The flagship property of Australia’s Echo Entertainment Group, the recently renamed Star, is experiencing higher overdue loans as a result of an increased emphasis on VIP clients.
The Sun-Herald reports that a year ago, credit extended to players accounted for just 1 percent of the then-Star City Casino’s cash earnings. That figure has grown to 12.5 percent, according to financial statements.
A spokesman for the Star, Brad Schmitt, said the loans were part of doing business with a larger proportion of high-roller clients, who have 90 days to repay.
Schmitt said overdue loans are not necessarily bad debt.
“If we thought we weren’t going to get it back, we would have made provisions in the accounts,” he said.
Echo Entertainment is the casino division spinoff from gaming operator Tabcorp. The Star refurbishment for more VIP appeal and the rebranding are costing almost AUS$1 billion.
The casino is currently undergoing routine licensing review by the state Casino, Liquor and Gaming Authority.