CASINO-OLOGY: Risk Assessment for Card Counting

Card counters often send chills up the spines of casino executives but what if you could develop a “risk assessment” for blackjack so you’d have a good idea exactly how much of a threat a particular card counter would be? Gaming expert Bill Zender explains why this could help.

Chicago Casino: Why Such a Chilly Reception?

A casino in Chicago, such as the proposed Bally’s River West project (l.), has the potential to be a financial winner, or at least plug some budget holes. So why is it generating such bad vibes? Lack of communication plays a major part. So does neighborhood opposition—the NIMBY effect.

Okada Back in Control in Manila

Kazuo Okada (l.) used strong-arm tactics to take over the Okada Manila integrated resort last week, two weeks after a Philippine judge ruled that he should be returned to the board chairmanship of the Tiger Resort, Leisure and Entertainment Inc (TRLEI), the group that operates the property. Philippine regulators have refused to step in, saying they’re only concerned with continuing operations.

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Osaka Citizens Demand Referendum on IR

There’s yet another obstacle ahead for MGM’s planned integrated resort (l.) in Osaka, Japan. In May, a coalition of citizens’ groups announced that it had collected enough signatures to force a referendum on the plan.

Iowa Regulators Punt On Cedar Rapids Casino

A Cedar Rapids casino (l.) may be on hold for another two years, as the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission waits to see if Governor Kim Reynolds will sign legislation approving a 2-year moratorium on new gaming licenses.

CA Law Exempts Tribal Projects From Environmental Reviews

Tribal projects by two California gaming tribes will be exempt from scrutiny by the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) thanks to a bill signed by Governor Gavin Newsom (l.). The bill, SB 900 ratifies the compacts of the Santa Rosa Rancheria Tachi Yokut Tribe and the Middletown Rancheria Band of Pomo Indians.

Britain Could Suspend National Lottery

The United Kingdom’s Gambling Commission warns that the National Lottery could be suspended for the first time in its 30-year history due to a legal challenge by former operator Camelot.


Under Covid Policy, Macau Casino Debt Piles Up

Investment analysts at Morgan Stanley say that China’s strict zero-Covid policy could result in massive debt for Macau casino operators—$25 billion by the end of this year, and even more by the end of 2023.

SJM to Buy Macau Casino from Parent

Macau casino operator SJM Holdings will buy the Oceanus casino (l.) from its parent company STDM. SJM plans to return the gaming area to the local government in December, after its current concession expires.

Suncity Group Still Shut Out of Philippine Market

An official of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation has said junket operator Suncity Group Manila is still considered unsuitable to operate in the market due to the ongoing litigation against the company’s former chairman, Alvin Chau.

Could Macau Satellites Be Performance-Based?

Last month, Macau government officials suggested that they may permit a performance-related system between casino promoters that want to run satellite casinos (l..) and concessionaires that hold the gaming rights.


Sherlock Calls for Complete Gaming Advertising Ban in Ireland

Senator Marie Sherlock (l.) of the Republic of Ireland is calling for a complete ban on gaming advertising in all media. The Labour Party member is criticizing the government for not doing enough to protect vulnerable populations from the dangers of gaming and gambling addiction.

Greece Raises €2 Online Bet Cap

Greece has raised the cap on bets made on slot machines and table games from a maximum of €2 to €20. The lifting of the cap came after the government spent a year reviewing gaming policies that had been in place since 2011, when gaming was legalized.

Former Maltese Gaming Official Faces Corruption Charges

Jason Farrugia (l.), a former official of the Malta Gaming Authority, and his wife Christine Farrugia have been accused of various counts of money laundering, bribery fraud and selling influence. Both have declared their innocence, but have been denied bail.


Star Sydney Facing Numerous Accusations as Inquiry Nears End

The inquiry into the dealings of Star Entertainment by New South Wales regulators is reaching its final stages, and the operator is facing a litany of accusations, including money laundering, fraud and criminal involvement. A formal decision is expected soon.

Montreal Casino Dealers Strike Continues

Poker rooms remain closed at Casino Montreal (l.) while 521 dealers continue to strike against Loto-Québec. The disagreement focuses on dealers’ request for a new schedule to help reduce repetitive strain injuries.

B.C. Money Laundering Commission Submits Report

For more than a year, the “Cullen Commission” conducted hearings and took testimony to investigate years of alleged violations of Ontario, Canada’s anti-money laundering laws by casinos, high-end car dealers and realtors. The final report now awaits review from B.C. officials.

Bet99 Close to Getting Ontario Sportsbook Approval

Bet99 is close to obtaining approval to participate in the Ontario sports betting market. Sports Venture Holdings Inc. CEO Jared Beber indicated that the process is still unfolding, but nearing completion.



Colorado May End Sports Betting Promo Tax Breaks

Colorado’s sports betting market, which went live in 2020, appears ready for a change. A bill that would eliminate part of the tax dedications operators take for promotions is awaiting the signature of Governor Jared Polis (l).

Missouri Republican Senators Blocked Sports Betting

The Missouri House easily passed sports betting legislation in March, but it failed in the Senate due to Republican senators’ concerns over video gambling machines and gambling addiction, among other issues.

WynnBET Applies For Illinois Sports Betting License

WynnBET has applied for a sports betting license in Illinois, but it’s not tethered to a particular casino. Possibilities include new Golden Nugget Danville, which recently broke ground, or one of the state’s 10 existing casinos.


Chicago Casino Revenue Estimates Fall Short

Bally’s River West casino (l.) is expected to generate $200 million a year in gaming tax revenue. But that will cover only 9 percent of the city’s fire and police pension debt, and it will require an extremely high rate of consistent wagering.

Rhode Island Senate Passes RG Measure

The Rhode Island Senate unanimously passed a bill sponsored by Senator Frank Ciccone III (l.) that would establish compulsive and problem gambling programs through the state’s Lottery Division.

Las Vegas’ Daily Room Rates Reached All-Time High in April

The Las Vegas Visitors and Convention Authority has reported that in April, average daily room rates in Las Vegas went upwards of $177 per night, which is a new record. The new highs were attributed to increased demand from a string of high-traffic events. (MGM Grand King Room at left.)


Washington Tribe to add Hotel, Expand Casino

The Snoqualmie Tribe of Washington State has announced plans to expand its casino gaming floor. It will also add three new restaurants, a hotel, spa and 2,000-seat entertainment and convention center. The work is expected to be completed by 2024.

Virginia Tribe Requests Temporary Casino Approval

The Pamunkey Tribe awaits the Norfolk, Virginia city council’s approval to open a temporary HeadWaters Casino (l.) at Harbor Park. The permanent casino resort is projected to open in 2024 and create 2,000 construction jobs.

Omaha WarHorse Temporary Casino Planned

Regulatory issues have delayed construction of Ho-Chunk’s WarHorse Gaming’s $220 million casino (l.) at Horsemen’s Park in Omaha. But officials said they plan to break ground this summer and open a temporary casino in the meantime.



Xincong Named Beijing’s Liaison to Macau

Zheng Xincong has been appointed the new director of the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in Macau. He replaced Fu Ziying, who served in the position for more than three years.


Caesars Offers Employees Education Assistance

Caesars Entertainment is launching All-In On Education, an education assistance program for its employees that includes student debt repayment, tuition assistance, scholarship opportunities and a college savings plan.

Win Systems Expands into New Hampshire

Ocean Gaming Casino in New Hampshire is partnering with Win Systems to install their WIGOS casino management system, as Win continues to expand its North American base.




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