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Gambling And Vice News Update, by Greg Tingle - 28th
continues to be a hotbed for Australian gambling,
casino and vice news, be it political, legal, new
games and innovation, tours, casinos battling it out
for the top entertainment acts, and so it goes on.
Man scours Australia for the hottest and most entertaining
news to be found...
Australia Police Officers Investigation Probe Over
double Australian tag team...4...off-duty police officers
are under investigation over a brawl at Adelaide's
famous SkyCity Casino. Just after midnight yesterday,
a bloke came out of a toilet and complained to a guard
a group of men were harassing him. News outlet Channel
7 reported last night the group emerged from the toilet
and approached the man, who is alleged to have told
them: "Leave me alone, I don't want anything
to do with this."
A fight then erupted, in which casino gaming tables
were knocked for six and seven security guards rushed
to the incident. The men were notified Hindley St
police had been called, to which they allegedly replied:
"We are the police." Police are reviewing
security footage, and Superintendent Graham Goodwin
said an investigation was continuing. We wish the
police good luck with the investigation - both sides
of the police.
Dogg Enjoys Time In Australian Casinos; Star City
In Sin City Sydney..
hip-hop stars Snoop Dogg and Nelly have been enjoying
their time down under in Australia. At an announced
side-show in Sydney's Star City Casino last weekend,
the two famed hip-hop stars shocked the crowd when
an ensemble of acclaimed Supafest co-stars joined
them on stage. Industry luminaries The Game, T-Pain,
Busta Rhymes, Fat Joe and Spliff Star all joined in
the fun. They wowed fans with an hour of freestyle
rapping. The show is already being described as the
biggest hip-hop show in Australian history. Star City
in Sydney is hoping to look after them again, as is
the Tabcorp owned sister casino on the Gold Coast
- Jupiters Hotel and Casino.
Australian Gambler And Sportsman Brendan Fevola Will
Pay Kids' Charity...
know the name, and you know some of his games. AFL,
poker and casino slots. Fev will make a payment to
well known and respected charity Variety. They will
be the beneficiary of ex AFL star Brendan Fevola's
drunken New Year's Eve. The former Carlton and Brisbane
full forward will pay about $2000 to the charity to
avoid charges of obstructing police and public nuisance.
Fevola was arrested after ignoring police instructions
to get off the road in Brisbane's Fortitude Valley
about 4.30am on New Year's Day. The situation degenerated
when he resisted arrest and threatened police, allegedly
saying: "Come on, take your hat and badge off,
I'll smash you." The dual-Coleman medallist had
pleaded guilty to the charges but entered mediation
talks with police this month to have them dropped.
He also wrote a letter of apology to the police involved.
Fevola's lawyer Jim Coburn told Brisbane Magistrates
Court yesterday mediation had been successful and
a commitment has been signed for Fevola to donate
the money. The charity, Variety Queensland, was chosen
by police. Fevola has two weeks to fulfil the mediation
terms. Fevola, who has struggled with gambling and
alcohol issues throughout his career, lost about $1
million through betting and admitted he attempted
suicide at his lowest point. He spent two months in
rehab to deal with mental health and addiction issues
after the altercation with police. The living legend
was sacked by the Brisbane Lions while he was still
in rehab, a move which drew criticism from some quarters,
including the AFL Players' Association. Fevola moved
back to Melbourne after his release from rehab to
be closer to his family, however he is now estranged
from his wife Alex and three daughters. His battle
with gambling is ongoing. He has been removed from
James Packer owned Crown Casino as well as a suburban
pokies venue in recent months. Fevola has not given
up hope of returning to the AFL, playing for VFL side
Casey Scorpions to help rebuild his career. We wish
Fev well with his ongoing journey.
Casino Grease Shaft Trap Man Ocean's One Slips Legal
Charges In Melbourne...
Melbourne 26 year-old known as "Grease Trap Man"
and "Ocean's One" after he was rescued from
a ventilation shaft at Crown casino walked out...slipped
away if you will... a free man from court yesterday.
Melbourne Magistrates' Court heard two charges against
Brook Adrian Valencic, 26, had been withdrawn by prosecutors.
Valencic, of Sydenham, faced a charge of criminal
damage to a door at Crown and a second charge of trespass,
over the incident in July last year. It is believed
the crim defence planned to argue he was so drunk
he could remember nothing of the incident and police
concluded they could not prove the charges. Valencic
spent hours trapped in the grease-filled ventilation
shaft and was pulled clear by a search and rescue
crew after staff at the Automatic Cafe heard screaming
when they turned on the ovens. He was covered head
to toe in grease, as was worried his might of been
in line for a cooked alive number ala battered fish
fry. The rescuers had to crawl into the shaft to rescue
Valencic, who was hot and dehydrated, but otherwise
unharmed, yet a touch worried about what was about
to get cooked. At the time of the incident firefighters
thought he entered the steel duct from a stairwell,
crawled about 30m, and then fell vertically through
the vents until he became wedged above the cafe's
grill. Valencic left court without talking to the
press. Crown Casino security and law enforcement agencies
will be watching Crown Casino like hawks as The Logies
is to take place on the 1st April, opened by performing
artist come casino babe Katy Perry.
Aussie Battle Returning To Casino King; Tarzan, Mr.
Cashman Headline Aristocrat's Booth at Southern Gaming
Australia to Vegas To Biloxi, the embattled Aussie
firm is bouncing back with a vengeance.
Technologies is bringing top-name celebrities to Biloxi
for the annual Southern Gaming Summit. "Tarzan(R)"
and "Mr. Cashman" of Cashman Fever(TM) will
be front and center as Aristocrat unveils its newest
games that will help operators across the South give
their customers the greatest gaming experience every
day. Aristocrat will be in booth #812, where the stunning
new video slot game Tarzan®Lord of the Jungle
will bring a call of the wild to the tradeshow floor.
Tarzan Lord of the Jungle is the newest title in Aristocrat's
award-winning VERVEhd cabinet, where the game's
big screen style action stretches top to bottom. The
game is complete with incredible stereo sound, seven
high-hit frequency bonus features and a four-level
progressive with a jungle-sized top jackpot of $250,000.
Co-starring at the event is every casino player's
best friend, Mr. Cashman, who is now starring
in the new video slot game Cashman Fever. Cashman
Fever brings the fun and excitement that players have
come to expect from Mr. Cashman to a scorching hot
new level. Cashman Fever is a new feature-rich, highly
entertaining gaming experience with four red-hot,
high-frequency Cashman Fever bonus features and an
exclusive Cashman Fever Progressive Link feature that
offers 20 jackpot pools. Aristocrat is riding a wave
of award-winning success, and the company will be
showing off its most recent award-winning products,
including More Hearts and More Chilli,
the opening titles on Aristocrat's all-new and award-winning
game category Mega Pay, which was recently named
one of the Top Ten Slot Floor Products for 2011 in
the fifth annual Casino Enterprise Management Slot
Floor Technology Awards. Aristocrat will also be showing
its all-new game category Win Your Way and its
industry-exclusive Nteractiv LCD Programmable
Buttons, which were both recently named to the list
of Casino Journal's annual "Top 20 Most Innovative
Gaming Technology Awards." Aristocrat will introduce
southern operators to Stuntman Sam, the company's
newest hero who in this thrilling new game attempts
several heart-stopping, death-defying feats to give
players an entertaining gaming experience and a big
win. And "Rock Star of the Art World," Michael
Godard's work will be on display in Monster Boogie,
the hilarious sequel to the instant player favorite
Rockin Olives. Also showing Gazellions
and Fortune Fantasy, where players have a chance
to play four games at once; and the latest entry in
Aristocrat's Reel Tall Tales line, The Headless
Horseman, a triple standalone progressive with
five bonus features. They're not just games, they're
Aristocrat games, and they give the greatest gaming
experience every day.
to the Scene of the Crime; Sin City Sydney Crime Tourism...
histories and many tourists will love this. From murder
and robbery to gambling and civil unrest, Sydneys
turbulent history will be revealed as we visit crime
scenes from the past and present in this fascinating
walking tour of Circular Quay and The Rocks.
