Crown arrests to force marketing rethink?

Beijing’s policies are once again creating waves across the Asian gambling scene and may force a rethink of how regional operators reach mainland Chinese customers. Last month, China arrested 18 employees from Australia’s Crown Resorts, including the group’s head of international business, for alleged and unspecified gambling crimes. Earlier this month, a junior employee was released, though the others remain in detention. It’s not the first time that employees from overseas casinos have been detained in China, with several representatives from South Korean operators apprehended last year. Experts say the latest arrests show China’s anti-corruption campaign is still in full force. President Xi Jinping’s anti-graft drive, which was officially launched at the end of 2012, triggered a two-year slump in gaming revenue in Macau. VIPs fled the market on concern over being on Beijing’s radar. However, Macau’s pain turned out to be a gain for further flung locations such as Australia and...

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