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GameCo installs skill based gambling games at Foxwoods

The industry pioneer, GameCo, Inc., announced on Monday that they had recently deployed half a dozen video game gambling machines ("VGM"™) at Foxwoods® Resort Casino in Mashantucket, CT. GameCo made history in the fall of 2016 when they placed the first-person action video game "Danger Arena" is several Caesars Atlantic City properties. The most recent move was the company's second deployment and their first venture into tribal gaming. The machines at Foxwoods consist of two three-unit kiosks that have been placed in high traffic areas of the Fox Tower casino. Games offered include Pharaoh's Secret Temple and Nothin' but Net. Pharaoh's Secret Temple is a match 3 type game where players use their skills to match gems and collect treasure in an allotted amount of time. Meant to appeal to casual gamers and existing slot players, features of the game include boosts, power-up prizes, charms, and Egyptian-themed traps. Nothin' but Net (pictured) is a fast-paced game where players get 16 shots to practice virtual basketball skills such as layups, jump shots, free throws, and half court bombs. The game also includes "bonus money balls" adding gambling suspense to the skill game. "Skill-based slot machine technology is the next generation of gaming, and we welcome this addition to our already industry-leading resort casino experience," said Felix Rappaport, Foxwoods Resort Casino President & CEO. "This partnership with GameCo is just another example of our commitment to provide our loyal guests new and exciting reasons to visit Foxwoods." Blaine Graboyes, co-founder, and CEO of GameCo, had this to say about the deployment: "We are very pleased to be expanding the world's first skill-based gaming offerings to the Connecticut market with Foxwoods Resort Casino as they have embraced the opportunity to bring a new type of gaming entertainment to their guests," according to press from the company today. Graboyes went on to speak of the evolution of casino gaming and strategic alliances the companies plans to nurture with companies like Foxwoods that "share our vision of combining the entertainment, engagement, and excitement of video games, esports, and gambling to create a new type of destination for current and future casino customers." He spoke of the potential market (target demographic) as being in the neighborhood of 23 million players over the age of 21 in addition to current slot players. The company's proprietary platform has been tested and approved by Gaming Laboratories International (GLI), which opens the machines to most markets already offering video poker and blackjack machines. The company is planning a major rollout and expects to be present in most U.S. gambling jurisdictions by year's end.

Posted on Monday May 22, 2017

Friday deadline for new Pennsylvania casino host fee legislation

Ahead of a looming Friday deadline, legislators in Pennsylvania are reportedly hoping to pass a measure that would reinstate a version of the eastern state’s controversial casino host fees policy so that local municipalities can continue receiving millions of dollars from gambling establishments every year. Under legislation ratified in 2006, each of Pennsylvania’s twelve casinos was required to sacrifice 2% of their annual gross slot revenues to the townships in which they were located. The measure additionally included a provision that mandated that this amount must be at least $10 million and obliged operators to make up any difference. However, Mount Airy Casino Resort objected in court as its 1,850 slots pulled in just $139.1 million in 2015, which meant that it was required to add $7.22 million onto its 2% host fee tax of $2.78 million, and its argument was subsequently upheld by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. In its September ruling, the state’s highest legal authority determined that the policy violated Pennsylvania’s uniformity clause because the $10 million minimum tax burdened some casinos more than others. According to a report from The Morning Call newspaper, legislators were then given 120 days in order to come up with a solution although this deadline passed in late-January with no agreement before the state was granted a second 120-day extension. This second stay is now reportedly due to expire on May 26 although at least five of Pennsylvania’s casinos have committed to continuing to pay the contentious fee even if legislators have failed to come up with a solution in time. “If it is not done by Friday, we will just make it retroactive,” Pennsylvania State Senator Lisa Boscola told The Morning Call. “The local municipalities are going to get their money. There is no doubt about that.” The newspaper reported that casino host fees funnel around $142 million a year to municipalities across the state including $8.8 million for the city of Bethlehem, which is home to the Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem, and $3.5 million to the neighboring community of Allentown. The Morning Call reported that two pieces of proposed legislation currently making their way through the Pennsylvania House Of Representatives hope to remedy the current impasse by changing the state’s casino host fee formula and basing the amount on each venue’s licensing fee rather than slot revenues. “My goal as Chairman is to have this bill run as cleanly as we could without many fights,” Scott Petri, Chairman for the Pennsylvania House Of Representative’s Gaming Oversight Committee, told the newspaper. “We are looking just to keep the status quo instead of building in a cadre of other issues.” In the Pennsylvania State Senate, legislation is reportedly due to be introduced on Wednesday that would offer smaller casinos such as Mount Airy Casino Resort funds for marketing and expansion as a way to help offset the $10 million minimum host fee. “We're going to look under the pillow [for funding],” Pennsylvania State Senator Mario Scavello, the Monroe County Republican behind the coming legislation, told The Morning Call. “We have a cadre of options we will be discussing.”

