Blackstone receives GWC approval for Crown Resorts takeover

The VGCCC and the ILGA had already approved Blackstone's acquisition of Crown.
The VGCCC and the ILGA had already approved Blackstone's acquisition of Crown.

Western Australia’s Gaming and Wagering Commission has given its okay to Blackstone’s proposed acquisition of Crown.

Australia.- Blackstone Inc has obtained another necessary approval to move forward with its acquisition of Crown Resorts. Following approval from the Victorian Gambling and Casino Control Commission (VGCCC) and the New South Wales Independent Gaming and Liquor Authority (ILGA) earlier this week, it’s now received a green light from the Gaming and Wagering Commission of Western Australia.

Crown Resorts has announced that the Western Australian minister for racing and gaming, and the Gaming and Wagering Commission of Western Australia (GWC) have given their approval of the takeover plan.

The approvals were granted subject to several conditions, including: 

  • enhanced reporting of anti-money laundering and responsible gambling activities and additional auditing requirements on Crown;
  • non-interference requirements to prevent Blackstone’s institutional investors from involvement in the day-to-day operations of Perth’s Crown Casino;
  • obligation to report any investigations by any Australian or overseas regulators; and
  • that Blackstone cannot change its corporate structure and funding arrangements without providing prior notice and relevant approvals. This means Blackstone will not be able to introduce new investors into the structure without approval. 

Racing and gaming minister Tony Buti said: “As the prospective new owner of the Perth Casino, Blackstone will be required to meet a number of stringent conditions. These conditions align with a number of the recommendations stemming from the recent Perth Casino Royal Commission. 

“The State Government has already made significant improvements to the regulatory regime and remains committed to establishing an even tougher regulatory and governance framework to ensure whoever owns or runs Perth’s casino is held to account. 

“The conditions on Blackstone, combined with upcoming reforms, will ensure appropriate standards are upheld at Perth’s Casino.”

Gaming and Wagering Commission chair Lanie Chopping added: “Blackstone has been subject to an extensive probity assessment by the Gaming and Wagering Commission. 

“This detailed and complex process undertaken since the application was submitted last year involved the comprehensive independent assessment of relevant Blackstone entities in accordance with the legislative requirements. 

“The Gaming and Wagering Commission’s probity approval has been granted subject to a number of conditions designed to ensure that the Commission has oversight and the capacity to monitor any change in licensee management or ownership.”

The final court hearing on Blackstone’s acquisition of Crown has been scheduled for June 15. If the Court approves the scheme, Crown will announce an indicative timetable for implementation.

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Blackstone Group Crown Resorts