Big Bookmakers Back Total Ban on Broadcast Gambling Advertising in UK

William Hill and GVC Holdings PLC, owner of Ladbrokes and Coral, are calling for a complete ban on gambling ads during sports broadcasts, either live or rerun, as well as gambling logos on the shirts of English football teams. An exception should be made for horseracing, GVC said in a press announcement. The move comes after similar calls for a total ban during live sports telecasts in the British Parliament. The companies have also been hit by the dramatic betting limit reduction on FOBTs in their UK betting shops.

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WEEKLY FEATURE: Macau CE Says Casino Concessions Will Not Be Extended

Macau’s six gaming concession holders were hoping their licenses would be extended beyond their scheduled expiration in three years. But Chief Executive Fernando Chui Sai On (l.) made it more or less clear at a recent meeting of the territory’s legislature that that isn’t going to happen.

Scientific Games Launches SciPlay IPO

Scientific Games has launched the initial public offering of its social gaming business, putting 22 million shares of the company to be called SciPlay. The new company will include the company’s leading social games like JackpotParty.com (l.) website.

Jonodev Chaudhuri Resigns as NIGC Chairman

After six years in office, Jonodev Chaudhuri has resigned as chairman of the National Indian Gaming Commission. He lists many accomplishments during his tenure, including new initiatives that served tribal sovereignty, technology improvements, and complete transparency.

MGM Cuts Continue

MGM Resorts last week chopped 254 management positions, with another round coming up soon, according to Chairman and CEO James Murren (l.). The job reduction is part of the MGM 2020 plan that will result in a new operating model.

New Jersey Governor: State’s Sports Betting Market Will Top Nevada

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy (l.), speaking at the Betting on Sports America conference, said the state should overtake Nevada in sports wagering by 2020. Murphy said he is proud his state led the charge to overturn a federal ban on sports betting and is a leader in online gambling. In another matter, a study by Eilers & Krejcik Gaming seeking to identify seven “types” of sports bettors and help sportsbooks expand their customer base was also highlighted at the conference.

Rosie’s Gaming Emporium Opens At Colonial Downs

Rosie's Gaming Emporium opened at Colonial Downs in New Kent County, Virginia, offering 600 historical horseracing machines and simulcast racing. Additional Rosie's will open later, creating 800 jobs statewide and generating $25 million in annual state taxes plus $25 million for Virginia's horseracing industry. Live racing will commence at Colonial Downs on August 8.

Suncity Bets on Primorye, Vietnam

Suncity Group Holdings Ltd. has become the largest single shareholder of the company that operates Tigre de Cristal (l.), the only integrated resort now open in Russia’s Primorye casino zone. And Suncity, Macau’s No. 1 junket operator, says rival junkets will be welcome at its Hoiana casino resort in Vietnam, which is due to opens this year. Suncity owns 34 percent of what will be the country’s largest IR.

Eclipse Gaming Names Edidin CEO, Slotwinski CTO

Longtime WMS Gaming executive Orrin Edidin (l.) has been named president of Eclipse Gaming. And gaming industry veteran Steven Slotwinski has been named chief technology officer, directing new product development and innovation.

Operators Form Sports Betting Monitoring Group

A group of U.S. sportsbook operators have announced the formation of the non-profit Sports Wagering Integrity Monitoring Association. The organization will monitor the sports betting industry to detect and discourage fraud and other illegal activity, the group said. The organization is modeled after ESSA, a European sports integrity monitoring association, says George Rover (l.), the association’s chief integrity officer.

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More Pro-IR Candidates Win in Japan

Tomakomai City in Hokkaido Prefecture and Sasebo in Nagasaki Prefecture are among the Japanese cities that chose pro-casino candidates in local elections on April 21. Naomichi Suzuki (l.), the newly elected governor of Hokkaido, is expected to approve an IR bid.

CoD Manila to Expand?

Melco Resorts & Entertainment may expand its gaming presence at the City of Dreams (l.) in the Philippines, according to two firms associated with the company. But all talk at this point is speculative, the firms add.

Naga’s Cambodia Plan Raises Questions

NagaCorp’s plan to develop a third integrated resort in Phnom Penh may be a bad bet, according to analysts. The cost would reportedly equal one-sixth of Cambodia’s gross domestic product.

