Form 20-F
Table of Contents
falseFY0001381640As of December 31, 2022 and 2021, the unamortized deferred financing costs related to the revolving credit facility of the 2020 Credit Facilities of $26,885 and $35,598 are included in long-term prepayments, deposits and other assets in the accompanying consolidated balance sheet, respectively. Adjusted property EBITDA” is net loss before interest, taxes, depreciation, amortization, pre-opening costs, development costs, property charges and other, share-based compensation, payments to the Philippine Parties, land rent to Belle, Corporate and Other expenses, and other non-operating income and expenses. The Company uses Adjusted property EBITDA to measure the operating performance of Mocha and Other, Altira Macau, City of Dreams, Studio City, City of Dreams Manila and Cyprus Operations and to compare the operating performance of its properties with those of its competitors.The amount mainly represents management fee expenses for the services provided by the senior management of Melco International and for the operation of the office of Melco’s Chief Executive Officer.As of December 31, 2022 and 2021, the current portion of restricted cash included bank time deposits of $50,971 and $275, respectively. On September 20, 2022, Melco Resorts Macau provided a bank guarantee in an amount of MOP820,000 (equivalent to $101,942) to the Macau government to guarantee the satisfaction of any labor liabilities upon expiry of the subconcession. As stipulated in the bank guarantee contract, MOP410,000 (equivalent to $50,971) was required to be held in a cash deposit account as collateral to secure the bank guarantee. In January 2023, such bank guarantee and the cash deposited in the collateral bank account were released. The cash of MOP410,000 (equivalent to $50,971) deposited in the collateral account was included in the current portion of restricted cash in the accompanying consolidated balance sheets as of December 31, 2022.As of December 31, 2022 and 2021, the non-current portion of restricted cash included bank time deposits of $124,592 and nil, respectively. On December 9, 2022, as required by the Concession, Melco Resorts Macau provided a bank guarantee in favor of the Macau government of MOP1,000,000 (equivalent to $124,319) to secure the fulfillment of performance of certain of its legal and contractual obligations, including labor obligations. As stipulated in the bank guarantee contract, MOP1,000,000 (equivalent to $124,319), or an equivalent amount in other currencies, is required to be held in a cash deposit account as collateral in order to secure the bank guarantee. The bank guarantee will remain in effect until 180 days after the earlier of the expiration and termination of the Concession. The cash of HK$970,874 (equivalent to $124,319) deposited in the collateral bank account was included in the non-current portion of restricted cash in the accompanying consolidated balance sheets as of December 31, 2022.The amount represents the share-based compensation expenses related to the grant of certain share-based awards under the Melco International Share Incentive Plan to an employee of the Company. Further information on the share-based compensation arrangements is included in Note 18.The amount represents goodwill which arose from the acquisition of Mocha Slot Group Limited and its subsidiaries by the Company in 2006. As of December 31, 2022, the gross amount of goodwill and accumulated impairment losses were $81,606 and nil, respectively.The amount represents goodwill which arose from the acquisition of Japan Ski Resort in 2019. The disposal of the Japan Ski Resort was completed on December 30, 2022 as disclosed in Note 6. 0001381640 2020-01-01 2020-12-31 0001381640 2022-01-01 2022-12-31 0001381640 2021-01-01 2021-12-31 0001381640 2022-12-31 0001381640 2021-12-31 0001381640 2020-12-31 0001381640 2022-09-20 2022-09-20 0001381640 2019-05-30 2019-05-30 0001381640 2020-04-29 2020-04-29 0001381640 2022-02-10 2022-02-10 0001381640 2022-06-01 2022-06-30 0001381640 2021-12-07 2021-12-07 0001381640 2022-09-20 0001381640 2022-12-08 0001381640 2022-12-09 0001381640 2019-12-31 0001381640 mlco:AdvanceCustomerDepositsAndTicketSalesMember 2022-12-31 0001381640 mlco:LoyaltyProgramLiabilitiesMember 2022-12-31 0001381640 mlco:OutstandingGamingChipsAndTokensMember 2022-12-31 0001381640 mlco:GamingSubconcessionMember 2022-12-31 0001381640 us-gaap:GeographicConcentrationRiskMember 2022-12-31 0001381640 country:MO mlco:AltiraMacauMember 2022-12-31 0001381640 country:MO mlco:CityOfDreamsMember 2022-12-31 0001381640 country:MO 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UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
WASHINGTON, D.C. 20549
 
 
FORM 20-F
 
 
 
REGISTRATION STATEMENT PURSUANT TO SECTION 12(b) OR 12(g) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
OR
 
ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2022
OR
 
TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
For the transition period from
    
    
    
to
    
    
    
OR
SHELL COMPANY REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
Date of event requiring this shell company report
Commission
file number 001-33178
 
 
MELCO RESORTS & ENTERTAINMENT LIMITED
(Exact name of Registrant as specified in its charter)
 
 
(Translation of Registrant’s name into English)
Cayman Islands
(Jurisdiction of incorporation or organization)
71 Robinson Road #04-03, Singapore 068895 and 38th Floor, The Centrium, 60 Wyndham Street, Central, Hong Kong
(Address of principal executive offices)
Amy Kuzdowicz, Senior Vice President, Chief Accounting Officer Tel +65 8488 9770 or +852 2598 3600, Fax +852 2537 3618
71 Robinson Road #04-03, Singapore 068895
(Name, Telephone, E-mail and/or Facsimile
number and Address of Company Contact Person)
Securities registered or to be registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:
 
Title of Each Class
 
Trading Symbol
 
Name of Each Exchange on Which Registered
American depositary shares
each representing three ordinary shares
 
MLCO
 
The Nasdaq Stock Market LLC
(The Nasdaq Global Select Market)
Securities registered or to be registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act:
None.
(Title of Class)
Securities for which there is a reporting obligation pursuant to Section 15(d) of the Act:
None.
(Title of Class)
 
 
Indicate the number of outstanding shares of each of the issuer’s classes of capital or common stock as of the close of the period covered by the annual report.
1,370,052,143 ordinary shares outstanding as of December 31, 2022
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule
 405 of the Securities Act.
    
Yes
 
    
No
 
If this report is an annual or transition report, indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section
 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
    
Yes
 
    
No
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant: (1)
 has filed all reports required to be filed by Section
 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2)
 has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days.
    
Yes
 
    
No
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of
 Regulation
 S-T
 (
§
232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit such files).
    
Yes
 
    
No
 
I
ndicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a
 non-accelerated
 filer, or an emerging growth company. See definition of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer,” and “emerging growth company” in
 Rule
 12b-2
 of the Exchange Act. (Check one):
 
Large accelerated filer
 
 
Accelerated filer 
  
Non-accelerated filer 
 
Emerging growth company 
If an emerging growth company that prepares its financial statements in accordance with U.S. GAAP, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section
 13(a) of the Exchange Act.
 
† The term “new or revised financial accounting standard” refers to any update issued by the Financial Accounting Standards Board to its Accounting Standards Codification after April 5, 2012.
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has filed a report on and attestation to its management’s assessment of the effectiveness of its internal control over financial reporting under Section
 404(b) of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (15 U.S.C. 7262(b)) by the registered public accounting firm that prepared or issued its audit report.
    
Yes
 
    
No
 
If securities are registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act, indicate by check mark whether the financial statements of the registrant included in the filing reflect the correction of an error to previously issued financial statements. 
Indicate by check mark whether any of those error corrections are restatements that required a recovery analysis of incentive-based compensation received by any of the registrant’s executive officers during the relevant recovery period pursuant to §240.10D-1(b). 
Indicate by check mark which basis of accounting the registrant has used to prepare the financial statements included in this filing:
 
U.S. GAAP 
  
International Financial Reporting Standards as issued
by the International Accounting Standards Board 
  
Other 
If “Other” has been checked in response to the previous question, indicate by check mark which financial statement item the registrant has elected to follow.
    
Item
 17
 
    
Item
 18
 
If this is an annual report, indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined
 in
 Rule
 12b-2
 of
 the Exchange Act).
    
Yes
 
    
No
 
(APPLICABLE ONLY TO ISSUERS INVOLVED IN BANKRUPTCY PROCEEDINGS DURING THE PAST FIVE YEARS)
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has filed all documents and reports required to be filed by Sections
 12, 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 subsequent to the distribution of securities under a plan confirmed by a court.
    
Yes
 
    
No
 
 
 
 


Table of Contents

TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

     Page  

INTRODUCTION

     1  

GLOSSARY

     6  

SPECIAL NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

     9  

EXCHANGE RATE INFORMATION

     11  

PART I

     11  

ITEM 1. IDENTITY OF DIRECTORS, SENIOR MANAGEMENT AND ADVISERS

     11  

ITEM 2. OFFER STATISTICS AND EXPECTED TIMETABLE

     11  

ITEM 3. KEY INFORMATION

     12  

A. [RESERVED]

     12  

B. CAPITALIZATION AND INDEBTEDNESS

     12  

C. REASONS FOR THE OFFER AND USE OF PROCEEDS

     12  

D. RISK FACTORS

     13  

ITEM 4. INFORMATION ON THE COMPANY

     78  

A. HISTORY AND DEVELOPMENT OF THE COMPANY

     78  

B. BUSINESS OVERVIEW

     79  

C. ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE

     118  

D. PROPERTY, PLANT AND EQUIPMENT

     120  

ITEM 4A. UNRESOLVED STAFF COMMENTS

     120  

ITEM 5. OPERATING AND FINANCIAL REVIEW AND PROSPECTS

     120  

A. OPERATING RESULTS

     120  

B. LIQUIDITY AND CAPITAL RESOURCES

     132  

C. RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT, PATENTS AND LICENSES, ETC.

     139  

D. TREND INFORMATION

     140  

E. CRITICAL ACCOUNTING ESTIMATES

     141  

ITEM 6. DIRECTORS, SENIOR MANAGEMENT AND EMPLOYEES

     146  

A. DIRECTORS AND SENIOR MANAGEMENT

     146  

B. COMPENSATION OF DIRECTORS AND EXECUTIVE OFFICERS

     151  

C. BOARD PRACTICES

     152  

D. EMPLOYEES

     158  

E. SHARE OWNERSHIP

     159  

F. DISCLOSURE OF A REGISTRANT’S ACTION TO RECOVER ERRONEOUSLY AWARDED COMPENSATION

     163  

ITEM 7. MAJOR SHAREHOLDERS AND RELATED PARTY TRANSACTIONS

     164  

A. MAJOR SHAREHOLDERS

     164  

B. RELATED PARTY TRANSACTIONS

     165  

C. INTERESTS OF EXPERTS AND COUNSEL

     166  

ITEM 8. FINANCIAL INFORMATION

     166  

A. CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS AND OTHER FINANCIAL INFORMATION

     166  

B. SIGNIFICANT CHANGES

     167  

ITEM 9. THE OFFER AND LISTING

     167  

A. OFFERING AND LISTING DETAILS

  

B. PLAN OF DISTRIBUTION

  

C. MARKETS

  

D. SELLING SHAREHOLDERS

  

E. DILUTION

  

F. EXPENSES OF THE ISSUE

  

ITEM 10. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

     167  

A. SHARE CAPITAL

     167  

B. MEMORANDUM AND ARTICLES OF ASSOCIATION

     167  

C. MATERIAL CONTRACTS

     178  

 

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     Page  

D. EXCHANGE CONTROLS

     178  

E. TAXATION

     178  

F. DIVIDENDS AND PAYING AGENTS

     184  

G. STATEMENT BY EXPERTS

     184  

H. DOCUMENTS ON DISPLAY

     184  

I. SUBSIDIARY INFORMATION

     185  

J. ANNUAL REPORT TO SECURITY HOLDERS

     185  

ITEM 11. QUANTITATIVE AND QUALITATIVE DISCLOSURES ABOUT MARKET RISK

     185  

ITEM 12. DESCRIPTION OF SECURITIES OTHER THAN EQUITY SECURITIES

     186  

A. DEBT SECURITIES

     186  

B. WARRANTS AND RIGHTS

     186  

C. OTHER SECURITIES

     186  

D. AMERICAN DEPOSITARY SHARES

     187  

PART II

     188  

ITEM 13. DEFAULTS, DIVIDEND ARREARAGES AND DELINQUENCIES

     188  

ITEM 14. MATERIAL MODIFICATIONS TO THE RIGHTS OF SECURITY HOLDERS AND USE OF PROCEEDS

     188  

ITEM 15. CONTROLS AND PROCEDURES

     188  

ITEM 16. [RESERVED]

     189  

ITEM 16A. AUDIT COMMITTEE FINANCIAL EXPERT

     189  

ITEM 16B. CODE OF ETHICS

     189  

ITEM 16C. PRINCIPAL ACCOUNTANT FEES AND SERVICES

     190  

ITEM 16D. EXEMPTIONS FROM THE LISTING STANDARDS FOR AUDIT COMMITTEES

     190  

ITEM 16E. PURCHASES OF EQUITY SECURITIES BY THE ISSUER AND AFFILIATED PURCHASERS

     191  

ITEM 16F. CHANGE IN REGISTRANT’S CERTIFYING ACCOUNTANT

     191  

ITEM 16G. CORPORATE GOVERNANCE

     191  

ITEM 16H. MINE SAFETY DISCLOSURE

     192  

ITEM 16I. DISCLOSURE REGARDING FOREIGN JURISDICTIONS THAT PREVENT INSPECTIONS

     192  

PART III

     193  

ITEM 17. FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

     193  

ITEM 18. FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

     193  

ITEM 19. EXHIBITS

     194  

SIGNATURES

     200  

INDEX TO CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

     F-1  

 

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INTRODUCTION

In this annual report on Form 20-F, unless otherwise indicated:

 

   

“2015 Credit Facilities” refers to the HK$13.65 billion (equivalent to US$1.75 billion) senior secured credit facilities agreement dated June 19, 2015, entered into by Melco Resorts Macau, as borrower, comprising (i) a Hong Kong dollar term loan facility of HK$3.90 billion (equivalent to US$499 million) with a term of six years and (ii) a HK$9.75 billion (equivalent to approximately US$1.25 billion) revolving credit facility, and following the repayment of all outstanding loan amounts, together with accrued interest and associated costs on May 7, 2020, other than the HK$1.0 million (equivalent to approximately US$128,000) which remains outstanding under the term loan facility, with a maturity date extended to June 24, 2024, and the HK$1.0 million (equivalent to approximately US$128,000) revolving credit facility commitment which remains available under the revolving credit facility, all other commitments under the 2015 Credit Facilities were cancelled;

 

   

“2020 Credit Facilities” refers to the senior facilities agreement dated April 29, 2020, entered into between, among others, MCO Nominee One, our subsidiary and as borrower, and Bank of China Limited, Macau Branch, Bank of Communications Co., Ltd. Macau Branch and Morgan Stanley Senior Funding, Inc., as joint global coordinators, under which lenders have made available HK$14.85 billion (equivalent to US$1.90 billion) in a revolving credit facility for a term of five years;

 

   

“2021 Studio City Company Notes” refers to the US$850.0 million aggregate principal amount of 7.250% senior secured notes due 2021 issued by Studio City Company on November 30, 2016 and as to which no amount remains outstanding following the redemption of all remaining outstanding amounts in August 2020;

 

   

“2021 Studio City Senior Secured Credit Facility” refers to the facility agreement dated November 23, 2016 with, among others, Bank of China Limited, Macau Branch, to amend, restate and extend the Studio City Project Facility to provide for senior secured credit facilities in an aggregate amount of HK$234.0 million (equivalent to approximately US$30.0 million), which consist of a HK$233.0 million (equivalent to approximately US$29.8 million) revolving credit facility and a HK$1.0 million (equivalent to approximately US$128,000) term loan facility, and which has been amended, restated and extended by the 2028 Studio City Senior Secured Credit Facility;

 

   

“2024 Studio City Notes” refers to the US$600.0 million aggregate principal amount of 7.25% senior notes due 2024 issued by Studio City Finance on February 11, 2019 and as to which no amount remains outstanding following the redemption of all remaining outstanding amounts in February 2021;

 

   

“2024 Studio City Notes Tender Offer” refers to the conditional tender offer by Studio City Finance to purchase for cash any and all of the outstanding 2024 Studio City Notes, which commenced and settled in January 2021;

 

   

“2025 Senior Notes” refers to the US$1.0 billion aggregate principal amount of 4.875% senior notes due 2025 issued by Melco Resorts Finance, of which US$650.0 million in aggregate principal amount was issued on June 6, 2017 and US$350.0 million in aggregate principal amount was issued on July 3, 2017;

 

   

“2025 Studio City Notes” refers to the US$500 million aggregate principal amount of 6.00% senior notes due 2025 issued by Studio City Finance on July 15, 2020;

 

   

“2026 Senior Notes” refers to the US$500.0 million aggregate principal amount of 5.250% senior notes due 2026 issued by Melco Resorts Finance on April 26, 2019;

 

   

“2027 Senior Notes” refers to the US$600.0 million aggregate principal amount of 5.625% senior notes due 2027 issued by Melco Resorts Finance on July 17, 2019;

 

   

“2027 Studio City Notes” refers to the US$350.0 million aggregate principal amount of 7.00% senior notes due 2027 issued by Studio City Company on February 16, 2022;

 

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“2028 Senior Notes” refers to the US$850 million aggregate principal amount of 5.750% senior notes due 2028 issued by Melco Resorts Finance, of which US$500.0 million in aggregate principal amount was issued on July 21, 2020 (the “First 2028 Senior Notes”) and US$350.0 million in aggregate principal amount was issued on August 11, 2020 (the “Additional 2028 Senior Notes”);

 

   

“2028 Studio City Notes” refers to the US$500 million aggregate principal amount of 6.50% senior notes due 2028 issued by Studio City Finance on July 15, 2020;

 

   

“2028 Studio City Senior Secured Credit Facility” refers to the facility agreement dated March 15, 2021 with, among others, Bank of China Limited, Macau Branch, to amend, restate and extend the 2021 Studio City Senior Secured Credit Facility to provide for senior secured credit facilities in an aggregate amount of HK$234.0 million, equivalent to approximately US$30.0 million which consist of a HK$233.0 million (approximately US$29.8 million) revolving credit facility and a HK$1.0 million (approximately US$128,000) term loan facility;

 

   

“2029 Senior Notes” refers to the US$1.15 billion aggregate principal amount of 5.375% senior notes due 2029 issued by Melco Resorts Finance, of which US$900.0 million in aggregate principal amount was issued on December 4, 2019 (“First 2029 Senior Notes”) and US$250.0 million in aggregate principal amount was issued on January 21, 2021 (“Additional 2029 Senior Notes”);

 

   

“2029 Studio City Notes” refers to the US$1.1 billion aggregate principal amount of 5.00% senior notes due 2029 issued by Studio City Finance, of which US$750.0 million in aggregate principal amount was issued on January 14, 2021 (“First 2029 Studio City Notes”) and US$350.0 million in aggregate principal amount was issued on May 20, 2021 (“Additional 2029 Studio City Notes”);

 

   

“ADSs” refers to our American depositary shares, each of which represents three ordinary shares;

 

   

“Altira Hotel” refers to our former subsidiary, Altira Hotel Limited, a Macau company through which we operated hotel and certain other non-gaming businesses at Altira Macau and which has been merged with Altira Resorts;

 

   

“Altira Macau” refers to an integrated resort located in Taipa, Macau;

 

   

“Altira Resorts” refers to our subsidiary, Altira Resorts Limited (formerly known as Altira Developments Limited), a Macau company through which we hold the land and building for Altira Macau and operate hotel and certain other non-gaming businesses at Altira Macau;

 

   

“AUD” and “Australian dollar(s)” refer to the legal currency of Australia;

 

   

“board” and “board of directors” refer to the board of directors of our Company or a duly constituted committee thereof;

 

   

“CGC” means the Cyprus Gaming and Casino Supervision Commission, also known as the Cyprus Gaming Commission;

 

   

“China” and “PRC” refer to the People’s Republic of China, excluding the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the PRC (Hong Kong), the Macau Special Administrative Region of the PRC (Macau) and Taiwan from a geographical point of view;

 

   

“City of Dreams” refers to an integrated resort located in Cotai, Macau, which currently features casino areas and four luxury hotels, including a collection of retail brands, a wet stage performance theater (temporarily closed since June 2020) and other entertainment venues;

 

   

“City of Dreams Manila” refers to an integrated resort located within Entertainment City, Manila;

 

   

“City of Dreams Mediterranean” refers to the integrated resort project in Cyprus, which is currently under development and is expected to be the largest and premier integrated resort in Europe upon its opening;

 

   

“COD Resorts” refers to our subsidiary, COD Resorts Limited (formerly known as Melco Crown (COD) Developments Limited), a Macau company through which we hold the land and buildings for

 

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City of Dreams, operate hotel and certain other non-gaming businesses at City of Dreams and provide shared services within the Company;

 

   

“Concession Contract” refers to the concession contract executed between the Macau Special Administrative Region and Melco Resorts Macau on December 16, 2022, that provides for the terms and conditions of the concession granted to Melco Resorts Macau;

 

   

“Crown Resorts” refers to Crown Resorts Limited, a company listed on the Australian Securities Exchange;

 

   

“Cyprus Acquisition” refers to our acquisition of a 75% equity interest in ICR Cyprus from Melco International with the issuance of 55.5 million ordinary shares as consideration pursuant to the definitive agreement entered into between us and Melco International on June 24, 2019 and completed on July 31, 2019;

 

   

“Cyprus License” refers to the gaming license granted by the government of Cyprus to Integrated Casino Resorts on June 26, 2017 to develop, operate and maintain an integrated casino resort in Limassol, Cyprus (and until the operation of such integrated casino resort, the operation of a temporary casino in Limassol) and up to four satellite casino premises in Cyprus, for a term of 30 years from the date of grant and with the right for exclusivity in Cyprus for the first 15 years of the term;

 

   

“DICJ” refers to the Direcção de Inspecção e Coordenação de Jogos (the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau), a department of the Public Administration of Macau;

 

   

“DSEC” refers to the Statistics and Census Service of Macau, a department of the government of Macau;

 

   

“EUR” and “Euro(s)” refer to the legal currency of the European Union;

 

   

“Greater China” refers to mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau, collectively;

 

   

“HIBOR” refers to the Hong Kong Interbank Offered Rate;

 

   

“HK$” and “H.K. dollar(s)” refer to the legal currency of Hong Kong;

 

   

“HKSE” refers to The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited;

 

   

“ICR Cyprus” refers to ICR Cyprus Holdings Limited, a company incorporated under the laws of Cyprus, in which we acquired a 75% equity interest upon the completion of the Cyprus Acquisition;

 

   

“Integrated Casino Resorts” refers to Integrated Casino Resorts Cyprus Limited, a company incorporated under the laws of Cyprus and which became our subsidiary upon the completion of the Cyprus Acquisition;

 

   

“MCO Nominee One” refers to our subsidiary, MCO Nominee One Limited;

 

   

“Melco International” refers to Melco International Development Limited, a Hong Kong-listed company;

 

   

“Melco Leisure” refers to Melco Leisure and Entertainment Group Limited, a company incorporated under the laws of the British Virgin Islands and a wholly-owned subsidiary of Melco International;

 

   

“Melco Philippine Parties” refers to Melco Resorts Leisure, MPHIL Holdings No. 1 and MPHIL Holdings No. 2;

 

   

“Melco Resorts Finance Notes” refers to, collectively, the 2025 Senior Notes, the 2026 Senior Notes, the 2027 Senior Notes, the 2028 Senior Notes and the 2029 Senior Notes;

 

   

“Melco Resorts Finance” refers to our subsidiary, Melco Resorts Finance Limited (formerly known as MCE Finance Limited), a Cayman Islands exempted company with limited liability;

 

   

“Melco Resorts Leisure” refers to our subsidiary, Melco Resorts Leisure (PHP) Corporation (formerly known as MCE Leisure (Philippines) Corporation), a corporation incorporated in the Philippines and one of the Philippine Licensees holding the Philippine License;

 

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“Melco Resorts Macau” refers to our subsidiary, Melco Resorts (Macau) Limited (formerly known as Melco Crown (Macau) Limited), a Macau company and the holder of our gaming concession;

 

   

“Mocha Clubs” refer to, collectively, our clubs with gaming machines, which are now the largest non-casino based operations of electronic gaming machines in Macau;

 

   

“MPHIL Holdings No. 1” refers to our subsidiary, MPHIL Holdings No. 1 Corporation (formerly known as MCE Holdings (Philippines) Corporation), a corporation incorporated in the Philippines and one of the Philippine Licensees holding the Philippine License;

 

   

“MPHIL Holdings No. 2” refers to our subsidiary, MPHIL Holdings No. 2 Corporation (formerly known as MCE Holdings No. 2 (Philippines) Corporation), a corporation incorporated in the Philippines and one of the Philippine Licensees holding the Philippine License;

 

   

“MRP” refers to our subsidiary, Melco Resorts and Entertainment (Philippines) Corporation (formerly known as Melco Crown (Philippines) Resorts Corporation), the shares of which have been delisted from the Philippine Stock Exchange since June 11, 2019 due to MRP’s public ownership having fallen below the minimum requirement of the Philippine Stock Exchange for more than six months;

 

   

“Nobu Manila” refers to the hotel development located in City of Dreams Manila branded as Nobu Hotel Manila;

 

   

“Nüwa Manila” refers to the hotel development located in City of Dreams Manila branded as Nüwa Hotel Manila, formerly branded as the Crown Towers hotel;

 

   

“our concession” and “our gaming concession” refers to the Macau gaming concession held by Melco Resorts Macau;

 

   

“PAGCOR” refers to the Philippines Amusement and Gaming Corporation, the Philippines regulatory body with jurisdiction over all gaming activities in the Philippines except for lottery, sweepstakes, cockfighting, horse racing and gaming inside the Cagayan Export Zone;

 

   

“PAGCOR Charter” refers to the Presidential Decree No. 1869, of the Philippines;

 

   

“Pataca(s)” or “MOP” refer to the legal currency of Macau;

 

   

“Philippine License” refers to the regular gaming license dated April 29, 2015 issued by PAGCOR to the Philippine Licensees in replacement of the Provisional License for the operation of City of Dreams Manila;

 

   

“Philippine Licensees” refers to holders of the Philippine License, which include the Melco Philippine Parties and the Philippine Parties;

 

   

“Philippine Parties” refers to SM Investments Corporation, Belle Corporation and PremiumLeisure and Amusement, Inc.;

 

   

“Philippine peso(s)” and “PHP” refer to the legal currency of the Philippines;

 

   

“Renminbi” and “RMB” refer to the legal currency of the PRC;

 

   

“SC ADSs” refers to the American depositary shares of SCI, each of which represents four Class A ordinary shares of SCI;

 

   

“SCI” and “Studio City International” refer to our subsidiary, Studio City International Holdings Limited, an exempted company registered by way of continuation in the Cayman Islands, the American depositary receipts of which are listed on the New York Stock Exchange;

 

   

“share(s)” and “ordinary share(s)” refer to our ordinary share(s), par value of US$0.01 each;

 

   

“Studio City” refers to a cinematically-themed integrated resort in Cotai, an area of reclaimed land located between the islands of Taipa and Coloane in Macau;

 

   

“Studio City Casino” refers to the gaming areas being operated within Studio City;

 

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“Studio City Casino Agreement” (previously referred to as the Services and Right to Use Arrangements) refers to the agreement entered into among Melco Resorts Macau and Studio City Entertainment, dated May 11, 2007 and amended on June 15, 2012 and June 23, 2022, and any other agreements or arrangements entered into from time to time, which may amend, supplement or relate to the aforementioned agreements or arrangements;

 

   

“Studio City Company” refers to our subsidiary, Studio City Company Limited, which is a company incorporated in the British Virgin Islands with limited liability and which is also an indirect subsidiary of SCI;

 

   

“Studio City Company Notes” refers to, collectively, (i) the US$850.0 million aggregate principal amount of 7.250% senior secured notes due 2021 (the “2021 Studio City Company Notes”), each issued by Studio City Company on November 30, 2016 and as to which no amount remains outstanding following the repayment in full upon maturity in November 2019 (in the case of the 2019 Studio City Company Notes) and the redemption of all remaining outstanding amounts in August 2020 (in the case of the 2021 Studio City Company Notes), and (ii) the 2027 Studio City Notes;

 

   

“Studio City Finance” refers to our subsidiary, Studio City Finance Limited, which is a company incorporated in the British Virgin Islands with limited liability and which is also an indirect subsidiary of SCI;

 

   

“Studio City Hotels” refers to our subsidiary, Studio City Hotels Limited, which is a company incorporated in Macau with limited liability and which is also an indirect subsidiary of SCI;

 

   

“Studio City Investments” refers to our subsidiary, Studio City Investments Limited, which is a company incorporated in the British Virgin Islands with limited liability and which is also an indirect subsidiary of SCI;

 

   

“Studio City IPO” refers to the initial public offering of a total of 33,062,500 SC ADSs, comprising the 28,750,000 SC ADSs sold initially and the 4,312,500 SC ADSs sold pursuant to the over-allotment option, at the price of US$12.50 per SC ADS;

 

   

“Studio City Notes” refer to, collectively, the 2025 Studio City Notes, the 2027 Studio City Notes, the 2028 Studio City Notes and the 2029 Studio City Notes;

 

   

“Studio City Project Facility” refers to the senior secured project facility, dated January 28, 2013 and as amended from time to time, entered into between, among others, Studio City Company as borrower and certain subsidiaries as guarantors, comprising a term loan facility of HK$10,080,460,000 (equivalent to approximately US$1.3 billion) and revolving credit facility of HK$775,420,000 (equivalent to approximately US$99 million), and which was amended, restated and extended by the 2021 Studio City Senior Secured Credit Facility;

 

   

“the Philippines” refers to the Republic of the Philippines;

 

   

“TWD” and “New Taiwan dollar(s)” refer to the legal currency of Taiwan;

 

   

“US$” and “U.S. dollar(s)” refer to the legal currency of the United States;

 

   

“U.S. GAAP” refers to the U.S. generally accepted accounting principles; and

 

   

“we”, “us”, “our”, “our Company”, “the Company” and “Melco” refer to Melco Resorts & Entertainment Limited and, as the context requires, its predecessor entities and its consolidated subsidiaries.

