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The Star Interim Chairman: “We have fallen short of expectations”

The Star Entertainment Group Interim Chairman Ben Heap has admitted that the operator has “fallen short of expectations” after an inquiry found it was unsuitable to hold a licence in New South Wales.

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Earlier this week, the New South Wales Independent Casino Commission (NICC) issued The Star Entertainment Group with a show cause notice, with a report by Adam Bell SC finding the operator unsuitable to hold a licence.

In a message to shareholders, team members and guests, The Star Interim Chairman has acknowledged the findings and recommendations of the report, as well as the gravity of the matters it has presented.

“We also acknowledge the public criticism of our governance, behaviours and culture, including by the NSW Independent Casino Commission Chief Commissioner, Mr Philip Crawford,” said Heap.

“We have fallen short of expectations. The people of NSW placed their trust in us as the holder of a casino licence, and we have not lived up to that trust. For that we offer a sincere and unreserved apology.”

Heap explained that the operator is working to respond to the notice from the NSW Independent Casino Commission as to why it should be able to continue to operate, which primarily consists of a comprehensive remediation plan, labelled by the company as its Renewal Plan. This multi-year plan will serve as the group’s integrated roadmap for improving its governance, culture and controls.

Heap continued: “It is clear from the report that we need to fundamentally transform our culture. We need more transparency, more robust governance, and greater accountability. At its heart, we need to be a workplace where our team members feel free to raise concerns, where we have open and honest dialogue with our regulators and Independent Monitor, and where our leadership is both vigilant and listens when concerns are raised.

“Our goal is to earn back your trust and the trust and confidence of the NSW Independent Casino Commission, and indeed all our regulators. I recognise that we won’t be judged by our words, but by our actions. You have my commitment, and that of my fellow directors and senior management team, that we will do everything in our power to make the necessary improvements.”

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