The lobbyists who advise the companies looking to legalize mobile sports betting in California speak their own language. As a public service, gaming observer Richard Schuetz acts as an interpreter.
U.K. Gamblers Moving Toward More Online Play
Online gaming has surpassed retail gaming in the U.K. and is becoming the dominant form in the sector. Meanwhile, according to the U.K. Gambling Commission, 15 million people gamble legally and the industry has almost recovered to pre-pandemic levels, but Michael Dugher (l.), CEO of the Betting and Gaming Council, worries that high taxes and strict regs could drive punters to illegal casinos.
Protecting the Alternative Games: Mississippi Stud Poker
Blackjack, craps and roulette are not the only vulnerable games to cheating on the casino floor. In a second installment on what to watch for in the alternate games, casino expert Bill Zender reveals the issues related to Mississippi Stud.
Sports Betting Operators Plagued by Account Hacks
Hackers have figured out how to commit fraud to siphon money from DraftKings player accounts. The situation has affected FanDuel as well, along with BetMGM. Global Payment Solutions was recognized for a quick response.
Competition Heats Up for NY Casinos
Caesars and a major developer want a casino on Times Square. The Mets are contemplating a casino next to their home at CitiField (l.), and Yankees are part of a group seeking a license in Coney Island. Las Vegas Sands looks to Long Island. While three are available, two are likely to go to existing casinos, so this is a fight to the finish for one casino.
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WEEKLY FEATURE: Pressure Mounting from All Sides as Star Continues Uphill Climb
There isn’t a lot going right for Star Entertainment at this point—the company is facing suitability proceedings in multiple states across Australia, and was just notified by AUSTRAC that it is facing additional penalties for “innumerable” failures related to anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism funding efforts.
Philippine Lawmaker Pushes PAGCOR Split
Philippine Senator Sherwin Gatchalian (l.) says the country’s gaming regulator, which also operates its own casino brand, should be divided into two separate bodies, to end the perception of conflict of interest.
Facebook Stiffens Rules for Gambling Ads
Facebook parent Meta has instituted new, stricter guidelines for gambling advertisers, while defining what does and does not require Facebook permission.
Gambling Interests Prepare For Texas Session
Before and since Texas Governor Greg Abbott (l.) indicated he’d support expanded gambling, casino and sports betting operators have lined up more than 300 lobbyists and donated to influencers’ political campaigns.
Maryland Mobile Sportsbooks Complete Boffo Debut
Maryland bettors stepped to the plate for the opening of mobile sports betting and produced the kind of results anyone would envy. The state had 16.5 million transactions, almost double that of Virginia.
Brazil Still Without Sports Betting Regulations During World Cup
Although a bill legalizing sports betting in Brazil was passed four years ago, it still awaits the publication of regulations to launch. The outgoing president, Jair Bolsonaro, has delayed implementing the law to maintain support among constituents who oppose all gambling.
Analyst: Despite Concession Shutout, Genting to Pursue Macau Venture
While Genting didn’t win a Macau gaming concession, this may not be the firm’s final go at the market. Analysts at JP Morgan say the Malaysian company, which operates a casino in Malaysia’s Highlands, that includes many non-gaming attractions, may try to slip in via an equity or joint venture deal.
Judge Rules Oklahoma Tribes Lack Standing
U.S. District Judge Timothy J. Kelly (l.) recently ruled four Oklahoma tribes had no standing to challenge gaming compacts Governor Kevin Stitt signed with the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokees and Kialegee Tribal Town since they do not operate casinos.
FANTINI’S FINANCE: Real Estate Reaction
In the past year, we’ve seen a sea change when it came to ownership of the Las Vegas Strip. VICI has become the dominant force as it bought out the ownership of Blackstone in two MGM-run casinos.
GLOBAL GAMING BUSINESS PODCAST: Tristan Sjöberg, Executive Chairman, TCSJohnHuxley
This week, the GGB Podcast sits down with Tristan Sjöberg, the executive chairman of TCSJohnHuxley, on how his company survived the pandemic and how it is working with the live dealer studios.
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Colombo Lotus Tower Sri Lanka to get casino
The tallest tower in Sri Lanka is getting a casino that will be built by Kreate Design and will cover 44,00 square meters and feature a water park, as well as the casino.
Chau Lawyers: No Impetus for Junket to Take Illegal Bets
Defense attorneys in the case of fallen Macau junket chief Alvin Chau (l.) say the billionaire had no financial motive to engage in illegal betting, because the profit margin was so small.