This annual report on Form 20-F includes our audited consolidated financial statements for the years ended December 31, 2022, 2021 and 2020 and as of December 31, 2022 and 2021.

Any discrepancies in any table between totals and sums of amounts listed therein are due to rounding. Accordingly, figures shown as totals in certain tables may not be an arithmetic aggregation of the figures preceding them.

 

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GLOSSARY

 

“average daily rate”    calculated by dividing total room revenues including complimentary rooms (less service charges, if any) by total rooms occupied, including complimentary rooms, i.e., average price of occupied rooms per day
“cage”    a secure room within a casino with a facility that allows patrons to carry out transactions required to participate in gaming activities, such as exchange of cash for chips and exchange of chips for cash or other chips
“chip”    round token that is used on casino gaming tables in lieu of cash
“concession”    a government grant for the operation of games of fortune and chance in casinos in Macau under an administrative contract pursuant to which a concessionaire, or the entity holding the concession, is authorized to operate games of fortune and chance in casinos in Macau
“dealer”    a casino employee who takes and pays out wagers or otherwise oversees a gaming table
“drop”    the amount of cash to purchase gaming chips and promotional vouchers that is deposited in a gaming table’s drop box, plus gaming chips purchased at the casino cage
“drop box”    a box or container that serves as a repository for cash, chip purchase vouchers, credit markers and forms used to record movements in the chip inventory on each table game
“electronic gaming table”    table with an electronic or computerized wagering and payment system that allow players to place bets from multiple-player gaming seats
“gaming machine”    slot machine and/or electronic gaming table
“gaming machine handle”    the total amount wagered in gaming machines
“gaming machine win rate”    gaming machine win (calculated before non-discretionary incentives (including our point-loyalty programs) and allocating casino revenues related to goods and services provided to gaming patrons on a complimentary basis) expressed as a percentage of gaming machine handle
“gaming promoter”    an individual or corporate entity who, for the purpose of promoting rolling chip and other gaming activities, arranges customer transportation and accommodation, provides credit in its sole discretion if authorized by a gaming operator and arranges food and beverage services and entertainment in exchange for commissions or other compensation from a gaming concessionaire
“integrated resort”    a resort which provides customers with a combination of hotel accommodations, casinos or gaming areas, retail and dining facilities, MICE space, entertainment venues and spas
“junket player”    a player sourced by gaming promoters to play in the VIP gaming rooms or areas
“marker”    evidence of indebtedness by a player to the casino or gaming operator
“mass market patron”    a customer who plays in the mass market segment
“mass market segment”    consists of both table games and gaming machines played by mass market players primarily for cash stakes
“mass market table games drop”    the amount of table games drop in the mass market table games segment

 

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“mass market table games hold percentage”    mass market table games win (calculated before discounts, commissions, non-discretionary incentives (including our point-loyalty programs) and allocating casino revenues related to goods and services provided to gaming patrons on a complimentary basis) as a percentage of mass market table games drop
“mass market table games segment”    the mass market segment consisting of mass market patrons who play table games
“MICE”    Meetings, Incentives, Conventions and Exhibitions, an acronym commonly used to refer to tourism involving large groups brought together for an event or specific purpose
“net rolling”    net turnover in a non-negotiable chip game
“non-negotiable chip”    promotional casino chip that is not to be exchanged for cash
“non-rolling chip”    chip that can be exchanged for cash, used by mass market patrons to make wagers
“occupancy rate”    the average percentage of available hotel rooms occupied, including complimentary rooms, during a period
“premium direct player”    a rolling chip player who is a direct customer of the concessionaire and is attracted to the casino through marketing efforts of the gaming operator
“progressive jackpot”    a jackpot for a gaming machine or table game where the value of the jackpot increases as wagers are made; multiple gaming machines or table games may be linked together to establish one progressive jackpot
“revenue per available room” or “REVPAR”    calculated by dividing total room revenues including complimentary rooms (less service charges, if any) by total rooms available, thereby representing a combination of hotel average daily room rates and occupancy
“rolling chip” or “VIP rolling chip”    non-negotiable chip primarily used by rolling chip patrons to make wagers
“rolling chip patron”    a player who primarily plays on a rolling chip or VIP rolling chip tables and typically plays for higher stakes than mass market gaming patrons
“rolling chip segment”    consists of table games played in private VIP gaming rooms or areas by rolling chip patrons who are either premium direct players or junket players
“rolling chip volume”    the amount of non-negotiable chips wagered and lost by the rolling chip market segment
“rolling chip win rate”    rolling chip table games win (calculated before discounts, commissions, non-discretionary incentives (including our point-loyalty programs) and allocating casino revenues related to goods and services provided to gaming patrons on a complimentary basis) as a percentage of rolling chip volume
“slot machine”    traditional slot or electronic gaming machine operated by a single player
“subconcession”    an agreement for the operation of games of fortune and chance in casinos between the entity holding the concession, or the concessionaire, and a subconcessionaire, pursuant to which the subconcessionaire is authorized to operate games of fortune and chance in casinos in Macau

 

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“table games win”    the amount of wagers won net of wagers lost on gaming tables that is retained and recorded as casino revenues. Table games win is calculated before discounts, commissions, non-discretionary incentives (including our point-loyalty programs) and allocating casino revenues related to goods and services provided to gaming patrons on a complimentary basis
“VIP gaming room”    gaming rooms or areas that have restricted access to rolling chip patrons and typically offer more personalized service than the general mass market gaming areas

 

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SPECIAL NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

This annual report on Form 20-F contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. These forward-looking statements relate to future events, including our future operating results and conditions, our prospects and our future financial performance and condition, all of which are largely based on our current expectations and projections. Known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors may cause our actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performances or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. See “Item 3. Key Information — D. Risk Factors” for a discussion of some risk factors that may affect our business and results of operations. Moreover, because we operate in a heavily regulated and evolving industry, may become highly leveraged and operate across various geographies including Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus, new risk factors may emerge from time to time and it is not possible for our management to predict all risk factors, nor can we assess the impact of these factors on our business or the extent to which any factor, or combination of factors, may cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in any forward-looking statement.

In some cases, forward-looking statements can be identified by words or phrases such as “may,” “will,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “aim,” “estimate,” “intend,” “plan,” “believe,” “potential,” “continue,” “is/are likely to” or other similar expressions. We have based the forward-looking statements largely on our current expectations and projections about future events and financial trends that we believe may affect our financial condition, results of operations, business strategy and financial needs. These forward-looking statements include, among other things, statements relating to:

 

   

our goals and strategies;

 

   

the impact of the global COVID-19 outbreak on our business, financial results and liquidity, which could worsen and persist for an unknown duration;

 

   

the reduced access to our target markets due to travel restrictions, and the potential long-term impact on customer retention;

 

   

restrictions or conditions on visitation by citizens of the PRC to Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus, including in connection with COVID-19, or the period of time required for tourism to return to pre-pandemic levels (if at all);

 

   

the impact on the travel and leisure industry from factors such as an outbreak of an infectious disease, such as COVID-19, extreme weather patterns or natural disasters, military conflicts and any future security alerts and/or terrorist attacks or other acts of violence;

 

   

general domestic or global political and economic conditions, including in the PRC and Hong Kong, which may impact levels of travel, leisure and consumer spending;

 

   

our ability to successfully operate our casinos;

 

   

our ability to obtain or maintain all required governmental approvals, authorizations and licenses for our operations;

 

   

our compliance with conditions and covenants under the existing and future indebtedness;

 

   

laws, rules and regulations which could bar the trading of the American depositary shares of our Company and of SCI in the United States such as the Holding Foreign Companies Accountable Act and the rules promulgated thereunder;

 

   

capital and credit market volatility;

 

   

our ability to raise additional capital, if and when required;

 

   

our future business development, results of operations and financial condition;

 

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fluctuations in the gaming and leisure market in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus;

 

   

the liberalization of travel restrictions on PRC citizens and convertibility of the Renminbi;

 

   

the tightened control of certain cross-border fund transfers from the PRC;

 

   

the availability of credit for gaming patrons;

 

   

the uncertainty of tourist behavior related to spending and vacationing at casino resorts in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus;

 

   

fluctuations in occupancy rates and average daily room rates in Macau and the Philippines;

 

   

our ability to continue to develop new technologies and/or upgrade our existing technologies;

 

   

cybersecurity risks including misappropriation of customer information or other breaches of information security;

 

   

our ability to protect our intellectual property rights;

 

   

increased competition from other casino hotel and resort projects in Macau and elsewhere in Asia, including the other concessionaires in Macau;

 

 

our ability to finalize the licensing procedures in relation to the Studio City Phase 2 project in accordance with Studio City land concession requirements;

 

   

our ability to complete the City of Dreams Mediterranean project in accordance with the Cyprus License requirements, our business plan, completion time and within budget;

 

   

our entering into new development and construction projects and new ventures in or outside of Macau, the Philippines or Cyprus;

 

   

construction cost estimates and completion time estimates for our development projects, including projected variances from budgeted costs and timing;

 

   

government policies, laws and regulations relating to the leisure and gaming industry, including the implementation of the new gaming law in Macau, and the legalization of gaming in other jurisdictions;

 

   

significantly increased regulatory scrutiny on Macau gaming promoters’ operations that has resulted in the cessation of business by many gaming promoters in Macau;

 

   

the completion of infrastructure projects in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus;

 

   

our ability to retain and gain new customers;

 

   

our ability to offer new services and attractions;

 

   

the outcome of any current and future litigation; and

 

   

other factors described under “Item 3. Key Information — D. Risk Factors.”

The forward-looking statements made in this annual report on Form 20-F relate only to events or information as of the date on which the statements are made in this annual report on Form 20-F. Except as required by law, we undertake no obligation to update or revise publicly any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, after the date on which the statements are made or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events. You should read this annual report on Form 20-F and the documents that we referenced in this annual report on Form 20-F and have filed as exhibits with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, or the SEC, completely and with the understanding that our actual future results may be materially different from what we expect.

 

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EXCHANGE RATE INFORMATION

The majority of our current revenues are denominated in H.K. dollars, whereas our current expenses are denominated predominantly in Patacas, H.K. dollars, the Philippine peso and Euros. Unless otherwise noted, all translations from H.K. dollars to U.S. dollars and from U.S. dollars to H.K. dollars in this annual report on Form 20-F were made at a rate of HK$7.809510 to US$1.00.

The H.K. dollar is freely convertible into other currencies (including the U.S. dollar). Since October 17, 1983, the H.K. dollar has been officially linked to the U.S. dollar at the rate of HK$7.80 to US$1.00. The market exchange rate has not deviated materially from the level of HK$7.80 to US$1.00 since the peg was first established. However, in May 2005, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority broadened the trading band from the original rate of HK$7.80 per U.S. dollar to a rate range of HK$7.75 to HK$7.85 per U.S. dollar. The Hong Kong government has stated its intention to maintain the link at that rate range and, acting through the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, has a number of means by which it may act to maintain exchange rate stability. However, no assurance can be given that the Hong Kong government will maintain the link at HK$7.75 to HK$7.85 per U.S. dollar or at all.

The Pataca is pegged to the H.K. dollar at a rate of HK$1.00 = MOP1.03. All translations from Patacas to U.S. dollars in this annual report on Form 20-F were made at the exchange rate of MOP8.043823 = US$1.00. This annual report on Form 20-F also contains translations of certain Renminbi, Euro, Philippine peso, Australian dollar and Singapore dollar amounts into U.S. dollars. Unless otherwise stated, all translations from Renminbi, Euros, Philippine pesos, Australian dollars and Singapore dollars to U.S. dollars in this annual report on Form 20-F were made at RMB6.923625 to US$1.00, EUR0.934290 to US$1.00, PHP56.119872 to US$1.00, AUD1.468024 to US$1.00 and SGD 1.339479 to US$1.00, respectively.

We make no representation that any RMB, EUR, PHP, AUD, SGC or U.S. dollar amounts could have been, or could be, converted into U.S. dollars or RMB or EUR or PHP or AUD or SGD, as the case may be, at any particular rate or at all.

PART I

 

ITEM 1.

IDENTITY OF DIRECTORS, SENIOR MANAGEMENT AND ADVISERS

Not applicable.

 

ITEM 2.

OFFER STATISTICS AND EXPECTED TIMETABLE

Not applicable.

 

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ITEM 3.

KEY INFORMATION

A. [RESERVED]

B. CAPITALIZATION AND INDEBTEDNESS

Not applicable.

C. REASONS FOR THE OFFER AND USE OF PROCEEDS

Not applicable.

 

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D. RISK FACTORS

Melco Resorts & Entertainment Limited is a Cayman Islands holding company. All of our current operations, and administrative and corporate functions are conducted in Macau, Hong Kong, Singapore, the Philippines, Cyprus and Japan.

We conduct our operations primarily in Macau, as well as in Cyprus and the Philippines. Our principal executive offices are located in Singapore and Hong Kong. Our operations in the PRC are currently limited to a wholly-owned subsidiary that hosts the domain names of our PRC websites and other online platforms which promote our non-gaming amenities in the PRC, and we do not have any material assets or operations in the PRC. We have no variable interest entities in our corporate structure.

We face various legal and operational risks and uncertainties as a company primarily operating in Macau, Cyprus and the Philippines. Since we derive a significant majority of our revenues from our Macau business and a significant number of our customers come from, and are expected to continue to come from, the PRC, our results of operations and financial condition may be materially and adversely affected by significant regulatory developments in the PRC. Actions by the PRC government can also significantly affect our business by, for example, placing limits on the ability of PRC residents to travel or remit currency outside of the PRC or by restricting gaming-related marketing activities in China. See “Item 3. Key Information — D. Risk Factors — Risks Relating to Our Business and Operations — Policies, campaigns and measures adopted by the PRC and/or Macau governments from time to time could materially and adversely affect our operations.”

The PRC may also intervene or influence our operations in Macau, Hong Kong or elsewhere at any time, or may exert more control over offerings conducted overseas and/or foreign investment in issuers in China, which could result in a material change in our operations and/or the value of our ordinary shares. Additionally, given recent statements by the Chinese government indicating an intent to exert more oversight and control over offerings that are conducted overseas and/or foreign investment in China-based issuers, any such action could significantly limit or completely hinder our ability to offer or continue to offer securities to investors and cause the value of our securities to significantly decline or be worthless. There are risks and uncertainties which we cannot foresee for the time being, and rules and regulations in China can change quickly with little or no advance notice. See “Item 3. Key Information — D. Risk Factors — Risks Relating to Our Business and Operations — Changes in laws, regulations and policies in the PRC and uncertainties in the legal systems in the PRC may expose us to risks. In addition, rules and regulations in the PRC can change quickly with little advance notice.” and “— The PRC government may influence our operations in Macau or elsewhere or intervene in our offerings conducted overseas or foreign investments in us. Its oversight and discretion over our business could result in material adverse changes in our operations and the value of our ordinary shares and ADSs.”

We also face risks associated with interpretations of or changes to gaming laws in the markets in which we operate, including the interpretation of the recently amended gaming law in Macau, as well as the continued ability by the U.S. Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, or PCAOB, to inspect our auditors.

Permissions, Approvals, Licenses, Certificates and Permits Required from the PRC, Hong Kong and Macau Authorities for Our Operations and for the Offering of Our Securities to Foreign Investors

As of the date of this annual report, we have obtained the requisite permissions, approvals, licenses, certificates and permits from the PRC, Hong Kong and Macau government authorities that are material for our business operations in those jurisdictions, including in particular our gaming concession in Macau which is required to operate gaming operations in that jurisdiction, and none have been denied. See “Item 4. Information on the Company — B. Business Overview — Regulations” for a detailed discussion on the concession in Macau.

Given the uncertainties of interpretation and implementation of relevant laws and regulations and enforcement practice by PRC government authorities, we may be required to obtain additional licenses, permits,

 

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filings or approvals for our business operations in the future, and may not be able to maintain or renew our current licenses, permits, filings or approvals. In addition, rules and regulations in China can change quickly with little advance notice. Uncertainties due to evolving laws and regulations could impede our ability to obtain or maintain certificates, permits or licenses required to conduct business in China. In the absence of required certificates, permits or licenses, governmental authorities could impose material sanctions or penalties on us.

Furthermore, in connection with our issuance of securities to foreign investors, under current PRC laws, regulations and regulatory rules, as of the date of this annual report, we do not believe we are currently required to obtain permissions from or complete any filing with the China Securities Regulatory Commission, or the CSRC, or required to go through cybersecurity review by the Cyberspace Administration of China, or the CAC. In addition, we have not been asked to obtain such permissions by any PRC authority or received any denial to do so. However, the PRC government has recently indicated an intent to exert more oversight and control over offerings that are conducted overseas and/or foreign investment by issuers like us. There remains significant uncertainty as to the enactment, interpretation and implementation of regulatory requirements related to overseas securities offerings and other capital markets activities.

If (i) we inadvertently conclude that certain regulatory permissions and approvals are not required or (ii) applicable laws, regulations, or interpretations change in a way that requires us to complete such filings or obtain such approvals in the future, and (iii) we are required to obtain such permissions or approvals in the future, but fail to receive or maintain such permissions or approvals, we may face sanctions by the CSRC, the CAC or other PRC regulatory agencies. These regulatory agencies may impose fines and penalties on us, limit our operations, limit our ability to pay dividends outside of China, limit our ability to list on stock exchanges outside of China or offer our securities to foreign investors or take other actions that could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects, as well as the trading price of our securities.

Cash Flows Through Our Organization

Cash from financing and operations is primarily retained by our operating subsidiaries for the purposes of funding our operating activities, capital expenditures and investing activities. Cash from financing and operations within our group is primarily transferred between our subsidiaries through intercompany loan arrangements or equity capital contributions. The dividend payments made in 2020 were funded primarily through dividends declared by our Macau operating subsidiary. In 2022, excluding cash transferred for the purpose of the settlement of intragroup charges, cash transferred to our holding company, Melco Resorts & Entertainment Limited, from its subsidiaries amounted to US$521.9 million. See also “Item 4. Information on the Company — B. Business Overview — Tax” and “Item 8. Financial Information — A. Consolidated Statements and Other Financial Information — Dividend Policy.” There are no regulatory or foreign exchange restrictions or limitations on our ability to transfer cash within our corporate group or to declare dividends to holders of our ADSs, except that Melco Resorts Macau must notify the Macau Chief Executive five business days in advance of any decision related to internal funds transfer in an amount greater than MOP2.5 billion (equivalent to approximately US$310.8 million), seek Macau government consent to grant or receive any loan in the amount of MOP100 million (equivalent to approximately US$12.4 million) and our subsidiaries incorporated in Macau are required to set aside a specified amount of the entity’s profit after tax as a legal reserve which is not distributable to the shareholders of such subsidiaries and authorization is required in the Philippines for inward and outward transfers of Philippine pesos above a certain amount. See “Item 4. Information on the Company — B. Business Overview — Regulations — Macau Regulations — Restrictions on Distribution of Profits Regulations” and “Item 10. Additional Information — D. Exchange Controls.”

On May 14, 2020, we announced the suspension of the Company’s quarterly dividend program to preserve liquidity in light of the COVID-19 outbreak and to continue investing in our business. Our board will continue to review from time to time our dividend policy as part of our commitment to maximizing shareholder value, taking into consideration our financial performance and market conditions. Prior to such date, we had declared various quarterly dividends in 2018, 2019 and 2020, as well as a special dividend in 2017. For each of

 

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the years ended December 31, 2020, 2021 and 2022, we paid dividends in the amount of US$35.4 million, US$0, and US$0, respectively, to holders of our ordinary shares with an address of record known to us to be in the United States (which includes all holders of our ADRs, which are traded on Nasdaq in the United States). These dividends were paid out of cash on hand. We cannot assure you that we will make any dividend payments on our shares in the future. Except as permitted under the Companies Act, as amended, of the Cayman Islands, or the Companies Act, and the common law of the Cayman Islands, we are not permitted to distribute dividends unless we have a profit, realized or unrealized, or a reserve set aside from profits which our directors determine is no longer needed. Our ability, or the ability of our subsidiaries, to pay dividends is further subject to restrictive covenants contained in the 2015 Credit Facilities, Studio City Notes, 2028 Studio City Senior Secured Credit Facility and other agreements governing indebtedness we and our subsidiaries may incur. For more details, see “Item 3. Key Information — D. Risk Factors — Risks Relating to Our Shares and ADSs — We cannot assure you that we will make dividend payments in the future.” and “— Item 5. Operating and Financial Review and Prospects — B. Liquidity and Capital Resources — Indebtedness.”

You should carefully consider all of the information in this annual report before making an investment in the ADSs. The following summarizes some, but not all, of the risks provided below. Please carefully consider all of the information discussed in this Item 3.D. “Risk Factors” in this annual report for a more thorough description of these and other risks.

You should carefully consider the following risk factors in addition to the other information set forth in this annual report. Our business, financial condition and results of operations can be affected materially and adversely by any of the following risk factors.

Risks Relating to Our Business and Operations

 

   

Risks relating to COVID-19 outbreaks and other epidemics and pandemics.

 

   

Risks relating to generating a substantial portion of revenues and cash from Macau and the Philippines.

 

   

Risks relating to our significant projects in various phases of development, including construction risks.

 

   

Risks relating to operating in a highly regulated industry, including complying with regulatory requirements for and restrictions on the development of City of Dreams Mediterranean.

 

   

Risks relating to regional political, social, economic and legal and regulatory risks in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus, and uncertainties in the legal systems in the PRC.

 

   

Risks relating to inadequate transportation infrastructure that may hinder increase in visitation to our properties.

 

   

Risks relating to natural disasters and extreme weather phenomena.

 

   

Risks relating to facing intense competition.

 

   

Risks relating to dependence on the continued efforts of our senior management and retaining qualified personnel.

 

   

Risks relating to inadequate insurance coverage.

 

   

Risks relating to operating in the gaming industry, including risk of cheating and counterfeiting, inability to collect receivables from credit customers.

 

   

Risks relating to mergers, acquisitions, strategic transactions, investments, divestments and developing new branded products or entering into new business lines.

 

   

Risks relating to fluctuations in currency exchange rates of currencies used in our business and availability of credit.

 

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Risks relating to failure to comply with anti-corruption laws and anti-money laundering policies.

 

   

Risks relating to cybersecurity risks and failure to protect the integrity and security of data, including customer information.

 

   

Risks relating to having a significant majority of operations in Macau, uncertainties in the legal systems in the PRC, and policies, campaigns and measures adopted by the PRC and/or Macau governments from time to time.

 

   

Risks relating to protection or alleged infringement of intellectual property rights.

 

   

Risks relating to environmental, social and governance and sustainability related concerns.

Risks Relating to Operating in the Gaming Industry in Macau

 

   

Risks relating to the Melco Resorts Macau’s Concession Contract.

 

   

Risks relating to restrictions on export of Renminbi.

 

   

Risks relating to adverse changes or developments in gaming laws or other regulations in Macau.

 

   

Risks relating to interpretation of the newly adopted gaming law in Macau and its implementation by the Macau government.

Risks Related to Operating in the Gaming Industry in the Philippines

 

   

Risks related to tenancy relationships as the land and buildings comprising the site of City of Dreams Manila are leased.

 

   

Risks relating to the regulatory requirements for and restrictions on the operation of City of Dreams Manila.

 

   

Risks relating to a suspension of VIP gaming operations at City of Dreams Manila under certain circumstances.

