James Packer has sold nearly half his stake in Crown Resorts. Picture: AAP
James Packer has sold nearly half his stake in Crown Resorts. Picture: AAP

Packer sells half his stake in Crown

JAMES Packer has sold almost half of his stake in casino operator Crown Resorts for $1.76 billion.

Consolidated Press Holdings (CPH), Mr Packer's private investment company, confirmed tonight it had sold 19.99 per cent of its shareholding in Crown Resorts to Melco Resorts and Entertainment. It was sold for an equivalent to $13 per share.

Once the share sale is completed, CPH will own about 26 per cent of Crown, worth about $2.3 billion, and will remain represented on the Crown board.

Mr Packer said Crown was a stronger company with Melco as a strategic shareholder.

"Crown has been a massive part of my life for the last 20 years and that absolutely remains the case today - my continuing Crown shareholding represents my single largest investment," Mr Packer said of the deal.

"I am still vitally interested in Crown's success as a world-class resort and gaming business. The sale allows me to continue my long term involvement with Crown and at the same time to better diversify my investment portfolio."

The deal comes a month after merger talks between Crown and Las Vegas casino giant Wynn Resorts broke down.

CPH will lodge a Notice of Change in Substantial Holding both with Crown and the Australian Securities Exchange.