Posted on Monday May 22, 2017

Casino related real estate firms in the Philippines post banner Q1 results

According to disclosures on the Philippines Stock Exchange along with local reports, it looks like the Philippine real estate market is producing well for the big players. First quarter results along with a bull market forecast are seeing some of the top firms increasing capital outlay for the rest of the year in light of current profits. Former Senate President Manny Villar's Vista Land and Lifescapes has seen improvements in residential sales and a strong leasing market which have contributed to net income of P2.3 billion (US46m) in the first quarter of 2017, an 11% hike. Although the family company may have considered entering the casino market in 2012 their other developments seem to be buoyed well by the current economy. The company acquired Starmalls in 2015 which included 2 BPO commercial centers. Vista's gross floor area of commercial space was over 630,000 sqm at the end of 2015 which was recently increased by 70,000 sqm, according to a report in the business section of Inquirer.net Megaworld Corp., the complete lifestyle developer is set to add 1,662 more rooms in four new hotels this year and in total expect to spend some P60 billion on new projects this year through subsidiary brands Empire East Holdings, Inc., Global-Estate Resorts, Inc. (GERI) and Suntrust Properties, Inc., Net income for the company net income grew 11% to P2.9-billion in the first quarter of 2017, from P2.6-billion during the same period last year. There Westside City project under development with Travellers will be located in the heart of Entertainment City along Marina Bay. One of the next developments there will be a Grand Opera House which the company states will "establish our image as the new Broadway of Asia." Belle Corp., driving growth from City of Dreams Manila, saw an increase in their share of gaming income from the property doubled to P722 million. The Inquirer report also notes an 84 percent increase in recurring net income for the first quarter. Overall consolidated net income increased 90%. Ayala Land, which comes into the casino picture indirectly through their mall at Bloomberry Resorts Corp's Solaire Resort & Casino in Manila's Entertainment City, posted an 18 percent gain year over year for the quarter with net income reaching P5.56 billion. Consolidated revenues were up 17% to P31.64 billion. Ayala Land Inc president and CEO Bernard Vincent Dy said, “Property sales have been encouraging and our commercial revenues continue to be on an upward trajectory. Given these positive results, we remain committed to launch over P100 billion worth of projects to support our targets for the year,” according to Bloomberg and other reports taking from press and filings. Ayala announced in early 2013 that they didn't plan to go into the casino business, but rather, focus on family-oriented entertainment, not gambling. SM Prime Holdings Inc., which operates nearly 60 malls with a total gross floor area of over 5.5 million sqm (~60m sq ft) experienced similar growth percentage-wise in the first quarter. Near the end of February, SM Group cemented control of Premium Leisure Corp. (PLC) on the open market. PLC owns half of the casino business at City of Dreams Manila. Members of the Sy family holds the top four positions at SM. Henry S. Sy, Sr., serves as Chairman of the Board of SM Investments Corp. He is the founder of the SM Group and is currently Chairman Emeritus of SM Prime, SM Development, Highlands Prime Inc., BDO Universal Bank, Inc. and Honorary Chairman China Banking Corporation. Two other officers of the company; Jose T. Sio and Elizabeth Anne C. Uychaco hold seats on the Belle Corp board according to Reuters.

