How ‘Accidental’ Casino Billionaire Chen Lip Keong’s Cambodia Bet Paid Off By Muhammad Cohen, Forbes March 7, 2018 at 4:45 pm When Chen Lip Keong won Cambodia’s first casino license in 1994, he had hardly ever stepped inside a casino. He’d been to Malaysia’s Genting Highlands once on a date in the 1970s and visited Las Vegas once as a tourist. Casinos are “not in my blood; I’m not a gambler,” he says. Yet today, renowned casino architect Paul Steelman calls Chen “one of the most powerful creators of these properties in the world.” This self-proclaimed “accidental” gambling billionaire is the chief executive and majority shareholder of NagaCorp. Its NagaWorld casino-resort complex in the capital Phnom Penh boasts 1,700 guest rooms, 600 gaming tables and more than 5,000 gaming machines. Despite his gambling aversion, he bet $369 million of his own money to build Naga2, an opulent twin-tower extension opened in November that features nine floors of guest rooms for high rollers with adjoining private gaming rooms. And soon there’ll be a 2,200-seat theater where Chen is aiming to host the likes of Lady Gaga, a favorite of his. The addition makes Cambodia and NagaWorld first-rank contenders in Asia’s $51 billion casino market.