Crown Resorts slaps government with lawsuit as profits dive

9 August 2018, Written by David Simmons

Crown Resorts slaps government with lawsuit as profits dive

Crown Resorts has filed a lawsuit to stop the government from obstructing the views of its new Sydney resort.

The casino operator hopes its suit will stop the government from approving new developments that obstruct views from its new Sydney resort of the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

As part of an earnings announcement on Thursday, the company said it had filed a lawsuit against the government's Barangaroo Delivery Authority seeking an order that it comply with its contract with Crown.

The contract obligations call for negotiations to "ensure that sight lines from the Harbour Bridge to the Sydney Opera House are retained for the Crown Sydney Hotel Resort".

The listed casino operator Crown Resorts has posted a rough full year profit this morning following a FY18 that saw gambling mogul and head of the Packer fortune, James Packer, step away from the business.The company posted a full year profit of $573.2 million, down 69 per cent from a FY17 result that was inflated by the proceeds from the sale of its Macau business.

Crown's revenue for the 12 months was up 4.5 per cent to $3.49 billion, with the company paying a final dividend of 30 cents per share, franked at 18 cents.

The company has also announced a new share buyback program for $400 million of shares that ends on August 22.

Perhaps the biggest win for the casino operator was the reinvigoration of its VIP program play turnover, which rose 54.5 per cent in FY18 to $51.1 billion.

Work continues on the construction of a Crown Sydney Hotel Resort at Barangaroo South, which will be Sydney's first six-star hotel once completed.

The project remains on schedule for completion in the first half of 2012, and the total gross project cost is expected to be approximately $2.2 billion.

These results cap off an uncertain year for Crown, which recently lost its family mogul, James Packer, who stepped away from the business citing mental health issues.

Crown has also been no stranger to controversy during the year, and was fined $300,000 by Victoria's gambling regulator after it was caught tampering with poker machines.

The casino was found to have been hiding certain buttons on 17 gaming machines over a three-and-a-half week period during March and April 2017 so only minimum and maximum betting options were available to punters.

Shares in Crown Resorts are up 3.15 per cent to $13.74 per share at 10.56am AEST.

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Business News Australia

Author: David Simmons





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