From humble beginnings in 1991 as a bingo company, to the leading Filipino gaming business operating online, in retail outlets, and casinos, and with investments in large-scale resorts, Leisure and Resorts World Corporation (LRWC) is still excited by the potential for further growth in the industry.
“There has always been a proliferation of illegal gambling throughout the country,” President and Chairman Reynaldo Bantug explains. “We thought: why don’t we offer an alternative — a legitimate alternative for satisfying the appetite of the market. So LRWC introduced the first professional bingo games in the Philippines.
It expanded rapidly in the early 90s, when we held bingo games inside the malls, and by the end of the 90s we had more than twenty-five bingo parlours.
“In 1999, LRWC became a publicly-listed entity and we continued to grow. Recently, we expanded our retail segment to not only include bingo sites but other gaming venues as well. The strategic idea is to establish retail shops close to where communities are so it will be more convenient for people to experience the games that we offer near their homes,” Reynaldo says.
“Our retail segment has grown significantly: we now have something like 195 outlets, and we hope to grow this to more than 200 sites by the end of the year. We see a lot of potential in our retail business, especially in the provinces. As the Philippines grows — we are currently at 100 million people — and the economy grows, we continue to grow as well. Our GDP grew more than 6.5 per cent from the first quarter, and we are seeing a lot more people patronising our gaming parlours.”