James Packer Dodging Trouble with Mental Health Claim?
Australian tycoon James Packer has quit his family firm Consolidated Press Holdings as he recovers from mental health issues, a spokesman said Monday, months after he stepped down from gaming empire Crown Resorts.
Packer’s departure from his private investment vehicle is the latest step by one of Australia’s richest people — who has previously spoken about his battles with depression — to walk away from his business commitments.
The Victorian Government is due to hand down its 5 yearly review of the Crown Melbourne licence imminently. Wonder if the timing of James Packer's resignation from CPH is connected: https://t.co/5cK4tqPmyc
— Stephen Mayne (@MayneReport) July 9, 2018
“Mr Packer has stepped off the CPH board as he continues his recovery from illness,” a spokesman for the firm said in a brief statement.
The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) told AFP Packer resigned from the board on June 27, with the notice confirmed to the corporate regulator on Friday.
Australian billionaire, witness in Netanyahu case, quits own company: James Packer, named witness in a bribery investigation into Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, quit the board of his private company on Monday. https://t.co/3JtfTPmmFC JPost pic.twitter.com/UXHE9UNaOe
— Jewish Community (@JComm_NewsFeeds) July 9, 2018
The 50-year-old son of the late publishing and gaming mogul Kerry Packer abruptly departed Crown in March, citing “mental health issues”. CPH is Crown’s largest shareholder.
With a personal fortune estimated at Aus$3.9 billion (US$2.9 billion), Packer had long controlled the two companies built up by his family over three generations.
Weight gain, dulled senses, cognitive impairment…I hope the post-treatment medication works. But if you want privacy & less media….my advice is to stay out of Saint-Tropez. #jamespacker #CPH pic.twitter.com/S6ATN2waE8
— Kim Ivey (@VertexCapital) July 9, 2018
He had only returned to the Crown board last year after earlier moving aside to focus on international interests.
The decision comes after a series of turbulent business and personal struggles for Packer.
The Australian had a high-profile engagement with US music diva Mariah Carey before the couple split in 2016.
Around the same time, 19 Crown current and former employees were held for 10 months in China on charges of illegally luring rich Chinese to gamble in Australia.
It was his dad, Kerry, who said in an interview with Ray Martin that "being rich only makes you a bit more comfortable in your own misery." >>> James Packer resigns from family company's board https://t.co/AWgciQDLvf via @ABCNews
— Stephen Asprey (@stephenasprey) July 9, 2018
Crown was also in the process of divesting from its international holdings to focus on its casinos in Melbourne and Perth, as well as a new gaming resort in Sydney.
Packer checked himself into a psychiatric hospital in the US just days after resigning from Crown’s board, the Sydney Morning Herald reported then, adding that he had stayed there for six weeks seeking treatment.
The newspaper reported in late June that he was now spending time in the French Riviera with his current girlfriend, New York socialite Kylie Lim.