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Stakes High in Christchurch Casino Deal

1 April 2004

NEW ZEALAND – As reported by the New Zealand Stuff: "No one looks like folding up in the high stakes game to take control of Christchurch Casino.

"Six months after talks kicked off between SkyCity Entertainment and Aspinall, the Casino's 41 percent shareholder, there appears to be no sign of a deal.

"…While no deal has been reached, SkyCity indicated it was still keen on winning a slice of Christchurch Casino.

"…But Christchurch Casino chairman Barry Thomas, who also represents Skyline Enterprises's 41 percent stake in the casino, said it was 'interesting' that no news had come out of the other camps.

"Mr Thomas has offered to buy out the Aspinall stake and was implacably opposed to SkyCity buying in.

"…Aspinall, the English gambling business which was a founder partner in the casino, has made it clear it wants to sell its stake which is conservatively estimated to be worth at least $100 million…"

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