Threatening the sports betting operators with consequences if they don’t reduce the number of ads they run doesn’t work. Raising the price of advertising will. Let’s see fewer ads featuring JB Smoove.
Last year turned out to be a record-breaker for gaming revenues, despite the lingering effects of Covid-19. In Part 2 of this new-year look back/look ahead, we ask the experts what’s in the cards for 2022.
The Covid-19 pandemic is not yet vanquished, but in 2021, reopened casinos managed the exposure, leading to record revenues. Results for mobile and online gaming also came to the rescue. In Part 1 of a two-part series, we examine how the industry navigated one of its greatest crises.
A sports betting bill introduced by North Dakota Rep. Jim Kasper (l.) failed last year in the legislature. But with sports books now coming to the state’s tribal casinos, and other opponents are pointing out with a lack of regulatory oversight, legalization of sports betting would be foolhardy.
At long last, New York sports fans can place mobile bets on their favorite teams. Starting Saturday morning, four mobile sportsbooks opened for wagers: Caesars Sportsbook, DraftKings, Rush Street Interactive and FanDuel.
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With the global surge in Covid-19 infections, with the latest Omicron variant, casinos in a number of jurisdictions have taken steps to curb the spread and protect patrons and staff. Precautions include the return of masking, reduced capacities and in some cases, temporary closures.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (l.) said he was not expecting Federal Judge Dabney L. Friedrich’s ruling that invalidated the entire Seminole compact over sports betting provisions.
In November, Nevada casinos set a new record, racking up $1 billion-plus for the ninth consecutive month. In 2021, Atlantic City posted almost $4 billion. U.S. casinos overall broke revenue records for 2021, with the final tallies still to come.
In December, Macau-based junket operator Suncity officially closed, the latest chapter in a VIP sector that has been declining for years but spurred by the arrest of former Suncity CEO Alvin Chau (l.). But the industry could survive in a different form under strict rules, experts say.
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro (l.) doesn’t like gambling, and neither do the country’s evangelicals. But Congress is likely to legalize it, after which Bolsonaro will veto the law, and Congress will override the veto.
The Seneca Nation of Indians has lost another federal court decision in its quest to keep millions it owes New York State and cities hosting their three casinos. The tribe asserts the compact did not specify payments after 2016.
ICE London, the largest game trade show in the world, announced that the event will be held April 12-14 at the ExCel Centre in London, and the iGB Affiliate London will span April 13-14. Stuart Hunter (l.), managing director of Clarion Gaming, said efforts were made to minimize disruption at the NIGA trade show scheduled for April 19-22 in Anaheim, California.
This week’s podcast features a discussion with Richard Veltri, the COO, and Rob Lekites, vice president for GAN Sports on how the company is rapidly gearing up with a unique sports betting platform.
The Vietnamese government has introduced new regulations for the country’s electronic gaming machine industry, including rules for side-betting, illegal iGaming and foreigners playing in local casinos, like the Corona Resort Casino (l.) in Phu Quoc.
In May, Philippine voters will elect a new president. Gaming analyst Andrew Klebanow has sized up the candidates including Ferdinand Marcos Jr. (l.), and says that most will support the gaming industry.
According to a plan released by Osaka last month, its proposed integrated resort would break ground in 2023 and open in 2029. Osaka’s partners in the IR are MGM Resorts International and Orix Corp.
The new hotel tower at Grand Lisboa Palace Resort Macau (l.) has been named the “Best Newly Opened Hotel” for 2021 by China Voyage Magazine. The tower opened in July.
Australia’s Crown Resorts has been fined $1 million by the Victorian gaming regulator for failing to comply with the rules for junket operations. Crown defied an order to sever ties with one agent deemed as unsuitable.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has advised travelers to refrain from going on cruises, regardless of their vaccination status. Cruise ships in U.S. waters reported 5,000 Covid cases in late December.
The head of Saipan’s casino regulatory body says revoking an exclusive gaming license held by Imperial Pacific International would be unconstitutional. The failed, bankrupt operation closed in March 2020.
Finland’s newly proposed Lottery Act will, if adopted into law, help shore up the existing Veikkaus state monopoly. It will also put a heavy regulatory hand on discouraging offshore gaming operators.
Sweden plans to lower the weekly deposit limit per week for online casino accounts from SEK 5,000 ($548.76) to SEK 4,000. This will prompt players to create multiple accounts, say critics of the new policy.
Playtech PLC has announced the launch of new live gaming studios in Michigan and New Jersey, which will stream dealer-assisted table games to online casinos in those states.
Vita Media Group has acquired Danish online gaming operator Greenplay, a subsidiary of Spanish casino group Codere’s iGaming division. The acquisition will help Vita strengthen its presence in Europe and LatAm.
