Effective May 1, 2017 the Canadian Gaming Association’s Board of Directors has a new addition and her name is Juliet A. Lim. She is the current Executive Vice President and Payments Business Leader of Everi Holdings Inc., one of the leading providers of gaming products and payment solutions in the casino and gambling field.
Juliet A. Lim has an extensive experience in Everi Holdings Inc. as Executive Vice President and Payments Business Leader, and ever since March 2014 she has been member of the company. This has given her the opportunity to get to know the field in depth and establish herself as a recognizable name. This milestone in her professional career proves to be an important one and it comes at a time, when Everi is making an effort to expand and diversify its brand. With this professional collaboration with the Canadian Gaming Association, Everi aims to become more distinguishable and better comprehended by the public and the Canadian citizen.
In response to the rapidly developing gaming industry in Canada and worldwide, the Spring Valley, Nevada based company aims to provide a comprehensive variety of payment solutions to the public. Founded in 1998 by the merger of two well-known in the casino industry companies – Global Cash Access, Inc and Multimedia Games, Inc, Everi has been processing cash access transactions ever since. The company has devoted its time and manages to provide video and mechanical reel gaming content and technology solutions, integrated gaming payments solutions and compliance and efficiency software.
The company is planning to further consolidate its position in Canada’s gaming industry by taking part in the annual Canadian Gaming Summit, a conference of utmost importance for every gaming professional. This year it is scheduled to be held on the 20th and 21st of June, on the premises of the Vancouver Convention Centre, located in Vancouver, British Columbia. This year’s theme of the conference is called with the self-explanatory name “Rapid Pace of Change”. It comes as a reflection of the dynamic development of the gaming industry and in unison with the newest developments happening in the field.
Most of the leading providers of gaming solutions will be part of the trade show floor of the Canadian Gaming Summit, exhibiting their award-winning brands. Everi’s display will be located at Booth #202 and the company will present its TournEvent® slot tournament solution, which is an eye-catching system which allows a quick access to the in-revenue gaming and out-of-revenue mode, as well as games such as the Tower 370™ premium top box, HIGH RISE® series games, and games for the PLATINUM MPX® cabinet.
Stanley Ho is about to give his daughter the reins of his legendary Shun Tak Holdings Ltd. after his work on it for the last more than four decades. Pansy Ho will be in charge of the Hong Kong conglomerate, as his father has stepped down from his Chairman position and is also no longer a director or officer at the company.
From now on the 95-year-old tycoon is going to be a Chairman Emeritus, which is a designation which is often given as a reward and a sign of appreciation to retired founders or corporative visionaries, who have done a lot or their company and brought it to new heights. The organization owns businesses in property, shipping, hospitality, and investment. After the stroke he suffered in 2009, he began gradually decentralizing his company and giving family members the opportunity to manage it.
Stanley Ho is Macau’s wealthiest man and one of the richest in Asia. His net worth is US$2 billion, which makes him the 13th wealthiest man in Hong Kong. He has four wives and sixteen children some of which are in the gambling industry as well. Being the head of one of the most profitable businesses through SJM Holdings, Ho is considered one of the main reasons why Macau is the gambling hub ti is now. He helped the then developing peninsula to become Asia’s biggest gambling location, attracting enthusiasts from all around the world. By monopolizing gaming on a local level, he acquired ownership of more than 50 percent of the territory’s economy, which truly made him “The King of Macau” as he is unofficially known.
One of his daughters, Pansy Ho was the Managing Director of Shun Tak Holdings, until recently. Her new position as the Executive Chairman is no surprise to anyone since she already has shown her managing potential in the company. She has two sisters working in the company – Daisy Ho is Deputy Managing Director and Maisy Ho is currently Executive Director of the corporation. Their father’s investments cover the territories of Mozambique, East Timor, the Philippines, China, Indonesia, North Korea, Portugal, and Vietnam.
Apart from being the new Executive Chairman, Pansy is also a director of Shun Tak Shipping Company Ltd., Renita Investment Ltd., Oakmount Holdings Ltd., and a couple more companies. In 2015 she has also been given the Justice of the Peace title by the government of Macau and she has a bachelor’s degree in marketing and international business management from the University of Santa Clara, US. For her role as a director of Shun Tak Holdings, Pansy Ho is going to receive annual fees of HK$ 50,000 (US$ 6,411 million) as well as an additional HK$ 60,000 (US$ 7,693 million) for being in the position of director of a subsidiary.
