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Occupation, Founder, CEO and Executive director of NagaCorp Ltd. Years active, present. Home town, Kinta Valley. Net worth, US$ billion (May ). Children, 3. Tan Sri Dr. Chen Lip Keong (ζ›Ύη«‹εΌΊ) is an ethnic Chinese Malaysian businessman who is Chen is the CEO of NagaCorp, parent company of NagaWorld casino resort.


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Today, NagaWorld is recognized as the finest integrated casino-hotel in Indochina, rivaling top Southeast Asian and world-renowned casinos. With a.


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Chhay Channyda and Shane Worrell, β€œNagaWorld Casino Staff Roll Dice on a Strike,” Phnom Penh Post, February 26, ; Kaing Menghun, β€œCourt Order Ends.


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who trained as a medical doctor before turning to property development and gaming, becomes a billionaire for the first time on the stellar performance of.


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With luxurious rooms and suites, NagaWorld is one of the largest 5-star hotels and the only luxury premium casino in Cambodia.


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Tan Sri Dr Chen Lip Keong, aged 72, appointed as an executive director of the Company in April Dr Chen is the founder, controlling shareholder, chief.


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Its NagaWorld casino-resort complex in the capital Phnom Penh Being a good corporate citizen may get a Malaysian casino owner only so.


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The Malaysian founder of Phnom Penh's only licensed casino, Chen Mr. Chen, the CEO and executive director of NagaCorp, NagaWorld's.


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Alex Gray Tours NagaWorld at WPT Cambodia

Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. The annual budget depends on it. In Hong Kong, I returned to print at Bloomberg as a regional business editor, worked as an editor at both Hong Kong English language dailies and headed Asia-wide media relations for a top US multinational. The favorable conditions extend to taxes. Read Less. Chen, who now spends two thirds of his time in Phnom Penh and most of the rest in Kuala Lumpur, has certainly found a win-win situation with the Cambodian government. The year term is well beyond Macau's 20 years, but in many jurisdictions, including Nevada and parts of Australia, licenses never expire; they're valid as long as licensees follow the rules and pay their fees. That struck me as something worthwhile. Chen may never have intended to become a casino mogul but NagaCorp's success is no accident. He's building a casino in Russia's far east, and he's eyeing hotel and casino projects in Australia, Mongolia and Kazakhstan. Bassaka also flies daily to Siem Reap, site of the Angkor Wat complex often included in tour itineraries, and twice weekly to Macau. To raise Cambodia's game, the government adopted international financial standards, signed the global Financial Action Task Force protocols and joined its Asia Pacific Group to combat money laundering, as well as passed national financial-crimes statutes, all at Naga's urging. When Chen Lip Keong won Cambodia's first casino license in , he had hardly ever stepped inside a casino. And it's intrigued by the casino-resort license offered in Australia's far northern Queensland near Cairns, where Chen envisions a 1,kilometer 1,mile rail link from Brisbane. Only , people visited the country in , according to the ministry of tourism; that figure topped 5. Naga has met with government officials about developing hotels in Mongolia and Kazakhstan. The country's gross domestic product has grown by 7. The part of that payment based on gaming rises Naga also funds a wide range of corporate social-responsibility programs. And the country does not want to chase away foreign investment. Cambodia was among the neediest -- Khmer Rouge rule in the late s left an estimated two million people dead out of a population of eight million. Mar 7, , pm EST. Chen's son, Chen Yepern, oversees much of this effort, visiting poor areas of Phnom Penh or provincial villages on weekends with Naga staff, distributing medicine, awarding scholarships or planting trees. Tweet This. Being a good corporate citizen may get a Malaysian casino owner only so far in Cambodia under the authoritarian regime of Prime Minister Hun Sen, in power since But Chen isn't worried. So Chen funded construction himself through a convertible-bond arrangement with the company. Amid the rising tide of tourists, Naga is booming. Construction workers stand near the construction site of Naga2, part of the NagaWorld complex Cambodia's reputation made financing Naga2 difficult. Then there's a Borneo resort that's the keystone of a multibillion-dollar Malaysian government eco-tourism master plan to be led by his Kuala Lumpur-listed companies Karambunai and Petaling Tin. In , Naga bought land near the barge dock and began building NagaWorld, and the casino moved onshore in Situated across a boulevard, Naga2 connects to the original via NagaCity Walk, a 3,square-meter underground shopping mall. It's broken ground for a casino hotel outside Vladivostok, and at last September's Eastern Economic Forum, Chen lobbied Russian President Vladimir Putin to "punch through" a railway to Vladivostok from Harbin in northeastern China, the casino's target market. And soon there'll be a 2,seat theater where Chen is aiming to host the likes of Lady Gaga, a favorite of his. To recruit this crowd the company engaged state-run China International Travel Service to market tours to second-tier cities Changsha, Hangzhou, Xi'an and Qingdao, flying via Naga-affiliate Bassaka Air's three-times-weekly service. McNally, 70, became NagaCorp's chairman in , and the next year it became the first gambling company listed in Hong Kong and, says Naga, the first company principally doing business in Cambodia listed anywhere. It's declaring itself "China ready" with more Mandarin-speaking staff, a lavish Cantonese restaurant in Naga2 and more deals with Macau's mainland-focused junket promoters. Along the way this native of Malaysia has helped Cambodia recover from decades of upheaval. Chen grew up in the Kinta Valley tin-mining area, a second-generation member of an immigrant family from China. Naga's casino license is good for 70 years and includes a year monopoly in Phnom Penh and everywhere else within kilometers. He expects it to be adopted before the election scheduled for July The casino law is the latest phase of Naga's year quest to improve Cambodia's investment climate. Chen says Naga has driven Cambodian efforts to enact a casino-gambling law that will codify and likely increase government oversight, and potentially raise tax rates. But closer to home, NagaWorld remains focused on the million people in Southeast Asia, and executives are already talking about Naga3. The Singapore stock market rejected NagaCorp for a listing in because Cambodia lacked international-standard casino regulations and anti-money-laundering laws. You may opt out at any time. Though enforcement is spotty, "the company operates as if it were in a heavily regulated jurisdiction," says Grant Govertsen, managing director in Macau for boutique investment bank Union Gaming Group. Most Popular In: Asia. Malaysia's richest Chen's first casino was of the floating variety. Thank you for signing in. But following UN-supervised elections in , the new government tendered a casino license. Edit Story. Chen, now wealthy, arrived in the early s. Forbes takes privacy seriously and is committed to transparency. Casinos are "not in my blood; I'm not a gambler," he says. Chen realized that to advance, Naga would have to raise Cambodia's game along with its own. Cambodia may be one of the most corrupt and least transparent countries in the world, but Chen insists on international best practices at NagaCorp. He'd been to Malaysia's Genting Highlands once on a date in the s and visited Las Vegas once as a tourist. Yet today, renowned casino architect Paul Steelman calls Chen "one of the most powerful creators of these properties in the world. So he decided to go into property development and for a time also ran an aviation-parts company, producing components for Malaysia's government-backed attempt to produce planes. There's no word on whether Putin is on board. We will never share your email address with third parties without your permission. Vietnamese troops overthrew the communist regime in , but fighting persisted into the s. You can follow me via my website www. Its NagaWorld casino-resort complex in the capital Phnom Penh boasts 1, guest rooms, gaming tables and more than 5, gaming machines. All Rights Reserved.{/INSERTKEYS}{/PARAGRAPH} I agree to receive occasional updates and announcements about Forbes products and services. As editor at large for Inside Asian Gaming following nearly a decade as a special correspondent for Macau Business magazine, I cover the casino business in Macau and throughout Asia. As editor at large for Inside Asian Gaming following nearly a decade as a special correspondent for Macau Business magazine, I cover the casino business in Macau and. Naga benefits from Cambodia's low labor costs and Chen's tight controls on capital expenditures. {PARAGRAPH}{INSERTKEYS}If this is your first time registering, please check your inbox for more information about the benefits of your Forbes account and what you can do next! This is a BETA experience. This self-proclaimed "accidental" gambling billionaire is the chief executive and majority shareholder of NagaCorp. But he viewed hospitality as a way to combine property development and a steady cash flow, and his company won the bid. Our agreement with the government is highly visible, so taking away the license to give it to a third party [would scare] overseas investors. He says he envisions Naga -- a pan-Asian term for dragon -- encircling China with gambling and non-gambling resorts, utilizing its frontier-market skills honed in Cambodia. Naga Academy has taught trade skills and languages to thousands since The company guarantees jobs for all graduates, in its own company or elsewhere in hospitality. In the s, Malaysia Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad launched his policy of Prosper Thy Neighbor -- not beggar thy neighbor -- to encourage the country's predominantly Chinese business community to seek out what Chen calls "win-win" situations in other Southeast Asian countries. Muhammad Cohen. Please help us continue to provide you with free, quality journalism by turning off your ad blocker on our site. Subscribe to Forbes Asia. Twice-yearly inspections became one of the conditions for Naga's Hong Kong listing. I'd like to receive the Forbes Daily Dozen newsletter to get the top 12 headlines every morning. These days Naga is doubling down on the China market, supplementing its Southeast Asian base. Now 70, Chen is casting his net wider. He saw Cambodia as a place where he would have to dig for opportunities, "a fish pond without fish," and planned to explore for oil in the Gulf of Siam. Naga has raised betting limits at VIP tables through revenue-sharing arrangements with junkets, spreading the risk. In addition, Naga created the Cambodia Sport Award, sponsors a national league football club and supports athletes training for international competitions. And, as he loves pointing out, Naga has no debt. He trained as a medical doctor at the University of Malaysia and practiced briefly as a general practitioner, but felt that his real calling was business. This story appears in the March issue of Forbes Asia.