Skycity Entertainment Group

Sky Convention Centre unlikely to be profitable. So why build it at all?

You have to wonder at the logic of SkyCity. Apparently their ‘gift’ to the nation of a convention centre won’t make them any money.

SkyCity’s international convention centre may end up running at a loss, compensated for by generous gambling concessions.

At the company’s annual general meeting in Auckland on Friday, chairman Chris Moller said the first sod of the huge development would be turned before the year was out.

However, Moller said the board was “under no illusion” that the centre itself would generate any significant profit.

Instead, the return on the $450 million investment will come from gambling concessions granted by the Government, including extension of the Auckland casino licence until 2048.    Read more »

There should be no taxpayer money for dysfunctional Team NZ

Team NZ is falling apart and the blame can be laid squarely at the feet of Grant Dalton.

The latest stoush is over Dean Barker who has now called in the lawyers.

A furious Dean Barker has called in the lawyers as the bitter battle over his future with Team New Zealand intensifies.

Barker was left shell-shocked at leaks to media this week that he was to be axed as skipper of the America’s Cup syndicate. His lawyers have written to the syndicate’s board seeking a “please explain” over his treatment.

The campaign for the 2017 regatta in Bermuda was already mired in controversy over taxpayer funding, and now the Herald on Sunday has learned the relationship between Barker and syndicate boss Grant Dalton has been toxic for some time, and that they rarely speak. It emerged this week that Barker only learned he was to be replaced at the helm of Team New Zealand by young sailing star Peter Burling after reading it on Facebook.

The leak occurred while Barker was in negotiations with Team New Zealand top brass. It is understood one of the options being discussed was for Barker to be replaced as skipper, but to retain a leading role within the team.

That now appears unlikely, with the Herald on Sunday learning last night that Barker – left in tears after Team NZ’s heartbreaking loss to Oracle in the 2013 America’s Cup – is set to walk away from the crew if Dalton remains in charge of the syndicate.

A source close to the team said if Barker moves on he will reject any imposition of a gagging order and is preparing to reveal all.

Read more »

Little understanding of how business works from Labour leader

His leadership is a dog's breakfast and tastes as good too

His leadership is a dog’s breakfast and tastes as good too

Andrew Little is back to being Angry Andy, with a bit of dunderhead Andy thrown in.

The man clearly has no understanding of business when he utters inanities like this.

Mr Joyce conceded that a smaller convention centre would be less attractive to some groups and could result in missed business “at the margins”.

Asked if he was hopeful SkyCity might soften any downsizing by spending more than the agreed $402 million, Mr Joyce said indications were that it wasn’t off the table.

“They are already making comments in that regard, so, let’s see.”

But Labour leader Andrew Little said a government under his leadership would be tougher. Read more »

Flash isn’t even a good descriptor

John Key says that SkyCity’s convention centre plan was too flash.

Prime Minister John Key says the SkyCity convention centre plan grew in both size and “flashness” until a public backlash persuaded the Government not to spend any more money on it.

SkyCity may need to shrink its international convention centre after public funding was ruled out, prompting critics to question whether the plan for a “world-class, iconic” building in downtown Auckland is now fading away.

“It grew from 33,000 square metres to 38,000 square metres. It did get a bit flasher,” he told Mike Hosking on Newstalk ZB this morning.

“Some of the points SkyCity were making were totally valid. But in the end I just think that public opinion on this thing, rightly so, was: ‘There’s a deal, leave it as the contract said, even if SkyCity were right, it’s possibly gone up a little more, we all need to live within our means’, and that’s what we are going to do.”

Flash?

Sky City’s convention centre appears to be gold plated. Well at least it must be.   Read more »

SkyCity bludgers want government cash from NZ but have plenty to pour into their dog in Adelaide

Sky City has increased the cost of the convention centre with the addition of a 5 star hotel, not on tarting up the proposal. Combined with escalation within the wider construction industry the Sky City team have grossly under estimated the true costs. So be it.

But wait there is more…

Now they say they want to invest heavily into their dog casino at Adelaide. It’s losing money hand over fist but the execs at Sky City obviously think a few hundred million spent there is a good idea.

