Pagcor allows LRWC subsidiary to resume e-bingo operations

LEISURE and Resorts World Corp. (LRWC) on Monday said state-owned Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Psgcor) has allowed its wholly owned unit AB Leisure Exponent Inc. to resume the operation of its electronic bingo sites.

The company said in its disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, Pagcor’s board decided to lift its revocation of the license to operate e-bingo sites it earlier issued to AB Leisure.

“Twenty e-bingo sites have resumed their operations by virtue of the aforesaid approval,” the company said, adding it received the order from the state-owned firm via e-mail during the weekend.

The approval was based on the recommendation of Pagcor’s Gaming Licensing and Development Department and the legal opinion of its Corporate and Legal Services Department to honor the licenses of operators whose gaming sites are located inside malls, arcades and hotels and consider them exempted from distance requirements, the company said. The resumption of e-bingo operations will be allowed until the expiration of the licenses of the sites.

“The Pagcor [is] still in the process of studying whether they will permanently maintain the exemption of malls, arcades and hotels from the distance requirements,” the company said.

AB Leisure provides amusement and recreation to the public in traditional, electronic, pull tabs and rapid bingo games. Its subsidiaries and affiliates operate 129 bingo parlors nationwide, inclusive of six closed bingo parlors, all of which are owned by AB Leisure. There are also two dormant parlors and two parlors are operated by minority-owned affiliates.

Electronic games have been in the spotlight recently after the Pagcor did not renew Philweb Corp.’s license to operate its 286 e-games outlets, with over 5,000 employees.

Philweb has closed down all of its e-game stations that it operates for the Pagcor after the agency refused to renew its Intellectual Property Licensing Management Agreement on  August 10.