Many sports federations warned that the recently-introduced by President Uhuru Kenyatta legislation, aiming to double up taxation on betting companies to 35%, may damage the betting industry in Kenya, vexing operators to leave the local gaming market and never look back again.
A number of organizations and federations, which are operating under the patronage of different betting firms raised concerns that the President’s proposal to raise the tax rate may damage the betting industry in Kenya. The federations urged lawmakers to rethink the overall situation, before taking any decision. President Uhuru Kenyatta came up with that proposal in June, declining the lawmakers’ advice to keep the former 15% tax. Mr. Kenyatta’s decision triggered a great reluctance by the betting companies.
It was explained that by doubling up the taxes, Mr. Kenyatta is trying to bridge some gaps in the budget. But this may produce exactly the opposite effect, as many operators started to consider exiting the Kenyan market. According to a recent research, conducted by Trends and Insights for Africa (TIFA), the majority of the nationals (around 60%) oppose the newly introduced Law.
The results from the research also showed that 22% voted in favor of the new Law, outlining the risk of social ills and gambling problems as the reasons for their stance. Most of the people, who supported the implementation of the Law are above 45 years old.
In an exclusive interview with Capital Sports, Kenyan Premier League Chief Executive Officer Jack Oguda explained that the new taxation will decrease betting companies’ investment in sports, which will increase the unemployment rate, as many young people are engaged in the sports sector. Currently, betting firms financially support the sports development in Kenya, as it witnessed a significant decline over the past years. SportPesa’s representatives, a betting firm which invests heavily in Kenyan sports, commented that supposing that the new Law comes into effect, they will reconsider the company’s expenses.
The betting companies are the main sponsors of the Football Kenya Federation, Kenyan Premier League, Kenya Rugby Union, the Boxing Association of Kenya, the Extreme Sports Super Eight League as well as Gor Mahia, AFC Leopards, Nakuru All Stars and Kenya Harlequins Rugby Club. The new Kenyan Law may lead to the exodus of betting companies and leave the sports entities with a threadbare budget.
The proposal unleashed a wave of lobbying over the tax increase, aiming to convince authorities that the implementation of the new Law threatens the development of the local sports, as well as the current 15% revenues, which the government secures from the betting operators.
The MPs should take the matters in hands, as they will take the final decision to implement the new Law or retain the old taxation system.
The new Kansas Crossing casino in Pittsburg, which managed to win over two other bids for a casino in Southeast Kansas and opened at the end of March this year, reported that its revenues cannot reach the projected monthly peak of $3 million, but the officials’ comments on the matter were permeated with optimism.
Revenues slide at Kansas Crossing casino in Pittsburg, but the officials still think that the glass is half full. Prior to the opening of the casino in the very late of March, financial specialists evaluated that the casino has the potential to reap as much as $3 million per month.
The reality seems to be a bit different as only a few months after the opening of the casino, it could not reach the projected amount. In a financial report, Kansas Crossing reported that for the 4 months of operation, the casino’s income is fluctuating between $2 million and $2.4 million per month. The numbers show that the casino did not achieve the projected success since its opening.
The revenue decline resulted in shrinking the casino staff with 10 people out of around 400 in total. Moreover, on Thursday, General Manager Doug Fisher officially announced that the casino is cutting also the operating hours of the table games, starting from 10 am until 2 am. He added that the main reason for the casino to chip away at hours is to meet the needs of players.
Keith Kocher, the director of gaming facilities with the Kansas Lottery explained that this is not a disturbing fact, as Kansas Crossing is not the only one, which is cutting the operational hours. Kocher pointed out that it is normal that the casino revenues plummet during the summer as most of their regular players are on holidays. The official also added that the tax revenues, which enters the state’s coffers are insignificant and the registered revenue decline will not affect the budget in any way, as it is relatively stable. It is interesting to note that the casino pays 22% of its income to the state’s government.
Daron Hall, Pittsburg City Manager commented that the additional revenues generated by the casino operations are savings for rainy days and the budget does not rely on the money.
There is also a silver lining in the cloud for Kansas Crossing, as with the coming of the fall, the regular players are expected to come back from their vacations and continue with their gambling pastime. The casino cut the number of its employees as well as the operating hours of the table games, aiming to shrink its expenses, but it should be mentioned that the revenue shortage is not that dramatic and has little, if no, impact on the casino itself.