Posted on Monday May 22, 2017

Major upgrades to Pioneer Crossing Casino of Fernley almost complete

As the Pioneer Crossing Casino of Fernley prepares to celebrate their 12th anniversary in operation, the gaming venue has been working on a remodel, with major improvements taking place throughout the facility. As much as $1 million has been estimated as being spent on the remodel efforts, a project that has been in the works for many years. According to the Nevada Appeal, CEO Mike Benjamin stated that the major remodel and expansion have been considered for many years and it feels great to finally see the plans come together. Benjamin stated further that the final decision to make the large investment at this time comes to the growth that is being anticipated for the Fernley area as well as the area where the Tahoe Reno Industrial Center is located. The facility upgrades include more square footage for the gaming floor with new carpeting being installed as well as a bigger Players Club area. A new sports bar is also being added that will offer lounging space along with a video wall complete with 14 screens. Within the gaming area, new slot machines are currently being installed which will provide 25% more games to the venue. According to the casino’s Facebook page, such new games being installed include Fast Cash, Money Roll, Drago Victory and Lock it Link. The former Chuckwagon restaurant is now known as The Branding Iron Café & Steakhouse and includes an updated menu with local favorites plus a new steakhouse menu. The Nevada casino plans on hosting a ribbon cutting ceremony this Wednesday beginning at 3pm with a schedule of festivities to celebrate the changes.

Posted on Monday May 22, 2017

Blueprint Gaming slots a hit at LeoVegas

Leading UK-based game studio, Blueprint Gaming Ltd, has launched a selection of its most popular slot games with world-class mobile game entertainment provider, LeoVegas, and the new content is a hit with the operator’s players. Already live on LeoVegas’ site are some of Blueprint’s leading slot games such as Wild Antics, Casper’s Mystery Mirror, and King Kong Cash. According to the news release, more of Blueprint’s top performers from its extensive slot catalog, including Jungle Jackpots and Wish Upon A Jackpot, are soon to hit the site. Part of Germany’s Gauselmann Group, Blueprint Gaming’s slots are considered to be some of the most popular in the online casino industry. The multi-level bonus games with modifiers have enjoyed a strong performance in the UK in recent years and are now creating quite a buzz in the European market as well, having gained steady momentum and produced overwhelmingly positive performance data. Blueprint Gaming’s Managing Director Matt Cole said, “We’re really pleased with how things have been going with LeoVegas since we launched our games with them. He added, “It’s particularly encouraging to see the multi-level bonus games with modifiers performing so well and this is a clear sign that they are also appealing to Scandinavian players. “Having done so well with UK operators over the past few years, we are really excited about their potential in Scandinavia which is a key target growth area for Blueprint Gaming,” said Cole. Casino Manager at Malta-based LeoVegas, Martin Larsson, said, “We’ve been very impressed with Blueprint Gaming’s content, especially the bonus rich nature of their games that has really grabbed the attention of our players. Larson added, “We’re committed to providing the very best and most engaging slots out there and Blueprint is an excellent addition to our portfolio. It’s been a great start and I’m sure their content will continue to perform strongly for us.” Blueprint Gaming creates exciting slot games for the worldwide online and mobile markets. Its games can be played on more than 100,000 land-based gaming terminals across the Germany, Italy, and the UK. Swedish mobile gaming company and provider of online casino and sports betting services, LeoVegas has become one of Europe’s leading mobile gaming companies. The company co-founded by Gustaf Hagman and Robin Ramm-Ericson went live in 2012 and now offers upwards of 700 casino games. Internationally recognized as a leader in mobile gaming, LeoVegas has been the recipient of several prestigious

Posted on Monday May 22, 2017

Melco Crown Philippines becomes world’s best-performing casino stock

Melco Crown Philippines (PSE:MCP), the Philippine arm of Melco Resorts & Entertainment group of Asia, is the world’s top-performing casino stock of 2017, a Bloomberg report confirms. According to the report, since 2015 the stock saw a return that was eight times higher than a “Bloomberg Intelligence index of global casino stocks”, while the company posted the highest gains out of any casino operator, reaching a market value of $500 million, at least, during this year. The biggest contributors to MCP’s 125% increase in shares this year are reportedly Chinese tourists. Philippine president, Rodrigo Duterte has been working on repairing ties with China for some time, which combined with the gambling crackdown China’s President Xi Jinping started and Macau’s own anti-corruption efforts are seen as the factors driving Chinese gamblers away from Macau and into Manila, the report suggests. Another growth factor is believed to be the acceptance of betting over the phone in MCP’s City of Dreams Manila Casino and Philippines in general, which was fought aggressively in Macau, first with a phone ban and later with bans on other forms of phone gambling. Duterte’s public support for the need to establish better relations between the Philippines and China has reportedly lead to a 25% increase in Chinese tourist to the country during the beginning of 2017, or 14% of the total visits according to official numbers, making China the number three tourist source in the Philippines. A local supply manager who has been playing at the City of Dreams confirmed to Bloomberg there has been an increase in foreign gamblers, saying that most of them come from China.

