|Contact: Investor Relations
Phone (858) 451-3637
San Diego, CA,
International Thunderbird Gaming Corporation (TSE - INB) is pleased to announce the following update:
Collection on the California receivable: The Company is pleased to announce that it has successfully completed the negotiation and collection of $3.25 million from a California tribe. A portion of the proceeds not exceeding $500,000 will be paid to Support Consultants, Inc. which was instrumental in securing the settlement. The Company continues to receive support from its lenders and the receipt of the $3.25 million allows the Company to decrease its loans payable and strengthen its balance sheet. The Companyís recoverability of these proceeds will be recorded against "other assets" which stem from the sale of its California Native Tribe operation. The Company continues to aggressively pursue the collection of additional amounts from various California Tribes. Now that the legal and regulatory environment in California has settled, the Company continues to negotiate with several compacted California Tribes concerning future gaming opportunities, pending the March 2000 vote on Proposition 1A.
Under the Venezuelan Law for the Control of Casinos, Bingos and Slot Machines (1997), casinos can only be established in jurisdictions that are declared as a "National Tourism Zone", and that have undergone a local referendum approving gaming. Casinos must be located in hotels that meet the five-star requirements set by Corpoturismo and that have at least two-hundred (200) rooms. The Hotel-InterContinental meets all of these requirements. Moreover, it is the only hotel that meets these requirements in an area that has a population in excess of 700,000 in the immediate city of Guayana and a total of 1.2 million within a 100-mile radius. Guayana is considered to be the industrial heartland of Venezuela and is the center for major steel, aluminum and other heavy industry, as well as the primary commercial center for the state of Bolivar.
The LOI calls for Thunderbird to enter into a 10-year Lease Agreement with the Hotel-InterContinental under certain terms and conditions: (a) Thunderbird may extend the Lease for an additional ten (10) years pending a new negotiation of major terms; (b) the joint venture will pre-pay US$2.5 million in rent over a twenty-four (24) month period, which will be used to build a new conference and events center adjacent to the hotel; (c) Thunderbird will pay no additional rent during the first three-and-a-half (3 ½) years, of the lease (this period will be used to amortize the US$2.5 million paid during the first two years); (d) beginning in month forty-three (43), Thunderbird will pay a monthly rent of US$45,000 plus 2% of net win, the combined total of which shall not be less than US$65,000 per month; (e) the initial size of the casino area will be approximately 7,850 square feet; (f) Thunderbird will have the right to expand the casino, without additional charges, up to a size of approximately 24,000 square feet should demand warrant part or all of such an expansion.
An independent analysis has been conducted as to the viability of the project, and based on this analysis Thunderbird believes there will be more than sufficient cash flow from the project to cover the pre-payment of rent of US$2.5million as described above. The initial capital costs of the project will be financed from excess cash flow from its Panamanian operation, as well as from the resources of its partners in Venezuela (Tamanaco Entertainment, C.A) and from a group of Panamanian investors and Thunderbirdís own resources. Thunderbird will own forty percent (40%) of the joint venture licensee that will own and operate the Casino.
International Thunderbird Gaming Corporation is an owner and manager of international gaming facilities. Additional information about the Company is available on its World Wide Web site at www.thunderbirdgaming.com .
On behalf of the Board of Directors
Cautionary Notice: This release contains certain forward-looking statements
within the meaning of section 21E of the United States Securities Exchange
Act of 1934, as amended. All statements, other than statements of historical
fact, included herein, including without limitation, statements regarding
potential revenue and future plans and objectives of the Company are forward-looking
statements that involve risk and uncertainties. There can be no assurances
that such statements will prove to be accurate and actual results could
differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Important
factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the Company's
forward-looking statements include competitive pressures, unfavorable changes
in regulatory structures, and general risks associated with business, all
of which are disclosed under the heading "Risk Factors" and elsewhere in
the Company's documents filed from time-to-time with the TSE and other