Risks Relating to Operating in the Gaming Industry in Cyprus

 

   

Risks relating to the continued partnership and cooperation of The Cyprus Phassouri (Zakaki) Limited for the operation of our Cyprus casinos.

 

   

Risks relating to the regulatory requirements for and restrictions on our operations in Cyprus and the development of City of Dreams Mediterranean.

Risks Relating to Our Corporate Structure and Ownership

 

   

Risks relating to the substantial influence our controlling shareholder has over us.

 

   

Risks relating to competing with Melco International on casino projects.

 

   

Risks relating to SCI’s ability to remain in compliance with the New York Stock Exchange requirements for its continued listing.

Risks Relating to Our Financing and Indebtedness

 

   

Risks relating to our current, projected and potential future indebtedness and our need for additional financing.

 

   

Risks relating to the inability to generate sufficient cash flow to meet our debt service obligations.

 

   

Risks relating to compliance with credit facilities and debt instruments.

 

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Risks Relating to Our Business and Operations

COVID-19 outbreaks have had an adverse effect on our operations, which has had a significant negative effect over the past three years and may continue to materially impact our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operations.

Uncertainty around COVID-19 outbreaks and related restrictions continue to have a material effect on our operations, financial position, and future prospects. In addition, the COVID-19 outbreak’s negative impact on the global economy, disruption to global supply chains and creation of significant volatility and disruption of financial markets is still being experienced.

While pandemic prevention measures in Macau were eased in 2021, in response to a COVID-19 outbreak in Macau, on June 23, 2022, the Macau government issued a closure order for certain entertainment venues which did not include casinos. Effective from July 11, 2022, however, the Macau government issued a further order whereby from July 11 until July 18, 2022, all entities performing industrial and commercial activities, including gaming activities, were required to suspend operation, except for those deemed essential to the community and to the day-to-day lives of the members of the public. These restrictions were further extended until July 23, 2022 and, as a result, City of Dreams, Studio City, Altira Macau and Mocha Clubs were closed for a total of 12 days in 2022. The Macau government continued to implement special prevention measures on operations until August 2, 2022, including the closure of certain outlets and limitations to capacity of operating outlets.

According to the DSEC, visitor arrivals to Macau decreased by 26.0% on a year-over-year basis in 2022 as compared to 2021 while, according to the DICJ, gross gaming revenues in Macau declined by 51.4% on a year-over-year basis in 2022. As we derive a significant majority of our revenues from our business and operations in Macau, our business has been materially and adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the Philippines, the government announced a re-opening of the Philippines’ borders to fully vaccinated international tourists with a negative RT-PCR test taken within 48 hours of departure of their country of origin, effective February 10, 2022, and lowered COVID-19 restrictions to alert level 1 starting from March 1, 2022, which allowed casinos to operate at 100% capacity, subject to certain guidelines. As of May 30, 2022, restrictions for inbound travelers into the Philippines were further eased and negative RT-PCR test results were no longer required for people who are fully vaccinated. In addition, as of October 28, 2022, the mandatory wearing of masks in the Philippines has been limited to healthcare facilities, medical transport vehicles and public transport.

In Cyprus, a surge in COVID-19 cases in December 2021 led to the introduction of certain gathering restrictions and enhanced COVID-19 test requirements for entry into venues such as restaurants and other entertainment venues in Cyprus, although our casinos in Cyprus remained open and certain restrictions were eased from February 21, 2022. Effective March 8, 2022, measures were further relaxed and the permissible capacity at our casinos was increased. The Cyprus Council of Ministers abolished the outdoor mask mandate from April 11, 2022 and further relaxed protective measures. There are currently no COVID-19 restrictions in place for travel to Cyprus and there is no requirement to present certificates of vaccination/testing for COVID-19.

While quarantine-free travel within Greater China has resumed and pandemic measures have eased significantly, the pace of our business recovery from COVID-19 is highly uncertain and will depend on the extent of any future COVID-19 outbreaks and government responses to such outbreaks, the efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines, including against any new strains of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, the impact of potentially higher unemployment rates, declines in income levels and loss of personal wealth resulting from COVID-19 outbreaks. Moreover, even if COVID-19 outbreaks subside, there is no guarantee that travel and consumer sentiment will rebound quickly or at all. In addition, although travel restrictions have eased in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus, we cannot be certain whether authorities in these jurisdictions, or the jurisdictions

 

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where many of our customers reside, will reintroduce any of the previously imposed restrictions or any new restrictions in response to COVID-19 or other health emergencies.

The COVID-19 outbreak has also caused severe disruptions to the businesses of our tenants and other business partners, which may increase the risk of them defaulting on their contractual obligations with us, which may adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations, including causing increases in our bad debts.

The disruptions to our business caused by COVID-19 outbreaks have had an adverse effect on our operations. For the years ended December 31, 2022, 2021 and 2020, our operating revenues generated amounted to US$1.35 billion, US$2.01 billion and US$1.73 billion, respectively. Lower operating revenues since 2020 were mainly due to the effects of COVID-19. As such disruptions remain, they could materially impact our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operations.

Our operating history may not serve as an adequate basis to judge our future operating results and prospects. We have significant projects in various phases of development and therefore are subject to significant risks and uncertainties.

Our business operating history is shorter than some of our competitors and therefore may not serve as an adequate basis for your evaluation of our business and prospects. City of Dreams commenced operations in June 2009 and Morpheus, the third phase of City of Dreams, opened in June 2018. In addition, City of Dreams Manila commenced operations in December 2014 and Studio City commenced operations in October 2015. We also operate a temporary casino in Limassol and three satellite casinos in Nicosia, Ayia Napa and Paphos and are developing City of Dreams Mediterranean in Cyprus, a project in which we acquired a 75% equity interest in July 2019 and which is under development and targeted to open during the second quarter of 2023.

We face certain risks, expenses and challenges in operating gaming businesses in intensely competitive markets. Some of the risks relate to our ability to:

 

   

fulfill conditions precedent to draw down or roll over funds from current and future credit facilities;

 

   

respond to economic uncertainties, including the social and economic disruptions caused by COVID-19 outbreaks;

 

   

comply with covenants under our existing and future debt issuances and credit facilities;

 

   

raise additional capital, as required;

 

   

respond to changing financing requirements;

 

   

operate, support, expand and develop our operations and our facilities, including opening Phase 2 of Studio City;

 

   

attract and retain customers and qualified employees;

 

   

maintain effective control of our operating costs and expenses;

 

   

maintain internal personnel, systems, controls and procedures to assure compliance with the extensive regulatory requirements applicable to the gaming business as well as regulatory compliance as a public company;

 

   

respond to competitive and/or deteriorating market conditions;

 

   

respond to changes in our regulatory environment and government policies; and

 

   

renew or extend leases or right to use agreements for existing Mocha Clubs.

If we are unable to complete any of these tasks or successfully manage one or more of the risks, we may be unable to operate our businesses in the manner we contemplate and generate revenues from such projects

 

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in the amounts and by the times we anticipate. We may also be unable to meet the conditions to draw on our existing or future financing facilities in order to fund various activities, which may result in a default under our existing or future financing facilities. If any of these events were to occur, it could cause a material adverse effect on our business and prospects, financial condition, results of operations and cash flows.

We generate a substantial portion of our cash flow from our properties in Macau and the Philippines and, as a result, we are subject to greater risks than a gaming company which operates in more geographical regions.

We are a parent company with limited business operations of our own. We conduct most of our business operations through our direct and indirect subsidiaries. Our primary sources of cash are dividends and distributions with respect to our ownership interests in our subsidiaries that are derived from the earnings and cash flow generated by our operating properties.

While we commenced operation of our temporary casino and satellite casinos in Cyprus, we primarily depend on our properties in Macau and City of Dreams Manila for our cash flow. Given that our operations are and will be primarily conducted based on our principal properties in Macau and one property in Manila prior to the opening of City of Dreams Mediterranean, we are and will be subject to greater risks resulting from limited diversification of our businesses and sources of revenues as compared to gaming companies with more operating properties in various geographic regions. These risks include, but are not limited to:

 

   

changes in Macau, the PRC and Philippine laws and regulations, including gaming laws and regulations or interpretations thereof, as well as PRC travel and visa policies;

 

   

dependence on the gaming, tourism and leisure market in Macau and the Philippines;

 

   

limited diversification of businesses and sources of revenues;

 

   

a decline in air, land or ferry passenger traffic to Macau or the Philippines from the PRC or other areas or countries due to higher ticket costs, fears concerning travel, travel restrictions or otherwise, including as a result of the outbreak of widespread health epidemics or pandemics, such as the outbreak of COVID-19;

 

   

a decline in economic and political conditions in Macau, the PRC, the Philippines or Asia, or an increase in competition within the gaming industry in Macau, the Philippines or generally in Asia;

 

   

inaccessibility to Macau or the Philippines due to inclement weather, road construction or closure of primary access routes;

 

   

austerity measures imposed now or in the future by the governments in the PRC or other countries in Asia;

 

   

tightened control of cross-border fund transfers, foreign exchange and/or anti-money laundering regulations or policies effected by the Chinese, Macau and/or Philippine governments;

 

   

any enforcement or legal measures taken by the Chinese government to deter gaming activities and/or marketing thereof;

 

   

natural and other disasters, including typhoons, earthquakes, volcano eruptions, outbreaks of infectious diseases, terrorism, violent criminal activities or disruption affecting Macau or the Philippines;

 

   

lower than expected rate of increase or decrease in the number of visitors to Macau or the Philippines;

 

   

relaxation of regulations on gaming laws in other regional economies that could compete with the Macau and the Philippine markets;

 

   

government restrictions on growth of gaming markets, including policies on gaming table allocation and caps; and

 

   

a decrease in gaming activities and other spending at our properties.

 

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Any of these developments or events could have a material adverse effect on our business, cash flows, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.

All of our current and future construction projects are and will be subject to significant development and construction risks, which could have a material adverse impact on related project timetables, costs and our ability to complete the projects.

All of our current and future construction projects are and will be subject to a number of risks, including:

 

   

changes to plans and specifications;

 

   

engineering problems, including defective plans and specifications;

 

   

disruptions to key supply markets, including shortages of, and price increases in, energy, materials and skilled and unskilled labor, geopolitical issues and inflation, including any disruptions resulting from COVID-19 outbreaks;

 

   

delays in obtaining or inability to obtain necessary permits, licenses and approvals;

 

   

lack of sufficient, or delays in availability of, financing;

 

   

changes in laws and regulations, or in the interpretation and enforcement of laws and regulations, applicable to gaming, leisure, residential, real estate development or construction projects;

 

   

labor disputes or work stoppages;

 

   

shortage of qualified contractors and suppliers or inability to enter into definitive contracts with contractors with sufficient skills, financial resources and experience on commercially reasonable terms, or at all;

 

   

disputes with, and defaults by, contractors and subcontractors and other counter-parties;

 

   

personal injuries to workers and other persons;

 

   

environmental, health and safety issues, including site accidents and the spread or outbreak of infectious diseases, such as COVID-19 outbreaks;

 

   

weather interferences or delays;

 

   

fires, typhoons and other natural disasters;

 

   

geological, construction, excavation, regulatory and equipment problems; and

 

   

other unanticipated circumstances or cost increases.

The occurrence of any of these events could increase the total costs, delay or prevent the construction or opening or otherwise affect the design and features of any existing or future construction projects which we might undertake. For example, in Cyprus, the City of Dreams Mediterranean project has experienced delays due to some difficulties that we have encountered with our contractors in relation to meeting labor resourcing plans and maintaining progress. We cannot guarantee that our construction costs or total project costs for existing or future projects will not increase beyond amounts initially budgeted.

We could encounter substantial cost increases or delays in the development of our projects, which could prevent or delay the opening of such projects.

We have certain projects under development. The completion of these projects is subject to a number of contingencies, including adverse developments in applicable legislation, delays or failures in obtaining necessary government licenses, permits or approvals, disruptions to key supply markets, including shortages of,

 

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and price increases in energy, materials and skilled and unskilled labor, and inflation, including any disruptions resulting from COVID-19 outbreaks. The occurrence of any of these developments could increase the total costs or delay or prevent the construction or opening of new projects, which could materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations. For example, construction work at our City of Dreams Mediterranean project was suspended from March 24, 2020 to May 3, 2020 as required by the Cyprus government under the restrictions imposed to restrict non-essential business activities due to COVID-19 outbreaks. We may also require additional financing to develop our projects. Our ability to obtain such financing depends on a number of factors beyond our control, including market conditions such as the economic disruptions as a result of COVID-19 outbreaks, investors’ and lenders’ perceptions of, and demand for, debt and equity securities of gaming companies and interest rates. In particular, the development of the City of Dreams Mediterranean project is still ongoing and still requires significant additional capital investments. See “Item 3. Key Information — D. Risk Factors — Risks Relating to Operating in the Gaming Industry in Cyprus — Our operations in Cyprus, particularly the development of City of Dreams Mediterranean, face significant risks and uncertainties which may materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations” for a discussion of the risks relating to the financing of the development of the City of Dreams Mediterranean project.

There is no assurance that the actual construction costs related to our projects will not exceed the costs we have projected and budgeted. In addition, construction costs, particularly labor costs, are increasing in Cyprus, where we are developing the City of Dreams Mediterranean, and we believe that they are likely to continue to increase due to the increase in building activity and labor shortage in Cyprus. In addition, our contractors in Cyprus may have to make up for any shortages in available labor from other European countries which could increase our labor costs and which may also be impacted if travel restrictions are re-imposed as a result of any COVID-19 outbreaks. For example, COVID-19 outbreaks have caused, among others, disruptions to the supply and import of labor, equipment and materials for our projects in Macau and Cyprus. Continuing increases in construction costs in Cyprus will increase the risk that construction will not be completed on time, within budget or at all, which could materially and adversely affect our business, cash flow, financial condition, results of operations and prospects.

Construction is subject to hazards that may cause personal injury or loss of life, thereby subjecting us to liabilities and possible losses, which may not be covered by insurance.

The construction of large-scale properties, including the types of projects we are or may be involved in, can be dangerous. Construction workers at such sites are subject to hazards that may cause personal injury or loss of life, thereby subjecting the contractors and us to liabilities, possible losses, delays in completion of the projects and negative publicity. For example, in December 2021, there was a fatality at the construction site at the remaining development project at Studio City and certain façade-related works were suspended for approximately two weeks. We believe, and require, our contractors take safety precautions that are consistent with industry practice, but these safety precautions may not be adequate to prevent serious personal injuries or loss of life, damage to property or delays. If accidents occur during the construction of any of our projects, we may be subject to delays, including delays imposed by regulators, liabilities and possible losses, which may not be covered by insurance, and our business, prospects and reputation may be materially and adversely affected.

As of March 30, 2023, we are finalizing the licensing procedures for the Phase 2 project for Studio City under the terms of a land concession which currently requires us to fully develop the land on which Studio City is located by June 30, 2023. Any extension of the development period is subject to Macau government review and approval at its discretion. In the event of any failure to complete certain licensing procedures by June 30, 2023, we could be forced to forfeit all or part of our investment in Studio City, along with our interest in the land on which Studio City is located and the building and structures on such land.

Land concessions in Macau are issued by the Macau government and generally have terms of 25 years and are renewable for further consecutive periods of ten years. Land concessions further stipulate a period within

 

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which the development of the land must be completed. The land on which Studio City is located must be fully developed by June 30, 2023, including obtaining the necessary permits, authorizations, approvals and licenses from the relevant governmental authorities.

While we opened Studio City in October 2015 and the construction of Phase 2 has been completed, as of March 30, 2023, the licensing procedures for the Phase 2 project of Studio City are still ongoing. There is no guarantee that we will obtain the required regulatory approvals by the deadline. Any further extension under the land concession is subject to Macau government review and approval at its discretion. While the Macau government may grant extensions if we meet certain legal requirements, there can be no assurance that the Macau government will grant us any further extension of the development period or not exercise its rights to terminate the Studio City land concession. In the event that no further extension is granted or the Studio City land concession is terminated, we could lose all or substantially all of our investment in Studio City, including our interest in the land and building and may not be able to continue to operate Studio City as planned, which will materially and adversely affect our business and prospects, results of operations and financial condition.

Studio City Casino is operated by us through the Studio City Casino Agreement under our concession. Changes in Macau’s gaming law or the requirements applicable to the concession granted to us by the Macau government could necessitate amendments to or the termination of the Studio City Casino Agreement, which may have a material adverse effect on the operation of the Studio City Casino.

Melco Resorts Macau and our subsidiary, Studio City Entertainment Limited, or Studio City Entertainment, have entered into the Studio City Casino Agreement since Studio City does not hold a gaming license in Macau. Under such arrangements, Melco Resorts Macau pays gaming taxes and the costs incurred in connection with its on-going operations from Studio City Casino’s gross gaming revenues. Studio City receives the residual amount and recognizes such residual amount as revenue arising from the Studio City Casino Agreement.

Any changes in Macau’s gaming law or other requirements applicable to the concession granted to us by the Macau government that necessitate amendments to, or termination of, the Studio City Casino Agreement, may have a material adverse effect on the operation of the Studio City Casino and, in turn, affect our financial condition and results of operations.

We are developing the City of Dreams Mediterranean project in Cyprus and are required under the Cyprus License to open the integrated casino resort by June 30, 2023. If we do not open City of Dreams Mediterranean by that time and the government of Cyprus does not grant us a further extension of the opening date, we would be required to pay a penalty to the Cyprus government or even have the Cyprus License terminated if such delay continues beyond a grace period.

Our subsidiary, Integrated Casino Resorts, was granted the Cyprus License by the government of Cyprus on June 26, 2017 to develop, operate and maintain an integrated casino resort in Limassol, Cyprus (and until the operation of such integrated casino resort, the operation of a temporary casino in Limassol) and up to four satellite casino premises in Cyprus, for a term of 30 years from the date of grant and with the right for exclusivity in Cyprus for the first 15 years of the term. Following an extension granted by the government of Cyprus, the Cyprus License required us to open City of Dreams Mediterranean by September 30, 2022, and if we failed to meet such timeline, Integrated Casino Resorts may be required to pay the government of Cyprus EUR10,000 (equivalent to approximately US$10,703) for each day of delay up to a maximum of EUR1.0 million (equivalent to approximately US$1.1 million). As City of Dreams Mediterranean did not commence operations by September 30, 2022, we may be required to pay the Government of Cyprus liquidated damages of EUR1.0 million (equivalent to approximately US$1.1 million).

 

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We have been informed that the Council of Ministers of Cyprus has approved an extension of the deadline to open the City of Dreams Mediterranean to June 30, 2023. The development of City of Dreams Mediterranean is still ongoing and there is no guarantee that we will complete the development of the City of Dreams Mediterranean project and open by the June 30, 2023 deadline. If we fail to commence operations of City of Dreams Mediterranean by June 30, 2023 and are not granted any further extension by the CGC and the government of Cyprus chooses to exercise its right to terminate the Cyprus License, we could lose all or substantially all of our investment in Cyprus and may not be able to continue our Cyprus operations as planned.

COVID-19 outbreaks have also caused significant disruptions to the construction work at City of Dreams Mediterranean. For example, construction work at City of Dreams Mediterranean was suspended from March 24, 2020 to May 3, 2020 as required by the Cyprus government under the restrictions imposed to restrict non-essential business activities due to COVID-19 outbreaks. There is no assurance that the Cyprus government will not impose additional restrictions due to COVID-19 outbreaks, which could cause further disruptions to the construction work at City of Dreams Mediterranean. Prior to COVID-19 outbreaks, we estimated that City of Dreams Mediterranean would open at the end of 2021. The City of Dreams Mediterranean is now currently targeted to open in the second quarter of 2023, subject to regulatory approvals.

If the scheduled opening date of City of Dreams Mediterranean is further delayed and extended beyond the current estimated date, we will have to apply for a further extension of the relevant period. Any application for an extension of the relevant period shall be subject to the review and approval of the government of Cyprus at its discretion and there can be no assurance that the government of Cyprus will grant us any necessary extension or not exercise its right to terminate the Cyprus License in the circumstances highlighted above. In the event that no further extension is granted by the government of Cyprus and the Cyprus License is terminated, we could lose all or substantially all of our investment in Cyprus and may not be able to continue to operate in Cyprus as planned, which may materially and adversely affect our business and prospects, results of operations and financial condition.

Our business in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus is subject to certain regional and global political, social and economic risks, as well as natural disasters, that may significantly affect visitations to our properties and have a material adverse effect on our results of operations.

The strength and profitability of our business will depend on consumer demand for integrated resorts and leisure travel in general. Terrorist and violent criminal activities in Europe, the United States, Southeast Asia and elsewhere, military conflicts between Russia and Ukraine, and/or in the Middle East, social events, natural disasters such as typhoons, tsunamis and earthquakes, and outbreaks of widespread health epidemics or pandemics, including COVID-19 outbreaks, have had and may continue to negatively affect travel and leisure expenditures, including lodging, gaming and tourism. We cannot predict the extent to which such acts or events may affect us, directly or indirectly, in the future. See also “— COVID-19 outbreaks have had an adverse effect on our operations, which has had a significant negative effect over the past three years and may continue to materially impact our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operations,” “— An outbreak of widespread health epidemics or pandemics, contagious disease or other outbreaks may have an adverse effect on the economies of affected countries or regions and may have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations” and “— Economic or trade sanctions and a heightened trend towards trade and technology “de-coupling” could negatively affect the relationships and collaborations with our suppliers, service providers, technology partners and other business partners and our ability to accept certain customers, which could materially and adversely affect our competitiveness and business operations.”

 

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We derive a significant majority of our revenues from our Macau business and a significant number of our customers come from, and are expected to continue to come from, the PRC. Accordingly, our results of operations and financial condition may be materially and adversely affected by significant political, social and economic developments in Macau and the PRC and our business is sensitive to the willingness and ability of our customers to travel. In particular, our operating results may be adversely affected by:

 

   

changes in Macau’s and the PRC’s political, economic and social conditions, including any slowdown in economic growth in the PRC;

 

   

tightening of travel or visa restrictions to Macau or from the PRC, including due to the outbreak of infectious diseases, such as COVID-19 outbreaks, or austerity measures which may be imposed by the Chinese government;

 

   

measures that may be introduced to control inflation, such as interest rate increases or bank account withdrawal controls; and

 

   

changes in the tax laws and regulations.

For example, our business and operations are affected by the travel or visa restrictions imposed by the PRC on its citizens from time to time. Even before the COVID-19 outbreak, the Chinese government imposed restrictions on exit visas granted to resident citizens of the PRC for travel to Macau. The PRC government further restricts the number of days that resident citizens of the PRC may spend in Macau for certain types of travel. Such travel and visa restrictions, and any changes imposed by the Chinese government from time to time, could disrupt the number of visitors from the PRC to our properties.

Our operations in Macau are also exposed to the risk of changes in laws and policies that govern operations of Macau-based companies. Tax laws and regulations may also be subject to amendments or different interpretations and implementation, thereby adversely affecting our profitability after tax. For example, the newly amended Macau gaming law requires the payment of a special premium if gross gaming revenue falls below the gross gaming revenue threshold set by the Macau government. In addition, the demand for gaming activities and related services and luxury amenities that we provide through our operations is dependent on discretionary consumer spending and, as with other forms of entertainment, is susceptible to downturns in global and regional economic conditions. An economic downturn may reduce consumers’ willingness to travel and reduce their spending overseas, which would adversely impact us as we depend on visitors from the PRC and other countries to generate a substantial portion of our revenues. Changes in discretionary consumer spending or consumer preferences could be driven by factors such as perceived or actual general economic conditions, high energy and food prices, the increased cost of travel, weak segments of the job market, perceived or actual disposable consumer income and wealth, fears of recession and changes in consumer confidence in the economy or fears of armed conflict or future acts of terrorism. An extended period of reduced discretionary spending and/or disruptions or declines in airline travel could materially and adversely affect our business, results of operations and financial condition.

In addition, our business and results of operations may be materially and adversely affected by any changes in the PRC’s economy, including any decrease in the pace of economic growth. Various factors have recently negatively impacted economic growth in the PRC, including the government’s efforts to cool the PRC’s housing market and disruptions caused by COVID-19 outbreaks, leading to reduced consumer discretionary budget and ultimately affecting their spending on travel and leisure. Moreover, the PRC’s common prosperity drive which started in 2021 aims to narrow the nation’s wealth gap by reducing wealth inequality. Any changes in the income tax rate or government policy which discourages conspicuous consumption may affect the spending patterns of our patrons. All of these measures as well as a number of measures taken by the Chinese government in recent years to control the rate of economic growth, including those designed to tighten credit and liquidity, may have contributed to a slowdown of the PRC’s economy. According to preliminary estimates from the National Bureau of Statistics of China, the PRC’s GDP growth rate was 3.0% in 2022, which was lower than the 8.4% in 2021. Any slowdown in the PRC’s future growth may have an adverse impact on financial markets,

 

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currency exchange rates and other economies, as well as the spending of visitors in Macau and our properties. There is no guarantee that economic downturns, whether actual or perceived, any further decrease in economic growth rates or an otherwise uncertain economic outlook in the PRC will not occur or persist in the future, that they will not be protracted or that governments will respond adequately to control and reverse such conditions, any of which could materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations.

City of Dreams Manila is located in the Philippines and is subject to certain economic, political and social risks within the Philippines. The Philippines has in the past experienced severe political and social instability, including acts of political violence and terrorism. Any future political or social instability in the Philippines could adversely affect the business operations and financial conditions of City of Dreams Manila. Any changes in the policies of the government or laws or regulations, or in the interpretation or enforcement of these laws and regulations, such as anti-smoking policies or legislation, may negatively impact consumption patterns of visitors to City of Dreams Manila and could adversely affect our business operations and financial condition.

In addition, demand for, and the prices of, gaming and entertainment products are directly influenced by economic conditions in the Philippines, including growth levels, interest rates, inflation, levels of business activity and consumption, and the amount of remittances received from overseas Filipino workers. Any deterioration in economic and political conditions in the Philippines or elsewhere in Asia could materially and adversely affect our Company’s business in the Philippines, as well as the prospects, financial condition and results of our operations in the Philippines.

Our business in the Philippines will also depend significantly on revenues from foreign visitors and be affected by the development of Manila and the Philippines as a tourist and gaming destination. Such revenues from foreign visitors and development of Manila and the Philippines may be disrupted by events that reduce foreigners’ willingness to travel to or create substantial disruption in Metro Manila and raise substantial concerns about visitors’ personal safety, such as power outages, civil disturbances, terrorist attacks and outbreaks of widespread health epidemics or pandemics, among others. The Philippines has also experienced a significant number of major catastrophes over the years, including typhoons, volcanic eruptions and earthquakes, which have caused road closures and work stoppages in the affected areas as well as cancellation of flights. We cannot predict the extent to which our business in the Philippines and tourism in Metro Manila in general will be affected by any of the above occurrences or fears that such occurrences will take place. We cannot guarantee that any disruption to our Philippine operations will not be protracted, that City of Dreams Manila will not suffer any damages and that any such damage will be completely covered by insurance, if at all. Should the Philippines fail to continue to develop as a tourist destination or should Entertainment City or Manila fail to become a widely recognized regional gaming destination, City of Dreams Manila may fail to attract a sufficient number of visitors, which would cause a material adverse effect on our business and prospects, financial condition, results of operations and cash flows. Any of these occurrences may disrupt our operations in the Philippines.

