Rife speculation in Athens that one of two bidders for the prized Integrated Resort Casino (IRC) license at the Helleniko site acquired substance on Wednesday, with Hard Rock International CEO Jim Allen charging that unnamed legal advisers are attempting to influence members of a relevant tender committee in favor of one of the contenders.
Allen's very profile charges came after his attendance on Tuesday at the 21st Capital Link conference in Manhattan, and his meetings with Greek Finance Minister Christos Staikouras and Development Minister Adonis Georgiadis, both of whom were in New York City for the high-profile investors' event.
His accusations were made to an Athens-based television station, Ant1, with the statement essentially pointing to Hard Rock International as the company facing disqualification, as media reports in Greece reported, without mentioning which of the two schemes was at risk.
Allen said his gaming and entertainment multinational has already conveyed to the relevant competition committee, established by the Hellenic Gaming Commission, its concerns regarding the tender procedure. He specifically alleged that legal advisers are not only providing counsel to HGC, but to the rival bidder as well. Allen said the Greek government has been provided with details of the allegation against a specific law office.
The Hard Rock CEO said his company expects a fair and impartial procedure to select an IRC concessionaire, something he was promised more than two years ago.