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Billionaire Packer’s Crown Buys Stake in Nobu for $100 Million

James Packer and Robert De Niro


Crown joins owners Robert De Niro, Nobu Matsuhisa in chain Nobu plans a number of new restaurant, hotel openings

Crown Resorts Ltd., the Australian casino group controlled by billionaire James Packer, bought a 20 percent stake ownership interest in the international restaurant and hotel company, Nobu, for US$100 million.

The other 80% will continue to be owned by the existing owners, entities associated with Nobu Matsuhisa, Robert De Niro and Meir Teper, Crown said in a statement.
As part of the acquisition, Crown will nominate Mr Packer to join the Nobu board as one of four directors.

Australia’s third-richest man James Packer stepped down as chairman of Crown Two months ago, is now focusing on developing the group’s resorts. The group include a planned casino in Las Vegas and a hotel for high-rollers on Sydney Harbour. He also holds an interest in movie-production company Ratpac with filmmaker Brett Ratner.

“James Packer established Crown’s relationship with Nobu some years ago. Now we have Nobu restaurants in both Crown Melbourne and Crown Perth and a Nobu Hotel at City of Dreams – Manila. This acquisition cements that existing strong relationship, ” Crown’s Chairman, Mr Rob Rankin.

The up-market Japanese eatery has outlets in Crown’s casino complexes in Melbourne and Perth and there is a Nobu Hotel at the City of Dreams in Manila, owned by Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd., according to the statement.

Melco Crown this week opened the Hollywood-themed $3.2 billion Studio City resort in Macau, which features a Batman ride and a 400-foot Ferris wheel.

The opening was attended by De Niro, Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese. “We see the Nobu brand as complementary to Crown Resorts’ global luxury entertainment positioning and the Nobu business has an attractive near-term growth profile, with a number of new restaurant and hotel openings planned, ” Crown Chairman Rob Rankin said in the statement.


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