Aquis and Oscars Agree on Casino Canberra Sale Terms

Aquis Entertainment Ltd has signed a deal with Capital Leisure & Entertainment Pty Ltd, an Oscars Group subsidiary, and now, the company is likely to sell Casino Canberra. Regulatory approvals also need to be obtained and the price for which Casino Canberra is sold is AU$52 million ($36 million).

Aquis Is Looking To Explore New Business Opportunities

As Aquis stated, the company will be able to use the money to explore new business opportunities. The CEO of both Aquis and Casino Canberra, Allison Gallaugher, stated that this transaction provides the company and its shareholders with a “considerable value.”

In an official report, Aquis stated that an update on the business opportunities and the sale of Casino Canberra will be included by the end of the financial year (June 30, 2022).

Gallaugherconsiders the sale of Casino Canberra as a recognition of its performance, which continued to show stability even though COVID-19 was raging.

The director of Oscars, Mario Gravanis, also commented on the development and stated Oscars is happy to be provided with the opportunity to purchase Casino Canberra. He added that Oscars will be working with Aquis in the next couple of months to ensure that the transition is completed smoothly.

Oscars also noted that all of the employees will stay at Casino Canberra as the sale of the casino won’t affect their status. The sale will result in Oscars obtaining 100% of the shares of Casino Canberra. The transaction will be completed via cash and debt.

Both parties agreed to satisfy the conditions before November 11, 2022, but also agreed to extend the sunset date for additional 4 months, should a need for a delay opens up.

ACT Government Blocked Redevelopment Plans for Casino Canberra Throughout the Years

Casino Canberra has had a bit of a rocky road filled with obstacles before the official sale. Back in 2015, Aquis submitted redevelopment plans for the casino and the addition of 500 slot games was included. However, the ACT government did not give the green light to the company.

Instead, the government proposed Aquis develop 200 slots and 60 EGMs, all of which would be subject to strict regulation. Then, an AU$330 million ($227.3 million) redevelopment plan was also denied.

In a filling, Aquis stated that the restrictions imposed by the ACT government make it hard for the company to progress. However, Aquisstated that it will continue to work closely with the government on various development opportunities as their partnership can result in “a lifetime tourism infrastructure opportunity.”

Casino Canberra had decent success in the first quarter of 2022, which was greeted well as the casino closed shop in mid-2021 due to the pandemic. In a report, Aquis stated that the casino’s total operating expenses for Q1 of 2022 reached $9.6 million. Labor costs were responsible for $4 million and operating expenses were $5.6 million.

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