Crown resorts to name change bid

James Packer's gaming company Crown Limited wants to rebrand itself as Crown Resorts Limited in an effort to become better known as a high-end tourism operator.

James Packer's gaming company Crown Limited wants to rebrand itself as Crown Resorts Limited in an effort to become better known as a high-end tourism operator.

Crown has advised shareholders in a notice of meeting that it will seek their approval next month to change its name to Crown Resorts, to take into account its "expanded portfolio of integrated resort assets".

In Crown's annual report, Mr Packer said the name change was timely given its large investments in the past few years in tourism infrastructure, and its expanding domestic and international investments.

Crown has casinos in Melbourne and Perth, and owns a third of Asian gaming joint venture Melco Crown.

Mr Packer received NSW cabinet approval three months ago to move to the final assessment stage for a six-star hotel and VIP casino at Sydney's Barangaroo harbour-front development.

Crown also wants to build a casino in Sri Lanka's capital, Colombo.

The annual report reveals that Crown chief executive Rowen Craigie received almost $5 million last financial year, down from almost $6.9 million in 2011-12. The drop reflects a reduction in his long-term share incentives from just over $3 million to $1.19 million.

Greg Hawkins, who stepped down as Crown Melbourne CEO last month, received a total package of $1.34 million this year, down from $1.82 million previously. Crown said Mr Hawkins was not entitled to a long-term bonus.

Mr Hawkins has been replaced by former Crown Perth CEO Barry Felstead, who has taken on an expanded role of chief executive of the company's Australian resorts.

The pay for Crown's other top executives also fell.

Crown suffered a shareholder backlash against its remuneration report in 2011 because of a lack of detail around the hurdles for its long-term incentive plan for its executives. But the likelihood of that happening again this year seems low given that the hurdles appear high.

Crown will seek shareholder approval for the name change at its annual meeting on October 30 in Melbourne.

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