Party Auction

Amaya Gaming and Playtech are among the companies rumored to be interested in taking over The board at was forced to confirm that it is in discussions with a “number of interested parties” on a possible bid for the online gambling company in a filing with the London Stock Exchange, but did not identify the parties.

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WEEKLY FEATURE: Caesars Reaches Bankruptcy Deal

Caesars Entertainment has reportedly reached an agreement with key senior bondholders on restructuring of the majority of the company’s $24.2 billion in debt. Sources say that a prearranged bankruptcy deal has been reached and could be put in place as early as January. But Chairman Gary Loveman (l.) said revenues for the third quarter were up by almost 50 percent.

Second Philly License to Be Awarded

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board announced that the second casino license for the city of Philadelphia will be awarded at a public meeting on November 18, but officials with existing casinos in the market pushed for more delays. Cordish’s “Live!” casino (l.) is said to be the favorite.

Ultimate Gaming Shuts Down

The first company to launch legal online gaming in the U.S. went belly up last week when Ultimate Gaming closed its doors in Nevada. The company had already pulled out of New Jersey and Nevada was its last operation, where it offered Ultimate Poker.

Could Mohegan Sun, Foxwoods Join Forces?

Planned casinos near Connecticut’s borders could turn that state’s rival gaming tribes into partners. Mitchell Etess (l.), CEO of the Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority, isn’t dismissing the idea that the Mohegans and the Mashantucket Pequots could work together.

Casinos in Japan: Maybe Next Year

Japan’s governing Liberal Democratic Party has acknowledged defeat in trying to pass a casino legalization bill in 2014, and with only two weeks remaining before the Diet adjourns, has decided instead to revisit the issue next year. The failure all but dooms chances that any gaming resorts will open in time for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.

Burns Leaving TCSJohnHuxley

Cath Burns is resigning her position as group CEO of TCSJohnHuxley after two and a half years, to be replaced by Tristan Sjöberg. Burns was credited for creating innovating products and providing strategic growth for the company.

Agreement Reached on Mexico Reforms

Lawmakers from Mexico’s two leading political parties have agreed to a package of regulations designed to provide clarity and consistency to the country’s casino industry. Gaming head Fernando Zarate Salgado (l.) says the legislation calls for a new licensing system and greater federal oversight of both the land-based and online sectors.

FANTINI’S FINANCE: Down on the Farmville

Social gaming is the most surprising development in gaming over the past several years. Gaming companies are devoting lots of attention to this segment, which could benefit real-life casinos.


City of Dreams Manila Sets December Opening

Melco Crown Entertainment’s City of Dreams Manila will open its doors next month, with a grand opening set for the first quarter of 2015. The $1 billion-plus super-resort will be the second to debut at Entertainment City and a welcome lift for Melco Crown, which is feeling the effects of Macau’s current revenue slump.

‘Gloomy’ Days Ahead for Macau VIP

SJM Chief Executive Ambrose So (l.) has added his voice to the chorus of pessimism being heard in Macau when it comes to gaming revenue for the rest of this year and the early part of 2015. He’s “bearish” on VIP in the short term, he says, but sees “high single-digit” growth market-wide for next year.

Revenue Plummets at Resorts World Sentosa

Singapore’s Resorts World Sentosa reported a sharp fall-off in VIP play in the third quarter, a market-wide slump that is also impacting rival Marina Bay Sands. Revenue was down 21 percent at RWS during the period and profit for owner Genting Singapore fell to a four-year low.


New Dutch Tax Rate Under Fire

Land-based operators in the Netherlands say it’s unfair to tax online operators at a lower rate than they pay, but that is what the government plans to do under a new law that will open the country’s gaming industry to competition for the first time.


Bermuda Government Announces Gaming Legislation

Bermuda Premier Michael Dunkley (l.), in his recently delivered Throne Speech, announced legislation establishing a domestic gaming industry and a casino gaming commission will be introduced in the upcoming session of Parliament. Dunkley said the Minister of Tourism Development has been drafting a gaming bill over the past several months.

Overhaul Set for Queensland Casino

The new owner of the Jupiters Townsville in Queensland plans to invest $20 million to refurbish the casino hotel and reposition it as a draw for Australian players and vacationers. He’s also recruited a top executive from SkyCity Entertainment to head up the effort.


NCLGS Advances Framework for Online Gaming

The National Council of Legislators from Gaming States has released a revised version of its U.S. Policy Framework for the Regulation of Internet Gaming. The policy was revised after input from throughout the gaming industry and other concerned parties.

