The Crown Resorts Ltd (ASX: CWN) share price rose by 6.7% last week, despite a barrage of bad news.
On one hand, the company is planning to open its new establishment at Barangaroo on 14 December. On the other hand the gaming commission inquiry has heard that Crown is unsuitable to hold the casino licence.
Counsel assisting the inquiry also stated clearly that the influence of Packer and his private company Consolidated Press Holdings (CPH) had a “deleterious impact on the good governance of Crown”.
Even NSW premier Gladys Berejiklian has cast doubt on the opening of Crown’s NSW casino, stating that she would seek “urgent and immediate” advice on the matter.
How has the Crown share price performed recently?
The Crown share price fell dramatically prior to its AGM. This was after the company’s largest institutional investor, Perpetual Limited (ASX: PPT), declared it would vote to oppose the re-election of three directors. This follows months of public discussion of money laundering accusations at Crown. Financial crimes regulator AUSTRAC has also declared “serious concerns” over the issue, driving it to launch its own investigation.
On the day before Crown’s AGM, the company formally announced the termination of all agreements between Crown and CPH. In addition, the AGM saw a strong protest vote against three directors, as well as the board’s remuneration report. The abstention by CPH allowed the directors to retain their seats, but also caused the remuneration report to receive a “first strike”.
Additionally, the Australian Financial Review reports that the federal Labor Party has demanded Crown chair Helen Coonan be removed from her role as the head of the federal government’s Australian Financial Complaints Authority.
Nevertheless, the Crown share price began to edge upwards after its AGM.
The resignation of two directors, termination of all agreements between CPH and Crown, and the continuing gaming commission inquiry are all an exercise in transparency and accountability.
Amid the recent turbulence, the Crown share price continues to rise, sitting at $9.04 at the time of writing.