Crown says 70 new staff added to financial crimes, responsible gaming teams

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Embattled Australian casino giant Crown Resorts says it has added an additional 70 full time employees to its Financial Crime & Compliance and Responsible Gaming teams ahead of another key week of testimony by the Victorian Royal Commission into Crown Melbourne.

According to a trading update issued early Monday morning in which Crown said it expects to report a loss for the year ended 30 June 2021, the addition of approximately 70 employees is part of the companys reform agenda which seeks to increase resourcing and capability across a number of key areas.

It also follows revelations around compliance emerging from last years NSW inquiry into Crown Resorts, which ultimately deemed it unsuitable to hold a state casino license, and from the ongoing Victorian Royal Commission into Crown Melbourne.

Crown said Monday that it expects to report theoretical EBITDA before Closure Costs and Significant Items of between AU$240 million and AU$250 million and theoretical EBITDA after Closure Costs but before Significant Items of between AU$90 million and AU$100 million. A full year loss is expected although no figure was given, with the results still subject to review by the board.

Crown also warned of more negative impact to come in FY22 due in part to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and related property closures, but also further fallout from Royal Commissions in Victoria and Western Australia.

The outcome of those regulatory processes may potentially impact Crowns financial performance, it said. Crown also expects to incur increased corporate costs throughout the 2022 financial year, including legal, consulting and associated costs, whilst these regulatory and any resulting processes continue.

On a positive note, the company said it has already utilized apartment sales to fully repay a AU$450 million project finance facility put in place last year to complete construction of Crown Sydney. Group-wide net debt currently sits at approximately AU$900 million, Crown added.