10 Things You Should Know About James Packer's Sydney Casino Plan

Photo: Crown

1. Non-VIPs will, in fact, be able to gamble there. It has been described as an exclusive venue for high-rollers. Those high-rollers will be able to bring a “limited number” of friends. Those friends will be allowed to play.

2. If you want to be a VIP you need to prove you spent a certain amount of money at other casinos. Or you will be subject to a 24-hour cooling-off period.

3. There will be no poker machines — remember, it’s not a classic “casino”. There will though, be electronic casino games. Anti-Gambling groups have pointed out that high-rollers are probably not flying to Sydney to play electronic baccarat, blackjack or roulette.

4. Analysts at Deutsche Bank and Goldman Sachs have predicted Crown Sydney will need to earn half its revenue from local players to turn a profit.

5. As a stand-alone property, it won’t make Crown much money. “We modelled and bid Crown Sydney to approximately a 9 per cent IRR (internal rate of return), which is basically a break-even position,” Packer told The Australian.

6. The New South Wales Government has conditionally said it will let people smoke indoors on the VIP gaming floor. The VIP gaming floor is the size of two-and-a-half rugby fields. Crown has said there will not be a health risk to staff as its air filtration systems will be so advanced.

7. While it wast as a “Casino War” between Echo Entertainment and Crown, which Packer eventually won, a license to build the casino has not been awarded yet. Rather, Packer’s proposal for Sydney Crown has been awarded the chance to proceed to the third stage of the State Government’s assessment process.

8. It will be open from 2019 and cost around $1.5 billion, if all goes to plan.

9. Crown won the proposal process, and the Sydney resort will almost certainly be built. But it does not mean Echo Entertainment loses anything. It still has an exclusive license until the end of 2018, and after that, 60 more years of a non-exclusive licence period.

David Murray, who was in charge of picking the best proposal, said “Two sites tend to spark off one another and produce more,” after awarding Packer the tentative go-ahead.

10. The casino license will cost Crown an upfront fee of $100 million. Non-rebate gaming will be taxed at 29%. Crown had proposed gaming be taxed at 27.5%.

Now read: James Packer May Have Won A Casino Licence But Now He Has To Win Over A City

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