The walk starts from the Justice & Police Museum
and winds its way through the city to finish in The
Rocks. Both planned and spontaneous true crime stories
are looked at in detail on this tour.
Justice & Police Museum
4-8 Phillip St
Telephone 02 9252 1144
Price from $20.00 to $25.00
Date Tue 03 May
Alternative dates Tue 17 May
City: crime & corruption in 20th-century Sydney
city in the world can rival Sydney's tolerance for
organised crime - Professor Alfred W McCoy, 1980.
In the second half of the 20th century, Sin City was
in every way a fitting nickname for Sydney. Organised
crime held a grip on the city and corruption was rife,
infiltrating the top levels of politics, law and justice.
Focusing on the 1940s to the 1980s, this exhibition
will examine some of the audacious crimes, fascinating
people and various vice trades from suburban
SP bookmakers and sly-grog sellers to narcotics dealers
and flashy illegal casinos that bankrolled
Bulfin; Casino And Business Criminal Tells His Story
In Undercover Tell All Book...
colourful story, described in his autobiographical
novel Undercover, reads like a movie script. Bulfin
says while the novel is fiction, it is based on the
true events of his life. The events may sound fantastical,
he says, but he can prove it all actually happened.
The story starts in the 1990s, when he was running
a mortgage company, and fell out of favor of the law
on a charge of conspiracy to defraud in the valuations
of Lasseters Casino and Dreamworld. My lawyers
said, Youve got no chance, theyll
throw the book at you. I pleaded guilty and
got sent to prison, he says. Bulfin was stabbed
and beaten several times at Port Phillip Prison, and
progressively moved to higher security sections with
tougher criminals at every turn, until he ended up
in a so-called supermax unit. "There are 20 people
in the unit, and youre under surveillance 24/7.
Its one of the worst units in Australia,"
Bulfin says. Bulfin advised he has a good reason for
writing a book about such a dangerous man, someone
who could easily arrange for him to be killed. "I
was sick of psychologists. I thought Ill write
a book, and maybe its therapy," he says.
"Also, by writing a book, Im safer, and
now no-one can threaten me." Bulfin says his
book, which was originally intended to be released
as a true story, is going to be made into a movie
called The Banker. Keith Bulfin will be speaking at
this years Bayside Literary Festival on May
22 from 1pm2.30pm. The event will be held at
the Brighton Savoy, 150 The Esplanade. Cost is $10,
and afternoon tea will be provided.
Rock Gods INXS Play Moncton Casino On July 7...
rock group INXS is going to perform at Casino New
Brunswick's Entertainment Centre in Moncton in July.
The band, performing in support of new album Original
Sin, will start the rock n roller Thursday, July 7
at 8 p.m. Doors open at 7 p.m. Over the span of the
band's 30-year career, INXS has sold more than 30
million albums worldwide. They have scored hits on
four different continents and have received MTV Awards,
World Music Awards, two Grammy nominations, British
Music Awards and Gold, Platinum and Diamond sales
status on their records. They have also performed
over 4,000 live shows for more than 25 million people
in almost 50 countries. First as the Farriss Brothers,
then as INXS, the band is made up of brothers Tim,
Jon and Andrew Farriss, along with Kirk Pengilly and
Garry Gary Beers. Original INXS singer Michael Hutchence
died in 1997 via a dark and adventurous sexual method
and has been replaced at various times by different
singers, notably J.D. Fortune who grew up in Nova
Scotia. Fortune is fronting the band on stage, but
on Original Sin new versions of classic INXS hits
were recorded with various vocalists, including Train's
Pat Monahan, Rob Thomas and Ben Harper. Tickets for
the Moncton INXS show go on sale Thursday at 10 a.m.
Casino execs think INXS will boost numbers to the
venue and should see more folks trying their luck
on casino games. Sounds like something to check out.
er readers, stay glued to Media
Man for more "can't miss" news on Australian
pokies and gambling wars.
Pacific Mega Gambling News Update, by Greg Tingle
- 9th April 2011
NSW War Pokie Laws...
poker machine restrictions proposed by Tasmanian independent
Andrew Wilkie will "annihilate" pubs and
clubs in the Hunter, leaving hundreds out of work,
ClubsNSW Newcastle councillor Jon Chin says. Clubs
Australia is launching a $20 million advertising campaign
on Monday in an attempt to prevent the introduction
of mandatory pre-commitment technology for all poker
machines. Banjo, a John "Singo" Singleton
company is behind the campaign. Mandatory pre-commitment
requires pokies users to commit to a spending limit
before they begin gambling. Once they reach that limit
they will be unable to gamble again until the following
day or longer, depending on what restrictions the
player sets for themselves. Chin said the cost of
implementing the new technology in the Hunter region
would surpass $100 million. This figure did not include
the 40% in revenue clubs would experience once the
restrictions were imposed, he said. "This means
Hunter clubs will lose another $100 million, making
it impossible for us to sustain our businesses,"
he said. Australian Hotels Association Hunter sub-branch
vice-president Bruce Woods said there was no evidence
to suggest the restrictions would discourage people
from gambling. "This won't help pathological
gamblers at all but it will lead to a loss of jobs,"
he said. "We support the clubs' campaign against
this, it will affect pubs just as much as clubs".
Gaming Strong Growth In Asia...
gaming industry has grown into a $US3 billion business
that provides a good standard of living to migrant
workers in Asia who play games all day and sometimes,
all night! Virtual currency is all the rage, it sometimes
gets sold to punters abroad for cash. A World Bank
study demonstrates an emerging industry in which firms
seeking to boost their brands' popularity pay low-skilled
workers overseas to become their Facebook fans or
Twitter followers. The study, Knowledge Map of the
Virtual Economy, is the World Bank's first in-depth
look at the impact of online gaming and social media
in the developing world. Vili Lehdonvirta, a co-author
of the report, advised that the bank should not pour
its money into the industry, because he said the deal
making violated some of the game publishers' terms
of service and was cheating. Known in the business
as "gold farming", the game-playing boomed
in the early 2000s with games like World of Warcraft
and has evolved considerably. Labourers in Asia spend
numerous hours each day advancing through levels of
an online game, picking up gold, swords and gems that
enhance a game player's status. Then gaming studios,
which employ the players, sell those virtual goods
to online retailers. Next step, the retailers sell
on those goods to more than 120 million players globally,
many of them in Europe and North America, who don't
want to play the games day and night to gather their
own. The bank's report indicates that online gaming
has a positive impact in Asia because 70% of the industry's
revenue remains in the gaming countries, with most
of that money going to the gaming studios. Compared
with the $US70 billion coffee market...in which only
a tiny fraction of the revenue remains in the bean-growing
countries...the gaming industry had a "much better
development impact", the report states. A report
survey checks out on a group of 26 players and studio
managers that offers a rough, yet rare demographic
look at their lives. Most of the players work out
of studios in China, in Beijing or Changsha, capital
of Hunan province. They earn an average wage of $US2.70
an hour, $US1 more than Beijing's minimum wage for
part-time factory work. "The larger point is
that online gaming is often viewed as exploitation,
Lehdonvirta said. "Certainly it's not a dream
career, but the players are not at sweatshop levels."
The gaming studios keep about 60% of the industry's
$US3 billion in revenue. Readers, would you like to
be a prize gather for the gaming studios on that level
of pay? Better not answer!
