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The Flimsy Economics of Odds Making

The margins for sports betting are already slim so when legendary gambler Billy Walters (l.) manipulates the casinos to get an edge, profitability becomes even more elusive. Can “sharps” like Walters attack today’s online sports betting markets?

New Air Charters Grow Atlantic City Market

With a soon-to-launch charter air service, Hard Rock Atlantic City will join other AC casinos to fly in high-value customers. The flights help bring in business beyond the city’s traditional geographic pull.

Resorts World Las Vegas Opens This Week

Resorts World Las Vegas will open June 24, tapping into a mood of revival in the city. The $4.3 billion North Strip resort should benefit from post-Covid exuberance, the novelty factor and an array of innovative features.

Featured Stories More

Report: Most Aussies Support China Tourism

A survey conducted by the Australia-China Relations Institute found that most Australians support Chinese tourism, believing it would help boost an economy undermined by Covid-19.

Ohio Senate Passes Sports Betting Legislation

In a 30-2 vote, the Ohio Senate (l.) has passed a bill legalizing sports betting in the state. The measure allows 58 sports wagering licenses, with 33 for brick-and-mortar casinos and racinos and 25 for online and mobile betting.

LVA Spent Millions on Failed Texas Casino bid

The Las Vegas Sands Corp. spent at least $10 million and hired 74 lobbyists in an effort to convince the Texas legislature to support four casinos in the state led by Andy Abboud (l.), the company’s SVP government relations. The company got very little for its efforts.

AGS Enters Canadian iGaming Market

AGS has officially launched its first title in the Canadian real-money online gaming market, with the game Golden Wins now available through at the Ontario Lottery & Gaming Corp.’s site.

ASIAN GAMING More

Singapore Increases Casino Capacities

Starting last week, casinos and other entertainment venues in Singapore increased their guest capacities to 50 percent. Singapore is the home of Marina Bay Sands and Resorts World Sentosa.

Macau Guards Against New Covid Cases

New Covid-19 infections in Guangzhou City have decreased, but the government of Macau continues to maintain strict health and safety policies, including quarantines and mandatory mask-wearing.

China Cyber Unit Details Cross-Border Crackdown

The Cyberspace Administration of China has released details of its plan to curb offshore gambling. It will first target offshore online platforms that try to lure Chinese gamblers and mete out “severe” punishments.

EUROPEAN GAMING More

BBC, ITV Accused of Appealing to Underage Gamblers

The BBC and ITV have been criticized for attempts to normalize betting among youth and at-risk gamblers by using social media during Euro 2020. Opponents say such activities will enhance betting among these groups.

Sweden Proposes Changes to Gambling Ads

The Ministry of Finance in Sweden has proposed changes to the way gambling operators can advertise. The proposal, similar to ads for alcohol, calls for ads to be monitored for minimal intrusion.

Spintec Consolidates Presence in France

Gaming technology provider Spintec will consolidate its footprint in France through a deal with French distributor Mascot SFM. Mascot will supply Spintec products throughout France and in French overseas territories.

ONLINE GAMING More

Pragmatic Play Launches Unibet Studio

After completing integration work, Pragmatic Play has launched its dedicated live casino for the leading online gaming brand of the Kindred Group, Unibet.

PlayStudios Partners with Peppermill

PlayStudios is partnering with Peppermill Resorts to offer its free-to-play social casino app to customers t Peppermill Reno and Montego Bay Casino, with play generating player’s club rewards.

EveryMatrix Partners with Mexican Operator

EveryMatrix has partnered with Mexican land-based operator Group Foliatti, to supply the operator with a complete iGaming software solution for the operator’s first online brand.

SPORTS BETTING More

Wyoming Sports Betting Launch Uncertain

The Wyoming Gaming Commission has forwarded the rules for Wyoming sports betting to Governor Mark Gordon (l.) for his approval. The state will be the second to offer online-only sports wagering.

Sports Betting Not Dead in Massachusetts

Massachusetts lawmakers got another chance to make their case for sports betting. Last week an economic development committee revisited the issue, which has the support of Governor Charlie Baker (l.).

