The main game floor of Crown Barangaroo, the Crystal Room.

The investigations were triggered by a series of reports from Sydney morning Herald, age and 60 minutes in 2019 which examined Crown’s irresponsible treatment of problem gamblers and its relationship with high profile “junket” operators linked to powerful Asian criminal gangs.

The regulatory upheaval, which still impacts Crown and Star, is another unwelcome juggle for the newly opened facility.

“First and foremost, we need to make sure we provide safe and responsible gaming, and then we provide the curated experience of luxury service,” McGrath says. “I think the combination of the two will give us a strong and sustainable business going forward.”

What also makes life more difficult is the fact that disgraced junket operators, who have done the dirty work of luring Chinese big players and extracting the money when they lose – for a fee important – have been banned.

But Crown’s new operation offered a not-so-subtle hint that Chinese gamers are still on the radar with its opening date of 08.08.22: eight is the luckiest number in Chinese culture with its traditional association with the wealth.

Whether he succeeds in wooing them will become clearer in October when his exclusive high-roller floor opens.

To enter the halls of Barangaroo’s Mahogany Hall – home to 30 private lounges for the high rollers that Crown once lured with its own private jets – a minimum spend of $45,000 in its bars, restaurants and hotel is required to reach the Platinum status required for entry. Again, Crown’s brochures do not specify the level of gaming spending required for Platinum status.

Of course serious high rollers will be offered black tier membership which is by invitation only.

Market analysts no longer follow Crown as it is a private company, but in December last year Macquarie predicted that Barangaroo could end up with 35% of Sydney’s table gambling market. by fiscal year 2025. It’s expected to be worth $923 million. Macquarie predicts $10 billion in VIP revenue by 2025.

Meanwhile, analyst reports focused on the ASX-listed star following a market update in July highlighted that revenue from poker machines and other games, at its casinos in Sydney and Queensland, have soared above pre-COVID levels. Revenue from table games, which Crown relies on in Sydney, remains weak.

Crown Barangaroo's main gaming floor, the Crystal Room, is finally open to bettors.

Crown Barangaroo’s main gaming floor, the Crystal Room, is finally open to bettors.

Crown will have 160 tables, plus 66 electronic tables operating in the Crystal Room and 30 private rooms on the Mahogany floor. While Crown Sydney will ensure that Star’s tabletop gaming revenue does not recover in Sydney, Star has a secret weapon that Crown cannot rely on: the grind market.

“In New South Wales, we note that the club’s Electronic Gaming Machine (EGM) data up to May 22 is consistent with Queensland, with earnings per EGM operating at 129% of pre-Covid levels. “, said a Goldman Sachs report last month.

And as JP Morgan analyst Don Carducci pointed out in a recent research note, The Star has a lot at stake as it extracts around $115 million in EGM, or slot machine, revenue from its players from foreground in addition to what he gets from their table. based on the game.

“Star’s slot support cannot be overemphasized; about a third of Sydney’s (VIP) revenue is slot game related,” he said.

A fund manager who watches the casino market closely, said Crown had the edge over big players in Melbourne because of the assets it had, including golf, horse racing and Grand Prix.

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“They always attracted this top tier player and probably didn’t have to do as much as Star had to do to attract these players to this market,” said the fund manager, who did not wish to be identified. due to market sensitivities. high roller company, said.

But the roulette rooms are not the ones where you make a lot of money.

“Crown had the edge on this part of the business, but it’s worth remembering. It’s not the best part of the business,” he said.

“The grind is where you make your margin. That’s 80% of your profit.

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