This Is A First: Washington Poker Room Operating Out of a Tent

A card room in Washington State has opened under a tent under special protocols approved by Governor Jay Inslee. The innovation was introduced because of fears that Inslee would keep state gaming halls closed through Phases 2 and 3 of the Covid-19 reopening plan.

In New York, Waiting Is the Hardest Part

The lockdown of four commercial casinos in New York State is now in its fifth month. Operators are frustrated, thousands of employees remain on furlough and Governor Andrew Cuomo (l.) still refuses to consider a reopening plan.

Fear Itself

Why is it that women in the gaming industry are always at the wrong end of the data set? Gaming observer Richard Schuetz explains why the feedback he gets from women demonstrates that they are afraid to demand a place at the table because they stand to lose what little they’ve gained.

U.K. Prime Minister Halts Casino Openings—Again

The U.K.’s casinos were poised to reopen August 1. Then Prime Minister Boris Johnson (l.) shut down the plans for at least two more weeks, citing a spike in Covid-19 cases in the greater Manchester area. The decision drew a sharp rebuke from the U.K. Betting and Gaming Council.

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Changing Partners In Japan

The cast of would-be casino operators in Japan has shifted again, with Wynn Resorts’ exit from Yokohama (l.), MGM’s waffling on its commitment to Osaka, and the departure of French bidder Partouche, which had planned to partner with Oshidori on an integrated resort in Nagasaki.

William Hill Opens First Arena-Based Sportsbook

Until August 3, Washington’s Capital One Arena spent a lot of time in the dark. But in concert with William Hill U.S., the arena welcomed the first sportsbook in a U.S. sporting venue. The temporary sportsbook will accept bets daily until a permanent facility is ready, as early as November.

Catawba Nation Proceeds with North Carolina Casino

A groundbreaking ceremony was held in Kings Mountain, North Carolina for the Catawba Indian Nation's $273 million casino resort (l.). The South Carolina tribe is seeking a Class III gaming compact; the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians is suing the Catawbas to stop the project.

Sports Betting: Where Do We Go From Here?

UNLV International Gaming Institute recently published a report for legislators and regulators. The assessment, “The Big Questions: Sports Wagering in America,” identifies a responsible path forward for U.S. gambling.

Detroit’s 3 Casinos Finally Reopen

Detroit's three casinos—MotorCity (l.), MGM Grand and Greektown—were allowed to reopen over the weekend under an executive order issued by Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer. Occupancy is limited to 15 percent.

Macau’s July Win Down 94.5 Percent

July was the fourth consecutive month that Macau saw declines in gaming revenue of 90 percent or more. Observers say that unless China acts soon to restore tourist visas, it may not be the last.

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Saipan Casino Execs Indicted

Two executives of Saipan casino operator Imperial Pacific International have been indicted for allegedly conspiring to hire illegal workers to help build the IP casino (l.) in violation of U.S. Department of Homeland Security regulations. Saipan, part of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, is a U.S. protectorate.

Donaco Cuts Costs, Waits to Reopen in Cambodia

Australian-listed Donaco International Ltd., awaiting permission from the Cambodian government to reopen its Star Vegas resort (l.) in Poipet, also plans cost-cutting measures to offset Covid-19 losses.

Court Rules Okada May Not Return to Universal

A Japanese court has barred Kazuo Okada (l.) from returning to the boards of companies he founded, Universal Entertainment Corp. and the unit that controls the Okada Manila resort in the Philippines. The Japanese billionaire is prohibited from seeking those positions for up to 30 years.

Genting HK Delays Two Ships

In a filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, Genting HK reported that it will delay the delivery of two new cruise ships by a year as it attempts to mitigate the negative impact of Covid-19.

EUROPEAN GAMING More

French Casino Closures Obscure 2020’s ‘Dynamic Start’

The Société Française de Casinos says the Covid-19 outbreak ended a “dynamic start” for the French casino operator in 2020. The operator said it “limited its costs as much as possible” while its casinos were closed, including cutting the workforce.

Illegal Gambling Up In Austria

Austria’s Finanzpolizei, or financial police, reportedly seized more than 660 gaming machines in almost 280 raids conducted since January. That’s sparked concerns about illegal gaming, especially in urban areas.

