A tribunal has ruled that Casino de Campione d’Italia is bankrupt, the decision came after a restructuring plan presented by the casino’s management and the municipal authorities was rejected.
In late July, the casino’s manager, Marco Ambrosini, requested that the court suspend its judgement until September, but this proposal was dismissed by judges.
The casino – the largest in Europe – has not paid the debt it owed to its sole shareholder, the municipality of Campione d’Italia, an Italian enclave within Switzerland’s Canton of Ticino.
By law, the casino must transfer a fixed sum each year to the municipality, but for months it failed to pay any contributions and reportedly owed the municipality E25m.
Investigations by the Guardia di Finanza revealed that the casino also had an outstanding debt of CHF39m (E33.9m) with Italian bank Banca Popolare di Sondrio.
The judicial investigation was triggered by a complaint submitted by Campione’s current mayor, Roberto Salmoiraghi, while in opposition.
Salmoiraghi travelled to Rome on 1 August to meet with Interior Ministry officials to try to find a solution to the situation. “This is a situation that has to be resolved in one form or another,” he asserted.
“It’s unacceptable that 600 employees could lose their jobs.”
Despite this, court appointed liquidators clarified that it would legally impossible for the casino to reopen.
“We’re conscious of the serious impact on the entire community in Campione,” said liquidators Elisabetta Brugnoni, Sandro Litigio, and Giulia Pusterla in a statement. “[However] the company is obliged to immediately return any movable or immovable assets to the Municipality.”
Campione’s original casino was built in 1917 but was replaced in 2007 by a new nine-floor property hosting 56 gaming tables and 500 slot machines.