With Marriott Deal, New Hope for Stalled South Korean IR
With Marriott Deal, New Hope for Stalled South Korean IR
IPI Settles With Creditor
Hong Kong-based Imperial Pacific International (IPI) has reached a settlement with Ping Shun Corp. over debts that it racked up over three years. The creditor served meals to thousands of employees and construction workers of a casino in Saipan and was left holding the doggy bag.
It’s Official: Landing Is Now Shin Hwa World Ltd.
On November 29, at a shareholders’ meeting, Landing International Development changed its name to Shin Hwa World Ltd. The Hong Kong-listed firm operates Jeju Shinhwa World in South Korea.
EUROPEAN GAMING More
KSA Orders End to Cashback Bonuses
De Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), which regulates Dutch gaming, has sent a letter to all online licensees in the Netherlands order the operators to end the practice of cashback bonuses. The bonuses, says KSA, “may reduce the perceived risk of gambling among players who are vulnerable.”
Sweden Rejects Tighter Gambling Ad Rules
The newly elected ruling party in Sweden’s parliament has rejected a proposal to tighten advertising regulations as a way to target “higher risk” gaming. The Culture Committee calls “adjusted moderation, an attempt to implement a risk classification by the back door.”
Belgium’s Lottery Pauses Sports Betting Ads During World Cup
The Belgian National Lottery has banned all sports betting ads during the FIFA World Cup in Qatar. The goal, says Minister of Finance Vincent Van Peteghem (l.), is to protect consumers. “The National Lottery is taking a leading role in protecting players and fighting gambling addiction,” he said.
ONLINE GAMING More
First Nation Takes Ontario Government To Court Over Online Gaming
The Ontario government approved a bill that made new forms of gambling legal, and the Mohawk Council of Kahnawà:ke has taken them to court saying it affects their livelihood. Council Chief Mike Delisle, Jr. (l.) called the action a “last resort.”
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15 Apply For Massachusetts Sports Betting Licenses By Deadline
November 21 was the deadline to apply for a Massachusetts sports betting license and 15 operators, including DraftKings FanDuel, and BetMGM all filed applications. MGM Springfield (l.) was a tad late, but got a reprieve.
Saskatchewan Lags, Ontario Ready For In-Person Sports Betting
It’s a tale of two provinces when it comes to in-person sports betting as Ontario has embraced having customers able to make sports bets in casinos but Saskatchewan is still only having people use mobile apps. Duncan Hannay (l.), the president of OLG, says sportsbooks in casinos creates jobs and other benefits.
Las Vegas to Host 2028 NCAA Final Four at Allegiant Stadium
The NCAA has announced that Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas will play host to the 2028 Men’s Final Four. This is the second high-profile sporting event to be awarded to the city this year, after it was recently announced that the stadium will also host the 2024 Super Bowl.
DraftKings, Churchill Downs Partner on Online Parimutuel Bets
DraftKings and Churchill Downs signed a multi-year deal to provide DraftKings customers access to horse races as part of the online sportsbook. The deal includes the Kentucky Derby.
Ohio Launch of Sports Betting a Month Away
With December 1, Ohio retail and online sports betting is just a month away. The 7 operators need to have everything in working order by the time the first card is dealt.
UNITED STATES GAMING More
VICI Buys Remaining Pieces of Mandalay Bay and MGM Grand
VICI, the real estate investment trust that dominates the Las Vegas Strip, last week bought the remaining equity in Mandalay Bay and MGM Grand (l.) that it didn’t own from Blackstone, making it the largest real estate owner on the Las Vegas Strip.
Bally’s To Hold Another Chicago Casino Meeting
Bally’s and Chicago officials held a community meeting November 29 to discuss area residents’ concerns about a temporary casino in Medinah Temple (l.). The next meeting, on December 5, will focus on the permanent casino’s impact.
Genting Asking $1 Billion For Miami Property
Genting’s 15.5-acre waterfront property (l.), the former home of the Miami Herald in downtown Miami, is for sale for more than $1 billion. Genting bought the land in 2011 for $235 million, hoping to build a casino resort if Florida gambling laws changed.
Las Vegas Continues its Hot Streak With Strong October Numbers
In the midst of economic uncertainty, the city of Las Vegas is continuing to post strong visitation and revenue figures. According to the latest report from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, visitation was slightly less than pre-Covid rates, but hotel room rates and revenues were higher than ever.
New Resort-Casino Project Proposed for Reno
A new casino proposal in Reno, Nevada has been submitted by Elevation Entertainment. Known as Firecreek Crossing Resort-Casino (l.), it would feature 1,250 slots, 40-plus tables and a hotel with 200-plus rooms.
