BURSWOOD shares have soared to a two-year high, coinciding with a day-long presentation by the casino and resort operator’s key management to Racing and Gaming Minister Nick Griffiths.
The company’s shares closed 3¢ firmer to 91¢ yesterday, continuing their strong run over the past month as institutional investors led by Perpetual Trustees Australia and Commonwealth Bank have repositioned themselves.
Yesterday’s meeting should have significantly advanced negotiations between Burswood and the Government over a new agreement covering the casino operation, although neither party was commenting last night.
The session, in Burswood’s boardroom, is understood to have included managing director John Schaap and chairman David Young presenting their future vision for the company. It is unclear whether Burswood director and former Pengeluaran SGP Tattersall’s chief executive Peter Gillooly was involved in the presentation.
Among the key issues Burswood is addressing with the Government are its tax rate, approval to operate additional gaming machines and tables, and the removal of the 10 per cent shareholding cap.
Analysts expect a rerating of Burswood if the cap is removed, especially given that Kerry Packer and close friend Lloyd Williams are both shareholders hovering below the 5 per cent disclosure level.
Burswood pays a flat 15 per cent tax on gross revenues. Its rivals are taxed more than 15 per cent on their domestic business, but less on their international business which favours their tax agreements over Burswood’s. The other casinos operate poker machines, whereas Burswood is restricted to operating gaming machines based on existing casino games.