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Crown Sydney retains casino licence after 'monumental transformation'

Crown Sydney keeps casino licence after major reforms; whether the operator has overstated these reforms is another matter.

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Crown Resorts and Crown Sydney (Crown) have acknowledged the decision by the New South Wales Independent Casino Commission (NICC) to allow Crown Sydney to retain its casino licence. 

This follows a recent announcement by the Victorian Gambling and Casino Control Commission (VGCCC) stating that Crown Melbourne has also been found suitable to keep its casino licence.

Crown has invested AU$200m (US$192m) in a transformation of its operations, implementing reforms across areas such as harm minimisation, financial crime prevention, governance, compliance and risk management.

These reforms have been undertaken under new ownership and executive leadership since Crown was acquired by Blackstone in June 2022. Notable changes include the establishment of new Boards, including Crown Sydney’s Board chaired by John Borghetti.

Crown Sydney has implemented standards to deter and detect money laundering, including being the first in NSW to introduce cashless gaming on all Electronic Table Games (ETGs).

Mark McWhinnie, Crown Sydney CEO, stated: “Since opening the Crown Sydney casino in August 2022, we have worked tirelessly to implement wholesale reform across our business, delivering 432 remediation activities to the NICC across key areas, including harm minimisation, financial crime, compliance, risk and culture.”

Crown Resorts CEO, Ciarán Carruthers, added: “Under the ownership of Blackstone, who brought in new executive leadership, management and Boards, the Crown of today has been rebuilt from the inside out. We’ve spent the past two years pioneering a monumental transformation unlike anything seen before in corporate Australia.”

The decision by the NICC to allow Crown Sydney to retain its casino licence follows recent challenges faced by the establishment. In November 2023, Crown Sydney announced plans to reduce operating hours and cut 180 jobs due to a lack of footfall.


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