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Despite New York dragging its feet in legalising sports betting, casinos in the state are busily finding ways to improve their business.
One of these is Empire Resorts, which recently announced a “strategic alliance” with a subsidiary of global gambling giant Bet365. The alliance will see Bet365 partner with Empire Resorts and offer sports betting and online gambling for at least 20 years.
The deal is of a similar nature to many other signed by casino companies in the states, partnering with international platforms, who can help provide the infrastructure for a regulated sports betting and iGaming industry.
Empire Resorts runs the Resorts World Catskills, a $1.2 billion commercial casino venture located in Monticello and appears to be a great fit for Bet365, the latest UK online sports betting operator seeking to penetrate into the US market, after it recently entering into an alliance with Hard Rock Atlantic City.
READ: BET365 REVIEW
Unlike the partnership with Hard Rock, which is a straight branding agreement, the one with Empire has a broader scope.
The alliance will allow Bet365 to power the retail sportsbook on the property and the statewide online and mobile sports betting platform.
It also has an online gambling aspect but this will be dependent on the legislation including online casinos.
The executive chairman of Empire, Manny Pearlman said joining forces with one of the biggest online gambling operators in the world was the correct strategic vision for his company.
“Bet365’s global expertise in effectively developing and executing world-class sportsbooks [and they] strongly complements Empire’s leadership in commercial casino operations in New York,” he said.
“This collaboration, which will enable Resorts World Catskills to be a leading destination for sports wagering in New York State, highlights our commitment to the continued growth of Resorts World Catskills, as well as our dedication to working with the best, most innovative pioneers in the industry to provide world-class gaming options.”
On the financial part of the deal, Empire and Bet365 will share profits accrued through the partnership evenly. Bet365 will have to invest $50 million in Empire Resorts to become its second-largest shareholder.
Through a voter referendum in 2013, New York legalised sports betting at four commercial casinos. Since the Supreme Court’s repeal of PASPA, the four casinos on the state have found themselves a sports betting partner. Del Lago is with DraftKings, Tiago Downs with FanDuel while Rivers Casinos and Empire have partnered with with Bet365.
It seems that bet365 has chosen to jump in bed with the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino (Atlantic City) in an attempt to get their betting product out to Americans.
IT’S a new week and plenty of new gambling changes have taken place all around the world, which could impact you as a player, operator or every day person. Our weekly column covers new laws, news updates, and industry changes occuring right around the globe.
If you think we have missed an important news story, send us an email at [email protected] or leave a comment at the bottom of the page.
This week, Australians may no longer be able to bet on the outcome of Australian lotteries due to licensing changes. In Kenya, new policies have been proposed to push sports betting winners into saving their money. Meanwhile, US gambling experts have written a paper featuring recommendations for the Japanese casino industry. Scroll down to find out more.
Australian online lottery betting to be banned
The Australian lottery betting site, Lottoland, has agreed to a ban on accepting bets on Australian lotteries. The online bookmaker has been fending off attacks from the official lottery operator, Tatts, for some time now. The Northern Territory Attorney General, Natasha Fyles, recently advised the NT regulator, which licenses Lottoland, to change its licensing requirements to ban all betting sites from accepting bets on Australian lotteries. The online lottery site still accepts bets on international lotteries.
The second verdict on the Tabcorp-Tatts tie-up is set to be handed down by the end of the week. The Australian Competition Tribunal was required to review the decision to approve the merger between Australia’s two gambling companies after the Federal Court approved an appeal by the Australian Competition Consumer Commission.
UK gambling regulator releases plan to improve industry
The UK Gambling Commission has released plans for a three-year strategy for the gambling industry and it features five main points. These points address consumer protections, including responsible gambling practices, as well as strategies to raise industry standards, optimise lottery returns, and improve the overall operations of the UKGC. The strategy aims to deliver a fairer and safer gambling environment, in line with the new regulations that have recently been enforced.
This week, it was revealed that the founder and boss of UK betting site Bet365, Denise Coates, made £217 million in 2016. The company made a profit of £525 million, after a record £47 billion in bets were placed last year. Coates, who purchased the domain for £19,000 off eBay and started the online betting company in a Portakabin 17 years ago, is considered to be the highest paying boss in Britain. Anti-gambling campaigners have pointed out that her pay packet has come at the expense of those who have a gambling addiction.
Work commences on NFL stadium in Vegas
The details of the gambling package Pennsylvania passed last month have been revealed, and the 939-page document that Governor Tom Wolf signed into law is attracting attention due to one condition. The stipulation, which failed to receive any attention due to the legalisation of online gambling in the US state, says: “A Category 4 slot machine license may not be located in a sixth-class county which is contiguous to a county that hosts a Category 2 licensed facility.” Since Mount Airy Casino Resort in the Pocono Mountains is a Category 2 casino, the three counties surrounding the venue will not be able to have slot machines.
Following the tragic Las Vegas Massacre last month, Boyd Gaming has changed its Do Not Disturb policies at all 10 of its casinos. From now on, security personnel will enter rooms after 48 hours, irrespective if the Do Not Disturb sign is still hanging. The change in policy is due to the lone gunman who killed more than 50 at the Route 91 festival, had been in his bedroom for three days, without any staff checking on him. If they had, they would’ve discovered the 23 guns and thousands of rounds of ammunition.
Construction has commenced at the future home ground of the Las Vegas Raiders. A ceremony to celebrate the National Football League (NFL) Las Vegas stadium took place on Monday night, with NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell, Nevada Governor, Brian Sandoval, and team owner Mark Davis all present. The ceremony, which was held at the Interstate 15 and Russell Road site, began by remembering the victims of the Las Vegas Massacre.
