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Delta Corp.’s Gaming Capacity to Increase 2.5X Once a Larger Ship Replaces Existing Deltin Caravela Vessel 

Deltin Caravela
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  • Attreyee Khasnabis May 3, 2022
  • 4 Minutes Read

A little over a year ago, news had come through that Delta Corp. wanted to make sizable investments to consolidate its dominance over Goa’s casino sector. The company had floated plans of spending ₹150 Crores on building a new casino vessel to replace the Deltin Caravela. The ship was to be constructed at the company’s recently acquired Waterways Shipyard. As per recent reports, the vessel is ready and will be brought into River Mandovi by August-September this year.

Chief Operating Officer (CFO) of Delta Corp., Hardik Dhebar, said that the new ship would replace the Deltin Caravela and would increase the company’s current gaming capacity by 2.5 times.

Hardik Dhebar
Hardik Dhebar

 

Deltin Caravela happens to be the smallest of the three offshore casinos operated by the Delta Corp in Goa. The possibility of the new vessel becoming the new Deltin Royale and the existing Deltin Royale or Deltin JAQK vessel replacing Deltin Caravela cannot be ruled out, similar to the switch when MV Horseshoe was introduced a few years ago.

Amid the news of a new vessel coming through, the casino operator was dealt a severe blow when the National Green Tribunal ordered Deltin Caravela to cease operations immediately for not having CRZ clearance. Delta Corp. challenged the order in the High Court of Bombay in Goa but decided to withdraw the petition later and file a plea in the Supreme Court instead.

This news related to Delta Corp. comes just days after Delta Tech, formerly known as Gaussian Network Pvt Ltd, announced its intention to file draft papers with the Securities Exchange Board of India (SEBI) to raise funds for its online gaming business through an initial public offering.

Delta Corp has further expansion plans in the works as it’s awaiting the final approval from the Goa government to construct its 100-acre integrated resort at Pernem.

 

New Deltin Caravela Ship to Increase Gaming Capacity by 2.5 Times

With the Goa government allowing casinos to return to full capacity post the COVID-19 shutdown, casinos have been competing to grab the attention of the casino-going crowds. Deltin Royale has, for the longest time, been one of the biggest ships anchored on River Mandovi.

“It’s a replacement for our existing vessel. And in terms of capacity, our current capacity is about 1,800 to 2,000 gaming positions. That should go up by at least 2.5 times,” said Dhebar. “And we’ll add another 1,500 gaming positions once the land-based casino comes.”

The ship will be ready soon but will only be brought into Mandovi in August-September once the monsoon season is over. A sensible decision considering the incident of the MV Lucky Seven that got stuck in a sandbar at Miramar beach in 2017.

With Big Daddy entering the Mandovi in March 2019, a turf war broke out between the top three poker brands, i.e., Spartan Poker (Big Daddy), Adda52 (Deltin Royale), and PokerBaazi (Majestic Pride). In mid-April, PokerBaazi LIVE ended its three-year-long association with Casino Majestic Pride, leaving Big Daddy and Deltin Royale as the only two branded poker rooms in Goa.

Delta Corp.’s new ship that is estimated to increase the company’s current gaming capacity by 2.5 times will indeed up the ante.

 

NGT Restrains Deltin Caravela Operations

On April 28, the National Green Tribunal (NGT) restrained Deltin Caravela from conducting its operation on the River Mandovi until it acquired the Coastal Regulatory Zone (CRZ) clearance.

NGT directed the Goa State Pollution Control Board (GSPCB) to assess and recover compensation for damage to the environment on account of operations by the ship without the requisite CRZ clearance. The NGT said after the money was recovered, following the due process of law, the same shall be utilized to restore the environment by preparing an action plan. It further said that no activity onboard the vessel can resume till Highstreet Cruises and Entertainment Private Limited (HCEPL), the subsidiary of Delta Corp. that operates the ship, obtains CRZ clearance.

On May 1, Delta Corp. decided to challenge the NGT order. “Based on legal advice, the company believes that HCEPL is not in violation of the CRZ Notification, and HCEPL is pursuing legal remedies to challenge the order of the National Green Tribunal,” said Delta Corp.’s company secretary and vice-president, Dilip Vaidya.

A day later, Deltin Caravela withdrew its petition filed in the High Court of Bombay at Goa, challenging NGT’s order. The company is expected to approach the Supreme Court against the tribunal’s order. During the hearing on Monday, counsel SS Kantak representing Deltin Caravela, after arguing for some time and based on instructions from the petitioner, sought leave to withdraw the petition with liberty to institute an appeal before the Supreme Court under provisions of the NGT Act, 2010.

 

Integrated Resort at Prenem Awaiting Final Approval by State Government

Last year, the gaming conglomerate estimated an investment of between ₹1,000 to ₹1,500 Crores to develop its proposed integrated resort over 100 acres of land close to the new Mopa Airport at Pernem. Dhebar, addressing analysts at a conference recently, also said that while the state government has approved the proposal for a 100-acre entertainment and casino complex at Pernem, “official communication” has yet to come through.

The project will include electronic casinos, themed hotels, water parks, and theaters and will be developed on 100 acres of land close to the under-construction airport at Mopa.

“With regards to our 100-acre parcel, we have got the approval from the cabinet. And we are waiting for the official communication to come by. We are ready, as far as our project is concerned, to commence work. Our endeavor would be to start the casino as soon as possible,” said Dhebar. He estimated that it would take 48 months to complete.

Delta Corp. employs over 2,500 people in Goa, and after the Pernem project is completed, the company`s headcount is projected to almost triple to 7,000 to 8,000 people.

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