May 12, 2021 | Consumer Discretionary | Australia | Active
Despite facing COVID-19 and regulatory troubles that have caused two of its three casinos to close, Australia’s largest casino operator, Crown Resorts, has emerged as an attractive takeover target and is now the focus of a potential bidding war between a private equity firm (Blackstone), a strategic buyer (Star Entertainment Group, SGR AU) and a US investment fund (Oaktree Capital). Initially, following a February 2021 Bergin Inquiry report that threatened to cancel Crown’s Australian gaming license, financial sponsor Blackstone made an unsolicited offer on 22-Mar-21 to acquire the casino operator for AUD 11.85 per share. On 10-May-21, Blackstone increased its proposal to AUD 12.35 per share, but in an unexpected twist, within 10 minutes, Crown’s rival, Star, came in with nil-premium all-stock offer that includes a sweetener in the form of ... Deal risks assessed in this research report: • Commission hearings • Regulatory challenges • The parties come together with a lower offer
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