SJM changes gaming division name from Sociedade de Jogos de Macau to SJM Resorts

Sociedade de Jogos de Macau

SJM Holdings Ltd, a Hong Kong Stock Exchange-listed operator of casinos and integrated entertainment resorts in Macau, has announced that it is changing the name of its gaming division from Sociedade de Jogos de Macau to SJM Resorts Ltd.

The casino operator revealed its decision regarding the rebranding of its gaming division in a securities filing made with the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. According to emerging media reports, the change has been made in an effort to better represent the company’s casino resort business.

In Portuguese, “Sociedade de Jogos de Macau” stands for to “Macau Gaming Society.” The new name/identity seems to be much better as “SJM Resorts” is the same in English, Portuguese as well as Chinese languages.

However, SJM Holdings’ name as well as its corporate identity will remain unchanged on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.

SJM Holdings’ boss Stanley Ho, who died last year at the age of 98, enjoyed monopoly on casino gambling in Macau for several decades. But after government of Portugal handed over the control of the enclave to Chinese authorities in 1999, many new commercial casino operators were welcomed. As a result of the entry of new players, SJM and its gambling division Sociedade de Jogos de Macau lost its monopoly as well as market share.

The Portuguese casino operator’s condition only worsened when Sands China, the Chinese division of American casino giant Las Vegas Sands Corporation, started developing the Cotai Strip and building a massive integrated resorts (IR) there.

In 2008, the Venetian became the first IR to open on the Cotai Strip. In 2009, the Plaza and City of Dreams came into existence. Currently, a total of 10 integrated casino resorts are present on the Cotai Strip.

SJM decided not to invest in Cotai, and that decision gradually trimmed down its market share. Prior to the pandemic, the operator held a roughly 15 per cent share of Macau’s casino gambling market. However, SJM is now optimistic that the company’s first IR in Cotai, the Grand Lisboa Palace, will help it regain some of its lost share in the market. The multi-billion-dollar Grand Lisboa Palace has been designed to focus on VIP play, a key segment that the group has largely lost to the five other casino operators in Macau.