Casino Proposal Has Social Concerns For Kiwi, Samoan
these places have land based casinos - Las Vegas,
Monte Carlo, Macau, Melbourne and just maybe soon
- Apia in Samoa. Some business folks have earmarked
it as a future gambling destination, and Kiwi group,
the Problem Gambling Foundation of New Zealand, is
advising against it, citing social harms of a casino
will outweigh any economical benefits that the Samoan
government will hope to achieve. In an admission of
the dangers of gambling, the proposed casino in Apia
will attempt to bar locals by only allowing the holders
of foreign passports to gamble. Problem #1... many
locals have duplicate passports, so getting in to
a casino for locals may not be that hard, and don't
even bring up the subject of fake ID. Will the region
get a land based casino? Stay tuned for updates.
Australia War On Gillard Labor Government Re Pokie
Australia has declared "open warfare" on
the Gillard government, preparing a $20 million media
campaign to try to stop laws to limit how much punters
can spend on poker machines. Last year "Tasmanian
Devil" (MM satire) independent MP Andrew Wilkie
backed Labor to form a minority government in return
for a clampdown on the use of poker machines. Now,
the lobby that represents clubs and pubs is wrestling
and punching back, with a media blitz targeting Wilkie
and Prime Minister Julie Gillard. Both Wilkie and
Gillard are in big trouble in the popularity polls,
with Labor set to lose the next federal election,
following their NSW loss, where it was bloody and
crimson mass. Billboards, a website, beer coasters
and more It's war on nationwide. The campaign has
been criticised as misleading for claiming punters
will need a licence to gamble. Clubs Australia executive
director Anthony Ball rejects that. "What we
do know is that everyone who plays a poker machine
will need to register and obtain a card, and then
insert it into a poker machine and set a binding limit.
There needs to be player tracking, because how else
does the machine know what the player is doing? It
will have your private details and your gambling history
on it. Now if that's not a licence, I don't know what
is." Under Wilkie's master plan, gamblers would
have to nominate a dollar figure for how much they
are prepared to lose before they start gambling, a
scheme known as "mandatory pre-commitment".
Wilkie wants the law in place by 2014 and he has the
backing of South Australian independent Senator Nick
'Mr X' (MM satire) Xenophon. Senator Xenophon describes
the Clubs Australia campaign as a "joke".
"This industry is willing to spend $20 million
of tax-break money that they get from community clubs
- effectively taxpayers' monies, indirectly - to peddle
lies in terms of a campaign where they haven't even
seen what the final report will say. Whether it's
$20 million or $200 million, this mob can spend as
much as they like, but they can't spin that they are
causing enormous damage out in the community. There
are 300,000 Australians who either have a severe gambling
problem because of poker machines, or are already
showing the signs of one."
Pokie Laws With Cost 10,000's of Aussie Jobs...
Australia advise the changes will cost jobs. They
want it to be a voluntary scheme and have rejected
a government request to hold off on the ad war. "It
will cost jobs, for the simple reason that asking
Australians to sign on to this licence to gamble will
mean they'll do something else," Mr Ball said.
"They'll go and gamble online where none of these
controls exist, or they they'll go to the TAB - they
won't do it at the club.Even the proponent of this,
Andrew Wilkie, is saying that this will cost up to
40% of revenue."
It's all hot fodder in Aussie Parliament too. Liberal
Steve Ciobo sits on the joint committee on gambling
reform, which has been hearing arguments pro and con
against a mandatory pre-commitment scheme. "The
committee was charged by the Labor party with the
responsibility to look at a roll-out of pre-commitment,"
he said. "But Coalition members will be putting
in a dissenting report because the evidence is clear
that it's going to cost jobs, it's going to cost investment,
and I'm concerned based on the evidence that it will
make problem gambling potentially worse." The
committee is due to report in the next few weeks.
The states and territories have until the end of May
to decide if they will agree to the Wilkie-led reforms.
If they refuse, the Commonwealth believes it has the
power to introduce overriding legislation to impose
a national scheme. The pokie industry has shown the
willingness to wrestle all the way to the next election,
and perhaps even beyond. It's the lovers VS the haters.
Who will win, and when will the final victor emerge.
City Entertainment Group Stocks Fall From Sky...
City Entertainment Group, the casino and hotel operator,
fell 0.9% to $3.41 amid media reports that overseas
competitors were looking to hire the 500 staff made
redundant or on leave without pay due to the closure
of the Christchurch Casino. SkyCity owns a 50% stake
in the business.
Bouncer Thought Disabled Bloke Was Drunk...
South Australian man with deasiese cerebral palsy
says he was refused entry to the Adelaide Casino because
the bouncer thought he was drunk. Mark Thiele was
on a big night out with friends when he attempted
to enter the casino, but was refused by a bouncer
aka "gorilla". Thiele says the bouncer mistakenly
thought he was drunk, but the casino is sticking by
its decision. "I had said to the man that I wasn't
a drunk, I was crippled," said Thiele, talking
about his rejection on 7.30 South Australia. "He
had said to me he was convinced I was intoxicated
even though we said that I had only had a few drinks
earlier on in the evening. "So I can't see why
I was singled out and everybody else in my party wasn't.
There was no difference between any of us besides
the obvious. It's a mystery to me really." Last
month, he and his friends had walked to the casino
from the city's Hindley Street entertainment strip
a few blocks away. Thiele has trouble moving his body
and for him, walking distances is a big effort. His
mate Aaron Nettlebeck says the casino bouncer did
not understand. "Walking that sort of distance
does get very, very sweaty over that sort of short
period. It was a bit infuriating that it happened
like that after such a nice evening." Thiele
says he has not had a problem at venues until now.
"For the vast majority it's never been a problem.
Bouncers that I've come into contact with have been
understanding and even let me skip the line a few
times just to put me at ease," he said. "Obviously
it's a stamina thing that I can't walk these long
distances and stand in lines and all of these things."
He says he is considering lodging a complaint with
the commission or under South Australia's liquor laws.The
casino's general manager, David Christian, has offered
an apology of sorts. "It was certainly not our
intention that Mark would have felt discriminated
against and I'm sorry that he does feel that way,"
he said. But he is defending the actions of his staff.
"They believe that they made the right call.
I would believe that with the calibre we have and
the training we put into our security officers, and
the level of management that oversees it, that they
would be right most of the time."
Zealand Christchurch Casino Workers Hurting From Earthquake
and emotional aftershocks are still be felt by the
casino sector after a series of earthquakes that rocked
the Asia Pacific - Japan and New Zealand region. Christchurch
Casino workers are feeling disappointed and even depressed
after having failed attempt to get a bigger redundancy
payday.In excess of 500 formally happy and motivated
casino employees were offered redundancy at the central
Christchurch casino last weekend, which was badly
damaged in the February 22 quake and has stayed closed
ever since the act of mother nature. Anyone who wants
to stay at the casino will be paid their holiday pay
as either a weekly amount or in a "lump sum".
Simply put, they will remain as employees of the land
based casino on leave without pay until the the gambling
den opens again. The SFWU (Service and Food Workers'
Union), which reps for 100 plus casino workers, has
a meeting with the casino's managers on Thursday.