IPI Renames Resort, Plans Phase I Launch

Imperial Pacific International, operator of the sole casino resort in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, has announced it will partially open Phase I of its Saipan IR “on or before” September 30, now called Imperial Palace Saipan.

Suen Settlement Shaves $96 Million From LVS Profit

The gaming giant didn’t identify the agreement by name in its first quarter earnings report, which also included a downturn in high-end play in Singapore. Macau operations continued strong, however, contributing the bulk of a 1.9 percent increase in net revenue for the period to $3.65 billion.

Digital Poker Folds in China

The Chinese government reportedly has banned digital forms of poker and mahjong, while also approving a giant backlog of video game titles. China is the largest market for video games in the world.

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Sweden to Consider Gambling Ad Ban

Sweden’s government said it will study whether to ban advertising by online casinos and other forms of gambling as gambling addiction numbers have been rising in the country. The country has moved to install consumer protection measures in its gambling code, but officials said further steps are needed.

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Aussie Casinos Look for Return of VIPs

Analysts with Macquarie Wealth Management say Chinese high rollers are due to make a “U-turn” back to Australian casino resorts, with a VIP recovery expected in the 2020 financial year. Macquarie says Star Entertainment’s three casinos, including Star Gold Coast (l.), have an “attractive” future.

Poll on Kenya Betting Faces Scrutiny

Kenyan Interior Minister Fred Matiang’i (l.) says the country needs to crack down on problem gambling among young people. He based his concerns on numbers from a poll that may not be comprehensive.

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EveryMatrix Joins Relaunch of Mybet

EveryMatrix has joined the relaunch of Mybet, which will be powered by EveryMatrix’s GamMatrix gaming management platform. Mybet went through an extensive reconstruction process and is now relaunching its operations across many European markets through a licensing partnership with Rhinoceros Group.

Belarus Begins Online Casino Registration

Belarus will allow gambling operators to legally register properly licensed online casinos. The country does not prohibit Belarusians from online gambling on overseas websites, but promoting unlicensed sites will become illegal in 2021.

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Iowa Sports Betting Bill Awaits Governor's Signature

The Iowa legislature approved a sports betting bill and forwarded it to Governor Kim Reynolds (l.), who hasn't publicly expressed whether she'll sign it. The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission would regulate sports wagering. The measure allows Iowans age 21 and older to wager online or at the state's 19 casinos, several of which are readying sportsbooks.

Delaware North Sues Over Sportsbook Closures

Delaware North's two West Virginia casino sportsbooks have been unable to take bets since March 6 due to a dispute between Miomni Gaming and a third party supplier. Delaware North sued Miomni, claiming it "fraudulently misrepresented ownership of a key part of the BetLucky (l.) sports wagering platform and breached the companies' joint venture contract."

Tennessee House Passes Sports Betting Bill

The Tennessee House voted 58-37 to pass HB 1 which would legalize sports betting, after it barely passed a Tennessee House committee 10-9. During committee discussion, state Rep. Arthur Holt, who is white, questioned state Rep. Rick Staples (l.), who is African American, and referred to gambling as "slavery--slavery to an addiction." The measure passed a Senate committee and moves to the full Senate.

Bipartisan Sports Book Bill Advances in Colorado Legislature

The Colorado House Finance Committee approved a bill that would establish up to 17 sports books in the state’s three casino towns and 17 online licenses. The bill, if approved would create a 10 percent tax rate on sports betting. Governor Jared Polis (l.) would still have to sign the bill before it goes to the voters.

Sports Betting Advances In Louisiana

A Louisiana Senate committee advanced SB 153 to the Senate floor. Sponsored by state Senator Danny Martiny, the bill would allow sports wagering at riverboat and land-based casinos and racinos. Mobile betting would be limited to a designated sports betting area on a casino floor. In comparison, neighboring Mississippi limits mobile sports wagering to the casino property.

Oregon Lottery Poised to Launch Sports Book

The Oregon Lottery plans to launch its sports book in time for this year’s football season. But first it must complete vetting its chosen vendor SBTech Global Ltd., whose international connections have raised some questions.

