JACK Entertainment will sell Greektown Casino (l.) in Detroit to Penn National Gaming and VICI Properties for $1 billion. The transaction will close in 2019. JACK Chairman Dan Gilbert, who's said he wants to exit the gaming business, said he'll use the proceeds toward "strategic investments in our Detroit real estate and business initiatives."
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The UK government, faced with growing opposition in parliament and the resignation of Sport Minister Tracey Crouch (l.) has agreed to move up a cut in the maximum stake allowed on FOBTS to April. More than 100 conservative MPs revolted when the government first announced that the cuts would be made in October, rather than the widely reported date of April. The MPs had threatened to attach amendments to the government’s budget bill to force the cuts to be moved up or possibly send the bill to defeat.
Penn National Gaming’s Hollywood Casino last week became the first Pennsylvania casino to take legal sports bets, as the casino opened its sports book on Thursday in a driving snowstorm. Other casinos are quickly expected to follow suit.
The Ho-Chunk Nation's proposed $405 million Beloit, Wisconsin casino resort is advancing at the federal level, with a public hearing on a draft environmental impact statement on December 11. The facility, the tribe's seventh in Wisconsin, will provide 1,500 jobs and include a gaming floor, 300-room hotel, indoor water park, conference center, entertainment space and retail.
A “State of the SAR” address by Macau Chief Executive Fernando Chui Sai On (l.) provided no clue about how the government is going to handle the renewal of the gaming concessions and sub-concessions, which are coming due starting in 2020.
A Vegas-focused blog popular with the locals reports for the second time this year that Hard Rock International is pursuing an acquisition that will land it the presence on the Strip it has long sought. The target—the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas.
Scientific Games CEO Barry Cottle (l.) says the company is studying the possibility of spinning off its social gaming business in an initial public offering. The company offers the popular games Bingo Showdown, Monopoly and Jackpot Party Social Casino, among others.
Pennsylvania has chosen to ignore the proven taxation and regulation of online gaming and sports betting, installing fees and tax rates that—almost—scared off potential participants. Author Richard Schuetz (l.) says the Keystone State will now become the poster child for doing it your own way, a valuable tool for jurisdictions going forward.
The deal to buy Greektown casino in Detroit brings together some strange bedfellows, but it once again points out that competition isn’t only limited to casino companies, it extends to the casino REITs, as well.
This week the GGB Podcast features an interview with Justin Flanagan, the vice president of sales for the Americas for Questback, an online survey and feedback software company based in Norway.
The Osaka government is angling to host both the 2025 World Expo and one of Japan’s first three integrated resorts. One big win would be great, say analysts. Two would be greater.
Gaming analysts are increasingly downbeat in their Macau forecasts for the coming year. The city’s chief industry will likely feel the pinch due to the slowing of the mainland economy and ongoing U.S.-China trade tensions. Visitors still are amazed by the city’s tall casino towers (l.).
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has restated his ban on casinos on the holiday island of Boracay, and says he doesn’t need an executive order to make the ban official.
Macau’s junket industry is asking the local government for help in managing its past-due debt problem. That help includes proposed changes in the tax structure, which currently is based on revenue, not profit. Paulo Martins Chan (l.), director of the Macau Gaming and Inspection Bureau, says changes are long overdue.
The India Cruise Lines Association has asked Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (l.) to permit casino cruises in local waters. Under current law, gambling is not allowed aboard ships until they have reached international waters.
Imperial Pacific International, which has struggled to complete its casino resort in Saipan and faced negative headlines about its solvency is fighting back against rumors that it could go belly-up.
High-roller luck in Macau has caused a dip in revenues and profits by Melco Resorts & Entertainment. In the third quarter, MRE’s net revenues were $1.22 billion, down 11 percent from the prior-year period.
Macau’s Court of Second Instance has overruled a lower court to determine that Wynn Macau is responsible to refund part of the HK$6 million (US$766,440) lost by investors in junket operator Dore Entertainment.
Ambrose So, chairman of Macau casino concessionaire SJM Holdings Ltd., has confirmed that an overpass will be built linking SJM’s Lisboa Palace to rival resort Wynn Palace. The overpass is expected to be built in 2020.
Casinos Austria has been issued certification for responsible gambling through the European Casino Association. This cortication follows an audit by Austrian Standards.
