The Star suspends all rebate play programs

Days after the resignation of three of its key management personnel on Friday, The Star Entertainment Group is suspending its domestic and international rebate play programs while it addresses issues arising from its royal-style commission inquiry in NSW. 

Rebate programs are often used by casinos to attract VIP players – typically either through a rebate on buy-in or a rebate on actual loss. 

Earlier this year, The Star’s then-chief casino officer, Greg Hawkins, was questioned about his involvement in a practice in which The Star would switch local players to its international rebate program in order for the casino to save on gaming taxes. 

Hawkins conceded that some staff on the main gaming floor were tasked to encourage eligible players to sign up for its international rebate program. 

“The board has resolved to immediately suspend rebate programs for both domestic and international players across all its casinos until further notice,” said The Star in a filing on Monday morning. 

“The Star will work with gaming regulators to address various identified risks as part of ongoing reviews of systems and processes.”

The casino company said it has also engaged with external advisors and continues to work to further improve its systems and processes. 

“In light of the Covid-related impacts on this part of the business, the decision to suspend rebate programs is not expected to have any material impact on earnings for FY22,” said the company.