Crown Resorts Backs Blackstone’s A$13.10 per Share Offer
Embattled Australian casino operator Crown Resorts has announced today its plans to accept American Investment business Blackstone’s takeover offer for about some AUD 8.9 billion ($6.3 billion) after months of negotiations and offers from interested parties.
In an official press release, Crown Resorts stated that it would recommend to shareholders that they allow the company to be sold to Blackstone for AUD 13.10 per share at its general meeting scheduled for mid-year.
According to Crown Chairman Ziggy Switkowski, “The all-cash offer provides shareholders with certainty of value.” He further acknowledged that investigations and Covid-19 pandemic “uncertainty” continues to reign over the future of the casino even after steps have been taken to combat several problems of the group.
Although Crown Resorts group has unanimously decided to sell to Blackstone, the eventuality of the deal coming through rests on the country’s gaming regulators allowing Blackstone to own and operate Crown’s casinos in Melbourne, Sydney, and Perth. The agreement will also be reviewed by an independent expert and Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board.
Crown Resorts has faced a series of scandals and money-laundering allegations in its operating states, which led to its license being suspended by the Australian government.
Shareholders of Crown, which has faced damaging misconduct inquiries in every state it operates in and has also been hammered by a COVID-19-led drop-in visitors, will get A$13.10 a share, a 5.7% premium to the stock’s last close.
Blackstone’s latest accepted price is 10.5% higher than its first A$11.85 per share offer last March.
We are very pleased to have entered into a binding implementation agreement with Crown and look forward to working with the company and its stakeholders to complete this transaction.