The subtropical climate and location of both Macau and the Philippines render them susceptible to typhoons, heavy rainstorms and other natural disasters, while Cyprus is also susceptible to heavy rainstorms and other natural disasters. In the event of a major typhoon, or other natural disasters in Macau, the Philippines or Cyprus, our properties may be severely damaged, our operations may be materially and adversely affected, and our properties may even be required to temporarily cease operations by regulatory authorities. Any flooding, unscheduled interruption in the technology or transportation services or interruption in the supply of public utilities is likely to result in an immediate and possibly substantial loss of revenues due to a shutdown of any of our properties and material adverse effect on our business operations and financial condition.

Our operations in Cyprus are subject to certain economic, political and social risks within Cyprus, particularly in the occupied part of Cyprus. There are ongoing political, social and economic issues in Cyprus relating to the division of the island following the Turkish invasion in 1974, with the occupied part of Cyprus controlled by Turkey and its military. These issues have been escalated due to the discovery and exploration of

 

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natural gas in Cyprus’ economic zones as well as in the economic zones around Cyprus. Turkey has unilaterally created its own economic zones overlapping the Cyprus ones and has initiated exploratory drilling in the area. Any future political or social instability in Cyprus could adversely affect the business operations and financial conditions of our casinos in Cyprus, as well as the development of City of Dreams Mediterranean. In addition, changes in government policies, laws or regulations, or in the interpretation or enforcement of these laws and regulations, may negatively impact consumption patterns of visitors to our facilities in Cyprus and could adversely affect our business operations and financial condition. Cyprus’ relatively small and open economy means it remains susceptible to rapid changes in economic conditions in the neighboring regions or globally.

In addition, the global macroeconomic environment is facing significant challenges, including disruptions to global economic conditions as a result of the responses to the global COVID-19 outbreaks, and dampened business sentiment and outlook. These events have also caused significant declines as well as volatility in global equity and debt capital markets, further elevating the risk of an extended global economic downturn or even a global recession that could in turn trigger a severe contraction of liquidity in the global credit markets. Even prior to these events, the global economy was facing the end of quantitative easing by the U.S. Federal Reserve, the continuation of international trade conflicts, including the trade disputes between the United States and China and the potential further escalation of trade tariffs and related retaliatory measures between these two countries and globally. Even though it recently eased its “zero-COVID” policy, the PRC government may re-impose lockdown or travel restriction measures in response to COVID-19 outbreaks or the outbreak of another contagious disease. Such measures, if re-imposed, may significantly affect visitation to our properties and have a material adverse effect on our results of operations.

Tensions between the United States and China have continued to escalate since 2020 in connection with ongoing trade disputes as well as other political factors, including COVID-19 outbreaks and the status of Hong Kong. Continued rising political tensions globally could reduce levels of trade, investment, technological exchanges and other economic activities between these two major economies, which would have a material adverse effect on global economic conditions and the stability of global financial markets. The introduction of the National Security Law for Hong Kong and the U.S. Department of State’s statements in reaction to it have resulted in a further deterioration in the Sino-U.S. bilateral relationship, which could negatively affect the Chinese economy and its demand for gaming and leisure activities.

Rising inflation rates globally and in places where we operate may not only weaken discretionary spending of our customers but also increase our operating costs due to possible hikes in salary payments for our staff or key expenditures in our business. Interest rate hikes from one or more central banks across the world to address inflation or other macroeconomic factors would increase the cost of credit throughout global economies, impacting cashflows for both businesses and consumers as they spend more on interest payments which, in turn, reduces the amount available for capital investments and for discretionary consumption. The sell-off in Chinese property bonds has also negatively impacted the market for high yield bonds of issuers in other sectors connected with the PRC, including those issued by Macau gaming operators. Other factors affecting discretionary consumer spending, including amounts of disposable consumer income, fears of recession, lack of consumer confidence in the economy, change in consumer preferences, high energy, fuel and other commodity costs and increased cost of travel may negatively impact our business. An extended period of reduced discretionary spending and/or disruptions or declines in airline travel have had and could materially adversely affect our business, results of operations and financial condition.

Considerable uncertainty remains over the long-term effects of the expansionary monetary and fiscal policies adopted by the central banks and financial authorities of some of the world’s leading economies, including the United States and the PRC. There have been concerns over conflicts, unrest and terrorist threats in the Ukraine, Middle East, Europe and Africa, including the ongoing military conflict between Russia and Ukraine, which has led to sanctions and export controls imposed by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom and other countries targeting Russia, its financial system and major financial institutions and certain Russian entities and persons. Such sanctions and measures have had and may continue to have a negative

 

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impact on our business and our ability to accept certain customers, including for our business in Cyprus where historically a significant number of tourists have come from Russia. The conflict has also caused volatility in global financial markets as well as rising prices in oil, gas and other commodities. In addition, concerns over conflicts involving the United States and Iran and potential conflicts involving the Korean peninsula persist. Any severe or prolonged slowdown in the global economy or increase in international trade or political conflicts may materially and adversely affect our business, results of operations and financial condition. In addition, continued turbulence in the international markets may adversely affect our ability to access capital markets to meet liquidity needs.

Policies, campaigns and measures adopted by the PRC and/or Macau governments from time to time could materially and adversely affect our operations.

A significant number of the customers of our properties come from, and are expected to continue to come from, the PRC. Any travel restrictions imposed by the PRC could negatively affect the number of patrons visiting our properties from the PRC. Since mid-2003, under the Individual Visit Scheme, or IVS, Chinese citizens from certain cities have been able to travel to Macau individually instead of as part of a tour group. The Chinese government has restricted and loosened IVS travel frequently and may continue to do so from time to time and it is unclear whether such measures will become more restrictive in the future. A decrease in the number of visitors from the PRC could adversely affect our results of operations. See also “— An outbreak of widespread health epidemics or pandemics, contagious disease or other outbreaks may have an adverse effect on the economies of affected countries or regions and may have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations” and “— COVID-19 outbreaks have had an adverse effect on our operations, which has had a significant negative effect over the past three years and may continue to materially impact our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operations” for discussions of how COVID-19 outbreaks have affected the policies and measures adopted by the PRC and Macau governments.

In addition, certain policies and campaigns implemented by the Chinese government may lead to a decline in the number of patrons visiting our properties in Macau and the amount of spending by such patrons. The strength and profitability of our business depends on consumer demand for integrated resorts in general and for the type of luxury amenities that a gaming operator offers. Initiatives and campaigns undertaken by the Chinese government in recent years have resulted in an overall dampening effect on the behavior of Chinese consumers and a decrease in their spending, particularly in luxury good sales and other discretionary spending. For example, the Chinese government’s ongoing anti-corruption campaign has had an overall dampening effect on the behavior of Chinese consumers and their spending patterns both domestically and abroad. In addition, the number of patrons visiting our properties may be affected by the Chinese government’s focus on deterring marketing of gaming to Chinese citizens by casinos and its initiatives to tighten monetary transfer regulations, increase monitoring of various transactions, including bank or credit card transactions, and reduce the amount that China-issued ATM cardholders can withdraw in each withdrawal and impose a limit on the annual aggregate amount that may be withdrawn. The Chinese government has also developed its digital currency and has performed certain test trials in its application within the PRC. If a digital currency is adopted by the Macau government for gaming operations in Macau, there could be a material and adverse impact on our operations, especially our VIP rolling chip operations, if limitations on transactions per player are also introduced in conjunction with the adoption of the digital currency.

Regulatory scrutiny of gaming promoters in the PRC and Macau has also affected the gaming business. See “— We depend upon gaming promoters for a portion of our gaming revenues in the Philippines and Cyprus and may depend on gaming promoters in Macau in the future. If we are unable to establish, maintain and increase the number of successful relationships with gaming promoters in the Philippines, Cyprus or Macau, the financial resources of our gaming promoters are insufficient to allow them to continue doing business or we are unable to find alternative means to attract VIP rolling chip patrons in markets such as Macau where gaming promoters have become subject to restrictions on doing business due to legal and regulatory requirements, our results of operations could be materially and adversely impacted” and “— Our business in Macau, the Philippines and

 

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Cyprus is subject to certain regional and global political, social and economic risks, as well as natural disasters, that may significantly affect visitations to our properties and have a material adverse effect on our results of operations.”

We derive a significant majority of our revenues from our Macau gaming business and any disruptions or downturns in the Macau gaming market may have a material impact on our business.

Prior to 2014, we derived substantially all of our revenues from our business and operations in Macau. While we now also generate revenues from our Philippine and Cyprus operations, we expect to continue to derive a significant majority of our revenues from our Macau gaming business and may be materially affected by any disruptions or downturns in the Macau gaming market. In 2019, for example, gross gaming revenues in Macau declined by 3.4% on a year-over-year basis as reported by the DICJ. We believe such year-over-year decline in 2019 was mainly driven by a decline in VIP gaming revenues in Macau and the slowdown in the Chinese economy. Governmental policies and responses to COVID-19 outbreaks have also resulted in a significant decline in inbound tourism in Macau with gross gaming revenues declining by 30.2% in 2022 compared to 2020, according to the DICJ. See “— COVID-19 outbreaks have had an adverse effect on our operations, which has had a significant negative effect over the past three years and may continue to materially impact our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operations” for a discussion of the impact of COVID-19 outbreaks on our business in Macau.

Although gross gaming revenues in Macau increased by 55.3% on a year-over-year basis in the first two months of 2023 compared to the first two months of 2022 according to the DICJ, we believe that disruptions from COVID-19 outbreaks are ongoing. Our business, financial condition and results of operations may be materially and adversely affected by such impacts or other disruptions in the Macau gaming market. COVID-19 outbreaks have had, and will likely continue to have, an adverse effect on the Macau gaming market. See “— An outbreak of widespread health epidemics or pandemics, contagious disease or other outbreaks may have an adverse effect on the economies of affected countries or regions and may have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.”

The gaming industries in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus are highly regulated.

Gaming is a highly regulated industry in Macau. Our Macau gaming business is subject to various laws and increased audits and inspections from regulators, such as those relating to licensing, tax rates and other regulatory obligations, such as anti-money laundering measures, which may change or become more stringent. Changes in laws may result in additional regulations being imposed on our gaming operations in Macau and our future projects. Our operations in Macau are also exposed to the risk of changes in the Macau government’s policies that govern operations of Macau-based companies and the Macau government’s interpretation of, or amendments to, our gaming concession. Any such adverse developments in the regulation of the Macau gaming industry could be difficult to comply with and could significantly increase our costs, which could cause our projects to be unsuccessful.

The Philippine gaming industry is also highly regulated, including the amendment to the existing Philippines Anti-Money Laundering Act, as amended (“Philippine AMLA”), whereby casinos are included as covered persons subject to reporting and other requirements under the Philippine AMLA. The Anti-Money Laundering Council and PAGCOR have also recently released regulations and guidelines on compliance. Amendments to existing anti-money laundering regulations have been signed into law, expanding the coverage of the Philippine AMLA and including Philippine offshore gaming operators in the list of covered persons, which includes the Melco Philippine Parties. The authority of the Anti-Money Laundering Council was also expanded to include the power to apply for search and seizure orders, issue subpoenas, and preserve, manage or dispose assets pursuant to a freeze order or judgment of forfeiture. While we have adjusted our anti-money laundering policies for our Philippine operations to the revised rules and regulations, we cannot assure you that our contractors, agents or employees will continually adhere to any such current or future policies or any such current

 

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or future policies will be effective in preventing our Philippines operations from being exploited for money laundering purposes. City of Dreams Manila is also subject to increased audits and inspections from regulators, including those relating to anti-money laundering requirements and measures. City of Dreams Manila may legally operate under the Philippine License, which requires a number of periodic approvals from and reports to PAGCOR. PAGCOR may refuse to approve proposals by us and our gaming promoters, or modify previously approved proposals and may require us and/or our gaming promoters to perform acts with which we disagree. The Philippine License requires, among others, 95.0% of City of Dreams Manila’s total employees to be locally hired. PAGCOR could also exert a substantial influence on our human resource policies, particularly with respect to the qualifications and salary levels for gaming employees, especially in light of the fact that employees assigned to the gaming operations are required by PAGCOR to obtain a Gaming Employment License. As a result, PAGCOR could have influence over City of Dreams Manila’s gaming operations. Moreover, because PAGCOR is also an operator of casinos and gaming establishments in the Philippines, it is possible that conflicts in relation to PAGCOR’s operating and regulatory functions may exist or may arise in the future. In addition, we and our gaming promoters may not be able to obtain, or maintain, all requisite approvals, permits and licenses that various Philippine and local government agencies may require. Any of the foregoing could adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations in the Philippines.

Furthermore, our licenses and permits from various Philippine government agencies, such as those related to labor, public works, safety, fire, buildings, health and environmental, are required to be renewed annually. There is no guarantee that the requirements for such permits and licenses will remain the same, or that the relevant Philippine government agencies will not impose additional and more onerous requirements or costs. This may affect our ability to renew our licenses and permits, which could adversely affect our business in the Philippines.

Gaming in Cyprus is a highly regulated new market and subject to various regulations of the European Union that are being developed and adopted in Cyprus. We have to review and amend our anti-money laundering policies for our operations in Cyprus when new laws and regulations come into force from time to time, including, for instance, a revised anti-money laundering Direction issued by the CGC in December 2021. The CGC has and will continue to conduct business-wide anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing inspections at our Cyprus casinos and review our anti-money laundering policies. As a result of these inspections and reviews, we have made, and expect we will need to continue to make, certain adjustments to our policies and compliance procedures from time to time. Being a new gaming regime, there are also fewer precedents on the interpretation of these laws and regulations. Our Cyprus License also requires us to submit periodic reports to the CGC in areas that include our operations, regulatory compliance, consumer complaints and financial and tax reporting. If we are unable to fully comply with any of the foregoing requirements, we could be subject to fines or other penalties.

Furthermore, our operations in Cyprus require various licenses and permits granted from various governmental or regulatory bodies in Cyprus, such as those related to labor, food and beverages, safety, fire, buildings, health and environmental, some of which are required to be renewed annually. There is no guarantee that the requirements for such permits and licenses will remain the same, or that the relevant Cyprus governmental or regulatory bodies will not impose additional and more onerous requirements. This may affect our ability to renew our licenses and permits or we may not be able to obtain any additional licenses or permits required to conduct our business as our business and operations expand in a timely manner or at all, which could adversely affect our business in Cyprus.

In addition, current laws and regulations in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus concerning gaming and gaming concessions and licenses, for the most part, have been enacted or amended recently and there are limited precedents on the interpretation of these laws and regulations. These laws and regulations are complex, and a court or administrative or regulatory body may in the future render an interpretation of these laws and regulations, or issue new or modified regulations, that differ from our interpretation.

 

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Changes in laws, regulations and policies in the PRC and uncertainties in the legal systems in the PRC may expose us to risks. In addition, rules and regulations in the PRC can change quickly with little advance notice.

We derive a significant majority of our revenues from our Macau business and a significant number of our customers come from, and are expected to continue to come from, the PRC. Accordingly, our results of operations and financial condition may be materially and adversely affected by significant regulatory developments not only in Macau but also in the PRC. Gaming-related activities in the PRC, including marketing activities, are strictly regulated by the PRC government and subject to various PRC laws and regulations. The PRC legal system continues to rapidly evolve and the interpretations of many laws, regulations and rules are not always uniform. Rules and regulations in the PRC can change quickly with little advance notice. In addition, the PRC legal system is based in part on government policies and internal rules, some of which are not published on a timely basis or at all. As a result, we may not be aware of all policies and rules imposed by the PRC authorities which may affect or relate to our business and operations. There is also no assurance that our interpretation of the laws and regulations that affect our activities in the PRC is or will be consistent with the interpretation and application by the PRC governmental authorities. These uncertainties may impede our ability to assess our legal rights or risks relating to our business and activities. Any changes in the laws and regulations, or in the interpretation or enforcement of these laws and regulations, that affect gaming-related activities in the PRC could require additional expenditures and efforts on our part to ensure our compliance with such regulations or interpretations and have a material and adverse effect on our business and prospects, financial condition and results of operations. We may incur penalties for any failure to comply with PRC laws and regulations.

In addition, PRC administrative and court authorities have significant discretion in interpreting and implementing statutory terms. Such discretion of the PRC administrative and court authorities increases the uncertainties in the PRC legal system and makes it difficult to evaluate the likely outcome of any administrative and court proceedings in the PRC and the level of legal protection we enjoy than in other legal systems. Any litigation or proceedings in the PRC may be protracted and result in substantial costs and diversion of our resources and management attention. Any such litigation or proceedings could have a material adverse effect on our business, reputation, financial condition and results of operations.

The PRC government may influence our operations in Macau or elsewhere or intervene in our offerings conducted overseas or foreign investments in us. Its oversight and discretion over our business could result in material adverse changes in our operations and the value of our ordinary shares and ADSs.

The Chinese government has exercised and continues to exercise substantial control over virtually every sector of the Chinese economy through regulation and state ownership. The PRC may also intervene or influence our operations in Macau or elsewhere at any time as the PRC government deems appropriate to further regulatory, political and societal goals, or may exert more control over offerings conducted overseas and/or foreign investment in PRC-based issuers, which could result in a material change in our operations and/or the value of our ordinary shares. Additionally, given recent statements by the Chinese government indicating an intent to exert more oversight and control over offerings that are conducted overseas and/or foreign investment in China-based issuers, any such action could significantly limit or completely hinder our ability to offer or continue to offer securities to investors and cause the value of our securities to significantly decline or be worthless. See also “— Failure to protect the integrity and security of company staff, supplier and customer information and comply with cybersecurity, data privacy, data protection or any other laws and regulations related to data may materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations, and/or result in damage to reputation and/or subject us to fines, penalties, lawsuits, restrictions on our use or transfer of data and other risks.” for discussions relating to the PRC Data Security Law.

If (i) we inadvertently conclude that certain regulatory permissions and approvals are not required or (ii) applicable laws, regulations, or interpretations change in a way that requires us to complete such filings or obtain such approvals in the future, and (iii) we are required to obtain such permissions or approvals in the future, but fail to receive or maintain such permissions or approvals, we may face sanctions by the CSRC, the CAC or other PRC regulatory agencies. These regulatory agencies may impose fines and penalties on us, limit

 

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our operations, limit our ability to pay dividends outside of China, limit our ability to list on stock exchanges outside of China or offer our securities to foreign investors or take other actions that could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects, as well as the trading price of our securities.

We face intense competition in Macau, the Philippines and elsewhere in Asia and Europe and may not be able to compete successfully.

The hotel, resort and gaming industries are highly competitive. The competitors of our business in Macau and the Philippines include many of the largest gaming, hospitality, leisure and resort companies in the world. Some of these current and future competitors are larger than we are and may have more diversified resources, better brand recognition and greater access to capital to support their developments and operations in Macau, the Philippines and elsewhere.

In the Philippine gaming market, we compete with hotels and resorts owned by both Philippine nationals and international operators. PAGCOR, an entity owned and controlled by the government of the Philippines, also operates gaming facilities across the Philippines. Our operations in the Philippines face competition from gaming operators in other more established gaming centers across the region, particularly those of Macau and Singapore, and other major gaming markets located around the world, including Australia and Las Vegas, as we attract similar pools of customers and tourists. A number of such other operators have a longer track record of gaming operations and such other markets have more established reputations as gaming markets. Our operations in the Philippines may not be successful in its efforts to attract foreign customers and independent gaming promoters to City of Dreams Manila, and to promote Manila as a gaming destination.

In Macau, some competitors have opened new properties, expanded operations and/or have announced intentions for further expansion and developments in Cotai, where City of Dreams and Studio City are located. For example, Phase 3 of the Galaxy Macau Resort is completed and is currently expected to be progressively opened in the second quarter of 2023, while Phase 4 is currently under development. Sands China Ltd., a subsidiary of Las Vegas Sands Corporation, has rebranded and redeveloped Sands Cotai Central in Cotai into The Londoner Macau, which opened in February 2021. MGM Grand Paradise S.A., or MGM Grand Paradise, opened MGM Cotai in February 2018. Sociedade de Jogos de Macau, S.A., or SJM, opened Grand Lisboa Palace in July 2021 and is expected to open two additional hotels in 2023. See “Item 4. Information on the Company — B. Business Overview — Market and Competition.”

In Cyprus, we hold a 30-year casino gaming license, which commenced from June 2017 and as to which the first 15 years are exclusive. Although we hold the exclusive license to operate casinos in the Republic of Cyprus until 2032, we may face competition from a large number of sports betting shops in Cyprus, online sports betting or other illegal casinos in Cyprus closed down by the Cyprus government, and from a large number of casinos in the occupied part of Cyprus or from casinos in nearby parts of Europe and the Middle East. For instance, Hard Rock International announced its plans to open a new integrated casino resort in Greece’s Athens Riviera in 2026 while Wynn Resorts Ltd. announced plans to open the first Gulf Arab region casino at the luxury resort it is constructing at Ras Al Khaimah in the UAE in 2026.

We also compete to some extent with casinos located in other countries, such as Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, Australia, New Zealand and elsewhere in the world, including Las Vegas and Atlantic City in the United States. Certain other regions or countries, such as Taiwan and Thailand, may also in the future legalize casino gaming and may not be subject to as stringent regulations as the Macau, Philippine and/or Cyprus markets. We also compete with both legal and illegal online gaming and sports betting websites, cruise ships operating out of Hong Kong and other areas of Asia that offer gaming. The proliferation of gaming venues in Asia could also significantly and adversely affect our business, financial condition, results of operations, cash flows and prospects.

Currently, Macau is the only region in the Greater China area offering legal casino gaming. Although the Chinese government has strictly enforced its regulations prohibiting domestic gaming operations, there may

 

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be casinos in parts of the PRC that are operated illegally and without licenses. In addition, there is no assurance that the PRC will not in the future permit domestic gaming operations. Competition from casinos in the PRC, legal or illegal, could materially and adversely affect our business, results of operations, financial condition, cash flows and prospects.

Our regional competitors also include casino resorts that Melco International may develop elsewhere in Asia Pacific outside Macau or elsewhere in the world. Melco International may develop different interests and strategies for projects in Asia or elsewhere in the world which conflict with the interests of our business in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus or otherwise compete with us for gaming and leisure customers. See “— Risks Relating to Our Corporate Structure and Ownership.”

Inadequate transportation infrastructure in the Philippines, Macau or Cyprus may hinder increases in visitations to the Philippines, Macau or Cyprus.

City of Dreams Manila is located within Entertainment City, a controlled development in the City of Paranaque. Other than Solaire and Okada Manila, there are currently no other integrated tourism resorts which have begun operations in Entertainment City. It is unlikely that Manila’s existing transportation infrastructure is capable of handling the increased number of tourist arrivals that may be necessary to support visitor traffic to large scale integrated resorts within Entertainment City, such as City of Dreams Manila. Although the NAIA Expressway and the newly constructed Skyway Stage-3 Expressway helped alleviate the traffic congestion within the area surrounding Entertainment City and the Philippine government continues to examine viable alternatives to ease traffic congestion in Manila, there is no guarantee that these measures will succeed, or that they will sufficiently eliminate the traffic problems or other deficiencies in Manila’s transportation infrastructure. Traffic congestion and other problems in Manila’s transportation infrastructure could adversely affect the tourism industry in the Philippines and reduce the number of potential visitors to City of Dreams Manila, which could, in turn, adversely affect our business and prospects, financial condition and results of our operations.

Macau consists of a peninsula and two islands and is connected to the PRC by five border crossings. Macau has an international airport and connections to the PRC and Hong Kong by road and ferry. To support Macau’s planned future development as a gaming and leisure destination, the frequency of bus, car, air and ferry services to Macau will need to increase. While various projects are under development to improve Macau’s internal and external transportation links, including the expansion of the Macau Light Rapid Transit and capacity expansion of border crossings, these projects may not be approved, financed or constructed in time to handle the projected increase in demand for transportation or at all, which could impede the expected increase in visitation to Macau and adversely affect our projects in Macau. Any further delays or termination of Macau’s transportation infrastructure projects may have a material adverse effect on our business, prospects, financial condition, results of operations and cash flows.

Furthermore, the expected benefits from the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge, which opened to traffic on October 23, 2018, may not fully materialize, and may not result in significantly increased traffic to Macau and to our Macau properties.

Cyprus is an island in the Eastern Basin of the Mediterranean Sea. It is the third largest island in the Mediterranean after the Italian islands of Sicily and Sardinia. Cyprus has two international airports with flights to other European countries as well as outside of Europe such as Russia, the Middle East and Africa. Cyprus’ existing transportation infrastructure may be incapable of handling the increased number of tourist arrivals that may be necessary to support visitor traffic to our temporary casino in Limassol and three satellite casinos in Nicosia, Ayia Napa and Paphos or City of Dreams Mediterranean (which is currently under development). There is no guarantee that any measures taken by the government of Cyprus will successfully increase air traffic into Cyprus or sufficiently eliminate the traffic problem or other deficiencies in Cyprus’ transportation infrastructure.

 

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The governments in Macau and the Philippines could grant additional rights to conduct gaming in the future, which could significantly increase competition and cause us to lose or be unable to gain market share.

In Macau, Melco Resorts Macau is one of the six companies authorized by the Macau government to operate gaming activities. Pursuant to the terms of Macau Law No. 16/2001, or the Macau Gaming Operations Law, as amended, the maximum number of gaming concessions is six. Concessionaires are prohibited from entering into a subconcession agreement. Notwithstanding, the policies and laws of the Macau government may change and could result in the grant of additional concessions or subconcessions, which could significantly increase competition in Macau and also cause us to lose or be unable to maintain or gain market share and, as a result, adversely affect our business.

In the Philippines, PAGCOR has issued regular gaming licenses to the Philippine Licensees and one other company and additional provisional gaming licenses to two other companies in the Philippines for the development and operation of integrated casino resorts. PAGCOR also granted a provisional license to a casino operator located at Las Piñas City and has also licensed private casino operators in special economic zones, including four in the Clark Ecozone, one in Poro Point, La Union, one in Binangonan, Rizal and one in the Newport City CyberTourism Zone, Pasay City. The Philippine License granted by PAGCOR to the Philippine Licensees is non-exclusive, and there is no assurance that PAGCOR will not issue additional gaming licenses, or that it will limit the number of licenses it issues. Any additional gaming licenses issued by PAGCOR could increase competition in the Philippine gaming industry, which could diminish the value of the Philippine Licensees’ Philippine License. This could materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations in the Philippines.

