Tatts and Tabcorp to take charges after pokies ruling

    Australia’s Tatts and Tabcorp both said they will need to take a charge to their results after The Court of Appeal of the Supreme Court of Victoria overturned a ruling regarding pokie machine levies, due to the Victorian government.
    The appeal court upheld the Victorian Treasurer Michael O’Brien’s assertion that Tatts should pay a $42.6 million health benefit levy. It will also have to pay interest of about $1.7 million, according to company estimates.
    Tatt’s said it will need to take a charge of about $25.7 million to cover the ruling, while Tabcorp expects its 2013/14 earnings to be impacted by about $19 million.
    Both companies said they were considering their options, which could include an appeal to the High Court.
    The two companies have been embroiled in litigation with the Victorian government over their pokies business. Last week the court ruled in favour of Tatts, saying the government should pay compensation of $450 million in a separate case related to the expiry of its license. Tabcorp lost its bid for compensation.
    The government has since said it will appeal that decision.