Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Sydney Star City Casino workers vote to strike - 22nd December 2009

Staff at Sydney's Star City casino have voted to take industrial action over pay, frustrated over a two per cent rise offered by management.

The LHMU hospitality union says staff in the next few days are likely to decide exactly what action to take and when.

"Star City staff have decided on strike action because they are frustrated by the casino's unfair wage offer and management's refusal to listen to them," LHMU NSW branch secretary Mark Boyd said in a statement on Tuesday night.

"The casino put its offer to a vote of all staff in September and earlier this month. Star City staff voted overwhelmingly `no' twice to the casino's unfair pay offer.

"Star City is refusing to listen to its staff who just want a decent pay rise and don't want to lose any of their conditions.

"The decision to consider action is not taken lightly but staff feel it is their last resort."

Mr Boyd said $575 million was being spent renovating the venue, its top executives were paid $2.6 million and the casino's last quarter revenue was up 11.6 per cent.

No one was available for comment at Star City on Tuesday night. (Credit: Wires, Google News, AP)

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Monday, December 21, 2009

Gatto asked to fix $6.25m dispute after mates fall out, by Vanda Carson - The Sydney Morning Herald - 22nd December 2009

Underworld figure Mick Gatto was called in to help settle a $6.25 million dispute between the colourful developer and high-roller gambler Harry Kakavas and the millionaire Gold Coast property developer Jarrod McCracken.

Details of the meeting in 2007 between Mr McCracken, the former rugby league player-turned-developer and the Carlton Crew boss Mr Gatto emerged as part of a sensational NSW Supreme Court lawsuit triggered by the bitter falling out between the two Gold Coast property tycoons, who were once best mates.

Mr McCracken travelled to Melbourne and met Mr Gatto, who he believed was ''very friendly'' with Mr Kakavas, in an attempt to encourage Mr Kakavas to repay the money, lent in a handshake deal.

But even Mr Gatto was not convincing enough to coerce Mr Kakavas to repay the money, which he had lost in gambling sprees at the Bellagio Casino in Las Vegas and at Crown in Melbourne.

About $500,000 of the money was lost when Mr Kakavas bet on the AFL and NRL grand finals.

*Read full article.

(Credit: The Sydney Morning Herald)

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Monday, December 14, 2009

Carl Icahn Moves to Control Trump Resorts - 11th December 2009

Carl C. Icahn, the investor, agreed to buy most of Trump Entertainment Resorts’ bank debt, pitting Mr. Icahn against a bondholders’ reorganization plan for the casino operator. Mr. Icahn leads a group that will buy a secured loan from the Beal Bank, which is first in line among creditors, and agreed to back the lender’s reorganization plan for Trump Entertainment, according to a statement Friday. Trump Entertainment’s three casinos filed for bankruptcy protection for the third time in February, blaming a high debt load and falling revenue. The founder, Donald Trump, and his daughter, Ivanka, dropped Beal as a partner last month and backed a bondholder plan that would give him up to 10 percent of the reorganized company.

“Despite the current problems in Atlantic City I continue to have great faith in the city’s future,” Mr. Icahn said in the statement. The competing plan “is a roll of the dice to releverage these operations, which may well turn into a round-trip ticket to bankruptcy court,” he said. Beal Bank is based in Plano, Tex. Trump Entertainment, based in Atlantic City, owns the Trump Taj Mahal Resort, the Trump Plaza Hotel & Casino and the Trump Marina Hotel Casino.

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Thursday, December 10, 2009

Melco Crown says no plans to raise equity - 9th December 2009

HONG KONG - Macau casino operator Melco Crown Entertainment does not plan to raise capital through the equity market, but will refinance its debt through bonds and bank loans by the middle of 2010, its chief financial officer said on Wednesday.

Melco Crown, a joint venture between Hong Kong-listed Melco International Development Ltd. and Australia's Crown Ltd , would be able to "carry comfortably" $US1.5 to 2 billion ($A1.65 to 2.2 billion) of debt on its balance sheet, CFO Simon Dewhurst told Reuters in an interview.

Melco Crown's stock has nearly halved since it hit its highest level in more than a year on September 23 on concerns about potential fund-raising. In contrast shares of Galaxy Entertainment Group slipped 8.2 per cent in the period.

Macau casino revenues could rise 20 to 25 per cent by the end of 2010 from 2009 levels, on the back of strong economic growth in neighbouring China, Dewhurst said.

"If we assume that China is growing at 10 per cent year-on-year, the gaming industry in Macau will grow for the next 20 years at 20 per cent," Dewhurst said. "I have never found a better proxy for consumer behaviour in China than the Macau gambling story."

Crown shares closed 1.76 lower to $7.79, against a 0.70 per cent decline in the benchmark index. (Credit: Wires, Google News, Reuters, Fairfax)

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Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Tatweer to Create world's First Marvel Super Heroes Theme Park - 21st April 2008

Tatweer to Create world's First Marvel Super Heroes Theme Park

4.5 Million Sq Ft Development to be Built in Dubailand.

Tatweer, a member of Dubai Holding, today announced a landmark deal with US-based Marvel Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE: MVL), the creators of such globally renowned Super Heroes as Spider-Man, The X- Men, Iron Man, the Fantastic Four and The Incredible Hulk, to develop the region's first Super Heroes theme park at the world's largest leisure, tourism and entertainment destination.

Allocated within DUBAILAND(R), the Marvel Super Heroes theme park will be one of its key anchor..

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