Any simultaneous planning, design, construction and development of any projects may stretch our management’s time and resources, which could lead to delays, increased costs and other inefficiencies in the development of these projects.

There may be overlap in the planning, design, development and construction periods of our projects. Members of our senior management will be involved in planning and developing our projects at the same time, in addition to overseeing our day-to-day operations. Our management may be unable to devote sufficient time and attention to such projects, as well as our operating properties, which may result in delays in the construction or opening of any of our current or future projects, cause construction cost overruns or cause the performance of our operating properties to be lower than expected, which could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Our business depends substantially on the continuing efforts of our senior management, and our business may be severely disrupted if we lose their services.

We place substantial reliance on the gaming, project development and hospitality industry experience and knowledge of the Macau, the Philippine and the Cyprus markets possessed by members of our board of directors, our senior management team, as well as other management personnel. We may experience changes in our key management in the future, including for reasons beyond our control. The loss of Mr. Lawrence Ho’s services or the services of the other members of our board of directors or key management personnel could hinder our ability to effectively manage our business and implement our growth and development strategies. Finding suitable replacements for members of our board of directors or key management personnel could be difficult, and competition for personnel of similar experience could be intense in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus. In addition, we do not currently carry key person insurance on any members of our senior management team.

The success of our business depends on our ability to attract and retain an adequate number of qualified personnel. A limited labor supply, increased competition and any increase in demands from our employees could cause labor costs to increase.

The pool of experienced gaming and other skilled and unskilled personnel in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus is limited. Our demand remains high for personnel occupying sensitive positions that require

 

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qualifications sufficient to meet gaming regulations and other requirements or skills and knowledge. Competitive demand for qualified personnel is expected to continue due to the increased number of properties recently opened and expected to open in close proximity to our properties in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus. Notably, with the easing of COVID-19 travel restrictions in Macau and the increase in business volumes, we will need to hire a significant number of employees to operate at full capacity, with a significant portion of these vacancies expected to be filled by non-resident workers for which Macau government-issued quotas are required. In addition, we have a substantial recruitment drive in effect, particularly for managerial and operational related positions, in anticipation of the opening of the City of Dreams Mediterranean in 2023. Conversely, the expected increase in demand for personnel in Macau due to the easing of COVID-19 travel restrictions could adversely affect the supply of personnel in the Philippines. The limited supply and increased competition in the labor market could cause our labor costs to increase.

Macau government policy prohibits us from hiring non-Macau resident dealers and supervisors. In addition, the Macau government has continuously stressed that it will continue to monitor the proportion of management positions held by Macau residents and implement measures to ensure such proportion remains no less than 85% of senior and mid-management positions. Due to the increased competition in the labor market and the relevant regulatory restrictions, we cannot assure you that we will be able to attract and retain a sufficient number of qualified individuals to operate our properties, or that costs to recruit and retain such personnel will not increase significantly. In addition, we have previously been subject to certain labor demands in Macau. The inability to attract, retain and motivate qualified employees and management personnel and to continuously optimize our workforce based on changing business demands could have a material adverse effect on our business.

Further, the Macau government is currently enforcing a labor policy pursuant to which the ratio of local to foreign workers that may be recruited is determined on a case-by-case basis and, in relation to construction work, must be at least 1:1 unless otherwise authorized by the Macau government. Such a policy could have a material adverse effect on our ability to complete work on our properties. Moreover, if the Macau government enforces similar restrictive ratios in other areas, such as the gaming, hotel and entertainment sectors, or imposes additional restrictions on the hiring of foreign workers generally, this could have a material adverse effect on the operation of our properties.

In the Philippines, the Philippine License requires that at least 95% of City of Dreams Manila’s total employees be locally hired. Our inability to recruit a sufficient number of employees in the Philippines to meet this provision or to do so in a cost-effective manner may cause us to lower our hiring standards, which may have an adverse impact on City of Dreams Manila’s service levels, reputation and business. In addition, in February 2019, Kilusan ng Manggagawang Makabayan (KMM-Katipunan) Melco Resorts Leisure (PHP) Corporation — Table Games Division — Chapter, or KMM-MELCO TGD, was certified by the Philippines Department of Labor to represent the rank-and-file employees of the Table Games Division of City of Dreams Manila as the former’s sole and exclusive bargaining agent and a collective bargaining agreement was subsequently signed between City of Dreams Manila and the KMM-MELCO TGD in February 2020. We reached a new collective bargaining agreement with the KMM-MELCO TGD in 2022, which will be in effect from July 1, 2022 until June 30, 2024. This new collective bargaining agreement covers essentially the same terms as the previous collective bargaining agreement, with the key differences being a slight adjustment to salaries with effect from July 1, 2023, and an improved leave policy for employees of Table Games Division of City of Dreams Manila. More recently, in February 2023, a petition was granted permitting KMM-Katipunan Melco Resorts and Leisure (Phil) Corporation Integrated Resorts and Casino (Housekeeping Chapter) to hold a certification election in an effort to represent the employees of the Housekeeping Division of City of Dreams Manila. In addition, another union, Kilusan ng Manggagawang Makabayan (KMM-Katipunan) Melco Resorts Leisure (PHP) Corporation — Security and Surveillance Division — Chapter, or KMM-MELCO SSDC, also sought to organize and represent the employees of the Security Division of City of Dreams Manila and filed a petition in February 2021 and July 2022 to request an election by the relevant employees. However, a majority of the members of the Security Division voted against the unionization of their division at the certification election in 2021, and the

 

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KMM-MELCO SSDC withdrew its petition for certification election in November 2022. Any demand or activities of such collective bargaining agent, or any additional collective bargaining agents that may be certified by the Philippines Department of Labor in the future, could have a material adverse effect on the business and operations of City of Dreams Manila or our financial condition and results of operations. The impact of any union activity is difficult to predict, and, if not resolved in a timely and cost-effective manner, industrial action or other labor unrest could prevent or hinder our operations from being carried out as we expect and could have a material adverse effect on our business, results of operations and financial condition.

In Cyprus, there is also a risk that our employees may organize or become part of a collective bargaining agreement or trade union. There is also a shortage of experienced gaming and other skilled and unskilled personnel as Cyprus is a new gaming market and we also compete with other local hotels and resorts for non-gaming personnel in the hospitality sector. There is also a shortage of labor in the construction sector given the robust building activities in Cyprus and the difficulty in applying for work permits for non-EU citizens. As a result, our contractors may have to make up for any shortages in available labor from Greece or other European countries which could also increase our labor costs.

Moreover, casino resort employers may also contest the hiring of their former employees by us. There can be no assurance that any such claim will not be successful or other similar claims will not be brought against us or any of our affiliates in the future. In the event any such claim is found to be valid, we could suffer losses and face difficulties in recruiting from competing operators. If found to have basis by courts, these allegations could also result in possible civil liabilities on us or our relevant officers if such officers are shown to have deliberately and willfully condoned a patently unlawful act.

Our insurance coverage may not be adequate to cover all losses that we may suffer from our operations. In addition, our insurance costs may increase and we may not be able to obtain the same insurance coverage in the future.

We currently have various insurance policies providing certain coverage typically required by gaming and hospitality operations in Macau. In addition, we maintain various types of insurance policies for our Philippine and Cyprus business and operations, including mainly property damage, business interruption, general liability and crime insurance policies. In the Philippines, we also maintain a surety bond required by PAGCOR, which secures the prompt payment by Melco Resorts Leisure of the monthly licensee fees due to PAGCOR. These insurance policies provide coverage that is subject to policy terms, conditions and limits. There is no assurance that we will be able to renew such insurance coverage on equivalent premium costs, terms, conditions and limits upon their expiration. Certain events, such as typhoons and fires, may increase and have increased our premium costs. The cost of coverage may in the future become so high that we may be unable to obtain the insurance policies we deem necessary for the operation of our projects on commercially practicable terms, or at all, or we may need to reduce our policy limits or agree to certain exclusions from our coverage. Our cyber insurance may not cover all expenses and losses and, accordingly, such breaches or other compromises of our information security or that of its third-party service providers or business partners may have an adverse impact on our operating results and financial condition.

We cannot assure you that any such insurance policies we obtained or may obtain will be adequate to protect us from material losses. Certain acts and events, including any pandemic, epidemic of infectious diseases, earthquakes, hurricanes and floods, terrorist acts, or cybersecurity attacks could expose us to significant uninsured losses that may be, or are, uninsurable or too expensive to justify obtaining insurance. As a result, we may not be successful in obtaining insurance without increases in cost or decreases in coverage levels. In addition, in the event of a substantial loss, the insurance coverage we carry may not be sufficient to pay the full market value or replacement cost of our lost investment or in some cases could result in certain losses being totally uninsured. In addition to the damages caused directly by a casualty loss (such as fire or natural disasters), infectious disease outbreaks or terrorist acts, we may suffer a disruption of our business as a result of these events or be subject to claims by third parties who may be injured or harmed. As an example, COVID-19 outbreaks

 

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have resulted in many governments around the world, including in the Philippines, Macau and Cyprus where we operate, placing quarantines disallowing residents to travel into or outside of the quarantined area, enforcing business closures and other restrictions. While we intend to continue carrying business interruption insurance and general liability insurance, such insurance may not be available on commercially reasonable terms, or at all, and, in any event, may not be adequate to cover any losses that may result from such events.

There is limited available insurance in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus and our insurers in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus may need to secure reinsurance in order to provide adequate cover for our property and development projects. Our credit agreements, our gaming concession in Macau, the Philippine License granted by PAGCOR and certain other material agreements require a certain level of insurance to be maintained, which must be obtained in Macau and the Philippines, respectively, unless otherwise authorized by the respective counter-parties. Failure to maintain adequate coverage could be an event of default under our credit agreements, our gaming concession in Macau or the Philippine License and may have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations and cash flows.

Gaming inherently involves elements of chance that are beyond our control, and as a result our revenues may be volatile and the winnings of our patrons could exceed our casino winnings at particular times during our operations.

The gaming industry is characterized by the element of chance. In addition to the element of chance, theoretical expected win rates are also affected by other factors, including players’ skills and experience, the mix of games played, the financial resources of players, the spread of table limits, the volume and mix of bets placed by our players, the amount of time players spend on gambling and the number of our players. As a result, our actual win rates may differ greatly over short time periods, such as from quarter to quarter, and could cause our quarterly results to be volatile. Each of these factors, alone or in combination, have the potential to negatively impact our win rates, and our business, financial condition and results of operations could be materially and adversely affected.

Our revenues are mainly derived from the difference between our casino winnings and the winnings of our casino patrons. Since there are inherent elements of chance in the gaming industry, we do not have full control over our winnings or the winnings of our casino patrons. If the winnings of our patrons exceed our casino winnings, we may record a loss from our gaming operations, and our business, financial condition and results of operations could be materially and adversely affected.

Our gaming business is subject to the risk of cheating and counterfeiting.

All gaming activities at our table games are conducted exclusively with gaming chips which, like real currency, are subject to the risk of alteration and counterfeiting. We incorporate a variety of security and anti-counterfeit features to detect altered or counterfeit gaming chips. Despite such security features, unauthorized parties may try to copy our gaming chips and introduce, use and cash in altered or counterfeit gaming chips in our gaming areas. Any negative publicity arising from such incidents could also tarnish our reputation and may result in a decline in our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Gaming customers may attempt or commit fraud or cheat in order to increase their winnings, including in collusion with the casino’s staff. Internal acts of cheating could also be conducted by staff through collusion with dealers, surveillance staff, floor managers or other gaming area staff. Our existing surveillance and security systems, designed to detect cheating at our casino operations, may not be able to detect all such cheating in time or at all, particularly if patrons collude with our employees. In addition, our gaming promoters or other persons could, without our knowledge, enter into betting arrangements directly with our casino patrons on the outcomes of our games of chance, thus depriving us of revenues.

Our operations are reviewed to detect and prevent cheating. Each game has a theoretical win rate and statistics are examined with these in mind. Cheating may give rise to negative publicity and such action may materially affect our business, financial condition, operations and cash flows.

 

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An outbreak of widespread health epidemics or pandemics, contagious disease or other outbreaks may have an adverse effect on the economies of affected countries or regions and may have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Our operations could be, and in certain cases, such as in relation to COVID-19, have been adversely affected by the outbreak of widespread health epidemics or pandemics, such as swine flu, avian influenza, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), Zika, Ebola and COVID-19. The occurrence of such health epidemics or pandemics, prolonged outbreak of an epidemic illness or other adverse public health developments in the PRC or elsewhere in the world could materially disrupt our business and operations. Such events could significantly impact our industry and cause severe travel restrictions in the PRC or elsewhere in the world as well as temporary or prolonged closures of the facilities we use for our operations and disruptions to public transportation, which could severely disrupt our operations and have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations. Such events may also indirectly and materially adversely impact our operations by negatively impacting the outlook, growth or business sentiment in the global, regional or local economy. See also “— COVID-19 outbreaks have had an adverse effect on our operations, which has had a significant negative effect over the past three years and may continue to materially impact our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operations.”

Several countries, including Japan, South Korea and Vietnam, have registered cases of avian flu since the end of 2020. Fully effective avian flu vaccines have not been developed and there is evidence that the H5N1 virus is constantly evolving so we cannot assure you that an effective vaccine can be discovered or commercially manufactured in time to protect against the potential avian flu pandemic.

In addition to COVID-19, there can be no assurance that an outbreak of swine flu, avian influenza, SARS, MERS, Zika, Ebola or other contagious disease or any measures taken by the governments of affected countries against such potential outbreaks will not seriously interrupt our gaming operations. The perception that an outbreak of any health epidemic or contagious disease may occur may also have an adverse effect on the economic conditions of countries in Asia. In addition, our operations could be disrupted if any of our facilities or employees or others involved in our operations were suspected of having COVID-19, swine flu, avian influenza, SARS, MERS, Zika or Ebola as this could require us to quarantine some or all of such employees or persons or disinfect the facilities used for our operations. Furthermore, any future outbreak may restrict economic activities in affected regions, which could result in reduced business volume and the temporary closure of our facilities or otherwise disrupt our business operations and adversely affect our results of operations. Our revenues and profitability could be materially reduced to the extent that a health epidemic or other outbreak harms the PRC or global economy in general.

Health and safety or food safety incidents at our properties may lead to reputational damage and financial exposures.

We provide goods and services to a significant number of customers on a daily basis at our properties in Macau, Manila and Cyprus. In particular, with attractions, entertainment and food and beverage offerings at our properties, there are risks of health and safety incidents, personal injury, or adverse food safety events, such as food poisoning, physical trauma, slip and fall accidents, or surges in crowd flow at popular ingress and egress points. While we have a number of measures and controls in place aimed at managing such risks, we cannot guarantee that our insurance is adequate to cover all losses, which may result in us incurring additional costs or damages, and negatively impact our financial performance. Such incidents may also lead to reduced customer flow and reputational damage to our properties. See “— We are subject to risks relating to litigation, disputes and regulatory investigations and proceedings which may adversely affect our profitability, financial condition, reputation and prospects.”

 

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Unfavorable fluctuations in the currency exchange rates of the H.K. dollar, U.S. dollar, the Pataca, the Philippine peso or the Euro and other risks related to foreign exchange and currencies, including restrictions on conversions and/or repatriation of foreign currencies, could adversely affect our indebtedness, expenses, profitability and financial condition.

Our exposure to foreign exchange rate risk is associated with the currency of our operations and our indebtedness and as a result of the presentation of our financial statements in U.S. dollars. The majority of our current revenues are denominated in H.K. dollars, given the H.K. dollar is the predominant currency used in gaming transactions in Macau and is often used interchangeably with the Pataca in Macau. Our current expenses are denominated predominantly in Patacas, H.K. dollars, the Philippine pesos and the Euro. In addition, we have revenues, assets, debt and expenses denominated in Philippine pesos and in Euros relating to our businesses in the Philippines and Cyprus, respectively. We also have subsidiaries, branch offices and assets in various countries and regions, including Singapore and Taiwan, which are subject to foreign exchange fluctuations and local regulations that may impose, among others, limitations, restrictions or approval requirements on conversions and/or repatriation of foreign currencies. In addition, a significant portion of our indebtedness, including the Melco Resorts Finance Notes and Studio City Notes, and certain expenses, are or will be denominated in U.S. dollars, and the costs associated with servicing and repaying such debt will be denominated in U.S. dollars.

The value of the H.K. dollar, the Pataca, the Philippine peso and the Euro against the U.S. dollar may fluctuate and may be affected by, among other things, changes in political and economic conditions. While the H.K. dollar is pegged to the U.S. dollar within a narrow range and the Pataca is in turn pegged to the H.K. dollar, and the exchange rates between these currencies has remained relatively stable over the past several years, we cannot assure you that the current peg or linkages between the U.S. dollar, H.K. dollar and Pataca will not be de-pegged, de-linked or otherwise modified and subject to fluctuations. Any significant fluctuations in exchange rates between the H.K. dollar, the Pataca, the Philippine peso or the Euro to the U.S. dollar may have a material adverse effect on our revenues and financial condition. For example, to the extent that we are required to convert U.S. dollar financings into H.K. dollars or Patacas for our operations, fluctuations in exchange rates between the H.K. dollar or Pataca against the U.S. dollar could have an adverse effect on the amounts we receive from the conversion.

While we maintain a certain amount of our operating funds in the same currencies in which we have obligations in order to reduce our exposure to currency fluctuations, we have not engaged in hedging transactions with respect to foreign exchange exposure of our revenues and expenses in our day-to-day operations during the years ended December 31, 2022 and 2021. In addition, we may face regulatory, legal and other risks in connection with our assets and operations in certain jurisdictions that may impose limitations, restrictions or approval requirements on conversions and/or repatriation of foreign currencies. We will consider our overall procedure for managing our foreign exchange risk from time to time, but we cannot assure you that any such procedures will enable us to obtain and achieve effective hedging of our foreign exchange risk, which could materially and adversely affect our financial condition and operating results.

Furthermore, the PRC has tightened currency exchange controls and restrictions on the export and conversion of the Renminbi in recent years. Restrictions on the export of the Renminbi, as well as the increased effectiveness of such restrictions, may impede the flow of gaming patrons from the PRC to Macau, the Philippines or outside of Asia, inhibit the growth of gaming in those markets and negatively impact our gaming operations.

We may undertake mergers, acquisitions, strategic transactions, investments or divestments that are not realized or may result in operating difficulties, distractions from our current businesses or a material and adverse effect on our business and financial condition and subject us to regulatory and legal inquiries and proceedings or investigations.

We have made, and may in the future make, acquisitions, investments, divestments or strategic transactions in companies or projects to expand or complement our existing operations. From time to time, we

 

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engage in discussions and negotiations with companies regarding acquisitions, investments, divestments or other strategic transactions, which may be material or significant, in such companies or projects. For example, the discussions and negotiations between us and Melco International led to our acquisition of 75% ownership interest in ICR Cyprus from Melco International, through which we expanded our operations to Cyprus. With this acquisition, our business expanded to the European region and includes the development of the City of Dreams Mediterranean, a new integrated casino resort project in Cyprus. Our expanded operations and developments in Cyprus require significant resources and investments and we may in the future make other acquisitions, investments or strategic transactions that require significant capital commitments and resources.

Should we pursue acquisitions in the PRC, we will be subject to a variety of PRC anti-monopoly laws. In recent years, additional regulations have been implemented which make merger and acquisition activities by foreign investors more time-consuming and complex. The Measures for the Security Review of Foreign Investments promulgated by National Development and Reform Commission, or the NDRC, and Ministry of Commerce, or MOFCOM, which became effective from January 2021, require that a security review by relevant governmental authorities must be conducted for foreign investments that affect or may affect national security in accordance with the provisions thereunder. In November 2021, the State Council inaugurated the National Anti-Monopoly Bureau, which aims to further implement fair competition policies and strengthen anti-monopoly supervision in the PRC, particularly to strengthen oversight and law enforcement in areas involving innovation, science and technology, information security and people’s livelihoods. Any failure or perceived failure by us to comply with the anti-monopoly laws and regulations may result in governmental investigations or enforcement actions, lawsuits or claims against us and could have an adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Any integration process that would follow any of our acquisitions, investments or strategic transactions, including our acquisition of 75% equity interest in ICR Cyprus, may prove more difficult than anticipated. We may be subject to liabilities or claims that we are not aware of at the time of the investment or acquisition, and we may not realize the benefits anticipated at the time of the investment or acquisition. Any benefits anticipated at the time of the investment or acquisition may also not be realized, or may be impacted, due to factors beyond our control. For example, in February 2020, we announced our decision to not pursue the acquisition of an additional 9.99% ownership interest in Crown Resorts due to the impact of COVID-19 outbreaks, and in April 2020, we announced the sale of our 9.99% equity interest in Crown Resorts to a third party and ceased to be a shareholder of Crown Resorts following such sale. These difficulties could disrupt our ongoing business, distract our management and employees, increase our expenses and liabilities, result in losses, including in material amounts, and may adversely affect our businesses, financial condition and operating results. Even if we do identify suitable opportunities, we may not be able to make such acquisitions or investments on commercially acceptable terms or adequate financing may not be available on commercially acceptable terms, if at all, and we may not be able to consummate a proposed acquisition or investment.

We may also, from time to time, receive inquiries from regulatory and legal authorities and become subject to regulatory and legal proceedings or investigations in connection with our acquisitions, investments, divestments or strategic transactions in companies or projects, which may delay or materially impact the completion of such acquisitions, investments, divestments or strategic transactions. For example, in connection with the definitive purchase agreement we entered into with CPH Crown Holdings Pty Limited in May 2019 to acquire a total of an approximately 19.99% ownership interest in Crown Resorts for the total purchase price of AUD1,759.6 million (equivalent to approximately US$1,198.6 million) and pursuant to which we acquired an approximately 9.99% ownership interest in Crown Resorts on June 6, 2019 and were to acquire an additional 9.99% ownership interest in Crown Resorts by September 30, 2019, as a result of the relevant Australian regulatory process, we and CPH Crown Holdings Pty Limited agreed to defer our acquisition of the additional 9.99% ownership interest in Crown Resorts. Any such regulatory and legal proceedings or investigations may materially and adversely affect our business, operations, financial condition and prospects.

 

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We face risks relating to any expansion of our operations and entry into new markets through mergers, acquisitions, strategic transactions or investments.

We have expanded our operations and entered into new markets in the past through acquisitions and strategic transactions. See also “— We may undertake mergers, acquisitions, strategic transactions, investments or divestments that are not realized or may result in operating difficulties, distractions from our current businesses or a material and adverse effect on our business and financial condition and subject us to regulatory and legal inquiries and proceedings or investigations.”

We may continue to evaluate and consider a wide array of potential strategic transactions as part of our overall business strategy. Any future expansion of our operations or our entry into new markets through mergers, acquisitions, strategic transactions or investments may subject us to:

 

   

additional costs for complying with local laws, rules, regulations and policies as well as other local practices and customs in new markets, including establishing business and regulatory compliance programs;

 

   

currency exchange rate fluctuations or currency restructurings;

 

   

limitations or penalties on the repatriation of earnings;

 

   

unforeseen changes in regulatory requirements;

 

   

uncertainties as to local laws and enforcement of contract and intellectual property rights; and

 

   

changes in government, economic and political policies and conditions, political or civil unrest, acts of terrorism or the threat of international boycotts.

These factors and the impact of these factors on our business and operations are difficult to predict and may have material adverse effect on our business and prospects, financial condition and results of operations.

We are subject to risks relating to litigation, disputes and regulatory investigations and proceedings which may adversely affect our profitability, financial condition, reputation and prospects.

We are, and may in the future be, subject to legal actions, disputes and regulatory investigations in the ordinary course of our business. We are also subject to risks relating to legal, administrative and regulatory proceedings and investigations which we or our affiliates are or may be a party to from time to time, or which could develop in the future, as well as fines or other penalties which may be imposed on us in connection with any requisite permit, license or other approval for our business and operations. Any adverse outcome may cause material disruptions to our normal business operations. In addition, administrative and regulatory proceedings can be costly and time-consuming and may divert management attention and resources from our operations. We could incur significant defense costs and, in the event of an adverse outcome, be required to pay damages and interest to the prevailing party and, depending on the jurisdiction of the litigation, be held responsible for the costs of the prevailing party. Our reputation may also be adversely affected by our involvement or the involvement of our affiliates in litigation, administrative and regulatory proceedings. In addition, we and our affiliates operate or have interests in a number of jurisdictions in which regulatory and government authorities have wide discretion to take procedural actions in support of their investigations and regulatory proceedings, including seizures and freezing of assets and other properties that are perceived to be connected or related to such investigations or regulatory proceedings. Given such wide discretion, regulatory or government authorities may take procedural or other actions that may affect our assets and properties in connection with any investigation or legal, administrative or regulatory proceeding involving us, any of our affiliates, or third parties, which may materially affect our business, financial condition or results of operations.

In addition, claims and proceedings against us, including but not limited to any claims alleging that we received, misappropriated or misapplied funds, or violated any anti-corruption law or regulation, may result in

 

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our business operations being subject to greater scrutiny from relevant regulatory authorities and requiring us to make further improvements to our existing systems and controls and business operations, all of which may increase our compliance costs. No assurance can be provided that any provisions we have made for such matters will be sufficient. Litigation and regulatory proceedings and investigation are inherently unpredictable and our results of operations or cash flows may be adversely affected by an unfavorable resolution of any pending or future litigation, disputes and regulatory investigation.

We extend credit to a portion of our customers, and we may not be able to collect gaming receivables from our credit customers.

We conduct, and expect to continue to conduct, our gaming activities at our casinos on a credit basis as well as a cash basis. Consistent with customary practice, we grant credit to certain premium direct players, and in markets where we engage gaming promoters and the grant of credit is permitted such as the Philippines, we grant credit to gaming promoters. We may also grant credit to gaming promoters in Macau. Gaming promoters bear the responsibility for issuing credit and subsequently collecting the credit they granted. We extend credit, often on an unsecured basis, to certain gaming promoters and VIP patrons whose level of play and financial resources warrant such an extension in our opinion. High-end patrons typically are extended more credit than patrons who wager lower amounts. Any slowdown in the economy could adversely impact our VIP patrons, which could in turn increase the risk that these clients may default on credit extended to them. In Cyprus, a new gaming market, we also grant credit to a small number of selected premium direct players.