USA Basketball, MGM Resorts Sign Deal

USA Basketball has expanded its partnership with MGM Resorts, hosting practice sessions and exhibition games for the men’s and women’s national teams in advance of the Summer Olympics in Tokyo.

WynnBET Partners with Cincinnati Reds

WynnBET has added another pro team to its growing list of marketing partners. The sportsbook will cross-promote the Cincinnati Reds to reach fans in Indiana.

DraftKings Joins AGA Responsible Gaming Campaign

DraftKings has joined the American Gaming Association’s “Have a Game Plan” public service campaign to promote responsible gaming. The sportsbook will promote the program in all its channels.

Covid-19 Boosts Esports Betting

One of the side stories to emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic was the rise in popularity of esports, particularly in betting when traditional athletics ceased. The pandemic pushed popularity of esports two years ahead.

Kenyan Football Clubs Oppose Excise Tax Increase

Kenya’s top football clubs have expressed concerns about an increase in the excise tax and its impact on the sport. Gor Mahia FC and the AFC Leopards say the tax on betting stakes could impact sponsorships.

UNITED STATES GAMING More

PA Lawmakers Turn Against ‘Skill Games’

Several prominent lawmakers in Pennsylvania have returned millions of lobbying dollars and campaign contributions from manufacturers of unregulated so-called “skill games,” deeming them illegal.

Illinois VGTs Surpassing Casinos

Illinois’ 40,000 video gaming terminals, operating in more than 7,710 locations, generated $228.8 million in May—more than double the casinos’ $107 million, according to the Illinois Gaming Board.

Rivers Pittsburgh Resumes Hotel Construction

Rivers Casino Pittsburgh has restarted construction on the Landing Hotel, a 219-room facility that will be adjacent to the casino, after the project was halted due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Revamped Harrah’s Debuts in Las Vegas

The newly renovated Harrah’s Las Vegas has reopened. Senior VP and General Manager Dan Walsh (l.) presided over the grand reopening of the resort, which underwent a four-year, $200 million upgrade.

New Hampshire Legalizes Historic Horse Racing

On June 9, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu (l.) signed legislation to permit historic horse racing. The bill was supported by state nonprofits, which will get 8.7 percent of revenues from bets on the machines.

Chicago Bears Bid for Illinois Track

Bidding for Arlington Park International Racecourse (l.) has closed, and the Chicago Bears are using it for leverage to force the city to renovate Soldier Field Former Arlington Park President Roy Arnold’s bidding group would retain racing for the site.

Sports Bar Sues to Operate Lincoln Racino

Lincoln, Nebraska-based Big Red Keno Sports Bar & Grill has sued the Omaha Exposition Racing Inc. and the Lincoln Race Course. It claims it has a right to operated expanded gaming at the horse racing track.

Louisiana Riverboat May Move Ashore

The Treasure Chest Casino in Louisiana can become land-based following a unanimous city council vote. In 2018, state lawmakers approved letting riverboats move onto land, up to 1,200 feet from their berths.

Illinois Gaming Board OKs Bally’s Purchase of Jumers

The Illinois Gaming Board has approved the ownership transfer of Jumer’s Casino Hotel in Rockford to Bally’s for $120 million. The board also gave preliminary approval to Walker’s Bluff Casino & Resort in Carterville.

Pritzker Signs Casino Labor Bill

Casino owner applicants must enter a project labor agreement under a bill signed by Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker (l.). The Project Labor Agreement Act ensures casino owners can’t bring in out-of-state workers at low wages.

TRIBAL GAMING More

Mohegan Sun Fined $60K for Covid Breaches

Mohegan Sun Casino at Virgin Hotels Las Vegas will pay a $60,000 fine for violating Covid-19 rules at its grand opening party in March. The fine followed photos of maskless partiers including actor Mario Lopez (l.).

Turning Stone New York Unveils Major Renovations

Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, New York, operated by the Oneida Indian Nation, has announced a series of renovations and new venues across the property, which will mark its 28th year in July.