The idea to turn only a handful of coins into a life-changing prize has enticed many people over the years to buy a lottery ticket and give it a try. Even the least money-focused has at least once tried their luck. Unfortunately, the chances to hit the jackpot appears to be not as high as we wished to be.
Nevertheless, hope dies last and that is the reason why such a great number of people buy the lottery tickets, waiting for the Powerball to “choose” their lucky numbers. What is more is that people get encouraged when they hear the enticing story of someone, who hit the jackpot.
Every country boasts the story of big jackpots and Canada is not an exception to the rule. The ones, who are interested in lottery most probably have heard the name of Zhe Wang, the woman who stroke the largest-ever lottery jackpot worth $64 million. The Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp. (OLG) reported that the lucky woman did not need to share the prize, as she was the only one to hold the winning ticket.
Ms. Wang pocketed the massive winning only by buying one single Lotto 6/ 49 ticket at a Petro-Canada station in Mississauga on 17th October 2015 for a top jackpot of $64million. This amount set a new record in the Canadian lottery history and it is still recognized as the biggest ever.
Two years earlier, and more precisely in April 2013, the largest jackpot at that time topped the impressive size of $63.4 million.
The third largest lottery jackpot was won by a group of workers in 2005. The amount, which they shared with each other was as high as $54.3 million.
It is interesting to note that Lotto 6/ 49 is one of the three lotteries in Canada, allowing players to choose 6 numbers out of 49 in total. Every Wednesday and Saturday the Interprovincial Lottery Corporation announce the winning numbers. The idea is to match all the 6 drawn numbers in order to strike the jackpot. In case that more people match all the winning 6 numbers, the jackpot is split between them. The players, who match at least 3 numbers also get a cash prize.
In 2004, the national lottery decided to increase the prices of the lottery tickets, which resulted in higher cash awards. Prior to the increase of the tickets’ prices, the biggest Lotto 6/ 49 jackpot was reported to be $26.4 million. After the reported jackpots, the national Canadian lotteries witnessed an increase in the number of tickets, which they sell.
PvPro Gaming announced that the international online gambling company Betway is to be the major sponsor of the ESG Tour, which is set to kick off on 7th September in the Greek island of Mykonos. The competition is to offer a massive prize of £200,000 for the winner, solidifying Betway’s reputation on the thriving eSports market. Under the sponsorship deal between PvPro and Betway, the latter is to offer live odds updates throughout the tournament and to be in charge of the naming rights to the ESG Tour.
The news for the Betway’s sponsorship did not surprise the gaming community, as earlier this year the operator has penned a partnership deal with the ESL Pro League 2017. By being the head sponsor of the upcoming ESG Tour, the operator aims to further increase the popularity of the eSports sector, as a currently developing market. According to the calculations of different market specialists, the eSports market will worth around $1.5 billion by 2020. Hence, it is not a surprise that there are so many operators, which are seeking to enter the enticing booming market. Betway is not an exception as the operator is always trying to expand its presence in the market by collaborating with various partners.
Betway is one the most well-known operators around the globe, holding two licenses issued by Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) and the Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission. In 2015 the operator has introduced its gaming site to the players for the first time, which eventually has become one of the world’s top 10. Over the years, Betway has established an immaculate reputation and proved its dedication to the development of the eSports sector. The operator is also among the founders of the ESports Integrity Coalition (ESIC). Betway’s greatest advantage is that it is already a renown brand on the gaming scene and it earned the trust of the players.
About the Tournament
It was reported that 8 of the world’s best teams, including Virtus Pro, BiG, Team Liquid, Team EnVyUs, SK Gaming, mouz and others, will participate in the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive competition for the top prize. The tournament is sponsored by PvPro and it will allow players to enter a specially designed platform to compete against each other. Earlier this year, the organizers of the tournament explained that what is most special for the event is that unlike all the rest, the ESG Tour is to take place only at luxurious resorts and unconventional places. What is more is that all the enthusiasts will be able to place bets on the outcome of the tournament.
Massachusetts came under the spotlight of the gambling scene with its 2 new gambling venues, and more precisely MGM Springfield (slated to open its doors in 2018) and Wynn Boston Harbor (scheduled to start operating in 2019). The local legislators projected that the 2 gambling venues can generate tens of millions dollars revenue income for the local coffers, securing a big cash injection to the local economy. At a hearing, which took place yesterday, the Springfield policymakers considered a number of proposals on how to budget the money wisely, investing in the local development.
