While Macau is dominating the gaming space compared to Las Vegas, there is a slight issue at hand involving table game limits. Currently, Macau casinos have a table cap of 5500, which is in effect until the end of March 2013. The cap isn’t a law but rather a government stipulation that can be changed at any time. So how does a savvy business overcome the cap? Easy: you build a Supertable!
These new “Supertables” seat 12 players and have two dealers as opposed to a traditional 6-8 player, single dealer setup. Las Vegas Sands (LVS) is leading the charge with 32 Supertables in place compared with the Venetian’s 20 and Starworld’s 5. Galaxy Macau has a single Supertable in place.
At the end of Q2 2012, the Macau government reported 5498 tables in operation. As LVS gets ready to open the second phase of its Sands Cotai Central (SCC) casino on September 20, investors are worried about the cap affecting the amount of table games in place since the SCC won’t get new table allocations until December of January. Sands China is making room for the additional 200 tables expected at SCC in late 2012/early 2013.
Until the table cap rises, we could see this Supertable trend quickly catching on with casinos.