Gaming Operations Set to Return to Crown Sydney
The Crown Sydney casino has received conditional approval from the NSW Independent Liquor & Gaming Authority to open gaming operations.
Philip Crawford, the Authority’s chairperson, announced that Crown has been given conditional permission to begin casino operations, which will give the Authority the chance to observe the last stage of its restricted gaming license suitability assessment. The assessment has been taking place since the 2021 Bergin Inquiry found Crown to be unsuitable to hold a license.
Under the Authority’s supervision, Crown has rebuilt its gaming model from the ground up, which has meant deep structural change around governance, anti-money laundering measures, and corporate culture. After more than one year’s work with Crown, the Authority is pleased to have reached a stage where Crown can open its casino operations on a conditional basis. Given the need to observe the changes in operation as well as ensure changes are embedded in the business, the Authority will consider approval of Crown’s suitability until the end of the conditional gaming period, which could run between 18 months and two years. The new systems and internal control measures have been set up and will be in place from day one.
Crawford went on to explain that the Bergin Inquiry brought to light numerous issues that needed to be addressed by Crown after billions of dollars were potentially laundered through its casinos. As such, Crawford said that the casino operator has been forced to introduce numerous controls to prevent any future money laundering or criminal activities in its casinos.
Crawford added, “With a complete clean-out of the board and senior executive, Crown has made significant progress and has agreed to ongoing work to regain its casino license.”
Recently, the Authority also approved Blackstone’s suitability for an NSW casino license. Blackstone had previously received approvals from the regulators in Victoria and Western Australia, as well as the Federal Court, allowing it to take over as the new owner of Crown on 24 June.