Crown Resorts Targets 2022 Gambling Pick Up As Struggles Continue
- Crown Melbourne struggling due to lack of tourists
- Crown expects to open Sydney casino in Jan 2022
- Crown Melbourne revenues should recover in 2022
A quiet midweek in Melbourne has contained Crown Resorts’ recovery from regulatory worries. Crown expects to open its casino in Barangaroo casino in Sydney to boost its earnings while hopes are alive for the renewal of interstate travel.
However, Crown Melbourne is at the receiving end of a bleak tourism scenario in Melbourne’s Central Business District (CBD).
Crown Eyes Sydney Casino While Melbourne Faces Setback
Steven McCann, the operator’s new CEO, addressed how the company faced obvious challenges in the COVID-19 pandemic. McCann added that Crown had all of its licensed properties open and were trying to up their ante to pre-pandemic levels. McCann also broached the subject of a fourth Crown hotel in Melbourne at a briefing on Dec 13.
Crown is still waiting for a green flag from the Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority (ILGA) to launch its casino venture in Sydney. The ILGA suspended the A$2.2 billion Barangaroo casino license after an investigation showed multiple compliance breaches by Crown Resorts.
However, McCann confirmed that the offering for a hotel in Sydney had been received positively by their customers over November 2021. McCann stated that since the hotel reopened, occupancy has averaged at approximately 40 percent since mid-November. Weekends saw higher occupancy and average room rates had risen twice as compared to its competitors in Sydney.
McCann commented that while the ILGA did not confirm an opening date for Crown Resorts’ Sydney casino, the company was looking to open its gaming floor in early January 2022. He added that given the current level of staff, the casino will open in stages. Staff will be recruited for gaming roles before the gaming operations are launched fully.
Crown Melbourne Struggling
While Crown is looking forward to the Sydney casino, its Melbourne casino suffers from the lack of tourist footfall. Crown Melbourne also happens to be the center of Crown Resort’s key earnings.
Alan McGregor, Crown’s chief financial officer told investors that the scenario in Melbourne CBD is still soft. The situation may last till the New Year period. McGregor added that ever since restrictions were lifted in Melbourne, Crown’s gaming revenue and hospitality revenue have been operating at 75 percent and 65 percent of pre-pandemic revenue.
He also acknowledged the acute shortage of staff that impacted the group’s hotels and the food and beverages sectors. Crown recently announced a training partnership with the government of Victoria to increase the staff strength in its Melbourne casino.