The Star Entertainment Group has appointed David Foster and Anne Ward as non-executive directors. In doing so, the number of members of the company’s board of directors has increased to seven and new appointments are subject to regulatory approvals.
This is Ward’s second high-end appointment of 2022
Prior to being named non-executive director of The Star, Ward held the same position at Crown Resorts. She was named NED during the massive Crown purge, which was insinuated by the Bergin report. The Bergin report concluded that Crown was unfit to hold its license in New South Wales.
However, after Crown was acquired by Blackstone, she retired as the company’s NED. During the official announcement, Ward said she was looking forward to joining The Star’s board of directors and helping the company “create shareholder value.”
In addition to working at Crown, Ward has experience in multiple industries including banking, technology, insurance, healthcare and financial services.
On the other hand, Foster is a true pioneer in financial services having worked for more than 25 years in this sector. This includes 5 years as CEO of Suncorp Bank. He also shared his thoughts on his appointment as NED. Foster noted that he, too, will work hard to increase shareholder value for the company and looks forward to “contributing to organizational change” that will lead to increased value.
The Star’s acting chairman, Ben Heap, noted that Ward and Foster bring a “relevant skill set” to the board and have considerable experience in highly regulated industries.
Trouble awaits the star in Queensland
Queensland has launched an investigation into The Star’s Gold Coast and Brisbane casinos. A first public hearing into the company, into alleged criminal activity across Australia, has begun. Queensland will look at several arrangements through which Chinese nationals have been able to gamble at The Star-owned casinos.
One of the sections that will be particularly studied is the use of China UnionPay credit cards. Interestingly, Crown Melbourne was also charged with the same criminal activities. Robert Gotterson, a former Court of Appeal judge, said there were concerns about the Star Sydney’s operations after several allegations were made and evidence presented.
In the meantime, the Gold Coast facility is seeing massive expansion progress. The $2 billion master plan for the second 63-story hotel has reached a major milestone. The six-level podium has just been poured with 12,000 cubic meters of concrete. This podium is the basis for a new pool bar, hospitality facilities and a luxury leisure terrace with swimming pool.
According to a report by The Star, the property’s 457 apartments have already been sold and half of them have been bought by local investors.