ONLINE GAMING More

GameCo Launches Interactive Division

GameCo will bring its skill-influenced video game gambling machines online through a new division, iGameCo, to serve the regulated iGaming and sports betting industry.

U.K. Think Tank Seeks Online Betting Limits

The U.K. Social Market Foundation has put out a list of proposed changes in iGaming including a monthly limit to online losses. The group wants online regulations to be as stringent as land-based ones.

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New Jersey, Indiana Investigate FanDuel Errors

In July, FanDuel provided the wrong line for a pro soccer game, affecting about a dozen bets in New Jersey and Indiana. The winning bets weren’t paid. The snafu caught the attention of regulators in the two states.

Illinois' Third Sportsbook Opens; Adds More Licenses

Grand Victoria Casino (l.) in Elgin, Illinois recently opened the third sportsbook in the state under the William Hill brand. Rivers Casino in Des Plaines opened Illinois' first brick-and-mortar sportsbook, followed by Argosy Casino in Alton. Rivers launched its sports betting app in June. And more licenses were approve in the Land of Lincoln.

PointsBet Storms Colorado Sports Arenas

Mobile sportsbook PointsBet and Kroenke Sports & Entertainment have become official partners of the Denver Nuggets, Colorado Avalanche and the Colorado Mammoth. The exclusive partnership covers retail and online sports betting, daily fantasy, online casino and free-to-play games.

Sportrader Mulls IPO

Sportrader, based in Switzerland, reportedly seeks a special acquisition company (SPAC) to help it launch an IPO. There are many possible suitors for such an endeavor.

Wynn Sports, Wynn Casino Enter N.J. Market

The Wynn name returned to New Jersey in August with the introduction of Wynn Sports betting app and Wynn Casino iGaming. Lines will be provided courtesy of German firm BetBull, which is minority owned by Wynn.

Four Winds Sportsbooks in Michigan Open

With major sports back in action, the new sportsbooks at Four Winds Casinos in Michigan are well-positioned to reap the rewards. The Pokagon Band of Potawatomi partnered with Kambi to offer the books.

U.K. Football Clubs Prepare for Suit Over Data

Hundreds of U.K. football players are pursuing legal action over payment for the use of performance and tracking data. At issue is sports betting companies’ use of the data without player consent or remuneration.

Manchester Track to Close, Victim of Covid-19

Bella Vue Greyhound Stadium in Manchester, England will close its doors. A lack of spectators due to Covid-19 has taken its toll. The facility will seek new homes for the racing dogs and continue financial support for unemployed trainers.

UNITED STATES GAMING More

Nevada Resort Workers Win Covid Protections

Legislation passed by Nevada senators provides an array of safeguards for employees in the hospitality sector and broad immunity from virus-related lawsuits for casinos, other businesses and government agencies, including schools. Teachers and healthcare workers are on their own.

Danville, Virginia Casino Closer To Ballot

Voters in Danville, Virginia are closer to approving casino gambling with city council's approval of a resolution requesting a referendum on the matter in November. If the ballot issue is approved, Caesars Entertainment can move forward on its proposed $400 million casino resort.

A.C. Visits Down, But Visitors Younger

A month into the reopening of Atlantic City, statistics indicate that fewer people are visiting compared to last year due to the coronavirus. But casino officials believe those who do show up are skewing younger.

Hefty Raises On Tap for New Caesars Execs

The $17.3 billion Caesars-Eldorado Resorts merger is done, and for the brain trust at Eldorado that pulled it off, it’s now payback time. Raises are coming for Executive Chairman Gary Carano (l.), his son Anthony, the company’s president and COO, CEO Thomas Reeg and others.

Sahara Las Vegas Accused of Safety Slips

The Sahara on the Las Vegas Strip could be fined due to a complaint lodged by the Nevada Gaming Control. The agency said the resort allowed social distancing protocols to be breached on the casino floor and hosted a business gathering that exceeded the state’s 50-person limit.

Churchill Downs Mum On Indiana Purchase

With the $17.3 billion merger of Eldorado Resorts and Caesars Entertainment, the Indiana Gaming Commission may require Caesars Southern Indiana to be sold to avoid market concentration. Will Churchill Downs put in an offer? CEO Bill Carstanjen isn’t saying.