SFWU strategic industry boss Len 'Razor' (MM tag)
Richards said workers were sombre but firm in their
desire about securing a more attractive redundancy
package. The union power that be were also asking
for continued pay for employees that choose to stay
on until the casino opens again. However, he advised
management was not prepared to increase the amount
of redundancy pay for staff, but did agree to request
for a government wage subsidy. Due to a private insurance
deal and policy in place, the land based casino has
not relied upon the $1.5 million government subsidy
available for quake-affected businesses. Richards
stated that the union has contacted earthquake recovery
minister Gerry Brownlee to request assistance to help
pay workers who remain employed. SkyCity, half owner
of the famous Christchurch Casino, has projected a
$130 million plus profit this year. It's not known
how much financially the quake cost Christchurch Casino
or SkyCity. Christchurch Casino top sheep er top dog...chief
executive Brett 'Ask Him' (MM satire) Anderson said
about 70% of employees have indicated they will stay
with the company rather than take the offered redundancy.
He said a number of employees are also being offered
jobs offshore. Anderson elaborated "I'm getting
phone calls from Australia looking for our people
and likewise all over New Zealand, and a few of them
have spread their wings. More than a few have gone
over to the Gold Coast. It's a lot warmer, it's a
lot more stable, you can swim in the sea, the pay
rates are better." Anderson said he still does
not know when the casino will reopen.Employees have
a deadline until Monday to decide whether they will
take the redundancy package or stay on. Yep, it's
the money or the box. Workers who have not contacted
the company by showdown at 5pm on Monday will be deemed
to have left their jobs and will be paid out a four-weeks-notice
payment, along with their annual leave entitlements.
Casino workers, did you get that. D Day is approaching.
Media Man spokesperson said "In the current global
economy anyone with a decent job should be grateful,
especially in the casino or gaming sector. Well done
to Christchurch Casino management for doing their
utmost to assist in their difficult times. Employers
will always want to ask for more... its in the nature.
Land based casinos generally remain popular around
the world so good staff will always be in demand."
Man and Gambling911 wish all parties well with their
dealings, and hopefully some win - win - wins will
still be possible.
Probe Sports Betting Ads...
states are uniting to consider a crackdown on an explosion
in advertising of sports betting, Victoria's Gaming
Minister says. Michael O'Brien last night revealed
the betting blitz on sport was being examined by the
Council of Australian Governments. "There is
growing concern at the extent to which is becoming
inseparable from the coverage of major sporting events.
Kids are being exposed to it constantly just by watching
the footy or cricket," he said.AFL chief executive
Andrew Demetriou said the league had expressed its
concerns to stadium managers. Goal posts, boundary
line fences and scoreboards at the MCG and Etihad
Stadium have been plastered with ads from bookmakers.
Demetriou said the alarm was raised during last year's
Brownlow Medal telecast. "There seemed to be
an enormous amount of (gambling) advertising after
each break," he told press. O'Brien said the
AFL, which enjoys lucrative sponsorship arrangements
with gambling giants, could take responsibility through
its media and stadium deals. "It may be that
there's an opportunity for this influence to be exercised
to ensure the promotion of sports betting isn't allowed
to detract from family-friendly objectives of (such)
sports," he said. This week, former Demon Daniel
Ward revealed in the the newspapers his battle with
gambling. "It's always in your face," he
said of the ads. "It's like being a drug addict
and an advert comes on saying, 'The first 50 people
to ring will get a free bag of marijuana'."
Former Ms Univervese Lookalike Kahili Blundell Wins
Ralph Swimwear Title At Star...
City Sydney babe Kahili Blundell has snatched the
Ralph Australian Swimwear Model of the Year comp.
The Crows Nest bikini super babe bested more than
2000 babes from all over Australia and Kiwi land to
grab the coveted title at Sin Sydney's Star City Casino
on Thurday. "I feel more than special right now,
I'm blown away and so honoured to be given this position,"
Blundell said. "I was expecting him to call another
number and I stood there thinking 27, is that me?
"It's also my boyfriend's birthday, but I realised
it was me and I was shivering." The 21-year-old
Jennifer Hawkins lookalike works as a personal assistant
and dabbles in makeup artistry in her spare time.
Blundell says modelling has been tough, slogging it
out for 3 years. "Since November I've been training
every week for this, thinking about it every night,"
she said. "I've been brought up to eat very healthy,
so I don't have too much trouble doing that, but I
definitely exercise a lot. I've been working very
hard so thank god it's all paid off." The comp
saw the 38 finalists strut their stuff in catwalk
parades. Sex bikinis were all the rage. A select group
of a bakers dozen were picked, then reigning champ
Emmi Moore handed over her sash and championship title
to Blundell. "I've been doing this for three
years now and this is exactly what I've been dreaming
and hoping for," Blundell said. "I'm open
to any opportunity and I love challenges. I've obviously
done well in the bikini field, so I might just continue
on this track for a little while." Burlesque
babe Sina King from Underbelly home Melbourne snatched
runner-up while second runner-up went to 21-year-old
writer - journo type Tiffany Baker from Fremantle
in Western Australia.
Boxer Katsidis To Fight Guerrero In MGM Grand Casino
Las Vegas Bloody Sunday...
under's Australia's Michael Katsidis and his opponent
in Sunday's (AEST) interim lightweight world-title
fight at Las Vegas' MGM Grand Casino, America's Robert
"The Ghost" Guerrero, also have powerful
stories. Guerrero's world was crushed big time circa
2007 when his wife, Casey, was diagnosed with leukemia.
The Californian gave up boxing, giving up his world-title,
so he could be by Casey's side and stay close to their
young children as she underwent a bone-marrow transplant.
Things are now looking up for Guerrero. "Casey
has been cancer free for almost a year now,"
28-year-old Guerrero, the number one ranked lightweight
in the world and a former featherweight and super
featherweight champion, said. Last year Katsidis'
was having a dream run. The likable 30-year-old blokefrom
Toowoomba celebrated his first wedding anniversary
with wife Kumiko. He loved being a dad to their one-year-old
daughter Kalia and was preparing for the biggest bout
of his career, a world-title fight in Las Vegas against
Mexican legend Juan Manuel Marquez. Things quickly
went downhill when five weeks before the Marquez fight
he learned his 31-year-old brother, champion Australian
jockey (horse racing) Stathi Katsidis, had passed
away. Just days later Katsidis' longtime trainer,
Brendon Smith, received two more bad news calls. Smith's
nephew got paralysed from the chest down in an accident
and one of the trainer's former boxers passed away.
"We got it all within three weeks and just before
the Marquez fight," Smith said. Katsidis and
Smith made the call to keep training at their Thai
boxing camp and take on Marquez at the MGM Grand Casino,
a match that would be voted the Fight of the Year
after Katsidis floored Marquez to the mat in the third
round. Marquez guts and balls by getting up and pounding
Katsidis so badly ref Kenny Bayless ended the match
in the ninth round, giving Marquez a ninth round technical
knockout victory. On the eve of the Guerrero fight,
Katsidis and Smith, who kept quite before the Marquez
bout, finally opened up about their personal tragedies.
Katsidis did not sleep two days before the Marquez
fight. "He was emotionally spent before he got
in the ring and to do what he did under the circumstances
was incredible," Smith said. "I believe
if something doesn't kill you it only makes you stronger,"
Katsidis said. Guerrero has 22 knockouts in his 27
professional victories. "This is truly a fight
for boxing fans," Guerrero, who has a 28 win
(18 KO), one loss professional record, said. "You
are going to see two guys go at it and give it their
all." The winner of the match will be named the
interim World Boxing Association and World Boxing
Organisation lightweight champions. Promoter 'Golden
Boy' Oscar De La Hoya has named the MGM card "Action
Heroes", with another Mexican legend, Erik Morales,
fighting Argentina's exciting welterweight contender
Marcos Maidana and in another welterweight battle,
Brooklyn's Paulie Malignaggi VS Jose Miguel Cotto.
The matches will be broadcast live in Australia on
Sunday from 11am AEST by Main Event pay-per-view.