California’s Largest Casino Ends Mask Mandate

On June 14, Pechanga Resort Casino (l.) in Temecula, California announced that it will admit fully vaccinated guests without face masks. Fully vaccinated Pechanga employees can also work without face masks.

Northern California Tribe Breaks Ground on Casino

Northern California’s Elk Valley Rancheria has broken ground on its new relocated Elk Valley Casino. The property is located on Highway 101 and it will have more slot machines, gaming tables, a restaurant and RV park.

Louisiana Tribe Assumes Paragon Management

After a five-year partnership, the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana has announced it will take over management of its Paragon Casino Resort in Marksville from the Mohegan Tribe.

PEOPLE More

Wynn President Spiegel to Retire

Maryland Spiegel (l.), president of Wynn Las Vegas and operator of Wynn and Encore Las Vegas, will retire at the end of the year, and Encore Boston Harbor President Brian Gullbrants will replace her.

PlayStar Names COO

PlayStar has named Dan Alexander (l.), a 10-year gaming industry veteran, as the company’s new chief operating officer as it prepares to enter the New Jersey market.

Yale Rowe Named President of Hard Rock Tahoe

Yale Rowe (l.) has been named the new president and general manager of the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Lake Tahoe. Rowe has 27 years of experience in gaming and is the founder of Front Rowe Hospitality.

Schenectady Casino Names New GM

Rick Richards, former general manager of Station Casinos in Las Vegas, has joined Rivers Casino & Resort (l.) in Schenectady, New York as its general manager.

Snoqualmie Tribe Names Stanford Le Casino CEO

The Snoqualmie Tribe of Washington has named Stanford Le to be chief executive officer and president of Snoqualmie Casino. He has been interim CEO during the Covid-19 pandemic and avoided letting go any employees.

HBG Design Promotes Emily Marshall to Principal

Marking the first in a series of “getting back to normal” activities for the firm, HBG Design has promoted Emily Marshall (l.) to the role of principal. Marshall has been the firm’s leading interior designer for 10 years.

Gambling Commission Taps Rhodes as CEO

The U.K. Gambling Commission tapped Andrew Rhodes to be the new CEO. Rhodes replaces Sarah Gardner. His appointment comes at a time when the spotlight shines on the gambling industry.

Miriam Adelson Executor of Sheldon’s Will

Miriam Adelson (l., with her late husband Sheldon Adelson), has been named executor of the billionaire’s estate. Adelson, founder and CEO of the Las Vegas Sands Corp., died in January.

GOODS & SERVICES More

World Series of Poker to Go Live Again This Fall

Last year, the World Series of Poker went both digital and live. This year, it’s back to the usual format. The annual poker tournament will run September 30 to November 23 at the Rio in Las Vegas.

Japan Pachinko Giant to Launch Poker Line

Japanese pachinko developer Sammy Corp. has announced a new business line that will focus on the world’s most popular poker variety, Texas Hold ‘em. The new business arm will be called “m.”

CPI Installs Cashless System at Viejas

Crane Payment Innovations has installed its cashless payment system at Viejas Casino and Resort (l.) in Alpine, California, including CPI’s SC Advance banknote validators and Easitrax Connect software.

YouTube Bans Gambling Ads

YouTube is banning advertising in several categories, including gambling, from its masthead ads, which is the most prominent Google advertising placement available.

TRADE SHOWS & CONFERENCES More

IAGR to Launch Awards at September Trade Show

The International Association of Gaming Regulators has announced an awards program for regulators “who are helping to drive the industry forward.” The awards will be given at the IAGR’s September conference.

WILD CARD More

Yukon Residents: Fine for Ex-Casino CEO a Wrist Slap

Last week, a former casino executive and his actress wife pleaded guilty to jumping the line to get Covid vaccines in the Yukon. Locals were disappointed by the punishment: $1,150 for Rod and Ekaterina Baker (l).

NUTSHELL More

THEY SAID IT More

QUOTABLE QUOTES

Outrageous pronouncements, simple statements and words of wisdom.