Online Gaming Does Not Lead to More Addiction

A University of Buffalo study says greater access to gaming via the internet has not led to a spike in problem gambling across the United States. It’s good news with a downside for the nation’s casinos. The study also found that Americans are gambling less overall.

Ainsworth Partners with Playtech

Ainsworth Game Technology will make its most popular titles available across all online platforms of Playtech on sites in the U.K. and elsewhere in Europe.

Atari Launches iGaming Site

Atari and Pariplay have launched Atari Casino, a real-money internet gaming website including the famous themes of the video game company. Fred Chesnais (l.), CEO of Atari, says the community will come together.

Swedish Pro Wins WSOP Championship

Swedish pro Martin Jacobson (l.) took home a better than $10 million first prize by winning the World Series of poker Main Event Championship in Las Vegas, The final three players of the event were non-Americans. Jacobsen. 27, is the sixth European to win the main event, and like most recent champion, an online poker player.

Edict and Mr. Green Partner Up

Edict egaming has signed a partnership agreement with Mr. Green. A selection of Merkur slot games is now live on Mr. Green through the newly developed Edict Game Bridge.


No Word from New York Casino Panel

The New York Gaming Commission’s casino siting board has yet to decide which development partners will win Class III gaming licenses in the state. The board, which originally expected to announce four winning licensees in October, is still looking at 16 proposals. The Lago project (l.) is being challenged by competing gaming operations.

With Casino Repeal Defeated, Casinos Move Forward in Massachusetts

Voters spokes with force on November 4 and said that they want casinos in the Bay State. The Massachusetts Gaming Commission reacted last week by setting in stone licenses that it had granted on a provisional basis before. MGM Springfield President Michael Mathis (l.) said work began on his project the day after the election.

Christie Calls For Unity to Help Atlantic City

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (l.) held a second summit of business and community leaders to develop plans to help beleaguered Atlantic City. The governor warned that to help the city political arguments have to stop and there is little time to waste. The second summit reportedly focused on reducing taxes in the resort.

Georgia Legislator Wants Coastal Casino

Georgia state Rep. Ron Stephens (l.), chair of the House Economic Development and Tourism Committee, said legislation is not required to allow a casino on Hutchinson Island. Instead, he said the state constitution already allows gambling through the Georgia Lottery, which could be extended beyond scratch-off cards and other games to slot machines.

Trump Entertainment Says Taj Mahal Will Close in December

Trump Entertainment President Bob Griffin (l.) has warned Atlantic City’s largest casino workers union that it will close the Taj Mahal casino December 12 unless the union withdraws an appeal of a court ruling ending the casino’s union contract. Last week, the casino filed the papers that make a closing almost a certainty.

Developer Regrouping After Election Loss

Former Providence, Rhode Island Mayor Joseph. R Paolino Jr. said he still wants to turn Newport Grand (l.) into an entertainment center, despite Newport voters' recent rejection of table games. The proposal passed statewide but a majority was required in both. Paolino's group said they'd invest $40 million in the project—if they could add table games.

Deadwood Notes 25th Gaming Anniversary

When casinos opened in Deadwood, South Dakota on November 1, 1989, gambling only was legal in Las Vegas and Atlantic City. Now, with casinos within 150 miles of most Americans, Deadwood officials have embarked on a major revitalization project and have hired consultants to help attract millennial customers.

Texas Casino Bill Introduced—For Sixth Time

For the sixth consecutive Texas state legislative session, a casino gambling bill has been introduced for 2015. State Rep. Carol Alvarado's bill would establish a gaming commission that would permit casinos on Galveston and South Padre Island, at existing parimutuel horse racetracks and in cities with populations of 675,000 or more.

United Ends Atlantic City Service

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is seeking an explanation from United Airlines after it announced it will end its Atlantic City to Chicago service after just eight months. The airline says the service “did not meet expectations.” Christie and state officials touted the subsidized flights as a step to turn Atlantic City into a destination resort.

Florida Casino Ship In Bankruptcy

Facing mounting financial pressures, the 600-passenger Island Breeze Casino cruise ship filed for bankruptcy in Palm Beach, Florida, laying off nearly 250 employees. Owners hope to start cruising again next month and attract customers from the Bahamas Celebration, which collided with something at sea on Halloween, causing hundreds of passengers in costume to evacuate.

College to Buy Atlantic City’s Closed Showboat Casino

Richard Stockton College of New Jersey will buy the closed Showboat casino in Atlantic City Caesars Entertainment has announced. The college plans to open a city campus at the site and continue to operate part of the property as a non-casino hotel.