Massachusetts Questions Encore Boston Harbor Expansion
A planned expansion of Wynn’s Encore Boston Harbor (l.) that recently added gaming has the Massachusetts Gaming Commission looking into whether gaming is permitted by law on the expansion.
Dream Las Vegas Operator Acquired by Hyatt
Hyatt Hotels has announced the acquisition of Dream Hotel Group, which is currently developing the Dream Las Vegas (l.) casino-resort on the Las Vegas Strip. The takeover will involve 12 existing properties and 24 additional unopened properties.
Virginia Skill-Game Hearing Set
The case, brought by former NASCAR driver Hermie Sadler (l.), challenges the state’s skill-games ban, passed in summer 2021. Virginia lawmakers toughened the ban since then as part of the recent budget process.
Las Vegas Convention Center Staff Mulling Potential Strike Vote
Hundreds of food service employees at the Las Vegas Convention Center (l.) are considering a strike vote in early December as their union battles for higher pay rates with Sodexo Centerplate. The previous contract expired in October.
Nevada Gaming Regulator Named Lombardo’s Chief of Staff
Nevada Gaming Commissioner Ben Kieckhefer (l.) has been appointed as Governor-elect Joe Lombardo’s chief of staff. Kieckhefer, a former state senator, will step down from the NGC when Lombardo takes office.
Parx Shippensburg to Open in February
Parx Casino Shippensburg (l.) will open in February 2023 as Pennsylvania’s fourth Category 4 “mini-casino,” offering 500 slots and 48 electronic table games.
Tunica’s Fitz Announces Renovation
The hotel at Fitz Casino (l.) in Tunica, Mississippi has become part of the Trademark Collection by Wyndham. The 9-story, 506-room venue has new furniture, flat-screen TVs, indoor pool and several new dining options.
Nebraska Temporary Casino To Open By Christmas
The temporary casino at Fonner Park (l.) in Grand Island, Nebraska plans to open before Christmas with 300 slots and kiosks for betting on live and simulcast races. The permanent facility is expected to open in 2025.
Hawaii ups Penalties for Illegal Gambling Rooms
Law enforcement in Hawaii have a new string in their bow of tactics to employ the fight proliferating illegal gambling rooms: increased criminal penalties. Honolulu Prosecuting Attorney Steve Alm (l.) calls new penalties and financial disincentives for landlords “a real game changer.”
TRIBAL GAMING More
Seneca Nation Receives $7.625 Million Federal Grant For Transit Hub
New York Senator Charles Schumer (l.) announced last week he had secured a $7.625 million federal grant for Western New York’s Seneca Nation to help construct a transit hub.
Matthew Anfinson to Succeed Tony Rodio as Great Canadian CEO
Great Canadian Entertainment has appointed Matthew Anfinson (l.) as its new CEO following the retirement of Tony Rodio. Anfinson was promoted from his previous role of chief operating officer.
MGM Names Smith Mitchell HR Exec
MGM Resorts International has promoted Allison Smith Mitchell to VP of regional human resources business partnerships. She will oversee regional HR operations and provided strategic direction and leadership.
Dawn Reynolds Pettit Named SVP of HR for Rush Street Gaming
Rush Street Gaming has named Dawn Reynolds as the new leader of human resources for the company. She has experience with Hard Rock and Caesars Entertainment in the past.
GOODS & SERVICES More
Apollo Directors Leave AGS Board
In the wake of the announcement Apollo Global Management was selling its 22 percent stake in supplier AGS, two Apollo representatives on the AGS board have resigned their positions.
Resorts World Vegas, Sightline Launch Next-Gen Cashless
Resorts World Las Vegas (l.) and Sightline last week announced the launch of second-generation cashless technology. New functionalities include digital identity verification, single-wallet capabilities and biometrics.
Bally Technology, Sportradar Team Up to Boost Fan Activation
A new deal between Bally Technology and Sportradar will utilize the sports tech company’s game stats and contextual data to power global fan activation.
Novomatic Achieves G4 Certification in Italy, Spain
Novomatic AG has added Italy and Spain to the jurisdictions in which the supplier and operator has achieved G4 certification for its responsible gaming efforts.
Agency Receives Grant from BetMGM to Study Problem Gambling
BetMGM donated almost $200,000 to the International Center for Responsible Gaming. The money will fund a study between advertising and problem gambling, according to ICRG President Art Paikowsky (l.).
NEWS & NOTES
Small Nuggets of News
THEY SAID IT More
Outrageous pronouncements, simple statements and words of wisdom.