PRIVATIZATION

Mohegan cuts Elliniko stake

mohegan-cuts-elliniko-stake

A new balance is emerging in the consortium that will develop the integrated casino complex at Elliniko following the partial decision by Mohegan Gaming & Entertainment (MGE) to stop being the project’s leader, according to senior government officials.

A reduction of the MGE participation, or even a possible departure, will create considerable opportunities for capital gains both for GEK Terna, which remains in the project, and for MGE’s candidate successors that have recently examined the possibility of their participation with contacts sought with the government and GEK Terna.

Sources from the Prime Minister’s Office and the Finance Ministry say that interest in the Elliniko casino project is particularly strong, as Greece is currently in a significantly better economic and investment environment that it was in 2018, when the tender for the casino began. Mobility and discussions on the matter are also confirmed by sources from MGE who Kathimerini spoke with.

MGE has decided to partly withdraw from the process, at least as a leader, according to government sources, at the start of the month after its demands for the modification of the necessary contracts were rejected; the state turned down the adjustments Mohegan asked for as unacceptable. The matter was also discussed at a government meeting in the first week of June.

Legal sources explain that the signing of the contract for the casino may well proceed with the representative of the consortium to undertake the project – i.e. probably GEK Terna, which currently controls 35% against MGE’s 65%, or another partner with which the venture could continue. The same legal sources say the stake balance may be maintained or even have one of the stakeholders replaced without causing any problems for the process; the only commitment the project leader has is to retain a stake no less than 35% for at least eight years.

Senior government officials say they have been approached by interested groups that are experienced in managing integrated casino complexes, some of them being major US names in the market. Since the management change at MGE, questions have been raised about its commitment to Elliniko.