While negotiating with the Government here on its Auckland project, SkyCity Entertainment Group is considering spending more than the A$350 million ($366 million) it originally planned on its Adelaide property.

Announcing the interim result yesterday, chief executive Nigel Morrison revealed a newly expanded plan for Adelaide which the business says would eventually be far bigger than its Auckland casino and entertainment operations. But he did not quantify the exact amount to be spent.

“SkyCity is currently exploring a range of different expansion options including additional Horizon VIP villas and suites and an expanded hotel, which would potentiality increase the costs for the project over the indicative cost of A$350 million,” he said.   Read more »

Why are we giving a hand out to a profitable company?

The worst welfare bludgers of all are corporate welfare bludgers.

They should know better, and if they can’t make money without the government hand-outs they should close.

It is even more ridiculous when the bludgers are extremely profitable companies like SkyCity.

They made a truck load of money in the last six months, yet are still wandering around sticking their hand out.

SkyCity Entertainment Group has increased its December half-yearly profit slightly, making $66.6 million normalised net profit after tax, up on its previous $66.4 million.

Read more »

Tell John Key to man up

John Key and Steven Joyce are so off the radar of mainstream opinion on SkyCity that we should be doing all we can to make sure that they man up and tell Sky City to go fly a kite.

The left are jumping on the bandwagon because they see it as a way to stop stupidity tax. But the way I see it is that SkyCity made a deal and John Key needs to ensure they deliver.

The Taxpayers Union has launched a petition they intend to deliver to Parliament. I’ve already signed it.

Sign the petition to stop taxpayer money going to SkyCity.    Read more »

Time for a quango hunt

It should be of little surprise that an organisation that is government funded should find themselves de-funded for involving themselves in politics instead of sticking to their mandate. Instead they are redirecting the funding into a more effective organisation.

The Herald reports on the predicament of the Problem Gambling Foundation. We already know that Labour’s claims of political retribution have fallen flat.

Government funding for the Problem Gambling Foundation has been scrapped, the organisation confirmed today amid rumours the service would be shut-down because it opposes National’s SkyCity convention centre deal.

The foundation issued a statement saying it had been informed by the Ministry of Health that from June 30 it would no longer be contracted for the bulk of its current services.

“While the ministry describes PGF as a valued provider of quality services it has told PGF it has a superior offer for the clinical and public health services PGF provides,” the foundation said.   Read more »

Another Labour fail. Making a claim, then having it destroyed in seconds

Yesterday Labour and their proxy blogs made the claims that the Problem Gambling Foundation had lost its funding because it opposed the government deal with SkyCity.

Once again Labour has been caught out.

Labour claims funding for the Problem Gambling Foundation has been stopped because the foundation opposed the deal to increase the number of gambling machines at SkyCity Casino.

But the Government has confirmed the new holder of the contract to provide health and counselling services for problem gamblers throughout New Zealand is the Salvation Army, which also opposed the deal.

Labour’s Internal Affairs Spokesman Trevor Mallard said the foundation was being forced to close its doors because it vocally stood against the deal between the Government and SkyCity to increase the number of pokies in the Auckland casino, in return for building a new national convention centre.

“Staff will this morning be told the foundation has lost its Ministry of Health funding and will close its 12 offices nationwide,” Mallard said.  Read more »

Cunliffe invests with big American firm, not Kiwi companies

At the same time that David Cunliffe is busily explaining his donation laundering scheme to an incredulous media, perhaps he’d like to explain why he doesn’t back Kiwi companies for his Kiwisaver account.

Cunliffe’s Kiwisaver is with Mercer Kiwisaver. Mercer is a wholly owned subsidiary of Mercer USA which is listed on the NYSE through its parent company Marsh and McLennan.

I wonder if the “optics” of Cunners using a big US firm to invest his taxpayer funded Kiwisaver subsidies (taking profits back to America etc) is damaging, especially when he could be using a NZ based Kiwisaver like Gareth Morgan, Milford, or Fisher Funds.

Maybe the man from Boston Consulting just can’t bear to not use his big American buddies…

It would be funny if Mercer Kiwisaver had investments in Skycity as well.

Oh wait while I just laugh.

2.75% of the Kiwisaver fund is SkyCity – number 7 in size.

Mercer Read more »