Sun International has closed two of its casinos permanently with Carousel Casino in the North West and Naledi Sun Hotel and Casino in Thaba Nchu not reopening once the current lockdown ends.
Both casinos have experienced escalating costs and falling revenues over the past few years. This, coupled with the economic effects of the shutdown, has left Sun International with no option but to close the businesses, it stated.
CEO Anthony Leeming said that the added financial burden of the lockdown was a factor.
“The inevitable financial burden it placed on us has impacted on our ability to continue subsidising under-performing properties,” Mr. Leeming said. “It was within this construct that we took the extremely difficult decision to permanently close both properties. Naledi has run at a loss for several years, while the Carousel too has incurred losses for some time. We previously made every effort to turn both businesses around, but these efforts have not achieved the desired results. We are deeply saddened that we have had to take this decision at this difficult time.”
Sun International did not disclose the number of jobs at risk there.
Lucas Ramatlhodi, Secretariat Co-Ordinator of the South African Commercial, Catering and Allied Workers Union, was far from happy with the closures.
“The announcement by the company pinning things on the Covid-19 pandemic was reckless and irresponsible at best and as a union, we will be seeking recourse with the courts against this action,” he said. “For now, our concern is our members who are at their lowest point and not even sure what their future holds because many of them were not earning much and practically next to the poverty line.”
[image credit : Sun International]