Jaime Wilhelm resigns as CEO of Dreams SA

The Chilean casino operators Dreams and Enjoy have dropped plans to merge.
The Chilean casino operators Dreams and Enjoy have dropped plans to merge.

The former CEO of the Chilean casino operator is to be investigated by the national competition authority.

Chile. The Chilean casino operator Dreams SA has announced that Jaime Wilhelm has resigned from the position of chief executive. Patricio Herman, general manager of Dreams’ casinos, will step in as interim CEO.

The announcement comes after it emerged that Wilhelm is one of several executives to be investigated by Chile’s competition authority, the FNE, in connection with alleged market violations and fraud. They are accused of having tried to secure outcomes for their own financial benefit in a planned merger between Dreams and the other major Chilean casino operator, Enjoy.

Last April, the FNE announced an antitrust investigation into the merger, raising concerns about possible collusion between the two companies. The Chilean Financial Markets Commission (CMF) had raised concerns that the combined company would have a monopoly over casinos and gaming arcades in Chile. The companies had planned measures to respond to those concerns but the merger plans were dropped when the FNE announced its investigation.

Dreams has seven casinos in Chile, plus one each in Mendoza (Argentina), Lima (Peru) and Panama. Enjoy has eight hotel casinos in Chile plus properties in Mendoza and in Punta del Este, Uruguay.

Dreams says that Wilhelm will remain as a corporate advisor. Meanwhile, Enjoy has announced that it has begun a strategic review of its business, which will include an exploration of the possible sale of its individual casinos in Chile, Argentina and Uruguay.

Enjoy has since announced that it will focus on expansion in Brazil, where it plans to launch an online gambling platform amid the liberalisation of the market. Meanwhile, Chile is preparing to liberalise online gambling by the end of this year.

The National Congress has announced the creation of a commission to review the country’s rules on sports betting advertising ahead of the market opening. The commission, led by sports minister Jaime Pizarro, will make recommendations on the relationships between football clubs and both international and domestic gambling companies.

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