Last week, Crown Resorts sold their majority share in CrownBet to Canadian gaming firm, the Stars Group. This move is just one of many cost-cutting measures the company has had to make in the past year after the 2016 arrests of their Macau employees. So far, the Aussie gambling operator has had to make a lot of cutbacks.
From shareholder complaints to slot tampering allegations, Crown Resorts was in the headlines many times during 2017. Luckily, their fortunes seem to be changing with the sale of their CrownBet subsidiary and a return of VIP gamblers to their land-based casinos. The 62% stake, worth NZ$163 million, has possibly saved James Packer’s company from bankruptcy. According to the Canadian firm’s CEO, Rafi Ashkenazi, ‘CrownBet has become one of the fastest growing online sportsbooks in Australia.’
Stars Group Re-enters AU Market
The Stars Group owns and operates PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker, two of the most popular poker rooms online. However, after the Aussie Interactive Gambling Act was amended and banned online poker, these brands left the market. So, the purchase of CrownBet could be the company’s foot in the door if the ban is rescinded. Either way, they now have a chip on the table for sports betting.
The Australian sports betting industry is the second largest regulated market in the world. So, with or without poker, the Stars Group stands to make a profit in the country. All they need now is to obtain permission from gambling regulators like the Northern Territory Racing Commission for the cash transaction.
Details about the CrownBet Deal
As mentioned, the Canadian gaming operator has acquired a 62% majority share in CrownBet. This means that they will be able to appoint most of the board of directors for the company. Their controlling interest will also determine the growth of the sports book. However, it’s unclear if they will keep the brand for long. Keep visiting NZ Casinos for more about this story.