Appeals Court Rules Against Harrah's NOLA

Harrah's New Orleans may have to pay the state up to $50 million in back taxes dating to 2001, following an appeals court ruling upholding a 2019 decision ordering Harrah's to pay taxes on comped hotel rooms. Harrah's can request the justices reconsider the decision or it could appeal to the Louisiana Supreme Court.

North Dakota Judge Nixes Pulltabs

Powerhouse Gaming's request to reactivate about 500 electronic pulltab machines in North Dakota was denied by U.S. District Judge Daniel Traynor, who wrote the shutdown of the games has not caused "immediate and irreparable injury, loss or damage."

Four New PA Truck Stops Introduce VGTs

Four truck stops in Cumberland and Lebanon counties have become the latest locations in Pennsylvania to add video gaming terminals under the 2017 expansion law. The VGTs are operated by Second State Gaming.

TRIBAL GAMING More

Miccosukees Want More Covid-19 Relief

The wealthy Miccosukee Tribe of South Florida is suing the United States for a larger share of Covid-19 relief funds. The tribe claims it only received $100,000 because its population mistakenly was listed as zero. It's the same tribe that lost a court battle to avoid paying the IRS $1 billion in back taxes.

Wisconsin Tribe Closes Casino

In an effort to contain Covid-19, the Wisconsin-based Menominee Indian Tribe recently closed its Menominee Casino & Resort (l.) through August 11. New emergency guidelines include limited capacity, social distancing, temperature screenings and mandatory masks.

North Dakota Track Returns To Racing

Following the approval of new Covid-19 protocols by the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians tribal council, Chippewa Downs in Belcourt, North Dakota opened its racing season on August 8. New rules include mandatory temperature screenings and face masks.

Michigan Tribe To Be Regulated, Taxed by State

Michigan tribal casinos have agreed to have the state regulate and tax sports betting and online platforms even though they’re sovereign nations. Bryan Newland (l.), chairman of the Bay Mills Indian Community, said the decision was a practical one that advance their gaming interests.

Navajo Nation Mulls Casino Relief

The Navajo Nation Council is poised to pass a $24 million Covid-19 aid package for the Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprise, which is on the verge of running out of money. The funds will come from federal CARES Act relief approved by Congress.

LOTTERY More

Virginia Lottery Adds Keno Game

The Virginia Lottery has added a new Keno game that gives players the chance to participate in drawings every four minutes. The top jackpot is $1 million.

U.K. Regulator Makes Changes to Codes and Lotteries

Following a 12-week study, the U.K. Gambling Commission has issued 22 changes to the License Conditions and Codes of Practice dealing in part with money laundering and additional changes to lottery rules, increasing winnings and transparency on the prizes and their selection.

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O’Hanley Joins E&K Gaming

Ross O’Hanley (l.) has joined Eilers & Krejcik Gaming as senior vice president of land-based casino consulting. In his new role, O’Hanley will be responsible for expanding the company’s brick-and-mortar-casino consulting-services division.

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IGT Reports Revenue Drop, Cost Savings

IGT’s second-quarter results reflected a 48 percent year-on-year drop, but identified hundreds of millions in cost savings and cost avoidance for fiscal year 2020.

Merkur Grows Belgian Market Share

Merkur Sportwetten, a subsidiary of the Gauselmann Group, has increased its stake in the Belgian market through its shares of Betcenter Group.

Monarch Taps Global Payments for iGaming

Last week, Global Payments Gaming Solutions announced that Monarch Casino & Resort has selected its iGaming solutions to power the casino’s sports betting applications in Colorado and Nevada.

Japanese Company Introduces Germ-Repelling Chips

Japanese chip supplier Matsui has released a new line of casino chips made with germ-killing rims and center decals. The chips include “an inbuilt protection to stop the spread of virus causing bacteria,” the company says.

Aristocrat’s Dragon Link Debuts in Tampa

Aristocrat Technologies’ upgraded Dragon Link progressive slot machine bank has launched the latest evolution of its Dragon Link progressive slot product at Hard Rock Tampa.

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iGB Live Postponed to 2021

Clarion Gaming has postponed the 2020 iGB Live. the show had been scheduled for September in Amsterdam, but travel restrictions and safety concerns caused its cancellation.

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