Berjaya Group wins round 1: Court stops PCSO from allowing others to operate lotto outlets in Luzon
The Makati Regional Trial Court has issued an order stopping the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office from tapping other lotto equipment providers for Luzon.
The writ of preliminary injunction issued by the Makati RTC on Aug. 10 was in response to the petition lodged by the Philippine Gaming and Management Corp. (PGMC), which claims to hold the exclusive right to operate lottery outlets in Luzon.
The order restrains the PCSO from “conducting or continuing with the public bidding process and from performing any act that will violate petitioner’s right as exclusive supplier/lessor of lottery equipment to PCSO insofar as the Luzon territory is concerned.”
The court declined to rule on PCSO’s contention that a supplemental status quo agreement signed by PCSO and PGMC in 2015 terminates PGMC’s amended equipment lease agreement in 2018 because the issue is pending an arbitration.
PGMC, the local unit of Malaysian leisure giant Berjaya Group, sued PCSO to enforce its exclusive contract to supply an online system in Luzon.
It accused PCSO of violating the terms of their contract when the state-run charity agency allowed rival lotto operator Pacific Online Systems Corp., which operates lotto outlets in the Visayas and Mindanao, to do business in Luzon.
“PGMC seeks a restoration of three more years of exclusivity in Luzon in accordance with the [agreement] entered into with PCSO in 2007,” Berjaya Group said in a disclosure to the stock exchange.
“The issuer is confident its subsidiary PGMC will prevail in arbitration and will be awarded a restitution of its exclusivity period after August 2018 when the contracts of all other suppliers in Luzon shall expire, for a period of three years to end in 2021,” Berjaya said.