Crown’s Overhaul Wins Support from New South Wales Regulator, Signaling Casino May Open

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Crown Resorts Ltd, found unfit in February to run its Sydney casino, is making “significant progress” in addressing the concerns laid out by the regulator, a sign the struggling company is on a pathway to start gaming at its $1.7 billion waterfront resort.

An independent monitor will report to the regulator on Crown’s structural changes, focusing on corporate governance, anti-money laundering measures and culture, the New South Wales Independent Liquor & Gaming Authority said Thursday. The regulator will decide on Crown’s suitability to operate the casino after the report, it said, without giving a time frame for any decision.

The update is a vote of confidence in Crown Chairman Helen Coonan’s plan to renew the casino operator’s board, improve governance and tighten anti-criminal controls.

A report on Crown for the New South Wales regulator in February by former Judge Patricia Bergin was among the most damning assessments of any Australian corporation. She recommended a comprehensive overhaul of the company before gambling operations could get underway in Sydney.

“Crown, through its Executive Chair Helen Coonan, is addressing many of the issues which caused Commissioner Bergin to find that it was unsuitable to hold a casino licence in NSW,” ILGA chair Philip Crawford said in a statement.

Crown has also agreed to make all gaming in its casinos cashless, using card technology linked to both identity and a recognised financial institution, ILGA said.

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