Land-based Casinos Would Benefit Indiana

If Indiana lawmakers allow riverboat casinos to move ashore, Evansville in particular could benefit. Allowing the Tropicana Evansville to become land-based would make room for the World War II LST boat, so the vessel, now a museum, could attract more tourists and generate more money.

Atlantic City's Marina District Casinos Thriving

As Atlantic City deals with four casino closings and the possibility of another—the Trump Taj Mahal—closing next month, one aspect of the closing may be overlooked. All of the closed casinos in the city are on the Boardwalk while the three city casinos located in its Marina District are turning profits.

IRGC Approves Greyhound Group's License

The Iowa Greyhound Association received a license from the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission to operate the Dubuque Greyhound Track. The IGA will run races April 29-September 27, 2015. The Council Bluffs greyhound track will close after next year's race season. Legislators approved the arrangement, which also ends casino subsidies to the tracks.

NJ Report Calls for Casino and Racetrack Partnership

A study by Rutgers University says if horse racing is to be saved in the state, a partnership between tracks and Atlantic City casinos needs to be formed. The report states that the two gambling entities have to stop competing with each other and work together to fight off new competition from out-of-state racinos and casinos.

Full House Tops Off Silver Slipper Hotel

A topping-off ceremony was held at the Silver Slipper Casino in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi for its new $17.7 million, six-story, 142-room hotel. The property will open next March, three months later than planned because an unexpectedly large amount of debris was found beneath the sand at the waterfront site.

Baltimore Mayor: Extra Cops Needed at Casino

Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake (l.) says she is protecting the city’s investment in its new casino by more than doubling the police presence there. The Horseshoe Casino, a Caesars Entertainment property, opened in August.

Pinnacle Proceeds with REIT Plans

Pinnacle Entertainment plans to split off some of its regional casino properties into a real estate investment trust, or REIT, apparently under pressure from an investor. Completion of the process would divide the Vegas-based company into two publicly traded companies.

Ohio Lawmaker Wants $8.8M for Cleveland Development

Cuyahoga County, Ohio Executive Ed FitzGerald wants to use $8.8 million from casino revenues to help fund three downtown Cleveland residential projects. In 2013, the county council agreed to funnel the county’s share into downtown development until 2016.

Price Hike at Caesars Resorts

It just got a little more expensive to stay at six Caesars Entertainment properties in Las Vegas. Everyone who checks in must pay a $25 fee that covers internet, local phone calls, gym and pool access and other incidentals. The fee applies even to guests who don’t use the amenities.

Tahoe Welcomes Construction

Lake Tahoe is hailing a $15 million retail and restaurant development as a harbinger of good things to come in the resort town, which has seen a decline in its gaming industry. Like Vegas, Tahoe wants to diversify to make up for lost casino revenues.

Stadium Partners Unveil New Funding Plan

The developers behind a $200 million stadium proposed for Downtown Las Vegas have come up with a new funding formula that pairs the planned arena with improvements to city parks. Councilman Bob Coffin says it’s not good enough.

Ohio’s Racinos Do Better Than Its Casinos

Ohio’s four casino resorts are not doing as well in the direction profits are taking as the state’s seven racinos. The Buckeye casinos are not living up to expectations and are seeing profits decline over previous years.

SLS Buffet Closes

The buffet line at the new SLS Las Vegas disappeared last weekend when the resort on the northern Strip closed the eatery. Officials including new SLS President Scott Kreeger say the buffet will reopen next year. Some workers will be placed elsewhere, and some will be laid off.

Supreme Court May Change Hotel Privacy Rules

Whether the U.S. constitution’s Fourth Amendment rules against unreasonable search and seizure applies to hotel guests will soon be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court. A group of hotels in Los Angeles is challenging a city law requiring them to maintain a registry of guest information for perusal by the police without a warrant.


California Feuding Tribe: Charges, Countercharges

The battle of three contentious factions of a Northern California tribe, the Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians, continued in court last week as several people were arraigned for conducting an armed raid in October as part of a jurisdiction battle to determine who legally runs the tribe and its Chukchansi Gold Resort & Casino (l.) in Coarsegold.

Walker To Use Entire Deadline Extension

Recently re-elected Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker said he probably will not make a decision on the proposed $810 million Menominee casino in Kenosha until the February 19, 2015 deadline. The Potawatomi Tribe continues to withhold state gaming revenue payments, fearing the state will owe them money if the Kenosha casino is approved.

Tribe Must Allow Union Organizing

The Saginaw Chippewa Indians must post notices at the Soaring Eagle Casino and Resort (l.) that employees have the right to organize, according to a recent ruling of the National Labor Relations Board. The tribe also must rehire an employee who was involved in union organizing. It's the second time the NLRB issued the same ruling against the tribe.

