Benitez family-led Leisure and Resorts World Corp. has reportedly been acquiring land in the province of Aklan, which according to the rumour mill will be the site of its planned integrated resort.
Just last week, LRWC said its wholly-owned subsidiary AB Leisure Global Inc. obtained a P2.5 billion loan from BDO Unibank Inc. to partly cover its resort development.
According to rumors, the company has been acquiring several parcels of land on Boracay Island, which is being eyed as a leisure and gaming hub to take advantage of the growing tourism in the area.
The proposed project may require an investment of as much as $500 million.
Galaxy Entertainment Group was earlier reported to be LRWC’s partner in the casino project. The Macau casino giant had its eyes set on the Philippines since 2012.
LRWC had long been wooing GEG to invest in the Philippines through a.partnership with the Sy family’s leisure development and gaming firm Belle Corp.
GEG, whose gaming operations are mostly based in Macau, hopes to take advantage of the growing Chinese VIP gamblers and junket operators visiting the Philippines.
The Macau casino giant is seen to benefit from its partnership with LRWC as Negros Occidental Rep. Alfredo Benitez is said to be close to President Duterte.
Benitez was among those named as possible 2019 senatorial candidates under Duterte’s Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban).
He had earlier supported the presidential candidacy of Senator Grace Poe.
LRWC was the fourth biggest gainer Thursday, closing 10.89 percent higher at P4.04 each. The company’s warrants which are listed on the stock exchange likewise went up 9.7 percent to P2.57 apiece.