Stanley Ho has retired from his position as chairman and executive director of SJM Holdings at the age of 96 – 56 years after first securing a Macau gaming licence and as announced in April.
Ho officially stepped down after yesterday’s SJM shareholders’ meeting. His daughter, Daisy Ho, takes on his board roles with fourth wife Angela Leong, who is SJM’s second-largest shareholder, as co-chair with another executive director.
Ho’s Hong Kong-based casino empire enjoyed a four-decade long monopoly in Macau, from the award of sole gaming rights in 1962 until the market opened in 2002, opening the enclave to casino giants Galaxy, Las Vegas Sands, MGM and Wynn.
Across the Macau peninsula and Taipa Island, SJM operates 20 casinos including the flagship Grand Lisboa, which opened in 2007. The present focus is on the Grand Lisboa Palace integrated resort development on Cotai, which will boast 2,000 hotel rooms and a casino when it eventually opens, probably in early 2019.
SJM still cites an H2 2018 opening for the delayed project but consensus among analysts is that it will be H1 2019.
But that will be Daisy Ho’s problem, with her father – in his 97th year – retaining only the honorary role of Chairman Emeritus.