"For a boxing card, sounds like it will be value
for money for a bit of a change", said a Media
Day Special, by Greg Tingle - 26th January 2011
and Happy Australia Day everyone. Ok, we know some
of you punters, journos, high rollers - casino whales,
entertainment news junkies, politicians, insiders,
outsiders and legal eagles are from across the globe
are not Australia, nor have ever been down under,
but you get the idea. Did you know that some indigenous
Australia's call Australia Day 'Invasion Day'! That's
because most history books show that Captain James
Cook and his crew invaded Australia on this day in
1988. They are known by a new names including the
First Fleet, while some aborigines will always think
of them and murderous mongrels, who stole their land
and pride. It's easy for many of us to get the point
of the blackfellas (affectionate). Media
Man and Gambling911
with a bush tucker bag full of Australian gambling,
casino, poker, media and sports news. Fair winds...
Banana Bender State: Pub Pokies And Online Pokies
Becoming More Popular?...
armed bandits are maintaining their popularity in
'The Sunshine State'. It's understand that punters
might have only a 1 in a million chance of winning
really big, lotto - millionaire style, but they just
keep coming back for more. Yep, throw another dime
in the pokie baby. Queenslanders "invested"
close to $2 billion last year as the punters passion
for the slots maintained its fever pace. The total
pokies expenditure of $1.81 billion was slightly down
on the previous year, it was the third year consecutively
the number exceeded $1.8 billion. We're also learned
that the 2008 figure of $1.83 billion was an all-time
record. Now, this is important - those numbers Do
Not take into account the rabid take up and roll our
of online poker or sports betting. You know, betting
over the global medium - the internet. Overall, Queenslanders
spent $7 million less on pokies than last year and
$28 million less than in 2008, but it still works
out at in excess of $150 million every month down
the slots August was the year's biggest month for
slot gamblers, who put close to $170 million in the
throats of the one armed bandits. August was also
the biggest month for gamblers in 2008, with more
than $173 million lost. Pokies remain by far the most
popular games for punters in Australia, bringing in
most of the estimated $17 billion spent on all forms
of gambling down under each year. Some insiders think
that the reduction in official spending was more a
sign of the increased popularity of internet and sports-based
gambling. Concentrating on pokie figures, it appears
Queenslanders gambled more at the height of the global
financial crisis two years ago than they did throughout
'Devil' Gambling Tycoon Devilish Quotes...
Walsh from Tasmania was such a big hit with the readership
we thought we would dig up a few more of the red hot
'The Devil's' quotes, that are too good not to share.
First a refresher...Art and gambling do mix, at least
that's the experience of Brits Damian Aspinall, Phil
'Tuffers' Tufnell, Australian artist Gina Sinozich,
(bodypaint and burlesque "fetish") and Tasmanian
gambling whale - tycoon, David 'Wicked' (satire) Walsh.
You will pick up on Dave's affectionate nickname by
us later. We like you David, ok mate. Tasmania's most
famous or infamous gambling figure, millionaire, David
Walsh yesterday gave us a peak into his art exhibit...the
biggest (and weirdest) private art gallery in Tasmania,
if not the Asia Pacific. The $110 million Museum of
Old and New Art is nestled on the banks of Hobart's
By The Tasmanian Devil!...
the art, let's rock'n'roll."
think formal curation is a form of mental masturbation."
not really that interested in a bunch of big names.
Most of the works are by people most people haven't
heard of and still won't have heard of because there's
no wall labels."
don't want to lose control (or) something that ends
up looking like a pale version of the National Gallery
see reception if you are planning a pool party or
a ritualistic orgy."
the opportunity to mess with your head. I like the
idea of people having a couple of beers and looking
at the art, having a couple more and changing their
a privileged guy with a megaphone"
like a rich mans soap box. Im standing
on my soapbox and Im shouting my views like
they mean something."
take all the popular stuff out. And if you go to the
toilet two or three times well recommend a good
brother once said about me that Id rather be
outside a barrel pissing in than inside the barrel
pissing out. Im anti this idea that we know
what were doing with certainty. I kinda think
that most things that are good happen to people largely
by accident, but then they start looking for explanations.
You see the views of rich, successful people on television,
and they tell you why they got rich and successful;
they dont interview all the people who went
through the same process and didnt. I think
most things are complete crap. I want to show that
you can be fortunate without believing that your fortune
was anything other than fortune."
are so many things we do that we hide from. We hack
open cows and eat their guts but we compartmentalise
that away from our lives so we can pretend its
not happening. And on a larger, more important scale,
if each of us acted individually to say OK,
ed up the atmosphere, it is our personal
responsibility, humanity would behave in a very
of the things about having money is that
feel a bit of guilt and a level of privilege, and
it seems to be an obligation to do something, and
since art is what Ive been doing....but it wasnt
really like that. It was: I bought this small gallery,
bought a bigger one, and gradually it became something
of this scale. Its become a lot more serious
endeavour than I intended it to be. Theres a
bit of thumbing my nose at the establishment and trying
to bypass academia, but mainly I just wanted it to
be a bit of fun. And it is. And it will be."
gambling is all a computer thing that is going on
of Old and New Art
Cairns Reef Hotel Casino Poised To Raise Big Bucks
For Flood Relief On Australia Day...
let's all spare a thought for those who have been
attacked by the floods on Australia Day. Numerous
events are being planed around Australia, from 'Sound
Relief' to and initiative from the Cairns Reef Hotel
Casino 'Bring on the Sun' It will be one of the biggest
events on the Australia Day calendar for the city
and all funds raised will go to the Premiers
Flood Relief Appeal. There's a good old fashioned
sausage sizzle, competitions and female performers
including the Marlins cheer squad. "The
whole idea is slanted towards the female performer,"
entertainment manager Bruce Stewart said. "Weve
got an eclectic blend of female artists coming to
perform as well." Cazalys, El Mundo Tapas Bar
and the Marlin Coast Bowls Club will also host events
to raise money for flood victims. Cairns Regional
Council will hold events across the region, including
the ever-popular celebrations on the Esplanade. Mayor
Val Schier said the council was expecting a good attendance
as usual with residents keen to get outside and celebrate
our sunburnt country in the green and gold. "Even
last year when it poured, a huge number of people
came to the Aussie breakfast; we expect the same will
happen this year, rain, hail or shine. It is one of
those days where people can come together as a community
and help celebrate why it is great to be an Australian.
We live in a fantastic country and it is good for
people to get out and enjoy it." Pubs and clubs
will also get into the Aussie spirit with a number
of activities on offer. Paradise Palms Resort and
Country Club has a patriotic, fun-filled day planned
with activities that pay homage to Australias
heritage such as the much-anticipated pie-eating competition.
"Everybody is welcome to come along and have
some fun while tucking into our Aussie selection of
meat pies, icy beers, lamingtons and classic Australian
music by DJ Danny from Millennium Sounds," director
of sales and marketing Darlene Holdsworth said.
Palms Resort and Country Club Australia Day celebrations
Whats on: Australian menu served from noon in
Restaurant 59, pie-eating and thong-throwing competitions
start at 1.30pm. Pies, icy beers, lamingtons and classic
Australian music on offer at the resort.
Time: 12pm. Entry free.
Bring on the Sun at Cairns Reef Hotel Casino
Whats on: Entertainment, sausage sizzle, raffles,
jumping castle and more with all proceeds going to
the Premiers Flood Relief Appeal.
Time: 2pm. Entry free.
Shane Warne And Poker Mates Get VIP Star Treatment
At Australian Open Tennis Sunday Night...
spinner got there at 8pm hoping to get star VIP treatment
for 14 of his closest mates. In the mix was was Joe
Hachem, who he had earlier caught up with at the launch
of the Aussie Millions Poker Tournament at Crown Casino.