PokerStars Fined $10K in New Jersey for Illegal College Betting

New Jersey’s gaming regulators have fined PokerStars $10,000 for taking bets on New Jersey college basketball teams in violation of the state's sports betting law. The state said PokerStars accepted bets on games involving New Jersey colleges Rutgers and Monmouth University. The fines come as New Jersey legislators are considering increasing the amount of penalties for violating the state’s sports betting laws.

Hard Metrics Partners With Toro Bet

Online sportsbook and casino platform Hard Metrics has signed an agreement with its first operator partner, Toro Bet. The deal will allow Toro Bet to enter the Mexican sports betting market powered by the Hard Metrics platform.

Montana Legislature Approves Sports Betting Bills

Montana has approved, two, count ‘em, two sports betting bills and presented them to the governor. Steve Bullock (l.) could sign one or both bills. If he does sports betting could spring up in about a thousand locations all over the state.

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Indiana Governor Expected To Sign Gambling Bill

The Indiana legislature passed a comprehensive gambling bill and forwarded it to Governor Eric Holcomb, who is expected to sign it. The bill allows mobile and on-site sports betting. It also allows Spectacle Entertainment to move one of the Majestic Casinos (l.) to downtown Gary; it must surrender the other license for a bidding process for a Terre Haute casino.

Hard Rock, Warner Gaming Partner In Arkansas

Hard Rock and Warner Gaming will partner to develop a casino resort in Pope County, Arkansas. Voters approved gaming licenses at Oaklawn, Southland and one each in Jefferson and Pope County. However, Pope County voters also passed a measure requiring approval of a county judge's letter of support. The current judge opposes a casino.

First N.Y. Racino Closes Its Doors

The gaming floor at Monticello Raceway didn’t last much more than a year after owner Empire Resorts opened its $1 billion Resorts World Catskills just six miles away. Empire says it will keep the 60-year-old harness track open, but its future doesn’t look too promising either.

Missouri Lawmaker Proposes Video Slots

Missouri state Rep. Dan Shaul (l.) introduced legislation allowing Missouri Lottery retailers to install up to five video slot machines and veterans groups up to 10. The Missouri Gaming Association called the bill "irresponsible" and noted its plans for oversight were "ludicrously inadequate." Supporters said the machines could generate $100 million in the first year.

Beshear Promotes Expanded Gambling in Kentucky

Former Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear unsuccessfully attempted to expand gambling. Now his son, Andy Beshear (l.), has proposed legalizing casino gambling and sports betting to help fund the state's challenged public pension systems. Beshear, the state attorney general, is one of four candidates seeking the Democratic party's nomination for governor.

Buyer Found for Vegas’ Shuttered Lucky Dragon

A Las Vegas businessman has bought the failed Lucky Dragon casino hotel (l.) for $36 million. He plans to reopen the 203-room hotel, closed since October. But the once-heralded Asian-themed casino is gone for good.

Maverick Gaming Acquires Three Seattle-Area Card Rooms

Maverick Gaming has continued its aggressive expansion moves last week, purchasing Great American Gaming, the owner of three card rooms in the Seattle area. Following the purchase of Nevada Gold, Maverick now has increased visibility in the Washington market, says majority owner Eric Persson (l.).

New Jersey to Stay In Charge of Atlantic City Through 2021

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy’s administration will leave in place a state takeover of Atlantic City’s finances for the full five years proposed under former Governor Chris Christie. A timetable laid out by Lt. Governor Sheila Oliver (l.) would keep the takeover in place through 2021. Murphy had campaigned on ending the takeover earlier than proposed.

Encore Boston Harbor Changes Skyline

The 27-story Encore Boston Harbor has changed the skyline of Everett, which can be seen from Boston. But is it for the better? Some people like it, others don’t, but it’s not going to change no matter who actually owns and operates it.

New Mexico Racino License Still Up In Air

A court challenge by a disgruntled applicant has kept the New Mexico Racing Commission from awarding the state’s fifth and final racino license since December. The board wasn’t expected to move on the license until the challenge is addressed although it was on the agenda for last week’s meeting.

Protests Don’t Shut Down Santa Anita

Santa Anita (l.) will continue to offer horseracing at its historic racetrack. Despite protests over 23 horse deaths since December the California Horse Racing Board last week ruled that it may complete its season, which runs until June 23.

