Star Entertainment and Crown Resorts discuss potential merger

Crown Resorts received an AU$12bn (US$9.4bn) offer from Star Entertainment.
Crown Resorts received an AU$12bn (US$9.4bn) offer from Star Entertainment.

Star Entertainment and Crown Resorts’ CEOs met virtually to discuss options regarding a possible merger.

Australia.- Crown Resorts CEO Steve McCann has met with The Star Entertainment CEO Matt Bekier to talk about the potential merger of the two casino operators.

In May, Australia’s The Star Entertainment made an unsolicited non-binding offer of AU$12bn (US$9.4bn) for Crown Resorts.

Although more details of the virtual meeting have not been released, according to local media, McCann could be willing to work on a deal and may have asked Star to provide more details about its non-bidding offer.

Star Entertainment previously said the fusion would deliver between AU$150m to AU$200m of cost synergies per annum with an estimated net value of AU$2bn.

It’s also been suggested that The Star Entertainment could help Crown Resorts solve its regulatory problems faster than Blackstone or Oaktree thanks to its experience as a casino operator in Australia.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) chairman, Rod Sims announced that a public review will be carried out to decide whether Star Entertainment would be allowed to make the acquisition.

Sims noted that the potential merger would result in a casino giant with operations in the main Australian states. 

According to local media, Sims said: “It’s very early days. But we would look at the market for domestic table game customers and we would look at the competition between Barangaroo and Star in Sydney.”

If Crown Resorts finally accepts the offer, Crown shareholders could retain 59 per cent of the shares while Star shareholders could own 41 per cent of the newly-merged entity.

There’s been speculation that a merger could prompt a new independent casino authority in NSW, which would likely ban junkets and demand enhanced requirements for suitability.

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Crown Resorts f&a star entertainment