Crown Resorts has received an unsolicited, non-binding, indicative proposal from The Blackstone Group Inc to acquire all of its shares for AU$8bn ($6.18bn).
According to Crown’s confirmation to the Australian Securities Exchange, Blackstone offers an indicative price of AU$11.85 per share, which “represents a premium of 19% to the volume-weighted average price of Crown shares since the release of its 1H FY21 results.”
Blackstone currently holds approximately 10% of shares in Crown Resorts that were acquired in 2020 from Melco Resorts and Entertainment.
The group already owns stakes in Las Vegas properties such as the MGM Grand and the Bellagio.
“The Crown Board has not yet formed a view on the merits of the proposal,” said Crown in the confirmation. “It will now commence a process to assess the proposal, having regard to the value and terms of the proposal and other considerations. It will also engage with relevant stakeholders including regulatory authorities.”
Analysts say the deal is probable, given the difficulties Crown has faced in the last few months, but the decision relies on James Packer who holds 37% of all shares.
The Financial Times reports that analysts at Fitch Ratings believe the deal with Blackstone might help Crown solve some of the issues presented in the Bergin report.
Fitch analysts said: “Even though Crown has already terminated agreements with CPH, and its representatives on Crown’s board have already resigned, we believe the removal of CPH as a shareholder will be viewed favourably by regulators as it will provide a permanent break in the relationship.”