17 children from four different relationships. The STDM is big enough to fit everyone there, but some don’t want to.
MB Feb 2020 Special Report | Casino Lisboa – 50 Years
Stanley Ho’s will must be a headache – after all, it is about distributing Macau’s largest heritage and one of Hong Kong’s largest assets to same many living children.
The inheritance has yet another complicating detail: two of the children have passed away, but their consorts are alive – and with grandchildren.
From his first marriage to Clementina Leitão (who died in 2004), Stanley had four children, two of which have passed away: Robert, who was said to be elected by his father’s to continue his legacy, was the first to die, from a car crash; Jane, the eldest daughter, died in 2014.
Angela and Deborah remain, but they barely contributed to the business of their father’s companies.
Nevertheless, in the midst of the 2011 big family crisis, it was Angela who went public to defend the interests of this branch of the family, stating that “I can’t believe my father would leave my mother’s family with absolutely nothing.”
Angela Ho then sent a letter to Macau and Hong Kong newspapers adding: “My father spoke to me on many occasions and stressed his intention to share his assets equally among all his children.”
In 1962, the year STDM took the gambling monopoly, two more of Stanley Ho’s daughters were born: the previously mentioned Deborah and Pansy, the first daughter from Ho’s relationship with Lucina Laam (polygamy was only banned in Hong Kong in 1971).
We have already talked at length about Pansy in this special report, but there are some things to say about her brothers.
In total, Lucina has given Stanley five children in 14 years and only one, Josie, is not in business.
Josie always wanted to be an actress and singer, and has achieved a lot of recognition in Macau and Hong Kong. She has described herself as the “little black sheep” of the family.
Daisy, Maisy and Lawrence are instead linked to the gambling business, albeit in different ways.
Daisy worked for a long time as the Executive Director of Shun Tak Holdings, but was promoted, at the time of her father’s official departure, to Chairman and Executive Director of SJM Holdings.
Lawrence, Stanley’s eldest son, never worked with his father, but he is currently the Melco Resorts & Entertainment’s CEO, overseeing the City of Dreams and Studio City resorts in Macau, eight Mocha Clubs, and investments in Russia, Philippines and Cyprus.
Maisy is the least known of Ho’s progeny. She’s now 52 years old and she is Executive Director of Shun Tak Holdings. Ms Ho holds a BA in Telecommunications and a BA in Psychology from Pepperdine University, USA.
Between Lawrence (born in 1976) and Stanley’s next child there is a 13 years difference.
In fact, the first of three children that Ho had from his relationship with Ina Chan, a nurse he met when Ina took care of Clementina, was born in 1989.
Florinda, the eldest, and the twins Laurinda and Orlando seem so far uninterested in the business of their father-founded companies.
Florinda and her mother Ina played one of the best aces up their sleeves during the 2011 family war, when they appeared in public next to Stanley Ho and the transfer of shares to his second and third families (with Lucina and Ina) was confirmed.
Ho’s fourth relationship also had a curious moment: Angela Leong’s first daughter, Sabrina, was born before the last two children of Stanley’s relationship with Ina Chan.
Sabrina is 29 years old, one year older than Orlando and Laurinda.
Then Arnaldo, Ho, Mario and Alice were born, six months before the transfer from Macau to China..
About Angela Leong’s five children, it is still difficult to say what connection they will have in the future to their father’s universe of companies, but it is known that Arnaldo has been participating in the Lisboeta theme park project and working at SJM.
Sabrina is the Chief Executive of Poly Auction Macau and Head of her own company, Chiu Yeng Culture, which promotes art and cultural events in Macau.
One of Stanley Ho’s last public statements, again during the 2011 crisis, was: “I love my family.”
Will the family know how to return this love when he is no longer alive?
… and nephews
Michael Hotung is the son of Winnie Ho, Stanley Ho’s sister who died last year.
Being the the sole executor of Winnie’s will, Michael sued his uncle for HK $2 billion in “unpaid shares dividends.”
Michael Hotung also filed a writ against his auntie Nanette Ho and STDM.
Another nephew creating problems is Alan Ho.
This former SJM executive has been sentenced to eight years behind bars for his role in a prostitution ring at the Hotel Lisboa. In March 2016, Macau’s Court of First Instance sentenced Alan to 13 months in prison after finding him guilty on a charge of sexual exploitation.