Australian poker king James Packer loses $400 million in one afternoon, due to latest gambling tax scare.
The Government of Victoria digs deeper into gambling operators’ pockets, as plans for a higher tax on poker machines have been announced. According to the new Australian gambling laws, business owners would have to pay a yearly fee of $22,715 for each poker machine.
Australian poker rooms will be taking a big hit after the new tax increase. According to the Australian Financial, for Crown Melbourne alone this means a $184 million tax liability.
The news caused a rapid 6.5% drop in share prices – from $16.76 to $15.67, making a slight recovery later on, to $15.90 – and a loss of almost $400 million affecting chairman James Packer directly.
Crown’s major shareholder already announced that he won’t be standing by and just watching this happen, as the major Australian gambling business’ shareholders are already discussing the matter with representatives of the Victorian Government.
“Crown Melbourne contributes more than $2 billion to the Victorian economy each year and the company takes its employment and economic contributions to the State of Victoria very seriously”, Packer said.
The chairman of the $12 billion company is planning to pick up negotiations with the government early next year, when several matters will be on the table, including the conditions of Crown’s license and new tax arrangements.