Warne requested an escort (no, not that type silly)
when he arrived and posed mostly for photographs with
his sunglasses on. He also spent time in Andy Roddick's
player's box during his loss to Swissman Stanislas
Wawrinka. It been a big couple of days for "poker
her" for the legend, playing rendezvous with
Liz Hurley in LA. He is expected to play in the second
round of the poker tournament and could face off against
Gary Ablett Jr and Jeff Fenech tomorrow. Blett made
it through to the second round.
Australian Financial Review Goes Gaga For Lady Gaga;
Gets Facts Wrong (We Think)...
took us a few months of going through newspapers but
we finally found the AFR to make a slip up, and its
a doozy....An article reads "the complex will
have a few upmarket bars, including one on the roof,
and an events theatre to house live acts think
Lady Gaga as well as awards nights." With
Gaga's level of popularity she would require a much
larger venue than Star City. Earlier this year, she
- they played two concerts at the Sydney Entertainment
Centre, capacity 12,000 or thereabouts. Do the math.
Kylie Minogue To Do The Colosseum At Caesars Palace
Las Vegas: Aphrodite Live...
is down Kylie fans the word over. She's doing Ceasers
Sunday May 22, 2011 8pm
Melbourne: Aussie Joker Comedian Performs At Packer's
Crown; Raises Cash For Flood Relief...
folks at Crown Casino recently enjoyed 'The Jokers
Comedy That Rocks' at Crown Casino. James Packer's
casino donated all proceeds from last Friday nights
show to Queensland flood victims. Organiser William
Leitch has happy with the way things went and showcased
an evening with some of the citys top stand-up
artists, including Brad Oakes, Christine Basil and
Greg Fleet. It's understood he got close to 150 people
to come along, and he may be invited back on upcoming
Top 100 ASX Listed Companies Respond To Flood Cry
For Help; Gambling And Gaming Industry Steps Up; Mining
Firms and Banking Bastards Lead Charge...
BHP Billiton: $1.3 million (in addition, matching
CBA: $1.35 million
Westpac: $1 million
ANZ: $1 million
NAB: $1 million
News Corp: $500,000 and Blue Ribbon campaign
Rio Tinto: $1 million ($700,000 to Premier Relief,
$300,000 to Emerald community)
Wesfarmers: $7.5 million (plus $3.5 million from Coles
Telstra Corp: up to $1 million by matching staff contributions
(so far $338,000; is also supplying phones and free
calls to people affected)
Woolside Petroleum: $122,395 (corporate + employees)
Woolworths: $6.9 million (matching customer donations
in Woolies, Big W, Dick Smith dollar for dollar)
Fortescue Metals: Matching staff donations dollar
QBE Insurance: not releasing a statement
Origin energy: $1 million
Macquarie Group: $200,000 (combined staff and company
effort with fundraising activities continuing both
here and overseas)
AXA Asia Pacific: No response
Santos: $500,000 plus use of helicopters and vehicles
for clean up. Also $50,000 for flooding in WA
Coal and Allied Industries: (see Rio Tinto)
AMP: $250,000 + matching employee contributions to
WA flood appeal up to $250,000
Suncorp Group: $100,000 (staff and customers have
Foster's Group: $500,000
Brambles: No response
Leighton Holdings: No response
Orica: No response
Oil Search: No response
Stockland: Donated $250,000 to the Premier's flood
relief appeal, another $30,000 to the Mayoress Rockhampton
regional flood appeal and are matching employee donations
dollar for dollar
Coca. Cola Amatil: No response
Amcor: No response
Westfield Retail Trust: No response
IAG: No response
Crown: Donation tins in Crown complexes and have committed
to matching all donations as well as staff contributions
Tabcorp Holdings: $1 million
Tatts Group: Going to run a dedicated lottery for
the Queensland flood appeal where all profits will
go to the Premier's Flood Appeal. They ran the same
thing in Victoria after the Black Saturday bushfires.
It will run on Wednesday 2 Feb in Queensland and is
expected to raise $200,000. In addition, another donation
will be made from the unclaimed prizes fund of an
as. yet undecided amount
Fairfax Media: Matching staff donations
Seek: Reported it had made a donation to the Premier's
Flood Appeal but chose not to disclose how much
Flood Relief Money Gets Spend On Pokies, Vice - Piss
Up At Pubs...
been reported in a number of Queensland newspapers
that the $1000 flood relief grants that went to many
good folks in Granville are being used to feed slots
and buy piss (beer) rather than food and necessities.
Two Maryborough publicans say that in some instances
the answer to that is yes, and they are disgusted.
One of the publicans was so incensed by the misuse
of flood relief money she telephoned Fairfax Media
to complain. "A man came in bragging about how
hed got the $1000 payout because he told Centrelink
he was stuck in Granville but he was here the
whole time. It makes me sick that people are openly
admitting theyve got the money for nothing,
while there are people whove died or lost everything."
She said Centrelink should have screened the applications
more carefully to make sure only people who were genuinely
in need received the cash. Another pub owner said
his one armed bandits had not stopped buzzing since
the grants became available. "We were quiet during
the actual floods but this weeks been totally
different. The pokies and the bottle shop have been
going non-stop." Yeah, Aussie continue to love
a punt, rain, hail, shine or flood!
Millions Game 8 Results...
London based chap took down the $1,100 8 game mixed
event title at Crown Casino in Melbourne adding AUD$23,800
to his almost $1.2 million in career tournament earnings.
He entered the final table as the short stack, but
managed to grind his way to victory and nudge away
Australia's Bruno Portaro for the victory. The event
marked Ashby's 8th final table appearance at the Aussie
Millions that includes a side-event win back in 2005
and a seventh-place finish in the main event in 2009.
Ashby also won his first WSOP bracelet this summer
in the $1,500 7 Card Stud event and went well in the
$10k H.O.R.S.E. for his biggest career score of $378,027.
The 2011 Aussie Millions $1,100 8-Game Mixed event
drew 68-players and paid the final 7.
are the results:
1 Richard Ashby AUD$23,800
2 Bruno Portaro AUD$16,320
3 Casey Kastle AUD$10,880
4 Daniel Ospina AUD$6,800
5 Oliver Gill AUD$4,760
6 Dane Coltman AUD$3,400
7 Paul Ravesi AUD$2,040
Main Event Day 1b: PartyPoker And Full Tilt Poker
Players Feel The Pain...
and Full Tilt Poker's powers that be likely won't
be celebrating. Ok, they got news coverage and exposure,
but its because their players are out. Yep, history
maties. Full Tilt went well on Day 1a but Day 1b was
rooted. Many of the big name pros went down for the
count as locals stepped up. 209 players entered the
Crown Poker room but after 7 levels of play, 80 remained.
David Oppenheim, Annette Obrestad, Carlos Mortensen,
David Benyamine, Andrew Feldman, Steve Yea, Andy Bloch
and Gus Hansen were some of the Full Tilt players
who died. Other casualties included Luke Santo, Raj
Ramakrishnan, George Moussa, Michael Pedley, Graeme
Putt, Martin Comer, Dennis Huntly, Jamie Pickering,
Bruno Portaro, Casey Kastle, Ben Savage and Tim Marsters.
