Support’ for casino buy-out

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The chairman of Queenstown tourism company Skyline Enterprises says their Christchurch Casino buy-out has clear support. 

Skyline shares have hit a record high since the Queenstown conglomerate bought the remaining half of Christchurch Casino. 

The local Skyline stock traded at around $7 before last month’s surprise $80 million buy-out of SkyCity Entertainment Group’s 50 per cent Christchurch stake. 

Early this week, Skyline shares were their highest ever at $7.45. 

“It’s clear there’s support for the directors’ action,” Skyline chairman Ken Matthews acknowledges. 

Matthews assesses earthquake-hit Christchurch as being on the verge of a gradual rebound. 

“The rebuild is going to pump a lot of money and cash into Christchurch,” he believes. 

Skyline are long term players “as signified by everything else we own” and Matthews sees similar upside in Christchurch Casino. 

Along with UK gaming group Aspinalls, Skyline partnered the casino’s 1994 launch. 

SkyCity bought Aspinalls out in 2004 for around $94m. 

As part of the latest casino play, SkyCity paid Skyline $5m for its 40 per cent stake in SkyCity Queenstown Casino.