Wynn withdraws Macau announcement, shares climb

Fri Mar 2, 2012 9:57pm GMT

Quotes

   

* Wynn stock resumes, up nearly 6 pct

* Retracts statement that Cotai project "gazetted"

* Project will be Wynn's third in the city

(Rewrites with Wynn's clarification)

LOS ANGELES, March 2 (Reuters) - Wynn Resorts Ltd (WYNN.O) retracted an announcement that it had advanced a major project in Macau, saying it had been made in error after its shares surged on the news.

Shares in the company, which were halted after that initial run-up, resumed trade shortly after and were still up 5.8 percent at about $129 in early afternoon trading.

Earlier on Friday, Wynn said a land concession contract has been published in the official gazette of Macau, a step toward allowing the company and a partner to develop a long-envisioned luxury hotel and casino resort in the world's largest gambling market.

But the company then back-pedalled, saying an "agent" had erred and had not been authorized to file that statement.

The "report regarding the gazetting of the Cotai Land Concession Contract on Form 8-K ... was filed by mistake by the Company's agent," the company said in a subsequent filing.

"The filing was not authorized by the Company. The Cotai Land Concession Contract has not been gazetted. The purpose of this filing is to retract the Land Concession 8-K in its entirety."

Wynn is proposing the development of 51 acres of land in the Cotai area of Macau for development into its third resort in the city, encompassing a five-star hotel, gaming areas, retail, entertainment, food and beverage, spa and convention offerings.

Analysts have been keen to pin down a specific timeline on that project, which Chief Executive Steve Wynn has said will house 500 game tables; 1,500 rooms, mostly suites; restaurants and stores, and a theater.

Subsidiary Wynn Macau (1128.HK) said in September it had formally accepted the terms and conditions from the government regarding land for the complex.

Friday's news came as Steve Wynn, the casino mogul who runs Wynn resorts, is embroiled in a bitter battle with Japanese billionaire and former friend Kazuo Okada.

Last month, Wynn Resorts redeemed Okada's nearly 20 percent stake in the company and accused him of violating U.S. anti-corruption laws, citing a report produced after an internal probe. Okada said the report is based on "false and misleading assertions." [ID:nL4E8DN6FT] [ID:nL4E8DK1U0]

Prior to the trading halt, Wynn shares were up $7.70, or 6.3 percent, at $129.76 on the Nasdaq.

(Reporting By Jonathan Stempel and Edwin Chan; Editing by Mark Porter and Tim Dobbyn)

((jon.stempel@thomsonreuters.com)(646)(223-6317)(Reuters Messaging: jon.stempel.reuters.com@thomsonreuters.net)) Keywords: WYNN/MACAU

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