2005 World Champion Joe Hachem (tweeting he struggled
with jetlag following a recent trip to the PokerStars
Caribbean Adventure.) Defending champ, 2010 Aussie
Millions Main Event winner Tyron Krost (PartyGaming's
pro went down too). A new champ will be crowned in
2011 with plenty of Aussies still in contention. The
field kicked off with Jeff Rossier in the lead with
154,900, closely followed by Michael Ottobra (143,400)
and Martin Drewe, After winning the Opening Event
last week and going deep in another event, Drewe is
now set in the chip leaders in the Main Event after
getting to 136,100. Jay SEABEAST Kinkade
did nicely with 128,700, Haibo Chu (113,900), Manny
Stavropoulos (85,600), Sorel Mizzi (74,400), Michael
Egan (61,100), Kent Hunter (56,400), Jeff Lisandro
(55,000), Eric Assadourian (50,300), Scott Montgomery
(49,200), Chris Ferguson (45,400), Lee Nelson (30,200),
Neil Channing (28,800), Roland de Wolfe (26,100),
Aleks Brkovic (24,600), Jackie Glazier (21,900), Grant
Levy (18,300), Gary Benson (10,500) and Mel Judah
(7,200) amongst those who will return on Day 2. The
3rd and final flight of the 2011 Aussie Millions Main
will commence Tuesday with another strong field and
a few big names expected. Even Van Marcus will front
up. Van, is your Red Ferrari safe this time mate?
We're looking for more good fodder to write about.
How about do a publicity stunt and make world wide
headlines ago. Maybe someone at Crown Casino - Crown
Limited might be open to it. Stanger things have happened...
like Ferrari's getting stolen on site, casino fights
and a man getting stuck in the Crown Casino kitchen
Millions Event #9 Day 1b: Rossiter In Front...
was down to business with players investing AUD$10,600
to buy in all with the goal of becoming the 2011 Aussie
Millions Champion. 7 seven levels of play, and the
209-player field went to 80. Jeff Rossiter is in front
with 154,900. Martin Drewe, 2011 Aussie Millions Event
#1 winner with 136,100 - now 3rd on the leaderboard.
Australian Jay Kinkade is on 128,700, and European
Poker Tour mainstay Jeff Sarwer sits 5th with 120,500.
Randy "nanonoko" Lew has 110,000 and Gavin
Griffin 101,700 in 9th ninth and 10th place. Sorel
Mizzi, Jeffrey Lisandro, Eric Assadourian, Team Full
Tilt's Chris Ferguson, Full Tilt Poker Red Pros Scott
Montgomery and Roland de Wolfe, Neil Channing, and
Lee Nelson have also all made it to Wednesday's Day
2, but it was touch and go for some of them, testing
the skill VS luck debate. Full Tilt Poker $25,000
Shootout Invitational winner David Oppenheim, Annette
Obrestad, Carlos Mortensen, Andy Bloch, David Benyamine,
Andrew Feldman, Gus Hansen, Joe Hachem, and David
Steicke all had to say goodnight nurse. PartyGaming's
Tyron Krost was eliminated in a hand VS Gavin Griffin
where his Ace-Queen couldn't best Griffin's Aces.
The 3rd and final Day 1 flight commences Tuesday in
Melbourne, Australia at 12:30 p.m. local time.
board of poker yet? If so, try your luck er skill
at Baccarat or Craps. If your more into luck, check
out the slots like Cleopatra, Sinatra, Rambo, Goanna
Gold and The Terminator. Rumour goes PartyGaming
also have, or will soon get, a World
Poker Tour themed online slot game. We recommend
punters open an account with PartyCasino,
Poker Tour, just to have all based covered. Party
appears to still be the most popular online casino
brand in Australia despite big efforts by the likes
of 888. Marvel
slot games are forecast to be some of the most
popular of this year with Captain
America and Thor
tipped to hit Australia cinema's this year, with Spider-Man
also getting a remake. Whatever your casino game of
choice, good luck, and let us know how you go guys
and girls. Spin to win.
the time to research and learn games before placing
News Media and Gambling911
are website portals. Not casinos as such, however
are recognised as world leading websites that cover
the sector and act as central points to games, news,
reviews and more.
er, punters, how did you like our report? Tell us
in the forum.
you have a bet, please bet with your head, not over
it, and for God's sake, have fun.
Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911
Man is primarily a media, publicity and internet
portal development company. Gaming is just one of
a dozen sectors covered
VIP's - Spoil Yourself With As Many Presents As You
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gives his own guide to satellites. PartyPoker.com
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accepts players mainly from Europe. No U.S players
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players - profile
accepts players from most parts of the world. Mainly
sports betting - profile
accepts players from most parts of the world - profile
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gaming companies in for huge 2011, by Greg Tingle
- 23rd November 2010
online gaming firms be in the mix of the top stockmarket
investments to make in 2011?
listing of Betfair (BET) at the conclusion of October
on a fancy multiple and the $3.3 billion megamerger
between PartyGaming and Bwin (PRTY), due to complete
in the first quarter of 2011, appears to have added
spark to the industry of late.
there is the prospect, albeit slight, of the liberalisation
of the US igaming market which has put the industry
firmly on investors' watch list, including ours, for
is understandable, as even a snapshot look at the
stockmarket gains of the worlds biggest online
gaming companies between circa 2004-2006 reveals just
how quickly fortunes were made and lost.
iGaming Global Top 30 Index, an index of the stockmarket
performance of the biggest 30 online gaming companies,
surged 40% between July 2004 and August 2005. This
was followed by 12 months of extreme volatility before
sinking thanks to a controversial piece of legislation
in the US.
2006, online gamings real story has been dominated
by Americas Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement
multibillion-pound global industry virtually collapsed
in a heap after its biggest market - the US - was
closed down overnight when Congress introduced a surprise
clause to legislation in September 2006, in effect
making internet betting illegal. Not only was that
a blow for investors - it was a hugely expensive one.
companies were among the biggest casualties.
soon as the London Stock Exchange opened the following
Monday morning, shares in PartyGaming - then a FTSE
100 member - dived by 58%, while rivals 888 Holdings
(888) and Sportingbet saw their shares slide by 26%
and 64% respectively, wiping an estimated £4
billion off the sector's value.
companies were forced to focus on opportunities in
other parts of the world, but the businesses have
never fully recovered from the impact of losing their
most lucrative market. Last year, online gambling
was worth an estimated $5.4 billion (£3.5 billion)
overall, a figure that could rise to $12-$16 billion
if the market was opened up, analysts say.
the recent loss of a sympathetic Democrat majority
in Congress last month, there is renewed hope of floated
gambling companies being dealt a good hand on both
sides of the Pond.
new Republican chairman of the House financial services
committee is likely to be an old-style Alabaman named
he is likely to listen to the prospects of a reinvigorated
gambling sector for the ailing US economy. The Federal
governments non-partisan accountants, the Joint
Committee on Taxation, have estimated online gambling
could generate between $10 billion and $42 billion
in new revenue by 2019, depending on the number of
states that opt into a federal regulatory programme.
he is likely to listen to the prospects of a reinvigorated
gambling sector for the ailing US economy.
Federal governments non-partisan accountants,
the Joint Committee on Taxation, have estimated online
gambling could generate between $10 billion and $42
billion in new revenue by 2019, depending on the number
of states that opt into a Federal regulatory programme.
you can see why if you glance at the forecast numbers.
the US nationwide unemployment rate at 10%, 48 of
50 states facing budget shortfalls and a Federal deficit
approaching $1.3 trillion, the economic backdrop against
which to promote regulation and taxation of internet
gambling has arguably never been more favourable.
those companies poised to get a real boost should
America legalise online gambling, such as the impressive
PartyGaming/Bwin combine, are getting excited about
are seeing things from a legislative perspective that
are quite exciting for us," says Jim Ryan, chief
executive of PartyGaming, whose comments undoubtedly
reflect the mood of a growing contingent of gambling
operators on both sides of the Atlantic.
has been speculation that PartyGaming and Bwin have
decided to merge at this time precisely because they
will be better placed than any other operator to seize
a huge market share should the US decide to legalise
online gambling. You only have to look at the market
share that Party was able to capture by becoming one
of the first operators into the online poker market
back in 2001.
agree the enlarged company is in a strong position
to exploit the opening up of the US market.
a note to investors recently, the Morgan Stanley leisure
analyst Vaughan Lewis said: "The overall political
tide is moving firmly in favour of regulation, rather
its expertise... market-leading technology, strong
marketing capability and good brands, we think the
combined entity of PartyGaming and Bwin would be extremely
well positioned to benefit from any market opening
in the US. We include nothing in our forecasts for
the US, so any new market here is pure upside."
in a recent Barclays Capital research note, the investment
bank said: "In the event of Federal regulation,
we believe PartyGaming would be the likely key beneficiary.
this hypothetical scenario, we estimate the potential
[underlying profits] uplift could be 94% for PartyGaming
and 58% for Bwin and 888. On a state-by-state hypothetical
scenario, we estimate the uplift for the group would
be considerably lower, but still meaningful."
at the end of October analysts at Numis published
a note saying there is 50% upside potential at Party
when the merger with Bwin completes in March 2011.
