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Australian Burswood Shares Up

25 September 2002

AUSTRALIA – As reported by the (Australia) Sunday Times: "Shares in casino and resort operator Burswood Ltd shot 6.5 per cent per cent higher after the Western Australian Government agreed to scrap its 10 per cent shareholding cap next September.

"Burswood also secured tax concessions for its international gambling business under changes outlined by Racing and Gaming Minister Nick Griffiths on Tuesday.

"It pushed the stock up nine cents to an intraday high of 86 cents (US$0.47) before it settled at 82 cents (US$0.45) on turnover of 8.2 million.

"…`It is out of the way now. It has been overhanging management for a couple of years, now they (Burswood) can get on with the job of running the business,' Paterson Ord Minnett industrial analyst Robert Gee said.

"He also supported the government's decision to delay removing the cap for a year, rather than leave Burswood vulnerable to a takeover at a time when it was undervalued.

"…Removal of the cap (the 40 per cent shareholding limit to foreign investors will remain in place) will almost certainly put Burswood in play with Kerry Packer's Publishing & Broadcasting Ltd (PBL) touted as a potential bidder.

"PBL is believed to have picked up almost five per cent of the company more than a year ago and reports surfaced in March that the cap was one of the issues discussed by executive chairman James Packer during a meeting with WA Premier Geoff Gallop in Perth.

"…Other possible predators include Jupiters, TAB, Tabcorp and New Zealand based Sky City however Sky City may struggle with foreign investment restrictions…"

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