Dutch regulator Kansspelautoriteit has levied big fines against CyberRock Entertainment and Honeydew. Each must ante up €350,000 (US$400,000) for offering online gambling to local players.
Ontario Premier Doug Ford (l.) reportedly wants to throw his considerable political weight around the idea of putting a waterfront casino in Toronto. He championed this proposal five years ago but lost.
Ontario’s $49 million Shorelines Casino Peterborough has opened. The new casino, operated by Great Canadian, has 500 slots, 22 table games and two dining options.
Striking workers in four casinos in Okanagan, British Columbia, returned to work last week after accepting a deal between the B.C. Government Employees Union (BCGEU) and Gateway Casinos. The workers won a 23.5 percent wage hike over the next four years.
An anonymous poster on social media tells a strange story about the Casino Woodbine in Ontario. The tale involves getting six weeks of work out of part-time workers and allegedly paying them nothing.
Rules taking effect in the new year will establish a regulated internet market and require operators to obtain Swiss licensing to participate or face blocking. Betting limits also will be enforced for poker tournaments and certain lottery and raffle games.
A recent study finds that online gambling sites serving Irish gamblers are not properly checking if players opening new accounts are of legal age. The study found that few consumer protections are in place for Irish gamblers and that most gambling companies are not conducting proper age verification. The study found that 37 of the 39 most popular gambling sites in the country do not require identity proof.
Sweden’s online gambling industry continues to be hurt by unlicensed according to the country’s gambling regulator. New online gambling regulations are scheduled to go into effect in Sweden in 2019. Gross gaming revenue was up slightly in the country for the first three quarters of 2019, but a decline was noted among licensed operators.
Pennsylvania online gaming operators will have to make a special request to the gaming board to tighten the rules for online blackjack from the player-friendly live version.
Asia Live Tech is launching the Progressive Baccarat Jackpot feature for its ALT Live Dealer suite of dealer-assisted online table game software.
Stride Gaming PLC of London must pay ₤7.1 million in fines to the UK Gambling Commission over its subsidiary Daub Alderney's failure to meet rules and standards regarding money laundering and protecting vulnerable customers. The fine and other requirements are the result of an investigation into the online casino sector.
With Democrats in control of the New York legislature and the governor’s mansion, advocates believe the time is finally right for legalization in the Empire State. That doesn’t mean it will go smoothly. But longtime iGaming supporter Assemblyman Gary Pretlow (l.) will try again.
New Jersey saw its new sports betting market take in $260 million in bets for October bringing the total handle for its first four and a half months of operation to nearly $600. William Hill US CEO Joe Asher calls the totals “impressive.” Atlantic City’s casinos also saw an about 16 percent increase in revenue compared to October of last year. New Jersey's casinos and racetracks have seen $52 million in revenue from sports bets this year.
Sports betting will be among the main topics in the Kansas, Kentucky and Tennessee 2019 legislative sessions. Kansas lawmakers approved a special joint committee to hold meetings on the topic. Kentucky state Senator Jim Carroll (l.) will refile sports betting legislation. And Tennessee state Senator Rick Staples prefiled a bill authorizing sports betting via county referendums.
DraftKings at Scarlet Pearl Sportsbook opened November 16 at Scarlet Pearl Casino in D'Iberville, the 12th and final Mississippi Coast casino to offer sports betting. Scarlet Pearl President LuAnn Pappas gets ready to cut the ribbon (l.). The company also took over the sports book at Resorts Atlantic City.
Two bills introduced into the Puerto Rican legislature would legalize sports betting, earmarking a fifth of the profits for a retirement fund. The bills’ author is Rep. Néstor Alonso Vega (l.), president of the House Commission of Tourism and Social Welfare.
Proponents of allowing casinos in Deadwood, South Dakota (l.) to offer sports betting have begun the process of putting a constitutional amendment before the voters in two years. They need to gather signatures of 10 percent of those who voted last week to qualify the measure.
The deal with France’s government-sponsored betting and lottery operator is the league’s first outside the U.S. It provides FDJ with exclusive use of official NBA game data and allows the partners to cross-promote their brands on both land-based and remote platforms nationwide.
The day after Thanksgiving, or maybe a little later, patrons at Rhode Island’s Twin River casino (l.) will be able to bet on sporting events. Lawmakers are unhappy because they hoped the system would be running by October 1.
Sports and entertainment agency IMG will provide bookmakers with live streaming and virtual sports products in a package called the IMG Arena.
