The Australian gambling and entertainment company, The Star, released its FY23 financial report, revealing a normalized EBITDA and significant statutory loss for the period. The report emerged Tuesday and sees the company post a statutory net loss of AU$2.44 billion ($1.57 billion). At the same time, the latest financial report reveals that normalized EBITDA hit AU$317 million ($203.3 million). This result, the company said, was slightly above the previously announced guidance of AU$280 million ($180 million) and AU$310 million ($199 million). Additionally, in its FY23 report, the company posted a normalized net profit of AU$41 million ($26.3 million).
Undoubtedly, the recent trading period was a challenging time, especially considering the Gotterson and Bell probes that identified different breaches. This is why The Star focused extensively on remediation processes that included strengthening anti-money laundering (AML), risk assessment and safer gambling policies. What’s more, a priority for the company was the implementation of internal controls along with the replacement of senior-level executives as a part of its Board.
During the recent trading period, The Star reached an agreement for the sale of Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort Gold Coast. The aforementioned sale had a price tag of AU$192 million ($123.1 million) and is “subject to purchaser obtaining approval for liquor license transfer,” explained the company.
Focusing on the year ahead, The Star confirmed that remediate actions will continue. Moreover, the company said that it will continue its extensive efforts to return to suitability and strengthen its collaborations with regulators, as well as stakeholders in Queensland and New South Wales. Priorities for The Star in the year ahead will include further AML policy improvement and efforts toward safer gambling and “culture transformation.”
An Exceptionally Challenging Year for The Star
Robbie Cooke, The Star’s group CEO and managing director, spoke about the company’s recent results and challenges it faced in the last year. He acknowledged the damage to the company’s “social license” in light of the regulatory breaches and explained that the company is fully aware of the “privilege and responsibility that comes with holding a casino license.”
“To say it has been a challenging year completely understates the lived experience at The Star over the last 12 months.“
Robbie Cooke, managing director and group CEO at The Star
Speaking about remediation, Cooke said that the process has already started and it is an ongoing objective for The Star. “We have invested in enhancing our control environments and are operationalizing and embedding these controls. We are improving our financial crime management and our overall approach to harm minimization,” he added. Finally, Cooke said that the resolution of the casino duty in NSW helped remove uncertainty and enable the company to protect thousands of jobs within the sector.