For the fourth time, Mississippi state lawmaker Cedrick Burnett (l.) has proposed mobile sports betting legislation. Currently, sports wagers only may be placed at casinos, but Louisiana’s imminent online launch may make the difference.
Arkansas casinos and licensed betting platforms would be able to offer mobile sports betting under changes made by the state Racing Commission. State legislators must now approve the changes. Oaklawn Racing and Casino Resort General Manager Wayne Smith (l.) opposes mobile sports bets.
This year, California voters may have the opportunity to choose from several measures to legalize sports betting. Some offer a path for retail sports betting while others hope to use revenues to solve the epidemic of homelessness.
Washington’s Emerald Queen Casino (l.) has opened its BetMGM Sportsbook. The casino and sportsbook is owned by the Puyallup tribe which intends to make it a “premier destination for sports betting.”
Texas legislators were unmoved last year by a relentless and expensive campaign by gaming interests to persuade them to legalize sports betting. Famous bettor Mattress Mack (l.) predicts it could take a decade to get things to change.
Rush Street Interactive has inked a 10-year deal to build a sportsbook adjacent to the Pro Football Hall of Fame (l.) in Canton, Ohio. The complex also includes Don Shula’s Steakhouse and Topgolf Swing Suites.
Bally’s Corp. signed a deal to become the exclusive partner in sports betting with Major League Fishing. Bally Bet will become the title sponsor of the Angler of the Year award and other promotions.
U.K. betting shops and sportsbooks will almost certainly see a ban on sponsorships that place gambling ads on football jerseys. The ban will force operators to look elsewhere for marketing revenues.
Oddin.gg, a leading esports betting solutions provider, has secured a new B2B deal with sportsbook platform provider Betby. Betby will integrate Oddin.gg’s esports odds feed and make it available to all its global clients.
Gaming and Leisure Properties Inc. has announced that its purchase of the real estate of Maryland Live! (l.) from Cordish Companies is complete, to be followed by two other Live! properties.
The Nevada Gaming Control Board is asking the state Supreme Court for ongoing disciplinary power over disgraced casino magnate Steve Wynn (l.). Wynn resigned from his company in 2018 and sold all his interests.
Boyd Gaming will replace its Treasure Chest riverboat casino in Kenner, Louisiana with a land-based facility, opening in late 2023. The venue will offer a 47,000-square-foot casino, sportsbook, meeting space and dining.
Online sports betting is legal in Iowa but operators of the state’s 19 casinos are divided over expanding online gambling to include slots and poker. The legislature may require a multi-year study on the issue.Operators of Iowa’s 19 licensed casinos are divided over expanding online gambling beyond sports betting to include slots and poker. Some operators see the online gaming expansion as a way to attract younger casino patrons. Those against it said additional mobile gaming will cannibalize brick-and-mortar operations. Iowa Racing and Gaming Administrator Brian Ohorilko said, “The casino industry is pretty divided. It is 100 percent up to...
Alabama state Senator Greg Albritton (l.) will introduce a bill to legalize a lottery and casinos in the upcoming session. The measure would let the Poarch Band of Creek Indians negotiate a compact and offer Class III games.
Casinos were exempted from Iowa’s 2008 ban on smoking in public places. Now state Senator Janet Petersen (l.) said temporary smoking bans in casinos were the one “silver lining” to Covid-19 and should be made permanent.
Full House Resorts has dropped its lawsuit against the Indiana Gaming Commission, opening the way for Churchill Downs to receive the Vigo County gaming license.
American Place (l.) in Waukegan, Illinois, opening in 2024, will create 1,800 jobs and generate new taxes and rental income for the city, say supporters of the project. The facility will offer an entertainment center and hotel.
Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring (l.) has asked the state Supreme Court to overturn a circuit court judge’s order that prohibiting state officials from enforcing its ban on slot-like skill games.
Coffee mogul Travis Boersma (l.) wants to make his Grants Pass Downs racetrack profitable racino with “historical horse racing.” He is frustrated with Oregon’s Racing Commission for slow-walking his licensing.
Ten years after selling the Fontainebleau in Las Vegas, the original developer, Jeffrey Soffer, has returned to finish the giant casino tower and 3,700-room hotel.
A California developer has purchased the Beesley Cottages lakefront Tahoe property in Tahoe Vista, California. The property will become part of a much larger “Beach Club” casino property (l.).
Lifestyle icon Martha Stewart’s (l.) first-ever restaurant venture will launch at Paris Las Vegas in the spring. Stewart has partnered with Marquee Brands on the concept, to be known as Bedford by Martha Stewart.
Think of it as a Disney store, but for football fans. The first retail store devoted to all things NFL will open at the Forum Shops at Caesars Palace. In addition to gear and souvenirs, the store will feature player visitations.
For those who doubted Bart Blatstein would build it, the Philadelphia developer expected to break ground January 12 on a 103,000-square-foot year-round waterpark at the onetime Showboat casino in Atlantic City.