Voters in 47 of Louisiana's 64 parishes approved daily fantasy sports betting. DraftKings and FanDuel were the major contributors to the $1 million campaign promoting the ballot measure. Lawmakers are expected to establish DFS regulations and tax rates by August 1, 2019. They're hoping DFS success will carry over to legal sports betting.
A new poll shows 53 percent of voters in Maryland favor legalized sports betting, although the state legislature failed to get a legalization measure on this year’s election ballot.
Greenwood Gaming will partner with Kambi for sports betting operations in Pennsylvania at the operator’s Parx Casino (l.) and South Philly Turf Club facilities.
The owner of the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings expressed optimism in the benefits to the league from newly legal sport betting, including the ability to lower ticket prices to games.
The pay-per-view broadcast of the special match between Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson will include statistics useful for in-play sports betting. Turner Sports, the producer of the broadcast, announced he broadcast will feature “first-of-its-kind integrations centered on predictive data.”
Empire Sports Inc. has announced it is forming a “strategic alliance” with Bet365 to develop and offer sports betting and online gaming at its Resorts World Catskills (l.) in New York. The state does not currently allow sports betting, but legislation is expected in 2019. An affiliate of Bet365 will acquire up to $50 million of Empire common stock at a price of $20 per share, making the company Empire's second-largest stockholder.
Sportradar has announced a deal to be the exclusive betting data provider to MGM GVC Interactive LLC for certain leagues. Sportradar works directly with the NBA and NHL as a distributor of league data. MGM currently has a marketing deal with both leagues.
Kentucky Racing Acquisition, recently formed by Ron Winchell and Marc Falcone, will purchase Kentucky Downs thoroughbred racetrack (l.) from Kentucky Downs Partners. The track offers live turf racing in September, plus 750 historical racing machines. KRA also plans to develop a new facility in Oak Grove, Kentucky if approved by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission.
Amendment 3, giving voters the right to determine expanded gambling, and Amendment 13, phasing out greyhound racing, both passed in Florida with more than 60 percent of voter approval. Now lawmakers and regulators are determining how to actually implement the new laws and analyzing what their economic and other impacts may be.
Margaritaville Resort's $200 million expansion moved forward as the Biloxi, Mississippi city council recently discussed the project, which includes a new amusement park, waterpark and two hotels. The expansion could attract a million visitors, a market study indicated. It includes a TIF district to help pay for infrastructure.
The Indiana legislature's Interim Study Committee on Commerce and Economic Development recently endorsed turning Gary's Buffington Harbor into an intermodal transportation hub, which would require moving Majestic Star Casino onto land and making its second license available, perhaps to Hammond. But officials with Horseshoe (l.), which is located in Hammond, oppose the idea, saying that would "disrupt the state's gaming industry."
Atlantic City Mayor Frank Gilliam (l.) and City Councilman Jeffree Fauntleroy are being investigated for an altercation they had at a city casino nightclub. The state Attorney General has ordered the case to be investigated by the neighboring Cape May County Prosecutor’s Office. A fight outside Haven Nightclub at Golden Nugget Atlantic City was captured on video and shows Gilliam exchanging punches with an unidentified individual and Fauntleroy tossing another man to the ground from behind.
The company’s decision to scrap the $3 billion Wynn Paradise means the Wynn Golf Club (l.) at the site will be spared demolition and will reopen for its high-end clientele, newly designed, late next year. “It’s a great amenity,” CEO Matt Maddox says.
The owners of Atlantic City’s former Atlantic Club Casino are negotiating with another potential buyer for sale of the site, which has been closed since 2014. A New York-based consulting firm is the latest suitor to negotiate a potential sale of the property.
Atlantic City’s Harrah’s Resort is planning a massive renovation of its Harbour Tower hotel rooms, the original tower when the hotel was built. The rooms will be aimed at business travelers, some of whom will be attending conferences at Harrah’s new meeting rooms.
As is normal after grand openings of new casinos, MGM Springfield is making some adjustments to its operations, including increased drink service on the casino floor and the addition of more popular slots and lower-limit table games.
Suffolk OTB is looking at 32 acres in Suffolk County, New York that it has been trying to sell for two years in a new light. It is proposing to build a 1,000 terminal video lottery casino in the city of Medford.
