Crown Resorts Ltd (ASX: CWN) shares are on the rise today. The positive price movement comes after it became known a major shareholder is pushing the company to make the sale of the gaming and resort business happen as soon as possible.
At the time of writing, the Crown share price is trading at $13.05 – up 2.35%. For context, the S&P/ASX 200 Index is currently trading 0.67% higher.
Let’s take a closer look at today’s news.
Crown sell-off too slow?
The Australian Financial Review (AFR) is reporting substantial Crown shareholder Perpetual Investments is actively pushing Crown’s board and management to begin selling the business as soon as possible. Crown is currently the target of three separate takeover bids from Blackstone Group, Oaktree Investments, and Star Entertainment Group Ltd (ASX: SGR).
“Given this interest, it makes sense for the board to immediately commence and fast-track a formal sale process, concurrent with its consideration of the proposals presented by Star Entertainment, Blackstone and Oaktree,” Perpetual Head of Equities, Paul Skamvougeras, is quoted as saying.
The AFR is reporting frustration is growing among bidders and shareholders that the Crown sales process is not happening quickly enough. However, reports suggest Crown is prioritising ensuring it can obtain/retain its gaming licenses in New South Wales, Victoria, and Western Australia.
The latest Blackstone bid is for $12.35 per share, Star Entertainment’s offer is a mix of cash and shares it says values Crown shares at approximately $14.00 each, and Oaktree wants to loan Crown $3 billion to buy back James Packer’s plurality in the company. Mr Packer was singled out by the NSW Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority (ILGA) as a key reason for withholding its NSW gaming license.
Crown share price snapshot
Over the past 12 months, the Crown share price has increased by around 44.5%. Shares in the company bottomed out at $6.00 during the height of the COVID market crash and then struggled to return to their pre-pandemic value, largely hovering around $9.00 to $10.00 until mid-March this year.
Crown shares then rocketed 21.4% after Blackstone was the first to submit an offer for the beleaguered company. Since then, successive bids from other potential buyers have seen the Crown share price go higher and higher.
Crown Resorts has a market capitalisation of $8.8 billion.