California Tribe Thinks Casino Still has a Chance, Despite Vote

Supporters of an Indian casino in Barstow, along California’s Interstate 15, claim that a statewide vote that killed the compact of the North Fork Rancheria Band of Mono Indians because they put land off the reservation into trust, doesn’t affect them at all.

Councilman Switches Catawba Casino Stance

Kings Mountain, North Carolina Councilman Tommy Hawkin recently changed his position from supporting to opposing the proposed Catawba Indian Nation casino-resort in Cleveland County. Hawkins said he made his decision after a recent trip to Las Vegas.

Southern California Casino To Expand

Pechanga Resort & Casino, one of the largest casinos in California, is planning a massive $285 million expansion and addition of a new hotel tower, the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Indians have announced. The new 14-story wing will add 548 rooms, making it comparable to the largest Indian casino resort in the Golden State.

Supreme Court Ruling Seen As Helpful to Tribes

The U.S. Supreme Court has delivered a favorable ruling to tribes who see states as constantly trying to erode their sovereign rights. The high court has ruled that a state may not sue a tribe under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act even if the casino is being operated on non-Indian land.

Appeals Court Rules For Kialegees

In a unanimous ruling, the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver said U.S. District Judge Gregory Frizzell must lift his injunction halting construction of the Kialegee Tribal Town's Red Clay Casino in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. The judges said the state could not sue because the casino is not on Indian lands.

Senecas Split with NY Developer

The Seneca Indians of New York State have terminated their contract with Rochester developer David Flaum, who was to have partnered with them to develop a casino in Monroe County. The Indians now operate three gaming halls in the western part of the state.

Data Breech At Minnesota’s Grand Casino

A breach affecting 1,600 transactions took place from April 24 through October 9 at Grand Casino Mille Lacs in Onamia, Minnesota. Some of the card information later was used for fraudulent transactions. The casino has set up a website link and toll-free number for more information.

Asian High Rollers Flocking To Tampa

Bored with Las Vegas, Singapore and Macau, Asian high rollers have discovered the Seminole Hard Rock Casino in Tampa, Florida, where it's not uncommon for them to spend $10 million in a weekend, says GM Pete Wu (l.). The property offers feng shui décor, private gaming rooms, butler service and special catering just to keep these "whales" happy.

TraffGen Names Connors VP Of Sales

Twenty-year casino industry veteran Jeffery Connors recently was named vice president of sales at the convergence marketing technology leader, Traffic Generation. Connors also has worked at Aristocrat Technologies, Bally Technologies, Gaming Systems International and Anchor Gaming.

Union Gaming Hires Three Analysts

Gaming-focused investment bank Union Gaming Group, based in Las Vegas, recently hired Chris Jones as managing director and head of equity research in North America. The company also added John DeCree and Steve Maniago to its expanded research division.


IGT Profits Rise Despite Revenue Drop

The CEO of International Game Technology blames “muted demand” for IGT’s core games as a reason for the last year’s 15 percent drop in revenues.

GTECH Signs Financing Agreement

GTECH S.p.A. has entered into a five-year senior facilities agreement with a syndicate of 20 banks, providing a multi-currency revolving credit facility.

Galaxy Enters Ireland

Galaxy Gaming announced that it is expanding its proprietary table game and system products to several casinos in the Republic of Ireland.


SAGE Latin America Begins

The SAGSE Latin America trade show opened last week amid an uncertain environment in the games-of-chance market in Argentina.

ICE Celebrates 20 Years

London’s ICE Totally Gaming trade show in February will mark the 20th anniversary of the show as a stand-alone gaming exhibition.


AGA Truth Squad

The American Gaming Association's "Get To Know Gaming" campaign helped persuade Massachusetts voters to defeat a ballot referendum, said Chief Executive Officer Geoff Freeman (l.). Whereas in the past the AGA felt cities and states should decide if they want expanded gambling, now it speaks out against critics and "unchecked stories," Freeman said.

Don’t Bogart that Joint

Smoking pot―even if it’s medically prescribed―in the state of Nevada may be cause for job termination, a labor lawyer warns. Though Silver State law requires that employers make accommodations for people who smoke medicinal weed, in the eyes of the feds it’s still illegal.

Car Quest

Vicki Wersching said the key she received in the mail from Gulfstream Park in Hallandale, Florida opened the lockbox to the Range Rover Sport the casino recently was giving away. Casino officials said Wersching "jiggled the key" to open the box and that the box was defective. Wersching is suing the casino.




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