Construction disruption at the Stratosphere in Las Vegas was the main cause of the red ink, the company said. But with a completely renovated hotel slated to debut at the property early next year and the addition of two more casinos in Laughlin, management is bullish on the future.
The Poarch Band’s Wind Creek Hospitality is not revealing plans for its Pensacola dog track in the wake of the phase-out or dog racing in the state under a ballot decision in the recent election.
Thirty years of phenomenal growth after passage of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act have turbo-charged tribal casinos into an industry of $105 billion, nearly as large as commercial gaming. National Indian Gaming Commission Chairman Jonedev Chaudhuri (l.) celebrated this milestone last week.
The Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma will expand its Choctaw Casino Resort (l.) in Durant, opened in 2006. The tribe will break ground in the spring and open in 2021. The project will create 1,000 new jobs and add gaming space, hotel rooms, parking, entertainment, dining options, a swimming pool and lazy river and conference center.
Observers of the Massachusetts political scene are wondering why U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (l.), talked about seriously as a presidential candidate in 2020, and a longtime critic of gambling is supporting a proposal to put land into trust for the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe. The tribe wants to build a casino in Taunton.
An old casino closes. A new casino opens, half again as large eight miles away. New Mexico’s Tesuque Pueblo is moving forward with the pending opening of Tesuque Casino next to the Santa Fe Opera while saying goodbye to the Camel Rock casino (l.).
Three months of falling slots revenues seem to signal that what the Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun casinos have warned would happen when the MGM Springfield casino opened in August has come true. This fall comes even though Indian gaming as a whole is at an all-time high of profitability.
The esports club Complexity Gaming, associated with Dallas Cowboys, named WinStar World Casino in Thackerville, Oklahoma its exclusive casino sponsor. Last month, the Cowboys became the first NFL team to name an official casino with WinStar World. Complexity players now will have access to the casino resort, which will host special events for them.
Cherokee Nation officials said construction of its new casino in Tahlequah, Oklahoma is not harming culturally significant sites nor wetlands, according to environmental studies submitted to the Bureau of Indian Affairs. A local artist has accused the tribe of acting in a "non-Indian" way in its pursuit of the casino.
The New Mexico Lottery has voted to create a “sports lottery” game with Intralot. It also extended its contract with Intralot by another two years. Intralot CEO Antonios Kerastaris (l.) called it a “special day.”
Chinese authorities are dodging questions about a reported RMB136 billion (US$19.5 billion) in losses to corrupt lottery officials. Officials deny the figures, but haven’t specified actual amounts.
Jonathan Nez (l.), jumping from vice president to president of the Navajo Nation, convinced two thirds of the voters to support him over former president Joe Shirley. Nez’s supporters say he has won a mandate.
Duetto has hired former ESPN and Twitter predictive analytics expert Jeff Ma as the company’s new senior vide president of product and analytics.
Seth Young has been named point man for leading the online bookmaker PointsBet into the market of sports betting in the U.S. His new job title is chief innovation officer, effective November 26.
The Las Vegas-based operator has hired Eric Fiocco to oversee marketing across the company’s portfolio of 11 casinos in four states. A protégé of CEO Tony Rodio’s from his Atlantic City days, Fiocco most recently was CMO for Tropicana Entertainment.
Interblock has named gaming expert Kevin Parker as gaming operations manager for North America, supporting operations in the western U.S.
iGaming veteran Glenn will bring extensive online gaming industry knowledge when he joins supplier AGS as the interactive division’s commercial director.
Quarterly game sales and expansion into new markets such as Canada has fueled a 34 percent increase in revenue for gaming supplier AGS. CEO David Lopez (l.) credits strong business in Canada for part of the increase.
IGT’s new electronic bingo content will be deployed by Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation in the supplier’s first entry into the Canadian bingo market.
Slot supplier Incredible Technologies was granted a license to sell its products in Alberta, Canada, as the company continues its first international expansion.
Slovenia’s Alfastreet has committed to using the SC Advance bill validator from Crane Payment Innovations as the preferred bill acceptor in its electronic table game products.
Clarion Gaming has agreed to a strategic partnership with the All-In Diversity Project, under which it will provide a platform for the organization to disseminate news. Tina Thakor-Rankin (l.), founder of All-In, says Clarion is the “ideal partner.”
Electronic table game supplier LT Game, Ltd. displayed its first single-player slot game titles at last week’s MGS Entertainment Show trade event in Macau.
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