We may not be able to collect all of our gaming receivables from, or fully realize the value of collateral posted by, our credit customers. We expect that we will be able to enforce our gaming receivables only in a limited number of jurisdictions including Macau, the Philippines, Cyprus and under certain circumstances, Hong Kong. As most of our customers in Macau are visitors from other jurisdictions, we may not have access to a forum in which we will be able to collect all of our gaming receivables because, among other reasons, courts in many jurisdictions, do not enforce gaming debts. Further, we may be unable to locate assets in other jurisdictions against which recovery of gaming debts can be sought. The collectability of receivables from our credit customers, and, in particular, our international credit customers, could be negatively affected by future business or economic trends or by significant events in the jurisdictions in which these customers reside, or in which their assets are located. As a result of COVID-19, we have increased our estimated allowance for credit losses. We may also have to determine whether aggressive enforcement actions against a customer will unduly alienate the customer and cause the customer to cease playing at our casinos. We could suffer a material adverse impact on our operating results if receivables from our credit customers are deemed uncollectible. In addition, in the event a credit customer suffers losses in connection with any gaming activities at our properties and receivables from such customer are uncollectible, Macau gaming taxes, Philippines license fees or Cyprus gaming taxes (as the case may be) will still be payable on the resulting gaming revenues, notwithstanding any receivables owed by such customer to us may be uncollectible. An estimated allowance for credit losses is maintained to reduce our receivables to their carrying amounts, which approximate fair values.

Our business and financial plans may be negatively impacted by any contraction in the availability of credit.

Our business and financing plans may be dependent upon the completion of future financings. Any severe contraction of liquidity in the global credit markets may make it difficult and costly to obtain new lines of credit or to refinance existing debt, and may place broad limitations on the availability of credit from credit sources as well as lengthen the recovery cycle of extended credit. Any deterioration in the credit environment may cause us to have difficulty in obtaining additional financing on acceptable terms, or at all, which could adversely affect our ability to complete current and future projects. Tightening of liquidity conditions in credit markets may also constrain revenue generation and growth and could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

 

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Rolling chip patrons and VIP gaming customers may cause significant volatility in our revenues and cash flows.

A portion of our casino revenues in Macau are generated from the rolling chip segment of the gaming market. Similarly, City of Dreams Manila also attracts foreign gaming visitors, particularly VIP players who typically place large individual wagers. The loss or a reduction in the play of the most significant of these rolling chip patrons or VIP gaming customers could have an adverse effect on our business. In addition, revenues and cash flows derived from high-end gaming of this type are typically more volatile than those from other forms of gaming primarily due to high bets and the resulting high winnings and losses. As a result, our business, results of operations and cash flows from operations may be more volatile from quarter to quarter than that of our competitors and consequently may require higher levels of cage cash in reserve to manage this volatility.

We depend upon gaming promoters for a portion of our gaming revenues in the Philippines and Cyprus and may depend on gaming promoters in Macau in the future. If we are unable to establish, maintain and increase the number of successful relationships with gaming promoters in the Philippines, Cyprus or Macau, the financial resources of our gaming promoters are insufficient to allow them to continue doing business or we are unable to find alternative means to attract VIP rolling chip patrons in markets such as Macau where gaming promoters have become subject to restrictions on doing business due to legal and regulatory requirements, our results of operations could be materially and adversely impacted.

Historically, VIP rolling chip patrons introduced to us by gaming promoters were responsible for a significant portion of our gaming revenues in Macau. However, significantly increased regulatory scrutiny of gaming promoters in Macau has resulted, and may continue to result, in restrictions on their activities and the cessation of business of many gaming promoters. In addition, changes to the legal and regulatory framework in the PRC has also affected gaming promoters in Macau. For example, amendments to the PRC’s criminal laws, which provide that anyone that organizes trips for Chinese citizens for the purpose of gambling outside of the PRC, including Macau, may be deemed to have conducted a criminal act, came into effect on March 1, 2021. Furthermore, in November 2021, the Court of Final Appeal in Macau issued a final unappealable decision holding that a gaming operator was jointly liable with a gaming promoter for the refund of funds deposited with such gaming promoter, and separately the Macau authorities have arrested executives from a gaming promoter for alleged illegal overseas gaming related activities. In January 2022, the Macau authorities also arrested an executive from another gaming promoter and certain related individuals and certain of these individuals were sentenced to jail terms in addition to the payment of monetary compensation to the Macau government in January 2023. In December 2021, we terminated our arrangements with all gaming promoters in Macau. On December 20, 2022, a new law came into effect that included provisions clarifying the extent of joint liability of concessionaires and gaming promoters pursuant to which the acceptance of funds or chips from others by a gaming promoter is only considered activity undertaken by the casino when such funds or chips were used to play or result from gaming winnings. The records kept by the concessionaire with respect to the chips or play are relevant for such determination. Under such new law, the taking of deposits of funds from others not for gaming purposes is considered a crime. We may in the future engage gaming promoters in Macau. In the event gaming promoters remain subject to such restrictions and regulatory scrutiny in Macau and we are unable to successfully attract VIP rolling chip patrons without such promoters or expand our mass market segment in Macau, our business, financial condition and results of operations could be affected materially and adversely. For a further discussion of restrictions on gaming promoters in Macau, see “— Adverse changes or developments in gaming laws or other regulations in Macau that affect our operations could be difficult to comply with or may significantly increase our costs, which could cause our projects to be unsuccessful.”

As of the end of 2022, we had arrangements with five gaming promoters in the Philippines. In the event we are unable or choose not to partner with additional gaming promoters in the Philippines or are unable to successfully operate our VIP rolling chip operations with reduced reliance on customers introduced by gaming promoters or expand our mass market segment in the Philippines, our business, financial condition and results of operations could be affected materially and adversely.

 

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For our operations in Cyprus, there are currently two licensed gaming promoters, although only one of them is currently active.

If we are unable to utilize, maintain, resume and/or develop relationships with gaming promoters and, in the case of Cyprus, if the number of licensed gaming promoters do not significantly increase in the future, our ability to grow our gaming revenues will be hampered and we will have to seek alternative ways to develop and maintain relationships with rolling chip patrons, which may not be as profitable as relationships developed through gaming promoters. As competition intensifies, we may therefore need to offer better terms to gaming promoters, including extensions of credit, which may increase our overall credit exposure or, in the case of Macau and to some extent the Philippines, to find alternate ways of attracting such patrons which may not be as effective as gaming promoters or may increase our marketing expenses.

In addition, in markets where we use gaming promoters, such promoters may encounter difficulties in attracting patrons to come to our casinos. For example, gaming promoters may experience decreased liquidity, limiting their ability to grant credit to their patrons, resulting in decreased gaming volume in the affected casinos. Credit already extended by our gaming promoters may become increasingly difficult to collect.

We are impacted by the reputation and integrity of the parties with whom we engage in business activities, including gaming promoters and we cannot assure you that these parties will always maintain high standards or suitability throughout the term of our association with them. Failure to maintain such high standards or suitability may cause us and our shareholders to suffer harm to our own and our shareholders’ reputation, as well as impair relationships with, and possibly result in sanctions from, gaming regulators.

The reputation and integrity of the parties with whom we engage in business activities are important to our own reputation and our ability to continue to operate in compliance with the permits and licenses required for our businesses. These parties include, but are not limited to, those who are engaged in gaming-related activities, such as gaming promoters, developers and hotel, restaurant and night club operators with whom we have or may enter into services or other types of agreements. Under the Macau Gaming Operations Law and Gaming Activities Law, if we enter into new arrangements with gaming promoters in the future, Melco Resorts Macau has an obligation to supervise gaming promoters who operate at our Macau properties to ensure their compliance with applicable laws and regulations. In June 2022, PAGCOR published The Casino Guide for Fitness and Propriety Assessment for Junket Operators, under which all land-based casinos must assess the fitness and propriety nature of its junket or chip-washing operators, its associates/agents/promoters, and applicants for junket operations. To conduct any business activity in licensed casinos, all persons responsible for the operations of junkets and/or applicants for junket operations must demonstrate that they are a “fit and proper” person.

For parties we deal with in gaming-related activities, where relevant, the gaming regulators also undertake their own probity checks and will reach their own suitability findings in respect of the activities and parties with which we intend to associate. In addition, we also conduct our internal due diligence and evaluation process prior to engaging such parties. Notwithstanding such regulatory probity checks and our own due diligence, we cannot assure you that the parties with whom we are associated will always maintain the high standards that gaming regulators and we require or that such parties will maintain their suitability throughout the term of our association with them. In addition, if any of our gaming promoters violate applicable laws, the government may, at its discretion, take enforcement action against the gaming promoters and could also seek to impose liability on us for the conduct of the gaming promoters. Also, if a party associated with us falls below the gaming regulator’s suitability standard or if their probity is in doubt, this may be negatively perceived when assessed by the gaming regulators. As a result, we and our shareholders may suffer reputational harm, as well as impaired relationships with, and possibly sanctions or other measures or actions from, the relevant gaming regulators with authority over our operations.

 

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Any failure or alleged failure to comply with anti-corruption laws, including the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”), could result in penalties, which could harm our reputation and have an adverse effect on our business, results of operations and financial condition.

We and our businesses in different jurisdictions are subject to a number of anti-corruption laws, including the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, or FCPA. The FCPA prohibits companies and any individuals or entities acting on their behalf from offering or making improper payments or providing things of value to foreign officials for the purpose of obtaining or keeping business. The FCPA also requires companies to maintain accurate books and records and to devise and maintain a system of internal accounting controls. Breach of these anti-corruption laws carries severe criminal and civil sanctions as well as other penalties and reputational harm. There has been a general increase in FCPA enforcement activities in recent years by the SEC and the U.S. Department of Justice. Both the number of FCPA cases and sanctions imposed have risen significantly.

While we have adopted and implemented an anti-corruption compliance program covering both commercial bribery and public corruption which includes internal policies, procedures and training aimed to prevent and detect anti-corruption compliance issues and risks, and procedures to take remedial action when compliance issues are identified, there is no assurance that our employees, consultants, contractors and agents, and those of our affiliates, will adhere to the anti-corruption compliance programs, or that any action taken to comply with, or address compliance issues, will be considered adequate by the regulatory bodies with jurisdiction over us and our affiliates. Any violation of our compliance programs or applicable laws by us or our affiliates could subject us or our affiliates to investigations, prosecutions and other legal proceedings and actions which could result in civil penalties, administrative remedies and criminal sanctions, any of which may result in a material adverse effect on our reputation, cause us to lose customer relationships or gaming licenses, or lead to other adverse consequences on our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operations. As we are a U.S. listed company, certain U.S. laws and regulations apply to our operations and compliance with those laws and regulations increases our cost of doing business. We also deal in significant amounts of cash in our operations and are subject to various reporting and anti-money laundering regulations. Any violation of anti-money laundering laws or regulations by us could have a negative effect on our results of operations.

A failure to establish and protect our intellectual property rights could have an adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

We have registered or have the right to use the trademarks, including “Melco,” “Altira,” “Mocha Club,” “City of Dreams,” “Nüwa,” “The Countdown,” “Morpheus,” “The House of Dancing Water,” “City of Dreams Manila,” “Studio City,” “Melco Resorts Philippines,” “C2” and “Melco Resorts & Entertainment” in Macau, the Philippines, Cyprus and/or other jurisdictions. We have also registered in Macau, the Philippines, Cyprus and other jurisdictions certain other trademarks and service marks used in connection with the operations of our hotel casino projects in Macau, City of Dreams Manila and Cyprus. We endeavor to establish and protect our intellectual property rights through trademarks, service marks, domain names, licenses and other contractual provisions. The brands we use in connection with our properties have gained recognition. Failure to possess, obtain or maintain adequate protection of our intellectual property rights could negatively impact our brands and could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations. For example, third parties may misappropriate or infringe our intellectual property, which may include but not be limited to the use of our intellectual property by offshore gaming websites, including those that may attempt to defraud members of the public. While we may take legal or other appropriate actions against these unauthorized offshore websites, such as by reporting the sites to the appropriate governmental or regulatory authorities, such actions may not be effective or significant expenses could be incurred and such unauthorized activities may draw businesses away from our operations and/or tarnish our reputation, all of which may adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations.

 

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The infringement or alleged infringement of intellectual property rights belonging to third parties could adversely affect our business.

We face the potential risk of claims that we have infringed upon the intellectual property rights of third parties, which could be expensive and time-consuming to defend. In addition, we may be required to cease using certain intellectual property rights or selling or providing certain products or services, pay significant damages or enter into costly royalty or licensing agreements in order to obtain the right to use a third party’s intellectual property rights (if available at all), any of which could have a negative impact on our business, financial condition and future prospects. Furthermore, if litigation were to result from such claims, our business could be interrupted.

We cannot assure you that anti-money laundering policies that we have implemented, and compliance with applicable anti-money laundering laws, will be effective to prevent our casino operations from being exploited for money laundering purposes.

The free ports, offshore financial services and free movement of capital have created an environment whereby casinos in Macau, the Philippines or Cyprus could be exploited for money laundering purposes. We also deal with significant amounts of cash in our regular casino operations in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus. As our Macau, Philippine and Cyprus operations are subject to various reporting and anti-money laundering regulations and increased audits and inspections from regulators, we have implemented anti-money laundering policies to address those requirements. Philippine laws on anti-money laundering have been amended to include casinos as covered institutions and the Anti-Money Laundering Council and PAGCOR have also recently released corresponding regulations and guidelines on compliance. The Cyprus House of Representatives has also enacted the Prevention and Suppression of Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Law 2007 to 2021(188(I)/2007) to transpose the European Union’s Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive 2018/843 into national law of Cyprus. The CGC also issued an updated anti-money laundering Direction in December 2021 which requires us to implement more compliance measures, primarily to meet additional obligations relating to our monitoring and control obligations and CGC reporting requirements. While we have adjusted our anti-money laundering policies for our Philippine and Cyprus operations to these new rules and regulations, their implementation or application, as well as any further changes to anti-money laundering laws and regulations in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus may require us to adopt changes to our own anti-money laundering policies.

We cannot assure you that our contractors, agents or employees will continually adhere to any such current or future policies or these policies will be effective in preventing our casino operations from being exploited for money laundering purposes, including from jurisdictions outside of Macau, the Philippines or Cyprus.

There can be no assurance that, despite the anti-money laundering measures we have adopted and undertaken, we would not be subject to any accusation or investigation related to any possible money laundering activities. In addition, we expect to be required by relevant regulatory authorities from Macau, the Philippines, Cyprus and other jurisdictions that regulate our business activities to attend meetings and interviews from time to time to discuss our operations as they relate to anti-money laundering laws and regulations during which regulatory authorities may make inquiries and take other actions such as compliance audits at their discretion. Any incident of money laundering, accusation of money laundering or regulatory investigations into possible money laundering activities involving us, our employees, our gaming promoters, our customers or others with whom we are associated could have a material adverse impact on our reputation, business, cash flow, financial condition, prospects and results of operations. Any serious incident of, or repeated violation of, laws related to money laundering or any regulatory investigation into money laundering activities may cause a revocation or suspension of the concession, of the Philippine License or the Cyprus License. For more information regarding anti-money laundering regulations in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus, see “Item 4. Information on the Company — B. Business Overview — Regulations — Macau Regulations — Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing Regulations”, “Item 4. Information on the Company — B. Business Overview —

 

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Regulations — Philippines Regulations — Anti-Money Laundering Regulations in the Philippines.” and “Item 4. Information on the Company — B. Business Overview — Regulations — Cyprus Regulations — Anti-Money Laundering Law and Regulations.”

Our information technology and other systems are subject to cybersecurity risks, including misappropriation of customer information, other breaches of information security or other cybercrimes, as well as regulatory and other risks.

We rely on information technology and other systems (including those maintained by third-parties with whom we contract to provide data services) to maintain and transmit large volumes of customer information, credit card settlements, credit card funds transmissions, mailing lists and reservations information and other personally identifiable information. We also maintain important internal company data such as personally identifiable information about our employees and information relating to our operations. The systems and processes we have implemented to protect customers, employees and company information are subject to the rapidly changing risks of compromised security and may therefore become outdated. Despite our preventive efforts, we are subject to the risks of compromised security, including cyber and physical security breaches, system failures, computer viruses, technical malfunctions, inadequate system capacities, power outages, natural disasters and inadvertent, negligent or intentional misuses, disclosure or dissemination of information or data by customers, company employees or employees of third-party vendors, ransomware attacks that encrypt, exfiltrate or otherwise render data unusable or unavailable or other forms of cybercrimes that include fraud or extortion. These risks can also be manifested in a variety of other ways, including through methods which may not yet be known to the cybersecurity community, and have become increasingly difficult to anticipate and prevent.

The steps we take to deter and mitigate these risks may not be successful or effective and our insurance coverage for protecting against cybersecurity risks may not be sufficient. Our third-party information system service providers face risks relating to cybersecurity similar to ours, and we do not directly control any of such service providers’ information security operations. A significant theft, loss or fraudulent use of customer or company data maintained by us or by a third-party service provider could have an adverse effect on our reputation, cause a material disruption to our operations and management team, and result in remediation expenses, regulatory penalties and litigation by customers and other parties whose information was subject to such attacks, all of which could have a material adverse effect on our business, prospects, results of operations and cash flows. If our information technology systems become damaged or otherwise cease to function properly, our services and results of operations may be adversely affected and we may have to make significant investments to repair or replace them. Furthermore, any extended downtime from power supply disruptions or information technology system outages which may be caused by cybersecurity attacks or other reasons at our properties may lead to an adverse impact on our operating results if we are unable to deliver services to customers for an extended period of time.

Despite the security measures we currently have in place, our facilities and systems and those of our third-party service providers may be vulnerable to security breaches, acts of vandalism, phishing attacks, computer viruses, misplaced or lost data, programming or human errors, other cybercrimes and other events. Cyber-attacks are becoming increasingly more difficult to anticipate and prevent due to their rapidly evolving nature and, as a result, the technology we use to protect our systems could become outdated. The occurrence of any of the cyber incidents described above could cause reputational harm to us, expose us to legal proceedings and have a material adverse effect on our business, results of operations and cash flows.

Any perceived or actual electronic or physical security breach involving the misappropriation, loss, or other unauthorized disclosure of confidential or personally identifiable information, whether by us or by a third party, could disrupt our business, damage our reputation and relationships with our customers, suppliers and employees, expose us to risks of litigation, significant fines and penalties and liability, result in the deterioration of our customers’, suppliers’ and employees’ confidence in us, and adversely affect our business, results of operations and financial condition. Any perceived or actual unauthorized disclosure of personally identifiable

 

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information of our employees, customers, suppliers or website visitors could harm our reputation and credibility and reduce our ability to attract and retain employees, suppliers and customers. We are also subject to enactment of new laws, or amendments to existing laws with more stringent requirements, in relation to cybersecurity. For example, a new Cybersecurity Law was introduced in Macau in 2019 which also applies to our businesses in Macau. See “Item 4. Information on the Company — B. Business Overview — Regulations — Macau Regulations — Cybersecurity Regulations.” As any of the above cybersecurity threats develop and grow and our obligations under cybersecurity regulations increase, we may find it necessary to make significant further investments to protect our data and infrastructure, including the implementation of new computer systems or upgrades to existing systems, deployment of additional personnel and protection-related technologies, engagement of third-party consultants, and training of personnel.

Failure to protect the integrity and security of company staff, supplier and customer information and comply with cybersecurity, data privacy, data protection or any other laws and regulations related to data may materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations, and/or result in damage to reputation and/or subject us to fines, penalties, lawsuits, restrictions on our use or transfer of data and other risks.

Our businesses collect, use and transmit large volumes of data, including credit card numbers and personal data in various information systems relating to our customers, suppliers and staff, and such personal data may be collected and/or used in, and transmitted to or from, multiple jurisdictions. We may be subject to a variety of cybersecurity, data privacy, data protection and other laws and regulations related to data, including those relating to the collection, use, sharing, retention, security, disclosure, and transfer of confidential and private information, such as personal information and other data. These laws and regulations apply not only to third-party transactions, but also to transfers of information within our organization. These laws and regulations may restrict our business activities and increase our compliance costs and efforts. Any breach or noncompliance may subject us to proceedings, damage our reputation, or result in penalties and other significant legal liabilities, and thus may materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition, and results of operations.

Our customers, suppliers and employees have a high expectation that we will adequately protect their personal information. Such collection, use and/or transmission of personal data is governed by privacy laws and regulations and such laws and regulations change often, vary significantly by jurisdiction and often are newly enacted. For example, the European Union (EU)’s General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”), which became effective in May 2018, requires companies to meet new and more stringent requirements regarding the handling of personal data. The GDPR may also capture data processing by non-EU firms with no EU establishment if, for example, they conduct direct marketing that specifically targets individuals in the EU.

In some jurisdictions, including the PRC where we have a wholly-owned subsidiary that hosts domain names of our PRC websites and other online platforms which promote our non-gaming amenities in the PRC, the cybersecurity, data privacy, data protection, or other data-related laws and regulations are relatively new and evolving, and their interpretation and application may be uncertain. For example, the Cybersecurity Administration of China, or CAC, issued the New Measures for Cybersecurity Review, or the New Measures, on January 4, 2022, which amended the Measures for Cybersecurity Review (Draft Revision for Comments) released on July 10, 2021 and came into effect on February 15, 2022. The New Measures extend the scope of cybersecurity review to network platform operators engaging in data processing activities that affect or may affect national security, including overseas listings. Specifically, the New Measures provide that if a network platform operator who possesses personal information of more than one million users plans to be listed in foreign countries, it must apply for cybersecurity review and, in any event, the CAC has the authority to initiate a cybersecurity review if it considers the data processing activities in connection with a proposed listing will or may affect national security. The New Measures do not specify the types of public listings that will be subject to cybersecurity review and do not give sufficient guidance on the specific types of data processing activities that may be subject to cybersecurity review. The PRC government authorities may have wide discretion in the

 

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interpretation and enforcement of the applicable laws. As such, we cannot predict the impact of the New Measures on us, if any, at this stage, and we will closely monitor and assess the developments in the rule-making process. If the practical application of the New Measures results in mandated clearance of cybersecurity reviews and other specific actions to be completed by companies operating in Macau like us, we face uncertainties as to whether such clearance can be timely obtained, or at all. As of the date of this annual report, we have not received any formal notice from any PRC cybersecurity regulator that we should apply for or otherwise be subject to a cybersecurity review, but we cannot be certain that such notifications will not occur in the future.

On November 14, 2021, the draft Regulations for the Administration of Cyber Data Security was published by the CAC for public comment, which provides that data processors conducting the following activities shall apply for cybersecurity review: (i) a merger, reorganization or division of online platform operators that have acquired a large number of data resources related to national security, economic development or public interests which affect or may affect national security; (ii) a listing abroad when the data processor processes over one million users’ personal information; (iii) a listing in Hong Kong which affects or may affect national security; or (iv) other data processing activities that affect or may affect national security. It also requires data processors processing important data or listed outside China to carry out a data security assessment annually by itself or through a third party data security service provider and submit an assessment report to the local agency of the CAC. As there are still uncertainties regarding the further enactment of new laws and regulations as well as the revision, interpretation and implementation of those existing laws and regulations, we cannot predict the impact of the Regulations for the Administration of Cyber Data Security on us, if any.

In addition, the PRC Data Security Law, which was promulgated by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress on June 10, 2021 and took effect on September 1, 2021, requires data collection to be conducted in a legitimate and proper manner, and stipulates that, for the purpose of data protection, data processing activities must be conducted based on data classification and hierarchical protection systems for data security. Furthermore, the recently issued Opinions on Strictly Cracking Down Illegal Securities Activities requires (i) speeding up the revision of the provisions on strengthening the confidentiality and archives management relating to overseas issuance and listing of securities and (ii) improving the laws and regulations relating to data security, cross-border data flow, and management of confidential information. The PRC Personal Information Protection Law, which was promulgated by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress on August 20, 2021 and took effect on November 1, 2021, integrates the various rules with respect to personal information rights and privacy protection and applies to the processing of personal information within the PRC as well as certain personal information processing activities outside the PRC, including those for the provision of products and services to natural persons within the PRC or for the analysis and assessment of acts of natural persons within the PRC. Although we have not collected, stored or managed any personal information in the PRC, given that there remain uncertainties regarding the further interpretation and implementation of those laws and regulations, if they are deemed to be applicable to companies operating in Macau, like us, we cannot assure you that we will be compliant with such new regulations in all respects, and we may be ordered to rectify and terminate any actions that are deemed illegal by the government authorities and become subject to fines and other government sanctions, which may materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition, and results of operations. Furthermore, we must also comply with other industry standards such as those for the credit card industry and other applicable data security standards.

Compliance with applicable privacy laws, regulations and standards may increase our operating costs and/or adversely impact our ability to market our products, properties and services to our customers and guests. For example, these laws, regulations and standards may restrict information sharing in ways that make it more difficult to obtain or share information concerning at risk individuals. In addition, non-compliance with applicable privacy laws, regulations and standards by us (or in some circumstances non-compliance by third parties engaged by us) may result in damage of reputation and/or subject us to fines, penalties, payment of damages, lawsuits, criminal liability or restrictions on our use or transfer of data. Failure to meet the GDPR requirements, for example, may result in penalties of up to four percent of worldwide revenue.

 

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Negative press or publicity about us or our directors, officers or affiliates may lead to government investigations, result in harm to our business, brand or reputation and have a material and adverse effect on our business.

Unfavorable publicity regarding us, or our directors, officers or affiliates, whether substantiated or not, may have a material and adverse effect on our business, brand and reputation. Such negative publicity may require us to engage in a defensive media campaign, which may divert our management’s attention, result in an increase in our expenses and adversely impact our results of operations, financial condition, prospects and strategies. The continued expansion in the use of social media over recent years has compounded the potential scope of the negative publicity that could be generated. Any negative press or publicity could also lead to government or other regulatory investigations, including causing regulators with jurisdiction over our gaming operations in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus to take action against us or our related licensees, including actions that could affect the ability or terms upon which our subsidiaries hold their gaming licenses and/or concession, our suitability to continue as a shareholder of those subsidiaries and/or the suitability of key personnel to remain with us. If any of these events were to occur, it could cause a material adverse effect on our business and prospects, financial condition and results of operations.

Our new branded products or new business lines may not be successful.

In 2018, we launched our new property at City of Dreams under the Morpheus brand. We have also launched the Nüwa brand in both Macau and the Philippines and the C2 brand in Cyprus and intend to rebrand The Countdown. We may continue introducing new brand names and brand identities in the future, such as City of Dreams Mediterranean in Cyprus, which may be time-consuming and expensive, or may not have the intended effect, any of which could have a material adverse effect on our business, results of operations and financial condition. We may also launch new products or enter into new business or service lines that are subject to different business or regulatory risks than our existing gaming business. These new initiatives may subject us to additional costs for complying with a new set of laws, rules, regulations and policies and/or requirements imposed by new governmental and regulatory bodies. Given our relative lack of experience in these new business ventures, there is also no assurance that they will be successful. Accordingly, the revenue streams from our new properties and casinos opening in the near future may not be stable or significant.

