Sat, Jul 29, 12:01pm by Staff Writer
One of the world biggest casino companies, Caesars Entertainment, is set to operate the Gold Coast’s second casino after reportedly agreeing with ASF to build a resort on The Spit.
Chinese-backed ASF have been negotiating with various parties over the past four years, with Crown coming closest to forming a partnership.
But Crown’s own troubles, plus uncertainty about the Queensland government’s approval of plans surrounding the resort has seen James Packer’s interest in the Gold Coast project wane.
Caesars, the Las Vegas based company, were reported to have toured the Gold Coast earlier this month and they have now signed an agreement with ASF Consortium to progress due diligence and commercial terms.
It’s a significant step for ASF, who were under pressure to get a major partner on board with questions over the financial viability of their company.
Planning, rather than the official granting if a casino licence, is said to be the biggest roadblock in the progress of the project.
ASF Group director Louis Chien said the onus was now on the state government to provide certainty about the project.
“We will select a casino operator as part of a detailed proposal,” he told The Australian. “We’ve got investors here, we’ve got people waiting. Come to the table. We just need clarity.”
Caesars Entertainment refused to confirm it had signed any agreement with ASF but did say ‘It’s accurate to say we are continuing to study the opportunity.’
The government are expected to make a decision whether to formally grant a licence in the next six months.
The Gold Coast project would certainly fit with Caesar’s new business approach, which is focussed on global expansion.
A 5.5 hectare site on The Spit next to Seaworld is the preferred development site for the project
There are currently two other major casino construction projects being undertaken in Australia with The Star constructing its new Brisbane casino and Crown having recently began building its VIP-only casino in the Sydney suburb of Barangaroo.
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