A new front has opened in the war between Crown Resorts and Echo Entertainment for control of Australia—Queensland—and they’re not the only ones eyeing the state’s potential as a magnet for the lucrative Asian tourist market
Monday, 30 December 2013 10:50
The war Crown and Echo are waging for Brisbane has been nasty and public, as Sydney’s was. The lowlight to date has been Crown’s denial of Echo Chairman John O’Neill’s claim that a lunch aboard Mr Packer’s yacht in March had been served with an offer by Mr Packer to lay off Brisbane in exchange for a free hand on Darling Harbour. Crown would be approved in Sydney a few months later, as it turned out, and certainly by that day in July when Mr Packer walked onto the soundstage of “Financial Review Sunday” the prospects for both had changed radically.
“It will be interesting to see where Premier Newman ends up on the ideological question of competition,” he said, appearing to challenge Queensland on his Brisbane bid. Or he was just being cagey, because Mr Newman believes the state can support at least three more casinos. “In the end,” he has said, “there could be up to seven.”