James Packer quits board of Crown Resorts

The Australian billionaire has resigned from the board of casino operator Crown Resorts due to mental illness.

Australia.- Casino mogul James Packer has resigned as the director of his company Crown Resorts Limited. A spokesman for Packer’s Consortium Press Holdings, Crown’s largest shareholder, said that the businessman intends to step back from all commitments.

“Mr Packer is suffering from mental health issues. At this time he intends to step back from all commitments,” said an emailed statement. While the Australia-listed company didn’t specify the reasons why Packer left his position, it also issued a brief statement: “We have appreciated James’ contribution to the board and respect his decision to step down from his role as director at this time,” executive chairman John Alexander said.

Earlier this month James Packer sold more than US$76 million worth of Crown shares, but he still retains a dominant stake of 47 per cent in the company.

Michael McCarthy, Chief Markets Strategist at brokerage CMC Markets, said that the departure of Packer is clearly not a positive for Crown. “He’s been a significant contributor to strategy in particular over the years. But at the same time this is a very strong board and executive team … it’s not a disaster.”

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