The Catawba Nation’s Two Kings Casino expanded pre-launch facility (l.) added 500 electronic table games including blackjack, roulette, craps and baccarat, for a total of 1,000 gaming machines, including 945 slots.
The Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe of Massachusetts, one of two federally recognized tribes in the state, has regained its right to put land into trust. The Department of the Interior last week reversed an earlier ruling. The tribe hopes to build the First Light casino (l.).
The Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Tejon in Kern County, California could begin building early this year. The project, proposed by the Tejon Indian Tribe, requires the approval of Governor Gavin Newsom.
Indian gaming contributed $129 million to Arizona tax rolls in 2021. Tribes added new games, sports betting and fantasy sports to “benefit all of Arizona,” said Ted Vogt (l.), of the state Department of Gaming.
The Bureau of Indian Affairs announced last week the release of the Environmental Assessment for the Siletz Casino Project (l.) in Salem, Oregon. It’s a significant step forward to obtaining federal approval.
On January 4, Inspired Entertainment announced that it has acquired Sportech Lotteries for $12.5 million. It marks Inspired’s first foray into the lottery sector and is expected to support growth in North America.
The Morocco State Lottery has put out an international call for bids seeking a new operator to assume overall management and operation of the lottery on an eight-year contract.
Atlantic City’s Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa has a new president. Veteran casino executive Travis Lunn (l.), who replaces Melonie Johnson, is a former group president and chief operating officer for MGM Resorts.
GeoComply co-founder Anna Sainsbury (l.) is once again CEO of the Canadian company. She replaces her co-founder David Briggs, who becomes a director.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis appointed the first three members of the state Gaming Control Commission, including Chairwoman Julie Imanuel Brown (l.) The commission will oversee gaming in the state starting in July.
The Canadian Gaming Association has named Ilkim Hincer (l.), a top executive of Hard Rock International, as chairman, and George Sweny of Flutter Entertainment as vice chairman of the board.
Pragmatic Play Ltd. announced that it has appointed Irina Cornides as chief operations officer, as the company continues its growth in the iGaming market.
EQL Games has added Seth Young (l.) to its board of directors. Young has more than 15 years of experience in interactive gaming and technology and currently serves as chief strategy officer at Fifth Street Gaming Digital.
Michael Fisher (l.) departed his role as general manager of the Chinook Winds Casino Resort in Lincoln City, Oregon, effective New Year’s Day. Fisher will be replaced on an interim basis by John Wheeler.
Sunshine Suzanne Sykes (l.) is the first member of the Navajo Nation to be nominated to be a federal court judge. She was nominated by President Joe Biden to be a judge for the Central District of California.
Rank Group Plc has tapped Richard Harris (l.) to be the company’s chief financial officer and board director. Harris will assume his new duties on May 1, replacing Bill Floydd, who resigned last summer.
Aristocrat Leisure Ltd. has announced that it will consider expanding its board of directors and increasing the funds available for non-executive director fees.
Australian sports betting firm PlayUp blames former U.S. CEO Laila Mintas (l.) for scotching a $450 million deal to sell the company. Mintas denies the allegations and says PlayUp has “eviscerated her reputation.” Mintas countersued and a court ruled she did not have to adhere to an injunction forcing her to
With at least one rival bid ready to compete with Aristocrat’s proposed takeover of gaming software supplier Playtech PLC, Playtech has postponed its shareholder vote on the bid.
AGS has acquired the player favorite Lucky Lucky Jackpot side bet from Aces Up Gaming, enhancing its rich content portfolio and providing opportunity for further growth of its progressive products.
Starting February 1, MGM Resorts will introduce a new loyalty program for gaming and nongaming guests across the U.S. The new MGM Rewards plan will offer “more ways to earn and a host of exciting new benefits.”
Gary Platt Manufacturing, in partnership with Gitchi Gaming, has replaced all seating at slot and table games at Iowa’s Diamond Jo Casino. More than 700 chairs were hand-crafted just for Diamond Jo’s.
Zitro has installed its Link King and Link Me games in eight casinos operated by France’s Barrière Group, and several games in Argentina’s Casino Fuente Mayor.
JCM Global has signed a master supply agreement with Caesars Entertainment, Inc., to supply the company’ bill validation and thermal printing technologies to Caesars properties.
The Three Rivers Casino Resort in Florence, Oregon has agreed to implement the OPTX suite of player development, slot and artificial intelligence software. Brooke Fiumara (l.), co-EO of OPTX, says her company’s products “increase guest visitation, revenue, and profitability.”
B Riley analyst David Bain is recommending buys on slot manufacturers Everi Holdings and AGS, which he says are both poised for significant share price gains.
Small Nuggets of News
Outrageous pronouncements, simple statements and words of wisdom.