David Schwartz, director of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas’ Center for Gaming Research, said it’s a telling sign when eight of the top 10 names among the world’s gaming billionaires have a connection to Macau. The region produced $45.2 billion in gaming revenue in 2013, almost seven times more than the Strip’s $6.5 billion.
Macau, he said, is the world’s best gaming growth market and rankings reflect that reality.
“This speaks to the dominant position that Macau in particular and Asia in general will continue to hold in the gaming world for the foreseeable future,” Schwartz said. “The domestic gaming industry does not have anywhere close to the growth prospects that Macau does, which is driving the increase in stock prices that is underwriting much of this wealth.”
Fantini Research CEO Frank Fantini said Macau, which opened to widespread gaming in 2003, initially attracted businesspeople who were successful in other ventures.
“The rise of the Macau billionaires reminds me of one of those old Wall Street sayings, ‘To become wealthy, you have to concentrate your investments. To stay wealthy, you have to diversify,’ ” Fantini said.