Macau-based Casino Galaxy buys in after Steve Wynn sells stake in company he founded

by | Mar 28, 2018 | All, News

Steve Wynn

Steve Wynn, who is now the former chief executive of Wynn Resorts Ltd., has sold his entire 11.8 percent state in the company, netting $2.1 billion

Steve Wynn, who is now the former chief executive of Wynn Resorts Ltd., has sold his entire 11.8 percent state in the company, netting $2.1 billion.

This departure from Wynn Resorts Ltd. has been a dramatic one for Wynn, who founded the company more than 16 years ago. Wynn’s ultimate divestment from the company is unsurprising. He resigned as CEO of the Las Vegas, Nevada-based group last month after claims that he had made inappropriate and unwanted advances on women who worked for him. Wynn has denied the allegations but outcry has forced him from the company.

Macau Casino-Operator Galaxy Entertainment Makes Surprising Move

In what experts are now calling an unexpected and separate move, the Macau casino operator Galaxy Entertainment has said that it has reached an agreement to buy 5.3 million primary shares of Wynn Resorts at $175 per share, which gives them a roughly 5 percent stake in the operation, which has resorts in both Macau and in Las Vegas.

To put the significance of this move in perspective it is important to note that Galaxy ranks as one of six licensed operators in Macau, which is the world’s largest gambling hub, and that it also happens to directly compete with Wynn, along with Sands China, MGM China and Melco Resorts.

The Timing of the Sale

Wynn’s sale of his share comes weeks after the company said that Steve and Elaine Wynn, who has a 9.26 percent stake, had done away with a shareholder agreement that prevented them from selling their shares.

On Wednesday, Galax and Wynn released a joint statement, with Galaxy Vice Chairman Francis Lui saying that it was a unique opportunity for them to “acquire an investment in a globally recognized entertainment corporation with exceptionally high quality assets and a significant development pipeline.”

No further comment has been made on whether Galaxy plans to increase its holdings in the company moving forward.

Wynn Resorts CEO Matt Maddox, however, has told reporters that the two companies happen to share the same core “operating philosophies and values.” This announcement also follows a relevant settlement that happened two weeks ago, which involved long-standing litigation between Wynn Resorts and Universal Entertainment Corporation.

Wynn said that two long-term institutional investors, who currently hold stakes in the company, have reached an agreement to purchase the other remaining eight million shares currently held by Steve Wynn. They will also be paying a price of $175 per share.

The following projects are currently underway by Wynn Hotels:

Encore Boston Harbor

Embassy Suites by Hilton St. Kitts

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