Indian state introduces laws to stamp out illegal gambling
The Telangana legislative council passed the Telangana Gaming (Amendment) Bill 2017 this week, after it passed the lower house on November 13. The bill bans both online gambling and games of skill, such as rummy, in Telangana. Home Minister, Naini Narshimha Reddy, said online gambling operations in the Indian state have continued to operate despite a zero tolerance policy. He said that the strong measures included in the bill, such as preventing access to gambling sites via VPNs, could curb illegal gambling.
International gambling operators increasing in Sweden
Offshore online casinos and gambling sites are increasing in Sweden, according to new figures released by the Lotteriinspektionen gaming regulatory body. The figures reveal that the Swedish gambling market is worth SEK 16.5 billion as of September 2017, which is a 3 percent increase than what it was worth at the same time last year. While Swedish licensed gambling operators held a SEK 12.5 billion share of the total market, international operators’ share reportedly climbed 11 percent to more than SEK 4 billion.
Kenyan winnings spent, not saved
Kenya’s Capital Markets Authority (CMA) has suggested betting companies offer winners the chance to invest their winnings instead of spending them. According to the Director of Regulatory Policy and Strategy at the CMA, Luke Ombara, nearly all the winnings won via betting on sports in Kenya are spent. Ombara said winners should invest in capital markets as a way to save their winnings. As a result, the CMA has proposed a new policy which rewards betting firms with lower taxes if they pay winners by purchasing bonds or shares in companies. It has been submitted to the National Treasury and could be successful given the recent uniform 35 percent tax hike on gambling companies.
French lottery launches esports betting site
The announcement of the shared online poker liquidity deal has paid off for France, with the country’s regulator revealing an 11 percent revenue increase during July, August and September of this year. Overall poker revenue rose 11 percent to €58 million, including profits in both cash games and tournaments. It has been six years since online poker revenue showed year-over-year gains, suggesting French poker players are preparing for the shared poker pool with Italy, Spain and Portugal.
The country is also moving into esports betting with France’s national lottery, Francaise Des Jeux, teaming up with Sportradar to launch a social esports betting site. The site, parionsesport.fr, is the first national esports betting platform backed by the national lottery and it aims to target millennials. However, since French law does not allow real money wagering on events which aren’t classified as traditional sports, the online site has had to adopt a free betting system where players bet with credits.
Japan receives casino industry recommendations
American gambling experts have advised Japanese lawmakers, who are responsible for drawing up the framework for the country’s new Integrated Resorts, to manage problem gambling and drinking, as well as keep crime out. The International Gaming Institute of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas has issued conclusions and recommendations on how casinos could work in the country, while still supporting Prime Ministers Shinzo Abe’s plans to boost tourism.
International casino operators have been monitoring the progress of the Integrated Resorts Implementation bill, with Caesars Entertainment the latest to go all in on not one, but two, casinos in Japan. The casino conglomerate has unveiled plans for two resorts located in Osaka and Tomakomai and has allotted around $5-10 billion to build each facility.
AN incredible year for online betting company Bet365 was capped off with recognition as the EGR Operator of the Year for 2017.
The online sports and racing bookmaker, which is based in the UK and has offices in Gibraltar and Australia, operates in several countries around the world, providing a wide range of sports and horse racing markets.
Its platform, which can be accessed online via a desktop device or a smartphone or tablet, allows for punters to make their selections with just a click of a mouse or a tap on a screen.
On October 26, the online betting site was recognised for its services when it took out the Operator of the Year at the EGR Operator Awards 2017, held at the Grosvenor House Hotel in Mayfair, West London.
Bet365 beat out The Stars Group (PokerStars parent company), Lottoland, Ladbrokes, Leo Vegas, Pinnacle, Mr Green and Sky Betting and Gaming, for the coveted award.
The online betting company reportedly impressed judges due to its “market-leading revenue and profit growth” over the past 12 months, which was “driven by innovation, differentiation and near-flawless execution.”
“A truly phenomenal overall performance across all areas of the business, Bet365 has outperformed on a truly impressive scale and was a clear winner this year,” the judges said.
“The group continues to evolve its product line-up and user experience to customers in over 150 countries.”
The online betting site also won the Mobile Sports Product prize, due to its smartphone and tablet betting app, which can you download to your device by going to Bet365.
Bet365 has been no stranger to the EGR awards, taking home the Sports Betting Operator award at the 2016 event, while Unibet took out Operator of the Year.
The online betting site also remained number one in the EGR’s Power 50 rankings, which lists the most powerful and influential gambling operators in the world.
Earlier in the month, Bet365 received the Digital Operator of the Year at the Global Gaming Awards 2017. The ceremony took place, despite the tragic and devastating Las Vegas Massacre, which occurred just days before the event.
The hosts addressed the incident at the Venetian Ballroom in Las Vegas, acknowledging the 58 who died, and the 500-plus who were injured, after a lone gunman fired on the Route 91 music festival.
The show went on, where Bet365 beat out Paddy Power Betfair, 888 Holdings, Kindred Group, LeoVegas, EnergyBet, Double Down Interactive, Lottoland, Codeta, and Ladbrokes Coral for the Digital Operator of the Year 2017 award.
The category is explained as a “wide-ranging award” which “covers all of the online sectors, making it an especially prestigious one to win.”
“The company receiving this recognition, and indeed even those nominated, will need to have achieved something truly special to make themselves stand out in what is a crowded and very competitive marketplace,” the description states.
The online bookmaker has had an incredible year, and its efforts have not gone unnoticed. Other online betting sites which have performed well this year include William Hill and Sportsbet.