The head of casinos operator Echo Entertainment, John Redmond, is leaving for personal reasons.
Echo Entertainment boss John Redmond is leaving after little more than a year in the job, but says the casino operator is on the way to overcoming its difficulties.
Mr Redmond, an experienced executive in the United States gaming and entertainment industry, started as chief executive of Echo in January 2013.
He will step down on May 1 to return home to the US for personal reasons.
Mr Redmond would not elaborate on his reasons for quitting Echo on Wednesday, and chairman John O’Neill said there was “no disputation whatever” between the Echo board and Mr Redmond.
“We’ve been delighted with the job John has done,” Mr O’Neill told reporters.
Echo operates The Star in Sydney, Jupiters Gold Coast and the Treasury casino in Brisbane, and is in the process of selling Jupiters Townsville.
In the year prior to Mr Redmond’s appointment, Echo’s profits had plummeted, the manager of The Star, Sid Vaikunta, was dismissed after sexual harassment claims, chief executive Larry Mullin quit, and chairman John Story departed after a bitter public campaign by major shareholder James Packer, the chairman of Echo rival Crown Resorts.
During Mr Redmond’s tenure, the NSW government rejected Echo’s proposal to further develop The Star in Sydney, in favour of a proposal for a new casino and resort from Crown Resorts.
Mr Redmond has also overseen the group’s plans to redevelop Jupiters Gold Coast and Treasury Brisbane.
He said on Wednesday he had joined Echo at a time when the group required a turnaround and a strategy for each of its casinos.
“The properties and the company is fixed,” Mr Redmond told reporters.
“All the problems that we had have been identified in a significant way, and a direction has been established going forward.”
The design stage of a proposed $345 million redevelopment of Jupiters Gold Coast was complete, the process of submitting a proposal for the redevelopment of the Treasury in Brisbane was substantially done, and a strategy had been devised to make The Star in Sydney competitive, he said.
“The foundation is set, and now it’s just a matter of making sure that things are stabilised and don’t go awry,” Mr Redmond said.
Echo chief financial officer Matt Bekier will replace Mr Redmond as chief executive.