Culinary Pickets Circus Circus Reno

The union has gone public to protest a standoff in contract negotiations with Eldorado Resorts over wages, health care and other benefits. It’s not the first time the regional casino giant and organized labor have clashed.

Illinois Video Gambling Machine Update

The coalition Bet on Main Street has formed to oppose Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker's proposal to raise the tax on video gambling machine revenue from 30 to 50 percent. Also, state Rep. Rep. Katie Stuart introduced legislation and launched a petition drive to allow video gaming terminals at horseracing tracks.

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New Interior Secretary Denies Delaying Casino

Due to strange circumstances the Department of the Interior sat on the request by the Connecticut Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan tribes to amend their tribal state gaming compacts. As a result their proposed casino was halted. New Secretary David Bernhardt (l.) denies that he had anything to do with those delays.

Seminoles, Florida Talking Compact

Seminole Tribe and Florida officials are attempting to finalize a new gaming compact. The tribe wants sports betting at its casinos and to serve as a "hub" for wagers placed at parimutuels and pro sports arenas. This would bypass Amendment 1, giving voters exclusive rights regarding expanded gambling, since gambling on tribal lands is federally regulated. But Governor Ron DeSantis (l.) thinks that time is too short.

Seneca Nation Seeks Interior Review of Arbitration Decision

Unhappy with an arbitration decision that it owes New York state $225 million in back revenue sharing, the Seneca Nation of Indians has asked the Department of the Interior to review the decision. Governor Andrew Cuomo says the tribe promised to abide by arbitration. But Seneca Nation President Rickey Armstrong Sr. (l.) said the arbitrators ignored federal law.

U.S. Senators Promote Catawba Casino

A U.S. Senate Committee invited South Carolina-based Catawba Indian Nation Chief Bill Harris (l.) to testify May 1 about acreage in North Carolina the tribe wants placed in federal trust for a casino. The tribe considers the tract ancestral land. The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, owners of two Harrah's Cherokee casinos, oppose the Catawbas' plan.

Pokagon Band, Four Winds Launch Green Initiatives

The Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians announced its four Four Winds Casinos and their hotels and restaurants plus tribal offices have launched several green initiatives. The "Skebgyak Zhetthken—Do It Green" campaign will include eliminating single-use plastics, replacing straws and cups with biodegradable products and recycling used personal hygiene products in the hotel and kitchen waste.

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Alabama Advances Lottery Bill

A bill to create a state lottery has advanced in the Alabama Legislature. The state Senate Tourism and Marketing Committee voted 6-5 to advance the bill by Republican Senator Greg Albritton (l.) of Atmore. The bill specifies that a lottery would be played with paper tickets and would not involve video gambling terminals.

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Legislative Leader Enters Macau CE Race

Ho Lat Seng (l.), president of the territory’s Legislative Assembly, said he will run for chief executive as soon as his resignation from China’s National People’s Congress is approved. The businessman said his long legislative experience uniquely qualifies him for the post.

San Manuel Names New COO

David Kopasz has been promoted to be chief operating officer of hospitality at San Manuel Casino, in Southern California. He has been in charge of food and beverage. Now he will run the entire hospitality department.

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Interblock Announces Placements in PA, Philippines

Penn National Gaming will install products from the complete portfolio of electronic table games from Interblock in more than 20 of its venues across the U.S., and Resorts World Manila in the Philippines will add a 100-seat Interblock stadium.

Fantini to Publish Sports Betting Who’s Who

Fantini Research will publish Who’s Who in the Emerging U.S. Sports Betting Industry, an instructional publication distributed at last week’s Betting on Sports America conference.

Gaming Arts Celebrates Milestones

Gaming Arts is celebrating company milestones with approval of its Pop’N Pays video slot machines and a record number of cabinet orders.

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Aristocrat Previews G2E Asia Lineup

Aristocrat Leisure Limited has previewed a product lineup showing its ever-expanding product portfolio for the G2E Asia trade show, to be held in Macau May 21-23.

Merkur Lauds NIGA Performance

Merkur Gaming announced that it logged a huge “milestone” with its display at the recent Indian Gaming Tradeshow in San Diego staged by NIGA.

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Couple Reports DR Casino Scam

A vacationing couple from Canada say they were victims of a casino scam that left them poorer by $6,500. The men say they got the shakedown at a casino inside near Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic.

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