Economic or trade sanctions and a heightened trend towards trade and technology “de-coupling” could negatively affect the relationships and collaborations with our suppliers, service providers, technology partners and other business partners and our ability to accept certain customers, which could materially and adversely affect our competitiveness and business operations.

The United Nations and a number of countries and jurisdictions, including the PRC, the United States and the EU, have adopted various economic or trade sanction regimes. In particular, economic and trade sanctions have been threatened and/or imposed by the U.S. government on a number of PRC-based technology companies, including ZTE Corporation, Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd., or Huawei, Tencent Holdings Limited, certain of their respective affiliates, and other PRC-based technology companies. These Chinese technology conglomerates manufacture and/or develop telecommunications and other equipment, software, mobile Apps and devices that are popular and widely used globally, including by us and by our customers, especially those in the PRC. The United States has also in certain circumstances imposed and threatened to impose further sanctions, trade embargoes, and other heightened regulatory requirements on the PRC and PRC-based companies. The U.S. government has brought enforcement actions against ZTE Corporation and Huawei and related persons, as well as companies who engaged in unauthorized transactions with Huawei.

These restrictions, and similar or more expansive restrictions that may be imposed by the U.S. or other jurisdictions in the future, though may not be directly applicable to us, may materially and adversely affect our suppliers, service providers, technology partners or other business partners’ abilities to acquire technologies, systems, devices or components that may be critical to our relationships or collaborations with them. In addition,

 

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if any of our suppliers, service providers, technology partners or other business partners that have collaborative relationships with us or our affiliates were to become subject to sanctions or other restrictions, this might restrict or negatively impact our ongoing relationships or collaborations with them, which could materially and adversely affect our competitiveness and business operations. Media reports on alleged uses of the technologies, systems or innovations developed by business partners or other parties not affiliated with or controlled by us, even on matters not involving us, could nevertheless damage our reputation and lead to regulatory investigations, fines and penalties against us.

In addition, the continuing military conflict between Russia and Ukraine has led to sanctions and export controls being imposed by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom and other countries targeting Russia, its financial systems and major financial institutions and certain Russian entities and persons. As these new and growing lists of sanctions and measures are extensive and changing, they could be difficult to comply with and could also significantly increase our business and compliance costs. Such sanctions and measures have had and may continue to have a negative impact on our business and our ability to accept certain customers, including for our business in Cyprus where historically a significant number of tourists have come from Russia.

Climate change, environmental, social and governance and sustainability related concerns could have a significant negative impact on our business and results of operations.

Governments, regulatory authorities, investors, customers, employees and other stakeholders are increasingly focusing on environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) and sustainability practices and disclosures, and expectations in this area are rapidly evolving and growing. There are also risks associated with the chronic and acute physical effects of climate change (including changes in sea levels, water shortages, droughts, typhoons and other extreme weather phenomena and natural disasters). Inability to maintain reliable energy supplies due to climate change disruptions may also impact our business continuity and an increase in frequency of extreme weather events could leave us vulnerable to increased insurance costs or limit or ability to obtain sufficient coverage. See “Item 3. Key Information — D. Risk Factors — Risks Relating to Our Business and Operations — Our business in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus is subject to certain regional and global political, social and economic risks, as well as natural disasters, that may significantly affect visitations to our properties and have a material adverse effect on our results of operations” for a discussion of risks relating to natural disasters that could be exacerbated by climate change.

We are also subject to the changes in related laws and regulations and their compliance could be difficult and costly. The criteria by which our ESG and sustainability practices are assessed may also change due to the evolution of the sustainability landscape, which could result in greater expectations of us and cause us to undertake costly initiatives to satisfy such new criteria. We have potentially high exposure to net zero transition-related policies and carbon prices that could result in energy inflationary pressures. Implicit carbon costs could also affect us where investments are required to meet building efficiency requirements and emissions regulations that are introduced as part of net zero transition plans. In addition, we have exposure to potential commodity price increase pressures on energy intensive goods and construction materials procured as a result of net zero transition-related regulations. If we are unable to satisfy such new criteria, stakeholders may conclude our policies and/or actions with respect to ESG and sustainability matters are inadequate. In addition, we utilize a significant amount of energy and water and produce a substantial amount of waste in our operations and any failure in our efforts to use materials efficiently or reduce waste may not meet the expectations of our stakeholders and our own ESG objectives. Compliance with future climate-related legislation and regulation, and our efforts to achieve emissions reduction targets, could also be difficult and costly. Consumer travel and consumption preferences may also shift due to sustainability related concerns or costs. As a result of the foregoing, we may experience significant increased operating and compliance costs, operating disruptions or limitations, reduced demand, and constraints on our growth, all of which could adversely affect our profits.

 

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Risks Relating to Operating in the Gaming Industry in Macau

Our business and operations in Macau are dependent upon our concession and, if we fail to comply with the complex legal and regulatory regime in Macau, our concession may be subject to revocation.

Under the terms of the Concession Contract, we are obligated to comply with all laws, regulations, rulings and orders promulgated by the Macau government from time to time. In addition, we must comply with all terms of the Concession Contract which contains various general covenants and provisions, such as general and special duties of cooperation, special duties of information and obligations in relation to the execution of our investment plan, as to which the determination of compliance is subjective and depend, in part, on our ability to maintain continuing communications and good faith negotiations with the Macau government to ensure that we are performing our obligations and covenants under the concession and applicable laws and regulations in a manner that would avoid any violations. We cannot assure you that we will perform such obligations and covenants in a way that satisfies the requirements of the Macau government.

Melco Resorts Macau’s concession further provides that the Macau government is allowed to request various changes in our investment plan and impose business and corporate requirements that may be binding on us. Melco Resorts Macau must also first obtain the Macau government’s approval before raising certain financing and must notify the Macau government before taking certain financial decisions. As a result, we cannot assure you that we will be able to comply with these requirements or any other requirements of the Macau government or with the other requirements and obligations imposed by our concession, the gaming law or other related regulations.

The harshest penalty that may be imposed on us for failure to comply with the complex legal and regulatory regime in Macau and the terms of the Concession Contract is revocation of the concession. Under the concession, the Macau government has the right to unilaterally terminate the concession in the event of non-compliance by Melco Resorts Macau with its basic obligations under the concession and applicable Macau laws. If such a termination were to occur, any casino premises and gaming equipment at that time will revert or be transferred to the Macau government without compensation to us and we would be unable to operate casino gaming in Macau, which would have a material adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations and cash flows and could result in defaults under our indebtedness agreements and a partial or complete loss of our investments in our projects. Termination events include, among others, endangerment to the national security of the PRC or Macau; the operation of gaming without permission or operation of a business which does not fall within the business scope of the concession; abandonment of approved business or suspension of operations of its gaming business in Macau without reasonable grounds; transfer of all or part of Melco Resorts Macau’s operation in Macau in violation of the relevant laws and administrative regulations governing the operation of games of fortune or chance and other casino games in Macau and without Macau government approval; failure to pay taxes, premiums, levies or other amounts payable to the Macau government; systematic non-compliance with the Macau Gaming Operations Law’s basic obligations; for reasons of public interest; and for failure to meet probity standards or failure to meet the investment amount and other criteria set in the Concession Contract within the period set by the Macau government. These events could lead to the termination of Melco Resorts Macau’s concession without compensation to Melco Resorts Macau. In many of these instances, the Concession Contract does not provide for a specific cure period within which any such events may be cured and the granting of any cure period, if at all, would be at the discretion of the Macau government. See “Item 4. Information on the Company — B. Business Overview — Regulations — Gaming Licenses — The Concession Contract in Macau.”

Currently, there is no precedent on how the Macau government will treat the termination of a concession and the laws and regulations relating to termination of a concession have not yet been applied by the Macau government. Accordingly, the scope and enforcement of the provisions of Macau’s gaming regulatory system cannot be fully assessed.

 

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Studio City faces significant risks and uncertainties which may materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Studio City commenced operations in October 2015 and operates in a challenging competitive environment. For example, some of our competitors in Macau have expanded operations or have announced intentions for further expansion and developments in Cotai, where Studio City is located. See “— We face intense competition in Macau, the Philippines and elsewhere in Asia and Europe and may not be able to compete successfully.” Moreover, we face risks and uncertainties related to changes to the Chinese and Macau governments’ policies and regulations relating to gaming markets, including those affecting gaming table allocation and caps, smoking restrictions, exchange controls and repatriation of capital, measures to control inflation and monetary transfers and travel restrictions.

In addition, Studio City may find it challenging to comply with the terms imposed under its financing arrangements, especially during periods of challenging market conditions (including changes in the PRC’s economy). The 2028 Studio City Senior Secured Credit Facility and the indentures governing the Studio City Notes impose certain operating and financial restrictions, including limitations on the ability to pay dividends, incur additional debt, make investments, create liens on assets or issue preferred stock. If we are unable to comply with such restrictions, it could cause repayment of our debt to be accelerated. See “— The agreements governing our credit facilities and debt instruments contain certain covenants that restrict our ability to engage in certain transactions and may impair our ability to respond to changing business and economic conditions or otherwise take actions that may be in our best interests” and “As of March 30, 2023, we are finalizing the licensing procedures for the Phase 2 project for Studio City under the terms of a land concession which currently requires us to fully develop the land on which Studio City is located by June 30, 2023. Any extension of the development period is subject to Macau government review and approval at its discretion. In the event of any failure to complete certain licensing procedures by June 30, 2023, we could be forced to forfeit all or part of our investment in Studio City, along with our interest in the land on which Studio City is located and the building and structures on such land.”

All of the foregoing trends, risks and uncertainties may have a material adverse impact on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Our gaming operations in Macau could be adversely affected by restrictions on the export of the Renminbi and any unfavorable fluctuations in the currency exchange rates of the Renminbi.

Gaming operators in Macau are currently prohibited from accepting wagers in Renminbi, the currency of China. There are currently restrictions on the export of the Renminbi outside of the PRC, including to Macau. For example, a Chinese citizen traveling abroad is only allowed to take a total of RMB20,000 (equivalent to approximately US$2,889) plus the equivalent of up to US$5,000 out of China. The annual limit of RMB100,000 (equivalent to approximately US$14,443) is the aggregate amount that can be withdrawn overseas by any person from Chinese bank accounts and it was set by the Chinese government, with effect on January 1, 2018. In addition, the Chinese government’s ongoing anti-corruption campaign has led to tighter monetary transfer regulations, including real-time monitoring of certain financial channels, reducing the amount that China-issued ATM cardholders can withdraw in each withdrawal, imposing a limit on the annual aggregate amount that may be withdrawn and the launch of facial recognition and identity card checks with respect to certain ATM users, which could disrupt the amount of money visitors can bring from the PRC to Macau. Furthermore, a law also exists to control cross-border transportation of cash and other negotiable instruments to the bearer. In accordance with such law, all individuals entering Macau with an amount in cash or negotiable instrument to the bearer equal to or higher than the amount of MOP120,000 (equivalent to approximately US$14,918) as determined by the Chief Executive of Macau are required to declare such amount to the customs authorities. The adoption of digital currency by the Chinese government may also cause more restrictions on the export of the Renminbi out of the PRC, which may impede the flow of customers from the PRC to Macau, inhibit the growth of gaming in Macau and negatively impact our operations.

 

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In addition, the value of RMB against the U.S. dollar and other currencies may fluctuate and may be affected by, among other things, changes in political and economic conditions and the foreign exchange policies adopted by the PRC government. In 2022, the value of RMB depreciated approximately 8.6% against the U.S. dollar. It remains difficult to predict how market forces or PRC or U.S. government policy, including the ongoing trade disputes between the PRC and the U.S. governments may further exacerbate the devaluation of the RMB against the U.S. dollar and other currencies in the future. Given that we derive a significant majority of our revenues from our Macau gaming business and a significant number of our gaming customers come from, and are expected to continue to come from, the PRC, any further devaluation of the RMB against the U.S. dollar and other currencies may affect the visitation and level of spending of these gaming customers and could in turn have a material adverse effect on our revenues and financial condition.

Adverse changes or developments in gaming laws or other regulations in Macau that affect our operations could be difficult to comply with or may significantly increase our costs, which could cause our projects to be unsuccessful.

Our operations in Macau are also exposed to the risks of changes in laws and policies. Current laws in Macau, such as licensing requirements, tax rates, immigration and other regulatory obligations, including those for anti-money laundering, could change or become more stringent resulting in additional regulations being imposed upon gaming operations in Macau. See “— The gaming industries in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus are highly regulated.”

On June 22, 2022, Law no. 7/2022, which amends Law no. 16/2001, or the Macau Gaming Operations Law, was published and on December 19, 2022, Law no. 16/2022, the new Gaming Activities Law, which replaces Administrative Regulation no. 6/2022, or the Gaming Promoter Regulation was published. These laws set additional requirements applicable to our operations. See “Item 4. Information on the Company — B. Business Overview — Regulations — Macau Regulations.” In addition, the Macau government imposed regulations and restrictions that affect the minimum age required for entrance into casinos in Macau, entry into casinos by off-duty gaming related employees, location requirements for sites with gaming machine lounges, data privacy and other matters. Any such legislation, regulation or restriction which is being or may in the future be imposed by the Macau government may have a material adverse impact on our operations, business and financial performance. Furthermore, our inability to address any of these requirements or restrictions imposed by the Macau government could adversely affect our reputation and result in criminal or administrative penalties, in addition to any civil liability and other expenses. See “Item 4. Information on the Company — B. Business Overview — Regulations — Macau Regulations.”

Also, smoking on the premises of casinos is only permitted in authorized segregated smoking lounges with no gaming activities, and such segregated smoking lounges are required to meet certain standards determined by the Macau government. Our properties currently have a number of segregated smoking lounges. We cannot assure you that the Macau government will not enact more stringent smoking control legislation. Such limitations imposed on smoking have and may deter potential gaming patrons who are smokers from visiting casinos in Macau, which could adversely affect our business, results of operations and financial condition. See “Item 4. Information on the Company — B. Business Overview — Regulations — Macau Regulations — Smoking Regulations.”

Current Macau laws and regulations concerning gaming and gaming concessions and matters such as prevention of money laundering are fairly recent or there is little precedent on the interpretation of these laws and regulations. These laws and regulations are complex and a court or an administrative or regulatory body may in the future render an interpretation of these laws and regulations or issue new or modified regulations that differ from our interpretation, which could have a material adverse effect on the operation of our properties and on our financial condition, results of operations, cash flows and prospects.

Our activities in Macau are subject to administrative review and approval by various departments of the Macau government. For example, our business activities are subject to the administrative review and

 

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approval by the DICJ, Macau health department, Macau labor bureau, Macau construction works bureau, Macau fire department, Macau finance department and Macau Government Tourism Office. We cannot assure you that we will be able to obtain or maintain all necessary approvals, which may materially affect our business, financial condition, results of operations, cash flows and prospects. Macau law permits redress to the courts with respect to administrative actions. However, such redress is largely untested in relation to gaming regulatory issues.

The Macau government has established a maximum number of gaming tables and gaming machines that may be operated in Macau and has set a minimum average annual gross gaming revenue on gaming tables and gaming machines.

The Macau government has set a cap on gaming tables and gaming machines that may be operated in Macau at 6,000 gaming tables and 12,000 gaming machines. In addition, gaming tables and gaming machines previously allocated to a concessionaire may also be revoked if the minimum average annual gross gaming revenue of MOP7 million for gaming tables and MOP300,000 for gaming machines are not met for two consecutive years or the tables or gaming machines are not fully utilized without reason within a certain period. Current and future restrictions on gaming tables and gaming machines may have a material impact on our gaming revenues and overall business and operations.

Melco Resorts Macau’s tax exemption from Complementary tax on income from gaming operations under the subconcession tax expired on December 31, 2022, and we may not be able to extend it.

Companies in Macau are subject to Complementary tax of up to 12% of taxable income, as defined in relevant tax laws. We are also subject to a 35% special gaming tax on our gaming revenues as well as contributions of 2% and 3% of gross gaming revenue to a public fund, and to urban development, touristic promotion and social security, respectively. Such contributions may be waived or reduced with respect to gross gaming revenue generated by foreign patrons under certain circumstances. The Macau government granted to Melco Resorts Macau the benefit of a corporate tax holiday on gaming profits in Macau until 2021, which was extended until December 31, 2022 by dispatch of the Chief Executive. We have applied for an extension of the corporate tax holiday of Melco Resorts Macau for the period from January 1, 2023 to December 31, 2027 and such application is pending approval by the Macau government. In addition, the Macau government has granted to one of our subsidiaries in Macau the Complementary tax exemption until 2021 on profits generated from income received from Melco Resorts Macau, to the extent that such income is derived from Studio City gaming operations and has been subject to gaming tax. The dividend distributions of such subsidiary to its shareholders continue to be subject to Complementary tax. We have applied for an extension of such Complementary tax exemption for the period from January 1, 2022 to December 31, 2022 and further for the period from January 1, 2023 to December 31, 2027 and such application is pending approval by the Macau government. We cannot assure you that the corporate tax holiday benefits will be extended beyond their expiration dates.

During the five-year period from 2017 through 2021, an annual payment of MOP18.9 million (equivalent to approximately US$2.3 million) was payable by Melco Resorts Macau with respect to tax due for dividend distributions to the shareholders of Melco Resorts Macau from gaming profits, whether such dividends are actually distributed by Melco Resorts Macau or not, or whether Melco Resorts Macau has distributable profits in the relevant year. For the period from January 1, 2022 to June 26, 2022, a payment of MOP4 million (equivalent to approximately US$0.5 million) was paid by Melco Resorts Macau. In March 2023, Melco Resorts Macau received an extension of the agreement with the Macau government for an amount of MOP4.2 million (equivalent to approximately US$0.5 million) as payment for the period from June 27, 2022 to December 31, 2022. Upon the payment of such amount, the shareholders of Melco Resorts Macau will not be liable to pay any other tax in Macau for dividend distributions received from gaming profits. We have applied for an extension of such arrangement for the period from January 1, 2023 to December 31, 2027 at an amount to be set by the Macau government but we cannot assure you that the same arrangement will be applied during such period or beyond or that, in the event a similar arrangement is adopted, whether we will be required to pay a higher annual sum.

 

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Risks Relating to Operating in the Gaming Industry in the Philippines

The land and buildings comprising the site occupied by City of Dreams Manila is leased by Melco Resorts Leisure and thus subject to risks associated with tenancy relationships.

Melco Resorts Leisure entered into a lease agreement on October 25, 2012, which became effective on March 13, 2013 (as amended or supplemented, the “Lease Agreement”), pursuant to which it leases from Belle Corporation the land and buildings occupied by City of Dreams Manila, which, in turn, leases part of the land from the Philippine government’s social security system (the “Social Security System”). Numerous potential issues or causes for disputes may arise from a tenancy relationship, such as with respect to the provision of utilities on the premises, rental lease payments, or any adjustments thereto, and the maintenance and normal repair of the buildings, any of which could result in an arbitrable dispute between Belle Corporation and Melco Resorts Leisure. There can be no assurance that any such dispute would be resolved or settled amicably or expediently or that Melco Resorts Leisure will not encounter any material issues with respect to its tenancy relationship with Belle Corporation. In August 2022 and October 2022, we entered into amendment agreements to the Lease Agreement with Belle Corporation, under which the parties revised the rent payable (i) for the year ended December 31, 2022; and (ii) for the year ended December 31, 2022 through the year ending December 31, 2033, respectively, subject to adjustments based on the annual headline inflation and bonus rent pursuant to the terms thereof. There can be no assurance that any material issue arising out of the tenancy relationship can always be resolved swiftly and on terms acceptable to us. Furthermore, if any dispute arises, Belle Corporation, as lessor, could discontinue essential services necessary for the operation of City of Dreams Manila, or seek relief to oust Melco Resorts Leisure from possession of the leased premises. Any prolonged or substantial dispute between Belle Corporation and Melco Resorts Leisure, or any dispute arising under the lease agreement between Belle Corporation and the Social Security System, could have a material adverse effect on the operations of City of Dreams Manila, which could in turn adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations. In addition, any negative publicity arising from disputes with, or non-compliance by, Belle Corporation with the Lease Agreement could have a material adverse effect on our business and prospects, financial condition and results of operations.

Furthermore, the Lease Agreement may be terminated under certain circumstances, including Melco Resorts Leisure’s non-payment of rent, or if either party fails to substantially perform any material covenants under the Lease Agreement and fails to remedy such non-performance in a timely manner, which could cause a material adverse effect on our business and prospects, financial condition, results of operations and cash flows.

If the termination of certain agreements which Belle Corporation previously entered into with another casino operator and other third parties is not effective, such operator and third parties may seek to enforce these agreements against Belle Corporation or MRP as a co-licensee of Belle Corporation, which could adversely impact City of Dreams Manila and MRP.

Melco Resorts Leisure is designated as the sole operator under the provisional gaming license issued by PAGCOR on December 12, 2008 for the development of an integrated tourism resort and to establish and operate a casino within Entertainment City in Manila, the Philippines, under which the Melco Philippine Parties and the Philippine Parties are co-licensees pursuant to the Amended Certificate of Affiliation and Provisional License dated January 28, 2013 (the “Provisional License”). Prior to this, Belle Corporation and the other Philippine Parties elected to terminate such contracts and the operator with whom Belle Corporation previously contracted, on behalf of itself and such third-party contractors, signed a waiver releasing the Philippine Parties from all obligations thereunder. Although Belle Corporation agreed to indemnify the Melco Philippine Parties from any loss suffered in connection with the termination of such contracts, there can be no assurance that Belle Corporation will honor such agreement. Any issues which may arise from such contracts and their counterparties, or any attempt by another operator or any other third party contractor to enforce provisions under such contracts, could interfere with MRP’s operations or cause reputational damage, which could materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations.

 

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Compliance with the terms of the Philippine License, MRP’s ability to operate City of Dreams Manila and the success of City of Dreams Manila as a whole are dependent on the actions of the other Philippine Licensees over which MRP has no control.

Although Melco Resorts Leisure is the sole operator of City of Dreams Manila, the ability of the Melco Philippine Parties to operate City of Dreams Manila, as well as the fulfillment of the terms of the Philippine License granted by PAGCOR in relation to City of Dreams Manila, depends to a certain degree on the actions of the Philippine Parties. For example, the Philippine Parties, as well as the Melco Philippine Parties, are responsible for meeting a certain debt to equity ratio as specified in the Philippine License. The failure of any of the Philippine Parties to comply with these conditions would constitute a breach of the Philippine License. As the Philippine Parties are separate corporate entities over which MRP has no control, there can be no assurance that the Philippine Parties will remain in compliance with the terms of the Philippine License of their obligations and responsibilities under cooperation agreement (as amended) entered into between the Philippine Parties and the Melco Philippine Parties on October 25, 2012, which became effective on March 13, 2013. In the event of any non-compliance, there can be no assurance that the Philippine License will not be suspended or revoked. In addition, if any of the Philippine Parties fails to comply with any of the conditions to the Philippine License, MRP may be forced to take action against the Philippine Parties under the cooperation agreement between the Philippine Parties and the Melco Philippine Parties or to enter into negotiations with PAGCOR for amendments to the Philippine License. There can be no assurance that any attempt to amend the Philippine License would be successful. Any of the foregoing could materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Furthermore, under the cooperation agreement between the Philippine Parties and the Melco Philippine Parties, the Philippine Parties are required to contribute the land and building structures for City of Dreams Manila. There can be no assurance that the title to the land and building structures for City of Dreams Manila will not be challenged by third parties or the Philippine government in the future. Any such event, each of which is beyond MRP’s control, may curtail the ability of MRP to operate City of Dreams Manila in an efficient manner or at all and could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Melco Resorts Leisure’s right to operate City of Dreams Manila is subject to certain limitations.

Melco Resorts Leisure’s right to operate City of Dreams Manila is subject to certain limitations under the operating agreement for the management and operation of City of Dreams Manila, entered into among Melco Resorts Leisure and the Philippine Parties. For example, Melco Resorts Leisure is prohibited from entering into any contract for City of Dreams Manila outside the ordinary course of the operation and management of City of Dreams Manila with an aggregate contract value exceeding US$3.0 million (such contract value to be increased by 5.0% each year on each anniversary date of the operating agreement, with the threshold at approximately US$4.7 million for the year ended December 31, 2022) without the consent of the other Philippine Licensees. In addition, Melco Resorts Leisure is required to remit specified percentages of the mass market and VIP gaming earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization and other defined adjustments or net revenues derived from City of Dreams Manila to PremiumLeisure and Amusement Inc.

If Melco Resorts Leisure is unable to comply with any of the provisions of the operating agreement, the other parties to the operating agreement may bring lawsuits and seek to suspend or replace Melco Resorts Leisure as the sole operator of City of Dreams Manila, or terminate the operating agreement. Moreover, the Philippine Parties may terminate the operating agreement if Melco Resorts Leisure materially breaches the operating agreement. Termination of the operating agreement, whether resulting from Melco Resorts Leisure’s or the Philippine Parties’ non-compliance with the operating agreement, could cause a material adverse effect on our business and prospects, financial condition, results of operations and cash flows.

 

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Melco Resorts Leisure may be forced to suspend VIP gaming operations at City of Dreams Manila under certain circumstances.

Under the operating agreement for City of Dreams Manila, Melco Resorts Leisure must periodically calculate, on a 24-month basis, the respective amounts of VIP gaming earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization and other defined adjustments derived from City of Dreams Manila (the “PLAI VIP EBITDA”) and VIP gaming net win derived from City of Dreams Manila pursuant to the operating agreement (the “PLAI VIP Net Win”) and report such amounts to the Philippine Parties. If the PLAI VIP EBITDA is less than the PLAI VIP Net Win, the Philippine Licensees must meet within ten business days to discuss and review City of Dreams Manila’s financial performance and agree on any changes to be made to the business operations of City of Dreams Manila and/or to the payment terms under the operating agreement. If such an agreement cannot be reached within 90 business days, Melco Resorts Leisure must suspend VIP gaming operations at City of Dreams Manila.

Any suspension of VIP gaming operations at City of Dreams Manila could materially and adversely impact gaming revenues from City of Dreams Manila. Moreover, suspension of VIP gaming operations could effectively lead Melco Resorts Leisure to limit or suspend certain non-gaming operations focusing on VIP players, such as the VIP hotel and VIP lounge, which would further reduce revenues from City of Dreams Manila. Any suspension of VIP gaming operations, even for a brief period of time, could also damage the reputation and reduce the attractiveness of City of Dreams Manila as a premium gaming destination, particularly among premium direct players and other VIP players, as well as gaming promoters, which could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

MRP’s strategy to attract Premium Market customers to City of Dreams Manila may not be effective.

