Stanley Choi has left his role as chairman and executive director of Asian gaming investor International Entertainment Corp. (IEC), just months after he ceased being a substantial shareholder in the company.
According to Inside Asian Gaming, Choi was one of a number of boardroom changes announced by IEC on April 1, with Eugene Ha Kee Choy also resigning as an independent non-executive director while Aurelio Jr. Dizon Tablante has been appointed as executive Director and Chung Dan as an independent non-executive director. The company’s CEO, Ho Wong Meng, will replace Choi as chairman.
IEC said that Choi, a high-stakes poker player, had stepped down “in order to devote more time to his other business commitments which require more of his attention and dedication.”
Choi’s departure comes just over a year since he began selling down his 55.82 percent interest in the company, starting with an 18.99 percent stake offloaded to Ho Wong Meng in March 2021.
Following a series of transactions culminating in January 2022, his holding eventually fell to its current 4.87% and below the 5% threshold to be deemed a substantial shareholder.
Choi was also reported to be part of a group of investors who recently bought up shares in online gaming platform provider Playtech plc, then blocked a takeover bid by Australian slot machine giant Aristocrat.
IEC owns New Coast Hotel Manila in the Philippines where it plans to co-run casino operations alongside local gaming regulator PAGCOR as part of a recently signed cooperation agreement. The company then plans to use the know-how it acquires from PAGCOR to develop and operate its own integrated resort in Manila, having already been granted a provisional gaming license.
IEC also owns the rights to run live poker events under the PokerStars brand across much of Asia.