Casino operator Star posts $2.4 billion loss despite tax boost

Casino operator Star Entertainment Group has posted a a $2.44 billion full-year loss.

Casino operator Star Entertainment Group has posted a a $2.44 billion full-year loss. Photo: AAP

Star Entertainment Group has posted a $2.44 billion loss after impairment costs of its casinos and legal issues smashed its bottom line, despite an impressive lift in revenue.

The troubled casino operator on Tuesday reported gross revenue for the year ended June 30 increased 22 per cent to $1.87 billion.

But changed operating conditions, increased casino duty rates, an increase in the discount rate and softness in earnings left the gambling group with a yawning $2.48 billion non-cash impairment for the year.

Chief executive Robbie Cooke said to call it a challenging year would be an understatement.

“The consequences flowing from the damage to our social licence are felt daily by team members on multiple levels, reinforcing the critical need to understand the privilege and responsibility that comes with holding a casino licence,” he said in an announcement to the ASX.

In February, Star booked a $1.6 billion writedown on its Sydney casino after a regulatory inquiry resulted in its casino licence being suspended and a $100 million fine in addition to an increase in NSW casino duty rates of up to 60.9 per cent imposed by the former coalition government.

But the NSW Labor government earlier in August gave The Star Sydney a $310 million tax reprieve after the company warned it would cause them to shut the venue down.

Under the new deal, Star will face a minor tax rise next year and again in 2027, as well as a 35 per cent cut of any gaming revenue above $1.125 billion per year, until the full value of the tax comes into effect in 2030.

In return, the gaming venue has promised to guarantee 3000 jobs for the seven-year period.

Star says the duty rate uncertainty is now resolved, with the new arrangements estimated to result in a $10 million impact next financial year.

Revenue at The Star Sydney was up 26.5 per cent to $984 million, despite increased regulatory controls including increased guest exclusions, while The Star Gold Coast booked a 20 per cent revenue lift and The Treasury in Brisbane was up 15 per cent.


Topics: Star Casino
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