James Packer To Make Final Decision Over Potential Crown Resorts Sale
Australian billionaire and former chairman of Crown Resorts has tried to distance himself from Crown Resorts and its operations for the last few years. Crown Resorts has run into multiple challenges in recent years after its employees were arrested in China for illegal gambling operations.
Crown Resorts has also faced heavy criticism in Australia and multiple state gaming regulators have launched investigations into Crown Resorts suitability to hold a gaming license and continue operating in their states.
James Packer is the majority shareholder in Crown Resorts and currently controls a 37 percent stake in the Australian casino operator. Consolidated Press Holdings (CPH) which is the private investment company that Mr. Packer owns released a statement on April 6.
CPH said that they were open to receiving offers for a potential Crown Resorts sale and all offers will be independently discussed and reviewed. CPH also said that they would pay close attention to what the Crown Resorts board would decide regarding the Blackstone acquisition proposal.
CPH said that they had enlisted the services of investment firm Moelis Australia who will act as an advisor to James Packer with regards to all acquisition proposals over Crown Resorts. Even if the board at Crown Resorts decides to go with the Blackstone offer, James Packer will have the final say in approving or disapproving the decision as the majority shareholder.
BlackStone Group Potential Acquisition
BlackStone Group, which is a top American based investment management firm expressed interest in March at acquiring the controversial Australian casino operator. Blackstone already owns a 10 percent stake in Crown Resorts as the investment firm bought these shares from Crown Resort’s former partner Melco Resorts & Entertainment.
Blackstone paid out A$9.15 per share in 2020 which worked out to over A$550 million. Given that Crown Resorts appears to be in trouble with Australian gaming regulators, both Crown Resorts and state gaming regulators are keen to see ownership change hands and for a new era to begin. Blackstone is looking to acquire all of Crown Resort’s casinos in Australia including its flagship Crown Melbourne casino.
Blackstone submitted an acquisition proposal of A$8 billion and rumours suggested that Crown Resorts was considering the proposal. However, James Packer has now made it clear that the final decision on the sale of Crown Resorts would be made by him.