A part of MRP’s strategy for City of Dreams Manila is to capture a share of the premium gaming market in the region. Compared to general market patrons, whose typical wagers are relatively low, premium market patrons usually have higher minimum bets. Despite its targeted marketing efforts, there can be no assurance that the premium market customers will be incentivized to play in City of Dreams Manila rather than in comparable properties in Macau or elsewhere in the region, as these players may be unfamiliar with the Philippines or refuse to change their normal gaming destination. If MRP is unable to expand in the premium market as it intends, this would adversely affect its and/or our business and results of operations.

Changes in public acceptance of gaming in the Philippines may adversely affect City of Dreams Manila.

Public acceptance of gaming changes periodically in various gaming locations in the world and represents an inherent risk to the gaming industry. In addition, the Philippine Catholic Church, community groups, non-governmental organizations and individual government officials have, on occasion, taken strong and explicit stands against gaming. PAGCOR has in the past been subject to lawsuits by individuals trying to halt the construction of casinos in their communities. Church leaders have on occasion called for the abolition of PAGCOR. There can be no guarantee that negative sentiments will not be expressed in the future against City of Dreams Manila or integrated casino resorts in general, which may reduce the number of visitors to City of Dreams Manila and may materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations.

MRP may be unable to successfully register City of Dreams Manila as a tourism enterprise zone with the Philippine Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority, an agency of the Philippine Department of Tourism (“TIEZA”).

While Melco Resorts Leisure intends to apply for a designation as a tourism enterprise with TIEZA, there can be no assurance that TIEZA will approve the designation of Melco Resorts Leisure as a tourism enterprise. If Melco Resorts Leisure is unable to register as a tourism enterprise with TIEZA, it will not be

 

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entitled to certain fiscal incentives provided to some of Melco Resorts Leisure’s competitors that are registered as tourism enterprises under TIEZA. For example, MRP’s liability for value added tax (“VAT”) on its sales largely depends on whether it may avail itself of tax incentives under TIEZA. If tax incentives under TIEZA are not available to MRP, it will be liable for VAT, which may result in a material adverse effect on our business and prospects, financial condition, results of operations and cash flows.

In addition, if Melco Resorts Leisure is able to register as a tourism enterprise with TIEZA, it will then be required to withdraw its current registration as a tourism economic zone enterprise with the Philippine Economic Zone Authority. The process of shifting from a tourism economic zone enterprise under the Philippine Economic Zone Authority to a tourism enterprise under TIEZA is uncertain. There is also uncertainty with respect to the fiscal incentives that may be provided to a registered tourism enterprise under TIEZA. Any of the foregoing results could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

However, several legislative bills were previously passed and are currently pending in the Philippine legislature with a view towards rationalizing fiscal incentives currently granted to certain enterprises and activities, including tourism enterprises. It is uncertain whether these bills will be passed into law, or what the effect, if any, will be on the incentives currently granted to qualified tourism enterprises under the Republic Act No. 9593, of the Philippines, or the Tourism Act of 2009.

MRP’s gaming operations are dependent on the Philippine License issued by PAGCOR.

PAGCOR regulates all gaming activities in the Philippines except for lottery, sweepstakes, jueteng, horse racing and gaming inside the Cagayan Export Zone. City of Dreams Manila’s gaming areas may only legally operate under the Philippine License granted by PAGCOR, which imposes certain requirements on the Melco Philippine Parties and their service providers.

The Philippine License is also subject to suspension or termination upon the occurrence of certain events. The requirements imposed by the Philippine License include, among others:

 

   

payment of monthly license fees to PAGCOR;

 

   

maintenance of a debt-to-equity ratio (based on calculation as agreed with PAGCOR) for each of the Philippine Licensees of no greater than 70:30;

 

   

at least 95.0% of the total employees of City of Dreams Manila must be Philippine citizens;

 

   

the Philippine Licensees shall demonstrate the fitness and propriety of gaming promoters;

 

   

2.0% of certain casino revenues must be remitted to a foundation devoted to the restoration of cultural heritage and 5.0% of certain non-gaming revenues to PAGCOR; and

 

   

operation of only the authorized casino games approved by PAGCOR.

Moreover, certain provisions and requirements of the Philippine License are open to different interpretations and have not been interpreted by Philippine courts or made subject to more detailed interpretative rules. There is no guarantee that the Melco Philippine Parties’ proposed mode of compliance with these or other requirements of the Philippine License will be free from administrative or judicial scrutiny in the future. Any difference in interpretation between PAGCOR and MRP with respect to the Philippine License could result in sanctions against the Melco Philippine Parties, including fines or other penalties, such as suspension or termination of the Philippine License. There can be no assurance that the Philippine Licensees will be able to continuously comply with all of the Philippine License’s requirements, or that the Philippine License will not be modified to contain more onerous terms or amended in such a manner that would cause the Philippine Licensees to lose interest in the operation of City of Dreams Manila. If the Philippine License is materially altered or revoked for any reason, including the failure by any of the Philippine Licensees to comply with its terms, MRP

 

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may be required to cease City of Dreams Manila’s gaming operations, which could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations. In addition, a failure in the internal control systems of MRP may cause PAGCOR to adversely modify or revoke the Philippine License. Finally, the Philippine License will terminate in 2033, coinciding with the PAGCOR Charter’s termination, and there is no guarantee that the PAGCOR Charter or the Philippine License will be renewed.

In addition, City of Dreams Manila’s gaming operation is highly regulated in the Philippines. As PAGCOR is also a gaming operator, there can be no assurance that PAGCOR will not withhold certain approvals from the Melco Philippine Parties in order to favor its own gaming operations. PAGCOR may also modify or impose additional conditions on its licensees or impose restrictions or limitations on Melco Resorts Leisure’s casino operations that would interfere with Melco Resorts Leisure’s ability to provide VIP services, which could adversely affect MRP’s business, financial condition and results of operations.

City of Dreams Manila may be required to obtain an additional legislative franchise, in addition to its Philippine License.

On August 2, 2017, House Bill No. 6111 was filed which proposed the creation of the Philippine Amusements and Gaming Authority, or PAGA, which, if adopted, would replace PAGCOR as the regulatory agency of gaming activities in the Philippines. Also under House Bill No. 6111, the holders of gaming licenses in the Philippines, including the Philippine Licensees, would be required to obtain from the Philippine Congress a legislative franchise to operate gambling casinos, gaming clubs and other similar gambling enterprises within one year from the date of the proposed law’s effectiveness. Non-compliance would result in the operations of holders of gaming licenses in the Philippines, including the Philippine Licensees, to be considered as illegal. On October 2, 2017, House Bill No. 6514 was filed whose provisions are essentially similar to House Bill No. 6111, particularly on the need for holders of gaming licenses in the Philippines, including the Philippine Licensees, to obtain from the Philippine Congress a legislative franchise within one year from the date of the proposed law’s effectiveness.

In the event that House Bills 6111 and 6514 are signed into law, City of Dreams Manila may be required to obtain an additional legislative franchise in addition to its Philippine License and there can be no assurance that such a franchise, which requires legislative approval, will be granted. In addition, the Philippine License may be subject to amendment or repeal by the Philippine Congress. In the event City of Dreams Manila is not granted any required franchise, or the Philippine License is materially amended or repealed, the operation of City of Dreams Manila may cease, which could, in turn, have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Changes to fiscal incentives and other forms of taxes that may be implemented by the Philippines government from time to time may have a material adverse effect on our Philippine subsidiaries.

For the gaming-related transactions in our Philippines operations, Melco Resorts Leisure currently enjoys exemptions from national, local, direct and indirect taxes, including VAT, in the Philippines pursuant to the PAGCOR charter and is subject to license fees which are inclusive of the 5% franchise tax payable to PAGCOR based on gross gaming revenue in the Philippines, in lieu of all other taxes. In 2022, the Philippine Bureau of Internal Revenue (“BIR”) issued Revenue Memorandum Circular No. 32-2022, which sought to impose 12% VAT on gaming revenue. While Melco Resorts Leisure and the other integrated resorts submitted a joint letter to BIR challenging the imposition of VAT on gaming transactions, there is no assurance that we will prevail on any challenge and any assessment of VAT on our gaming revenue could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Further, Melco Resorts Leisure, by virtue of its being registered with the Philippine Economic Zone Authority as a Tourism Economic Zone Enterprise, enjoys a tax and duty exemption on importation and VAT zero-rating on its local purchases of certain capital equipment used in registered activities. Our Philippines

 

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subsidiaries are also liable for VAT on certain transactions. On March 26, 2021, the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises (“CREATE”) was signed and took effect on April 11, 2021 and is applicable to income derived from our non-gaming operations in the Philippines. CREATE reduced the minimum corporate income tax from 2% to 1% from July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2023 and the corporate income tax rate from 30% to 25% starting July 1, 2020.

Any future amendments of CREATE, such as changes on the application of value-added and corporate income taxes and tax rates or changes to the fiscal incentives provided to Melco Resorts Leisure pursuant to its registration with the Philippine Economic Zone Authority as a Tourism Economic Zone Enterprise, may have significant negative impact on our Philippines business. Our Philippine subsidiaries may also be subject to other forms of taxes that may be implemented by the Philippine government from time to time, which could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

MRP is exposed to risks in relation to MRP’s previous business activities and industry.

Prior to our acquisition of MRP, MRP’s primary business was the manufacture and processing of pharmaceutical products. The pharmaceuticals industry is highly regulated in the Philippines and abroad. There can be no assurance that MRP will not be involved in or subject to claims, allegations or suits with respect to its previous activities in the pharmaceutical industry for which MRP may not be insured fully or at all. Although MRP has indemnities as to certain liabilities or claims or other protections put in place, any adverse claim or liability imputed to MRP with respect to its previous business activities could have a material adverse effect on its business and prospects, financial condition, results of operations and cash flow.

Our Philippine operations may be adversely affected by policy changes in the Philippines.

Our Philippine operations may be adversely affected by changes in policies due to changes in government personnel in the Philippines, including but not limited to any changes following elections in the Philippines. There can be no assurance that newly elected or appointed officials will not modify previous policies in relation to the development and operation of integrated tourism resorts in the Philippines, tax incentives extended to their developers or operators or policies on gaming and tourism in the Philippines in general. Newly elected or appointed officials may also impose more stringent or additional conditions on gaming licenses or seek to discourage Philippine citizens from gambling by imposing restrictions. We are unable to predict whether new officials will seek to further alter or impose stricter conditions relating to gaming in the Philippines. Adverse changes in policies and regulations by the current administration or any officials elected or appointed in the future in the Philippines could disrupt the operations of our Philippine subsidiaries and materially and adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations.

Risks Relating to Operating in the Gaming Industry in Cyprus

Our operations in Cyprus, particularly the development of City of Dreams Mediterranean, face significant risks and uncertainties which may materially and adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Our operations in Cyprus include a temporary casino in Limassol and the license to operate four satellite casinos and the development of City of Dreams Mediterranean. In July 2019, we acquired a 75% equity interest in ICR Cyprus from Melco International, our controlling shareholder, while the remaining 25% equity interest in ICR Cyprus is held by The Cyprus Phassouri (Zakaki) Limited. We have entered into a shareholders’ agreement with The Cyprus Phassouri (Zakaki) Limited regarding certain commercial and financial arrangements pursuant to which we will, as more fully set out in additional management and service contracts, (i) provide certain corporate-level management services to ICR Cyprus and its subsidiaries for a fixed amount of EUR2 million (equivalent to approximately US$2.1 million) per annum and (ii) have the right to receive an allotment of preference shares in the gaming license-holding subsidiary of ICR Cyprus, which will provide the right to a preferential dividend, among other terms.

 

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We will require the continued partnership and cooperation of The Cyprus Phassouri (Zakaki) Limited for the operation of our Cyprus casinos. The temporary casino in Limassol and two satellite casinos in Nicosia and Larnaca opened in 2018 (the Larnaca satellite casino ceased operations in June 2020), the third satellite casino opened in 2019 in Ayia Napa and our fourth satellite casino in Paphos opened in February 2020. In addition, our City of Dreams Mediterranean project, which requires significant investment of capital and other resources, is still under development. We have been informed that the Council of Ministers of Cyprus has approved an extension of the deadline to open the City of Dreams Mediterranean by June 30, 2023 under the terms of the Cyprus License. The City of Dreams Mediterranean is targeted to open in the second quarter of 2023, subject to regulatory approvals. Our operations in Cyprus are also subject to ongoing compliance with various laws, regulations, licenses, permits and renewals of those licenses and permits. Given our relatively short operating history and limited experience in Cyprus, which also represents our first significant business venture outside of Asia, it may be difficult for us to comply with the applicable laws and regulations or to secure all necessary licenses and permits in Cyprus, which could be time-consuming and significantly increase our costs. In addition, Cyprus is a new gaming market and we may not achieve the intended results or return through our operations in Cyprus.

While we have already made significant capital investments for the development and operation of our operations in Cyprus, the ongoing development of City of Dreams Mediterranean requires further significant additional capital investments. Based on our current plan for the development of City of Dreams Mediterranean integrated resorts project, we currently expect a project budget of approximately US$575 million to US$600 million (inclusive of the land cost but exclusive of any pre-opening costs and financing costs). The development of City of Dreams Mediterranean may be funded through various sources, including equity, cash on hand, operating free cash flow as well as other financing, including by way of shareholder loans and external debt financing. We will be required to obtain approval from, or the consent of, or notify relevant government authorities, including the CGC, in order to enter into such debt financing. Given that this is the first significant integrated casino resort project to be developed in Cyprus, we may face difficulty in obtaining the necessary approvals or consents in a timely manner or at all. Our ability to obtain such debt financing also depends on a number of factors beyond our control, including rising interest rates, market volatility, and a contraction of liquidity in the global credit markets caused by COVID-19 outbreaks and lenders’ perceptions of, and demand for, the debt financing for our City of Dreams Mediterranean project. Under the shareholders’ agreement entered into between us and The Cyprus Phassouri (Zakaki) Limited regarding ICR Cyprus, the shareholders are obligated to use all commercially reasonable endeavors, subject to certain terms and conditions, to source debt financing of up to EUR437 million (equivalent to approximately US$468 million) for the development of City of Dreams Mediterranean. To the extent there is a shortfall in the amount of third-party debt available (or available on commercially-acceptable terms), we are obligated to fund the shortfall up to the full amount of EUR437 million (equivalent to approximately US$468 million) on terms which are, subject to certain terms and conditions, no less favorable to the project than any commercially-acceptable terms available in the commercial lending market. In connection therewith, a shareholder loan agreement for up to EUR275 million (equivalent to approximately US$294 million) was entered into by a subsidiary of the Company as lender, and Integrated Casino Resorts as borrower in March 2020. In addition, a further shareholder loan agreement for up to EUR250 million (equivalent to approximately US$268 million) was entered into by a subsidiary of the Company as lender, and Integrated Casino Resorts as borrower in May 2022, along with a subordination agreement pursuant to which the March 2020 shareholder loan was subordinated to the May 2022 shareholder loan. There is no guarantee that we can secure the necessary additional capital investments, including any debt financing, required for the ongoing development of the City of Dreams Mediterranean project in a timely manner or at all. In addition, our plan for the City of Dreams Mediterranean project may be subject to additional risks, particularly labor shortages and disruptions to global supply chains exacerbated by COVID-19 outbreaks, the military conflict between Russia and Ukraine, and resulting disruptions as well as further revisions and changes to certain design elements which remain subject to further refinement and development. For example, construction work at our City of Dreams Mediterranean project was suspended from March 24, 2020 to May 3, 2020 as required by the Cyprus government under the restrictions imposed to restrict non-essential business activities due to COVID-19 outbreaks and following the suspension, construction work at the site was also subject to the

 

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additional health and safety requirements imposed by the Cyprus government. There is also no assurance that the Cyprus government will not impose additional restrictions due to COVID-19 outbreaks, which could cause further disruptions to the construction work at City of Dreams Mediterranean. In addition, the City of Dreams Mediterranean has experienced delays due to some difficulties that we have encountered with our contractors in relation to meeting labor resourcing plans and maintaining progress.

All of these uncertainties increase the risk that construction in Cyprus will not be completed on time and that our construction costs will increase. We were granted a nine-month extension of the deadline for commencement of operations at the City of Dreams Mediterranean by the CGC from the original deadline of December 31, 2021 to September 30, 2022, and we have been informed by the Council of Ministers of Cyprus that such deadline was further extended to June 30, 2023. If we fail to commence operations of City of Dreams Mediterranean by June 30, 2023 and are not granted any further extension by the CGC and the government of Cyprus chooses to exercise its right to terminate the Cyprus License, we could lose all or substantially all of our investment in Cyprus and may not be able to continue our Cyprus operations as planned. See “— Economic or trade sanctions and a heightened trend towards trade and technology “de-coupling” could negatively affect the relationships and collaborations with our suppliers, service providers, technology partners and other business partners and our ability to accept certain customers, which could materially and adversely affect our competitiveness and business operations” for discussions of events relating to Cyprus.

All of the foregoing trends, risks and uncertainties may have a material adverse impact on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Cyprus’ gaming operations are dependent on the Cyprus License issued by CGC and any failure to comply with the terms of the Cyprus License could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Our current operations in Cyprus, including a temporary casino in Limassol and three satellite casinos in Nicosia, Ayia Napa and Paphos and the development of City of Dreams Mediterranean, are dependent on the Cyprus License granted by the government of Cyprus to Integrated Casino Resorts on June 26, 2017. Under the Cyprus License, Integrated Casino Resorts has been granted the right to develop, operate and maintain an integrated casino resort in Limassol, Cyprus (and until the operation of such integrated casino resort, the operation of a temporary casino in Limassol) and up to four satellite casino premises in Cyprus, for a term of 30 years from the date of grant with the right for exclusivity in Cyprus for the first 15 years of the term. The Cyprus License imposes certain requirements and conditions on Integrated Casino Resorts and its service providers, including the threat of suspension or termination of the Cyprus License upon the occurrence of certain events. Such requirements include, among others:

 

   

in connection with the operation of the temporary casino and City of Dreams Mediterranean, payment to the government of Cyprus of an annual license fee of EUR2.5 million (equivalent to approximately US$2.7 million) per year for the first four-year period commencing from June 26, 2017, the grant date of the Cyprus License, and an annual license fee of EUR5.0 million (equivalent to approximately US$5.4 million) per year for the second four-year period. Upon completion of the above eight-year period and for each four-year period thereafter, the government of Cyprus may review the annual license fee payable for each four-year term, provided that the annual license fee payable per year shall be no less than EUR 5.0 million (equivalent to approximately US$5.4 million) and subject to a maximum percentage increase;

 

   

in connection with the operation of the satellite casino in Nicosia, payment to the government of Cyprus of an annual license fee of EUR1.0 million (equivalent to approximately US$1.1 million) per year since its commencement of operations;

 

   

in connection with the operation of each of the satellite casinos in Larnaca (which ceased operation in June 2020), Ayia Napa and Paphos, payment to the government of Cyprus of an annual license fee of

 

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EUR0.5 million (equivalent to approximately US$0.5 million) per year since their operations commenced; and

 

   

payment to the government of Cyprus of a monthly casino tax of an amount equal to 15% of the gross gaming revenue, such casino tax not to be increased during the initial 15-year exclusivity period under the Cyprus License.

Following the extension granted by the government of Cyprus, we were required under the Cyprus License to complete the City of Dreams Mediterranean project and commence operations by September 30, 2022, and we have been informed by the Council of Ministers of Cyprus that such deadline was further extended to June 30, 2023. If we fail to commence operations of City of Dreams Mediterranean by June 30, 2023 and are not granted any further extension by the CGC and the government of Cyprus chooses to exercise its right to terminate the Cyprus License, we could lose all or substantially all of our investment in Cyprus and may not be able to continue our Cyprus operations as planned.

Moreover, given that the Cyprus License is the first casino license granted in Cyprus, certain provisions and requirements of the Cyprus License have not yet been interpreted by Cyprus courts and may thereby be subject to different interpretations. There is no guarantee that Integrated Casino Resorts’ proposed mode of compliance with these or other requirements of the Cyprus License will be free from administrative or judicial scrutiny in the future. Any difference in interpretation of such Cyprus License requirements between the CGC and/or the government of Cyprus on the one hand and Integrated Casino Resorts on the other could result in sanctions against Integrated Casino Resorts, including fines or other penalties such as suspension or even termination of the Cyprus License.

There can be no assurance that we will be able to continuously comply with all of the requirements under the Cyprus License, or that the Cyprus License will not be modified to contain more onerous terms or in such other manner that would cause us to lose our interest in our Cyprus operations, particularly when the initial 15-year exclusivity period expires in 2032. If the Cyprus License is materially altered or revoked for any reason, including due to any failure by us to comply with its terms, we may be required to cease our gaming operations in Cyprus, which could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

Risks Relating to Our Corporate Structure and Ownership

Our controlling shareholder has a substantial influence over us, and its interests in our business may be different than yours. We have had, and may continue to have, transactions with our controlling shareholder and its affiliates and such transactions may create conflicts of interest between us and our controlling shareholder.

As of March 24, 2023, Melco International’s beneficial ownership in our Company was approximately 51.7%. There are risks associated with the possibility that Melco International may: (i) have economic or business interests or goals that are inconsistent with ours; (ii) have operations and projects elsewhere in Asia or elsewhere in the world that compete with our businesses in Macau, the Philippines, Cyprus and in other countries and for available resources and management attention; (iii) take actions contrary to our policies or objectives; or (iv) have financial difficulties. In addition, there is no assurance that the laws and regulations relating to foreign investment in Melco International’s governing jurisdictions will not be altered in such a manner as to result in a material adverse effect on our business and operating results.

In addition, Melco International has the power, among other things, to elect or appoint all of the directors to our board, including our independent directors, appoint and change our management, affect our legal and capital structure and our day-to-day operations, approve material mergers, acquisitions, dispositions and

 

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other business combinations and approve any other material transactions and financings. These actions may be taken in many cases without the approval of other shareholders and the interests of Melco International may conflict with your interests as minority shareholders.

We have entered into various related party transactions with Melco International and its affiliates and subsidiaries. For example, we acquired a 75% equity interest in ICR Cyprus from Melco International on July 31, 2019. Prior to this acquisition, we had entered into arrangements with Melco International to provide planning, design, construction and other services to Melco International and its subsidiaries in connection with the City of Dreams Mediterranean project. In August 2022, we repurchased 9,995,799 ordinary shares and 25,000,000 ADSs, collectively representing approximately 5.5% of our Company’s outstanding shares at that time, from Melco Leisure. In March 2023, we repurchased 40,373,076 ordinary shares, representing approximately 3% of our Company’s outstanding shares at that time, from Melco Leisure. We may, from time to time, enter into additional agreements and arrangements with Melco International or its affiliates or subsidiaries in connection with other projects. We may, from time to time, purchase, acquire or invest in other assets, companies or projects held or sponsored by Melco International or its affiliates or subsidiaries or Melco International may make such purchases, acquisitions or investments in assets, companies or projects that our Company holds. The consideration or amount of such purchase, acquisition or investment may be material or significant. While we believe the terms of agreements and arrangements we have with Melco International or its affiliates or subsidiaries are commercially reasonable, the determination of such commercial terms are subject to judgment and estimates and we may have obtained different terms had we entered into such agreements or arrangements with independent third parties.

Melco International may pursue additional casino projects in Asia, Europe or elsewhere, which, along with its current operations, may compete with our projects in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus, which could have material adverse consequences to us and the interests of our minority shareholders.

Melco International may take action to construct and operate new gaming projects located in other countries in the Asian region, Europe or elsewhere, which, along with its current operations, may compete with our projects in Macau, the Philippines and Cyprus and could have adverse consequences to us and the interests of our minority shareholders. We could face competition from these other gaming projects as well as competition from regional competitors. We expect to continue to receive significant support from Melco International in terms of its local experience, operating skills, international experience and high standards. Should Melco International decide to focus more attention on casino gaming projects located in other areas of Asia or elsewhere that may be expanding or commencing their gaming industries, or should economic conditions or other factors result in a significant decrease in gaming revenues and number of patrons in Macau, the Philippines and/or Cyprus, Melco International may make strategic decisions to focus on their other projects rather than us, which could adversely affect our growth.

Casinos and integrated gaming resorts are becoming increasingly popular in Asia, giving rise to more opportunities for industry participants and increasing regional competition. We cannot guarantee you that Melco International will make strategic and other decisions which do not adversely affect our business.

Changes in our share ownership, including a change of control of our shares or our subsidiaries’ shares, could result in our subsidiaries’ inability to draw loans or cause events of default under our subsidiaries’ indebtedness, or could require our subsidiaries to prepay or make offers to repurchase certain indebtedness, as well as potentially negatively affect our ability to retain our concession in Macau.

Credit facility agreements relating to certain of our indebtedness contain change of control provisions, including in respect of ownership over our shares as well as our obligations relating to our control and/or ownership of certain of our subsidiaries and their assets. Under the terms of such credit facility agreements, the occurrence of certain change of control events, including a decline below certain thresholds in the aggregate direct or indirect shareholdings of us held by Melco International and the aggregate direct or indirect

 

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shareholdings of certain of our subsidiaries held by us or certain of our subsidiaries (as the case may be) may result in an event of default and/or a cancellation of committed amounts as well as a requirement to prepay the credit facilities in relation to such indebtedness in full. Other applicable change of control events under the credit facility agreements include steps being taken in connection with the liquidation or dissolution of certain of our subsidiaries.

The terms of the Studio City Notes and the Melco Resorts Finance Notes also contain change of control provisions whereby the occurrence of a relevant change of control event will require us to offer to repurchase the Studio City Notes or the Melco Resorts Finance Notes (as the case may be) (and, in the case of a change of control event under the Melco Resorts Finance Notes, which is accompanied by a ratings decline) at a price equal to 101% of their principal amount, plus accrued and unpaid interest and, if any, additional amounts and other amounts specified under such indebtedness to the date of repurchase.

Any occurrence of these events could be outside our control and could result in events of default and cross-defaults which may cause the termination and acceleration of our credit facilities, the Studio City Notes and Melco Resorts Finance Notes and potential enforcement of remedies by our lenders or note holders (as the case may be), which would have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and results of operations. For example, Melco Leisure has pledged 677,360,904 ordinary shares of our Company held by it in connection with a credit facility entered into by it and Melco International. If they are unable to comply with certain covenants under such credit facility, it could result in the relevant lenders enforcing the pledge, which could result in a change of control in our Company that would trigger the above provisions under our credit facilities, the Studio City Notes and Melco Resorts Finance Notes.

Such a change of control would also potentially adversely affect our ability to retain our concession in Macau. In the event we are unable to retain our concession in Macau, our business, financial condition, cash flows and prospects may be materially and adversely affected, including as a result of the fact that, in such case, an event of default or a mandatory prepayment obligation would arise under our credit facilities and result in the cancellation of committed amounts as well as a requirement to prepay the credit facilities in relation to such indebtedness in full. Furthermore, under the terms of the Studio City Notes and the Melco Resorts Finance Notes, we would also be required to offer to repurchase the Studio City Notes and the Melco R