On Tuesday, 19th September, the state Joint Committee on Economic Development held a hearing at Springfield Technical Community College in Springfield, with state Sen. Eric P. Lesser, D-Longmeadow, and state Rep. Joseph Wagner, D-Chicopee presiding over the panel. The main purpose of the meeting was to discuss the way in which the money generated from the gambling activities should be distributed.
Investment Proposals Summary
Among all the proposals, Richard K. Sullivan Jr., CEO of the Western Massachusetts Economic Development Council, suggested that certain amount of the money should be invested in the further development of the local Pioneer Valley as it is a popular year-round tourist destination and it can invigorate the local tourism sector. This, on the other hand, will also contribute to the city’s economic growth, reviving also the small- and medium-sized business.
The panel also paid attention to the social and economic challenges, which Massachusetts gateway cities (11 cities in the urban area of the state) are facing for years. It was suggested that a share of the revenues generated by the city’s gambling activities can be invested in regional economic development and business regulation. Yet another prospect, which the legislators discussed was the possibility to invest also in education and training of the labor force. The state Legislature will have the hard task to decide how the casino money will be spent when crafting the state budget for 2019 or 2020.
According to their agreement with the state, both casino operators are to pay 25% tax on their turnover per year. The state’s lawmakers already decided that 9.5% of that amount will be used to finance various programs, dedicated to supporting the local economic development. Mr. Sullivan forecast that tens of millions of dollars should enter the economic development purse.
State Rep. Bud L. Williams also recommended that a Western Massachusetts Balanced Sustainable Development Commission should be created. The main purpose of the suggested commission will be to bring together representatives from all sectors, which the legislators consider to financially support with the casino money. In that way, the directly involved parties can join forces with the lawmakers to develop comprehensive plans and programs for the further development of the different sectors.
Daily fantasy sports (DFS) has turned into a highly-controversial topic in America. Different states have taken a different approach to DFS. The fact that DFS industry has started to grow at a rapid pace made many states to reconsider their stance on the matter. In an attempt to bring additional wealth into the local economy, DFS legislations has appeared on the agenda in several states. It seems that DFS may soon become a regulated industry in Ohio after Ohio Senate voted in favor of a bill, that aims at regulating the provision of such services.
The legalization and regulation of DFS contests have been brought up for discussion some time ago by Reps. Jonathan Dever and Robert McColley. On Wednesday, the majority of Ohio Senate thumbed up the bill that is to authorize the provision of DFS contests by licensed operators such as the giants FanDuel and DraftKings. Currently, the bill is patiently sitting on Gov. John Kasich’s desk, waiting for his signature.
The bill met also opposition among the members of the Senate. A total of 4 officials voted against the bill. Sen. Bill Coley did not throw his support behind the bill, explaining that regulating DFS is to create favorable conditions for gambling-related problems among locals. As it can be recalled, Sen. Coley suggested imposing higher taxes on the DFS operators in order to fund addiction awareness campaigns. His proposal was rejected by the chamber, leaving the operators to pay only 0.26% commercial activity tax on business gross receipts. Sen. Coley argued that the state will not benefit in any way from the regulation of DFS.
Why the Bill Should be Enacted
The bill asserts that the outcome of the fantasy contests is dependent on the player’s knowledge and skills, but not on luck. This means that DFS contests do not qualify as gambling under the existing state’s laws. Supposing that Gov. Kasich signs the bill, the Ohio Casino Control Commission is to be tasked with overseeing the industry. The bill would ban college fantasy games and minors will be also not allowed to play.
Sen. David Burke announced that leaving such a rapidly growing industry unregulated is unacceptable as it is to siphon off money from the government and leave players’ interest unprotected. Optimists believe that Ohio is soon to join the other 16 states, which already regulated the provision of DFS. It was revealed that a great number of people are playing DFS contests, even though these have been held in an unregulated environment.
The development of events around Wynn Resorts and its leading positions is a hot topic for everyone in the industry, as there are new happenings every day. The most recent information which revolves around the company’s name came from its newly appointed Chief Executive Officer Matt Maddox who claimed that he has had no information regarding the sexual misconduct allegations against the former CEO of the company, Steve Wynn.
