Australian operator Star Entertainment Group has certainly had a rocky year or so, with suitability inquiries and allegations popping up all over the place—however, the company is trying to right the ship, and has appointed Robbie Cooke as its new CEO, three months after his predecessor Matt Bekier resigned amid the chaos.
The hire is still pending approval from regulators, and the company has not confirmed a start date for Cooke at this time.
Star is still being investigated in two separate inquiries in New South Wales (NSW) and Queensland, and Cooke’s hire is not expected to affect the outcome of those proceedings. The final verdict of the NSW investigation is expected to come in the near future, whereas the Queensland inquiry was just launched earlier this month.
Cooke most recently served as the managing director of fintech company Tyro Payments. Before that, he was CEO of lottery operator Tatts Group from 2013 to 2018. Star said that Cooke’s experience in finance will be of vital importance for the company, given its ties to money laundering and other financial mishaps.
Cooke released a statement saying that even though Star’s struggles have been “well documented,” he is not backing down from the challenge—indeed, he intends to make the company’s pitfalls his “priority and focus.”
After news of the hire broke, Star’s stock price jumped 2.4 percent. That said, it is still down nearly 30 percent since the beginning of this year.