Macau’s gross gaming revenue for the first four months of 2023 has exceeded the total amount generated during the entire previous year. From January to April, the special administrative region of China reported MOP49.23bn (£4.88bn/€5.53bn/$6.12bn) in revenue, marking a 16.7% increase from the MOP42.20bn generated in 2022. Compared to the same period last year, the year-to-date figure is an impressive 141.4% higher.
Monthly Gains Reflect Easing of Restrictions
Each month of 2023 has seen significant year-on-year growth in Macau’s gross gaming revenue. April’s figures show a 449.9% increase to MOP14.72bn, while January experienced an 82.5% surge to MOP11.58bn. In February, revenue rose by 33.1% to MOP10.32bn, and in March, it spiked 246.9% to MOP12.74bn.
These remarkable improvements come as Macau experiences the benefits of relaxed Covid-19 restrictions. Many measures have been lifted, allowing more visitors to enter the region. Quarantine requirements for visitors from outside of China have been eliminated, and flight caps have been removed. These changes occurred in response to widespread protests against the Chinese government’s strict “zero-Covid” policy.
New Concessions Usher in Fresh Opportunities
At the start of 2023, new concessions were introduced for gaming operators in Macau. Seven applicants, including incumbents Galaxy Entertainment Group, Las Vegas Sands, MGM Resorts International, Melco Resorts, SJM Resorts, and Wynn Resorts, along with Genting Malaysia, applied for these concessions. However, only the six operators already active in Macau were chosen, leaving Genting Malaysia out. The new concessions took effect on 1 January 2023 and will last until 31 December 2032.
Implications for the iGaming Industry
Macau’s astounding revenue growth in the first four months of 2023 has significant implications for the iGaming industry:
- Recovery prospects: Macau shatters 2022 revenue suggesting a strong recovery for the iGaming industry, despite the pandemic’s initial negative impacts.
- Future growth: The surge in Macau’s gaming revenue highlights the region’s potential for continuous growth and profitability, attracting more investors and operators to the market.
- Regulatory changes: The introduction of new concessions signifies the importance of adapting to regulatory changes for operators to remain competitive and seize emerging opportunities.