According to Mr. Maddox who became the new leading position on 6th February, there have been no information or reports in relation to the alleged accusations which were reported by employees of the company. It could be recalled that there have been reports about such misconduct happenings dating back to 2009 which became public at the beginning of February. What is concerning both investors in the company and gambling authorities is the fact that actions have not been taken since the first report. This confirmation that everything in the company has been alright coming from a leading position in the company perfectly aligns with the position supported by Steve Wynn himself.
He claimed that all accusations of sexual misconduct are false and nothing of the sort has happened in his company. Following Mr. Wynn’s resignation, it became clear that some of the shareholders in the company are going to sue the board of the international casino developer because they failed to look into the allegations before the scandal became public. The lawsuit filed in Clark County, Nevada, claimed, based on press reports, that “a board representative” was notified of Wynn’s alleged misconduct in 2009 by Wynn’s then-wife Elaine. There is the possibility that if measures had been taken back then, the current situation would not have been this harmful to the investors in the company as well as for Mr. Wynn himself
Future Development of the Company
Mr. Maddox has been on a leading position in the company since 2013. He might be able to take the company on a different path and introduce a more innovative way of management to the company. Analysts in the industry stated that Mr. Maddox is already well-acquainted with the operations of Wynn and will be able to sustain the policy. Since he has been close to the former CEO, he might attempt to continue the vision of the company’s founder. Mr. Maddox joined the casino developer back in 2002, so he is well into the operation of the company and its business strategies.
He pointed out that for the last four years the management of Wynn Resorts has been working on a smooth transition towards a succession plan, so the company is now prepared for the turn of events and the sudden resignation of its Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Maddox was the potential candidate for replacing Mr. Wynn and he deems himself able to continue the development of the brand and its future projects. In addition to that, the company is looking forward to improving the gender equality situation with the help of a new leadership initiative.
The Japanese government is planning to introduce very strict regulations to address problem gambling in a market where integrated casino resorts are about to open for the first time. The new proposal includes a system which would allow family members to ban problem gamblers from entering casinos or to limit their visits.
The coalition government led by the ruling Liberal Democratic Party is still discussing a plan to limit the harmful effects of gambling on people. The latest proposal says that Japanese nationals and foreigners who reside within the country would be able to apply for self-exclusion, while their family members would be able to limit their casino visits or ban them altogether if these individuals are gambling addicts or considered in risk, The Japan Times reported on Thursday. The proposal would be submitted to the Diet, sources in the government and the ruling bloc said on Wednesday.
Casino operators would be obliged to monitor the number and frequency of visits of their customers and to restrict their access if necessary. In addition, a maximum number of 10 casino visits per month would be allowed, while there would be an entry fee of ¥2,000. In order to track individuals’ visits to different casino resorts, authorities are proposing a rigorous identification process that may include not only checking visitors’ official government My Number identity cards (which have an embedded IC chip), but also certain biometrics. According to some sources, this would consist of an advanced facial recognition technology or even vein recognition.
The restrictions and the casino entry ban could be lifted provided the individual in question submits an official document that shows they have undergone counseling, The Japan Times added. If they are considered capable of gambling without the risk of addiction, they would be allowed within the premises. All these rules and restrictions are designed to cut the number of local gambling addicts and, therefore, would not apply to tourists.
Why the Government Tries to Restrict Residents from Entering Casinos
Under the Penal Code, gambling in Japan is prohibited apart from several exceptions made in separate laws. They permit horse racing, motorcycle and bicycle racing, and motorboat racing, while the popular pachinko machines are considered gaming, not gambling. The ban on casinos was lifted in Japan last year when new legislation allowed them as long as they are part of the so-called “integrated resorts”. These are large properties that combine hotels, convention centers, retail space and other entertainment facilities.
These integrated casino resorts are expected to boost inbound tourism numbers, contribute to the regional economic development, and bring in huge tax revenue. The development of casino resorts is viewed by the government and the ruling party as a key factor in making Japan competitive in the Asian market. At the same time, gambling addictions are deemed a serious issue and a threat to the public health. According to a 2017 government survey, 3.2 million people are estimated to have been addicted to gambling at some point in their life, with most of them believed to be addicted to pachinko.
This is why the coalition government is now planning a system that would prohibit certain individuals from entering casinos. Since foreign tourists need to be attracted to the casino resorts, the restrictions, identity checks and probably even the entry fee would apply only to Japanese nationals or foreigners who live in the country.