Now the “small” faux pas has been reported to the responsible exchange in Hong Kong (HKEX). And the responsible employee of the corporate group? Surprisingly, it disappeared just like the millions. The new year starts with an embarrassing message for Hong Kong-based Landing International Development Limited. The management level measures eleven million euros and one of its employees. There is currently no information about the whereabouts of the money. Now the company was forced to inform shareholders and investors of the stock exchange about the “incident” (= incident).
There are no reserves worth millions
The management of Landing International Development Limited announced that the financial reserve from Jeju, South Korea was missing. In the Republic of Korea, the investment group operates, among other things, the world-famous casino resort Jeju Shinhwa World as well as other arcades and theme parks with restaurants and accommodation.
Koreans are completely prohibited from gambling in land-based casinos, for example. For this reason, the Landing Casino and other gambling companies generate their sales from tourism. However, this has plummeted as a result of the global pandemic.
An internal audit has now shown that around 14.5 billion South Korean won are missing in this division. Converted, this currently corresponds to a value of around eleven million euros. Where the multi-million dollar reserve of the landing group has remained has not yet been conclusively clarified, but is the subject of ongoing investigations. At the same time, the company’s management expressed at least an indirect suspicion.
Fund staff disappeared
In connection with the report that around eleven million euros cannot be found, the fact that the employee responsible for the funds can no longer be reached is suspicious. So it does not seem improbable that the responsible manager is on the run with the millions. The landing management expressed itself specifically in the following words:
“At the moment, the management of the group cannot reach the employee responsible for the funds. The company immediately reported the incident to the police in South Korea, who are currently investigating the incident ”.
The incident only came to the public because the Landing Group, as a publicly traded company, is obliged to report such incidents. For this reason, the relatively embarrassing incident has now been reported in accordance with the applicable exchange rules in Hong Kong.
Investors are urged to be prudent
In its statement, the Landing Group calls on its investors to be prudent. This step seems understandable, as it would certainly be counterproductive for the company’s financial situation if other important investors now pull their capital out of the Landing Group. However, given the current reports, it seems unlikely that the financial reserve sought will reappear in full. At least the police investigation does not seem to have led to any result so far.
At Jeju Shinhwa World Resort, the Landing Group operates one of the largest land-based casinos in South Korea. The gigantic casino resort with around 150 live gaming tables and more than 230 slot machines was only opened in 2018. Overall, the play area here is around 5,500 m².
Liquidity struck anyway
The solvency of the Landing Group has already suffered due to the ongoing global pandemic situation. Due to the severe entry restrictions, very few tourists have recently come to South Korea. Tourists are one of the casino resorts’ only sources of income, as gambling is forbidden to the locals, as mentioned above. During this time, of course, it hits the investment group all the harder when a financial reserve in the millions has suddenly disappeared along with the responsible employee.
For an outsider, it is difficult to grasp that a single employee can obviously make an amount of eleven million euros disappear without being noticed. It will be interesting to see if at least some of the money will reappear soon. It also remains to be seen whether the police investigation in South Korea will lead to the perpetrator being arrested.