5 questions lobbed at the 2021 Tabcorp AGM

October 24, 2021

Here is the text of the 5 written questions that were lodged for the Tabcorp AGM held on October 19, 2021.

Is it correct that we have lost most of the RSL Victoria pokies management contract which was generating around $28 million of revenue each year? Why did one of our biggest pokies management clients choose to take their business in house? Was there something wrong with our service and when do the changes take effect? Does this make the Gaming Services business harder to sell?

Tabcorp and Aristocrat both floated in the mid-1990s. Our opening market capitalisation in August 1994 was $675m based on the $2.25 float price and Aristocrat was valued at $303 million after its 1996 IPO at $2.90 a share. Today, Tabcorp shares are trading at $5.23 giving us a market capitalisation of $11.64 billion after multiple share issues. Aristocrat shares last traded at $45.79, giving it a market capitalisation of $29.23 billion. What is the chair and CEO's explanation as to how two gambling industry companies can have such starkly different performance? Which of our past takeovers do the chair and CEO believe added long term value to the company? Which do they regret?

The ABC recently reported that the gambling industry had made Australian political contributions totalling $81 million since 1999. How many millions have Tabcorp shareholders contributed to registered political parties over the years and why don't we follow Aristocrat's lead and have a policy of zero political donations? Also, what disclosures do we make about shareholder spending entertaining politicians, such as at the Melbourne Cup?

Since Tabcorp signed up to manage RSL Victoria's pokies fleet in 2012, 20 of the 70 RSL Victoria pokies venues have gone broke, the latest being Cranbourne in recent weeks. Tabcorp has been paid more than $200m in management fees by largely unprofitable Victorian RSLs since 2012. Is the board concerned about brand damage with some veterans saying that TabCorp made profits from the deal as veterans were forced to sell off buildings gifted to them from ANZACs to pay debts to Tabcorp under a deal that is not being renewed. Will TabCorp apologise to veterans for these poor business outcomes resulting in mass RSL closures and property sales.

As the former chairman of Tattersalls, could Harry Boon please explain why he is seeking another term when he has served on the board since before the 2005 Tatts Group IPO. Also, what was the point of the merger with Tabcorp if the lotteries business might now be demerged?