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Another one bites the dust: COVID-19 forces Okura Holdings to close 2 Pachinko Halls

Posted:: May 10, 2021 12:14 Category: Asia , Land-Based , Casino , Posted by
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With intense competition in the pachinko industry, the management agreed that it will be more beneficial for the group to focus its resources on the more promising pachinko halls to minimise further losses

The Japanese pachinko hall operator, Hong Kong-listed Okura Holdings, has announced that it will be permanently closing two of its pachinko halls in Japan, effective today, reported Asia Gaming Brief.

The two halls that have shut are namely, the K’s Plaza Mikatsuki hall in Ogi city, Saga Prefecture, and the Big Apple YouPark Motosumiyoshi hall in Kawasaki city, Kanagawa Prefecture. The shutdown of the KS Mikatsuki hall means that the firm no longer has a presence in Kyushu’s Saga Prefecture.

Okura Holdings said in a statement that they will be shuttering the pachinko halls doors due to “their deteriorating operating and financial performance since the outbreak of Covid-19 resulting in significant decline in overall customer traffic.”

Okura Holdings Ltd“The management considered that as compared to some of the group’s other pachinko halls, which have gradually managed to regain customer traffic since the latter half of 2020, KS Mikatsuki and BA Motosumiyoshi have not yet been able to recover their customer traffic despite the group’s continuous effort.

Taking into account the general adverse operating landscape and the intense competition in the pachinko industry, the management considered that it will be more beneficial for the group to focus its resources on the more promising pachinko halls by enhancing customer experience there and minimise further losses by closing down the pachinko halls with weaker performance.” The company added.

Okura Holdings had a total of 18 pachinko halls back in 16th April 2018, with a particular focus in the Kyushu region, and mainly in Nagasaki Prefecture. Currently, with the termination of two halls, brings a total 15, from 17 operational pachinko parlours, under Okura Holdings.

Last month, Okura Holdings announced that they had reached an agreement with Nagasaki to purchase a residential and commercial building via the Hong Kong Stock Exchange filing. Okura is eyeing this business to diversify its income streams as the pandemic took a toll on its land-based income.

In late April, the central government has declared a new state of emergency in four urban Japanese prefectures: Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, and Hyogo. Medical experts have described this as a ‘fourth wave’ of the pandemic and imposed further restrictions including the suspension of various pachinko parlours, with a floor area of over 1000 square meters, including those smaller parlours, have been ordered to suspend business until tomorrow (May 11).

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