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Australia’s Publishing

Australia’s Publishing and Broadcasting Ltd. Ready To Buy US Casino

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Australia’s richest man, James Packer, is ready to make a splash into the casino business in the United States when the company he controls, Publishing and Broadcasting Ltd., finalizes their purchase of a Pennsylvania casino.

The sale will be for an estimated $1.78 billion, and will be one of two casinos. Not disclosed is which casino will be bought, but PBL’s Crown has had talks with owners of a casino in Pennsylvania.

Either Harrah’s Chester casino or Prairie Meadows Racetrack and Casino will allegedly be the casino that will be bought, although reports did not specify which one.

In May, PBL made plans to split its gaming and media interests into two separate listed companies, and the gaming company was to be Crown.

Consolidated Media Holdings will be the other company and will include a 25 percent stake in PBL Media and PBL’s stake in pay TV business Foxtel.

Crown will be the company that PBL has its casino and international gaming assets.

MGM Grand and Detroit Make Good Business Partners

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MGM Grand Detroit is up and running, and both the city and the company are much the better for it. MGM moved from a temporary casino into its permanent location last month, and revenue has jumped. The casino took in $54.9 million in October, up $15.3 million from October of 2006, an increase of over 38%.

Even more astoundingly, the increase in intake was due almost totally to new gamblers, as the two competing Detroit casinos, MotorCity Casino and Greektown Casino, both showed revenue numbers roughly equal to last October?s.

From these stats analysts conclude that MGM?S big jump occurred without draining customers from the existing base of the competition.

The three casinos have paid taxes of over $265 million to the state and city so far in 2007.

And the creation of the plush, new MGM $800 million hotel complex has led to business seeking to meet in Detroit. According to a spokesman from the Detroit Convention and Visitor?s Bureau, inquiries into Detroit hosting conventions are up 71%.

The boost in both revenue from gaming and overall tourist attendance will only continue as MotorCity opens its new hotel later this month, and Greektown continues its expansion planned for next year.

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