With the shares trading at around 230p at the beginning
of November Numis have put a price target of 400p
on the stock.
PartyGaming/Bwin merger has got the other big companies
in the sector scurrying around to do similar deals.
They don't want to be left behind in what will become
a gold rush should the US legalise online gaming.
and Sportingbet are also possible future takeover
targets as the industry consolidates, but only once
their legal liabilities in the US market are cleared.
Serious negotiations in the PartyGaming/Bwin merger
were only concluded once Party had secured a $105
million settlement with US authorities.
say a resolution would clear the way for 888 and Sportingbet
to re-enter the lucrative US market should moves to
overturn the 2006 legislation succeed.
has already acted telling shareholders at its latest
results meeting that it had made a £22.8 million
settlement with the US Department of Justice over
an investigation into illegal internet gambling. The
agreement means the firm will avoid being prosecuted
in the US for accepting online bets made by Americans
between 1998 and 2006.
would hold the most appeal to potential bidders, analysts
reckon, pointing to its very strong market positioning
in Australia and commenting that Ladbrokes (LAD) and
William Hill (WMH) could be interested in a takeover.
Capital analyst Richard Taylor recently highlighted
the strength of Sportingbets sports betting
business, which he said had one of the best gross
margins in the sector at around 10%. In addition,
he said Sportingbets management was open to
a bid, having previously stated up to 55% of their
cost base could be removed.
former giant of the sector, now somewhat depleted
thanks to the UIGEA, is 888.
say 888's attraction would be the potential for cost
savings in a tie-up with a rival online gaming operator,
and that Party/Bwin might be a possible buyer. What
would make it attractive is that both Party and Bwin
use 888 as a supplier.
the Shaked family who founded the company, and who
control over 50% of the shares, would be looking for
a price significantly above the 40p at which the company
have been whispers among London traders in the last
few weeks that a £262 million, or 76p a share,
cash bid from a much bigger industry player, possibly
US entertainment giant Harrah's, which already has
close business links with 888 could be on the cards.
888 chief executive Gigi Levy has said recently that
he looks at consolidation as one of the possible routes
to realising shareholder value.
giant of the industry looking to become bigger still
is the mighty Betfair. Having listed on the LSE at
the end of October at 1,300p, the shares soon touched
1,600p-plus, as tracker funds piled in confident it
will canter into the FTSE 250 index at the December
review with a market value above £1.6 billion.
things are hotting up at the Federal level for the
online gaming industry there are also some exciting
developments at state level.
far in 2010, four states have considered whether or
not to legalise some combination of online poker,
casino gaming and sports betting: Iowa, Florida, California
and New Jersey.
state making most headway is New Jersey, where internet
gambling has been under consideration by lawmakers
since 2001. It is finally receiving serious consideration
in the state Senate where two bills, which would legalise
internet sports betting and casino gaming respectively,
have already passed the committee stage this year.
California to New Jersey to Florida, more state and
federal congressmen are taking the reality of a legal
online gambling regime a lot more seriously.
wins the race, state or federal, one thing is clear:
more and more stakeholders in the US are finally coming
around to understand the risks and implication of
a do nothing strategy. This is an opportunity
cost and gambling companies are getting their bets
ongoing political deadlock clearly poses a real threat
to regulatory efforts at all levels of American government.
But even as gambling industry stakeholders duke it
out in the halls of legislatures around the country,
as well as on Capitol Hill in Washington, the very
fact that the conflict between them is intensifying
signals that interest and investment in pushing for
online gaming regulation is rising.
billions of dollars out there to harvest and market
share to win, the entire online gaming sector looks
ripe for an upturn in coming months. Investing in
online gaming companies has always been a white knuckle
ride - and there looks to be every sign this particular
circus is once again rolling back into town.
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betting firm bwin announces merger with PartyGaming
- 30th July 2010
online betting company bwin announced Thursday it
had signed a merger agreement with British rival PartyGaming.
move, giving bwin a 51.6-percent stake in the new
group compared to 48.4 percent for PartyGaming, will
become effective in the first quarter of 2011, the
Austria Press Agency reported.
business combination makes great strategic, operational
and financial sense," bwin chief executive Norbert
Teufelberger said in a statement.
will be in pole position to capitalise on the wealth
of opportunities that will flow from the continued
evolution and expansion of the global online gaming
industry," he added.
chief executive Jim Ryan echoed that sentiment, saying:
"The enlarged group will have a winning formula
to exploit the growing online gaming market, supported
by a strong balance sheet, significant cashflow generation
and a highly experienced management team."
two men will become co-chief executives of the new
company, which will have its seat in Gibraltar and
be listed on the London Stock Exchange.
bwin will be delisted from the Vienna Stock Exchange.
new group will be the largest listed online gaming
late trade Thursday, bwin shares were up 20.35 percent
to 42.88 euros in Vienna and PartyGaming gained 19.49
percent to 307.1 pounds in London. (Credit:
Gaming Count Down, by Greg Tingle - 28th May 2010
Bransons next major project is entitled Virgin
details are not yet available, however Media Man has
it on good advise that this is going to be one of
the biggest things to come out of Virgin and Virgin
Games for the next decade or so!
himself will be launching the product - service in
LA on the 15th June.
world awaits Virgin Gaming loosing its Virginity.
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Internet Betting Laws
may seem difficult but it is important that all citizens
across the world stay updated with Internet Betting
laws. Below you will find what we understand as the
laws to online betting in certain areas of the world.
Internet Betting Laws
The United States of America has the most ambiguous
online casino laws in the world. They have passed
laws to ban banks from allowing transactions that
are deemed illegal, but no one has any idea what the
United States considers legal or illegal. Currently,
all US citizens are advised to check with local laws
before gambling online. Even the online casinos aren't
sure if you should be allowed to bet at their site.
Some companies don't allow US players, others allow
some US players, and some could care less where a
player is from.
Internet Casino Laws
The UK is the first major country to completely legalize
and regulate online gambling. The Gambling Act of
2005 was passed while Prime Minister Tony Blair was
in office. Blair had a flair for expanding gambling,
but when Gordon Brown took over as Prime Minister
in the UK he provided a tax structure that was so
high that most online casino companies were not urged
to relocate to England. Today, all web branded casinos
that are in a UK approved jurisdiction are legal for
UK citizens to play at.
Online Betting Laws
As the world gets deeper into the 21st century and
the Internet becomes a more common cultural tool more
and more countries are realizing the reality that
is Internet gambling. Currently, Spain, Italy, Germany
and other countries have moved to legalize and regulate
the industry, while few still look to protect their
homeland gaming monopolies. It is extremely important
to check all local, state, and federal laws before
participating in any online gambling activities.