Press Release By Aspinall (Nz) Limited
23 December 2003
Aspinall (NZ) Limited announced today that the balance of power on the board of the Christchurch Casino has been
restored. This follows the purported removal of Mr Arthur Pitcher as a director and managing director of Christchurch
Casino on 12 December in a board meeting called on one hour’s notice by the Chairman, Barry Thomas, because of
“shareholder issues”. Mr Thomas is also the Chairman of Skyline Enterprises, which has previously negotiated to buy
Aspinall’s stake in the business.
Aspinall asked for assurances from Mr Thomas restoring the status quo on Wednesday 17 December. When these assurances
were not forthcoming, Aspinall issued legal proceedings in the Christchurch High Court seeking interim orders to
preserve the balance of power on the Christchurch Casino board pending a substantive hearing. The position of Mr Pitcher
has now been resolved by negotiation between the parties on an interim basis, with Mr Pitcher remaining as both director
and managing director of Christchurch Casinos Limited.
UK-based Aspinall director James Osborne said today “Aspinall is happy that Mr Pitcher has been restored to the Managing
Director role. The parties have asked the Court for an urgent substantive hearing to finally resolve all issues”. Any
hearing is likely to occur some time in the New Year.