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Sale of Dutch Casino subject to court case

Privatization of Holland Casino 

The state-run casino’s in The Netherlands, Holland Casino, will be privatized. The first skirmish on this casino sale is to bedealt with by the Dutch court. The casinos are organized in a Dutch trust (Stichting). Such a trust does not have any shareholders. The Dutch state has incorporated the trust some 40 years ago. However, such an incorporation does not make you owner of a company run by the trust. The Dutch state, however, controls the company through the board and the dividend policy. 

Preparation of the Casino organization for sale 

To prepare the Dutch casinos for the sale, the board has decided to transform the trust into a company limited by shares (naamloze vennootschap). The transfer of the company can then take place through a share transaction. However, the works council of the Holland Casino trust has different views. The works council is of the opinion that the proceeds of the sale of the casinos should remain in the trust. That means that the proceeds cannot go to the Dutch state, but should stay in the trust itself. The lawyer for  the Dutch state have submitted that the Dutch state has been the “actual shareholder” from the beginning. 

Casino employees worry about their jobs 

Holland Casino trust is doing quite well at the moment. The turnover is EUR 576,000,000.- with last year’s profits, before taxes it was EUR 104,700,000.-. The Dutch parliament has to ratify the privatization of Dutch casinos. The background of this casino dispute is the employment of the 3,200 croupiers and other Holland Casino employees are worried about their future in case of privatization. The Enterprise Section of the Amsterdam Court of Appeal will decide on the matter in a couple of weeks. 
For further news on gambling law in the Netherlands also read: update on gambling license in the Netherlands.

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