The Star, Sydney

Australian pubs and clubs mogul Bruce Mathieson has reportedly asked for authorization to increase his stake in The Star Entertainment Group, days after the group announced that it had reached an ‘in-principle’ agreement with New South Wales authorities to reduce proposed tax increases.

According to the Australian Financial Review, Mathieson has written to the NSW Independent Casino Commission to increase his 9.97 percent stake in the company.

The holding of more than 10 percent of the company requires approval under state casino legislation.

This approval process could “extend for weeks or months”, a regulator spokesperson told the publication.

Mathieson is a major investor in the hotel, pub and liquor store chain Endeavor Group, with a fortune topping $1.37 billion.

Just in February, amongst ongoing financial woes by the company largely due to fines and restrictions issued by state and national authorities due to malpractice, Mathieson acquired the 9.97 percent stake for just AU$141.7 million ($90.9 million), saying that the investment was long-term, or at least for three decades.

Since his investment, The Star has been working to pull itself out of financial difficulty, holding an equity raising drive, letting go of 500 employees and negotiating for a reduction on proposed tax increases for The Star Sydney.

The threat of further layoffs at the property preempted approval for a reduction in the NSW tax levies.

However, the group is now facing litigation by its contractor for the Queen’s Wharf Brisbane project, and has yet to conclude cases brought over alleged breaches of anti-money laundering laws by both investors and authorities.

The company is set to release its financial results on August 29th.