By Clyde Mooney – editor Australian Hotelier
Now enjoying a rear-mirror view of the fiasco around gaming reform and with the Australasian Gaming Expo in full swing, under-optimised gaming pubs continue to emerge on offer.
Symbolising the opportunity in this kind of asset, the Lucky Australian is “considered a future Top 200 venue” and is a reluctant sale by operators Pelathon Management Group, divesting to free up capital for acquisition of larger venues.
Located within 200 metres of St Marys station, in one of the State’s top gaming precincts, the hotel is amongst proven performers with consistent growth and boasts 20 EGMs with approval for another six machines.
“The Lucky Australian has skyrocketed up the State gaming rankings in the past 18 months, moving up over 250 places,” observes Sam Handy, JLL’s manager – pub investment, who is taking the property to market.
Similarly, Wollongong’s Dicey Riley’s offers a “serious upside” around its gaming, returning well above average without the smoking solution that has become so essential in modern era.
“The main-street location enjoys substantial foot traffic, but Dicey Riley’s currently offers no outdoor gaming solution, while all other venues in the area do,” advises Joel Fisher – veteran pub broker, who recently joined Ray White Hotels and is managing the campaign.
“This could be easily rectified with a minor refurbishment.”
Due to go to auction in two weeks, the hotel is likely to attract interest from savvy gaming operators and investors.
In recent weeks a number of high-value assets have come onto the pub real estate market, underscoring what is widely seen as a crest in pricing that will hopefully be sustained for some time to come.