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Fiona Simmons December 7, 2023 3 min read
Star Entertainment Must Get Its Business in Order, Lest It Loses its NSW License
A NICC spokesperson confirmed that The Star should prove its capability to run its business independently within six months
Star Entertainment Group has six more months to regain its license in New South Wales, lest it risk closing. As reported by The Sydney Morning Herald, the NSW regulator is not content with Star’s ability to do business without supervision.
Star’s business has been having regulatory trouble for some time now. Its casino license was suspended by the NSW Independent Casino Commission (NICC) last year after a probe that uncovered multiple AML and CTF failings.
An independent manager has been appointed to oversee Star’s Sydney property ever since, ensuring that the company implements its remediation plan. However, the NICC does not believe that Star has yet reached a point where its license suspension can be lifted since it does not trust the company to run its casino without supervision.
The NICC spokesperson confirmed that The Star should prove its capability to run its business independently within six months or risk losing its license for real.
This comes just after the NSW and Queensland regulators agreed to extend the terms of the independent managers appointed to oversee Star’s business in two states. Back then, Star also pointed out that this would be the final extension of the manager’s term.
NICC Says Manager Weeks Has Been the Main Driver of Remediation
The NICC was very unhappy at the fact that much of Star’s remediation measures had been spearheaded by independent manager Nicholas Weeks, instead of driven by the casino company’s own decisions.
In addition, the regulator has doubts that the NSW remediation plan would be enough to reinstate Star Entertainment’s license. The NICC also expressed its concerns that the operator’s profit-driven culture might return once the independent manager concludes his term, considering that a significant portion of the senior executive team has remained the same.
However, a Star Sydney spokesperson argued that the company is firmly committed to implementing the remediation plan with the “utmost rigor and discipline.” The Star team said that it is pleased to have had the opportunity to work with manager Weeks for so long and is glad that his term was extended three times.
In any case, Star will be fighting an uphill battle if it is to retain its license. The company must make sure that its business is in order and show initiative when implementing remediation measures.
In other news, Star recently renegotiated its duty rates in NSW.