Posted on Monday May 22, 2017

Assortment of Amanet slots come to VideoSlots.com

Online casino operator Panda Media Limited has signed a deal that will see a selection of video slots from games developer Amanet integrated onto its domain at VideoSlots.com. The Malta-based operator stated that Amanet is the online games division of giant Austrian gaming firm Amatic Industries GmbH and that the agreement is set to “bolster its market-leading portfolio of titles” as part of its mission “to provide games from the industry’s most trusted providers”. “By going live with Amanet games, we have made further strides in establishing ourselves as a casino capable of offering players the best range of slots in the industry,” read a statement from Daniel Hansen from VideoSlots.com. “We are always looking for the very best premium casino content that can enhance our user experience and the slots from Amanet tick all the boxes for us.” Holding licenses from authorities in the United Kingdom, Malta and Curacao, Panda Media Limited declared that the deal will see a number of “the most successful land-based casino games move into the online space” where it is confident the titles are capable of “proving just as successful”. “We are thrilled that our games will now be available on VideoSlots.com’s online casino platform,” read a statement from Tatjana Bauer-Engstberger from Rutzenmoos-based Amatic Industries GmbH. “One of our guiding principles has always been that proven land-based games will also be successful in the online gaming market and we are certain these titles will prove a hit with VideoSlots.com’s customers.” Latest Casino Bonuses offers a comprehensive review of VideoSlots.com with over 100 comments by players along with sign-up and cash-back bonuses. Unfortunately, players in the United States may not open an account with VideoSlots.com.

Posted on Monday May 22, 2017

Caesars Entertainment Corporation looking to develop Las Vegas lands

American casino giant Caesars Entertainment Corporation has reportedly revealed that it is hoping to develop more than 90 acres of land it owns in Las Vegas after its troubled operating subsidiary emerges from bankruptcy later in the year. According to a report from the Bloomberg news service, the revelation came from Mark Frissora, Chief Executive Officer for Las Vegas-based Caesars Entertainment Corporation, and follows the firm recently winning approval from authorities in New Jersey for the plan to bring its Caesars Entertainment Operating Company Incorporated subordinate out of bankruptcy. “We have a lot of real estate that is underutilized,” Frissora told the news service on Thursday. “We have plans to basically develop all of that very valuable center-strip property as soon as we emerge. Those assets will have a very high-return [and] low-risk profile.” Bloomberg reported that Caesars Entertainment Corporation, which is one of the largest casinos firms in the United States thanks to a portfolio of over 30 venues, has been struggling under a mountain of debt since its $30 billion leveraged buyout in 2008. It filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protections for its Caesars Entertainment Operating Company Incorporated subsidiary in January of 2015 due to the arm holding long-term debts of around $18.4 billion but agreed a deal four months ago that will see its subordinate emerge from insolvency and shed approximately $10 billion in liabilities. Frissora reportedly explained that the Las Vegas land his firm is looking to develop includes some 50 acres behind its Bally’s Las Vegas as well as almost 40 acres adjacent to The Linq on the Las Vegas Strip. He declared that Caesars Entertainment Corporation is moreover hoping to exploit seven acres in front of its Caesars Palace Las Vegas resort casino and expand further internationally involving markets such as Japan, South Korea, Canada, and Brazil. “We are excited because we have a lot of growth plans [that] we have not been able to act on because of the complicated structure,” Frissora told Bloomberg. “Once we emerge, we will be able to do a lot of development projects around the world as well as merger and acquisition activity.”

Posted on Monday May 22, 2017

Arkansas AG shoots down separate casino and marijuana ballot proposals

Proposed constitutional amendments in Arkansas to allow casino gambling in the state and to legalize marijuana have been rejected by Attorney General Leslie Rutledge (pictured). The state’s attorney general wrote in an opinion dated Friday, that the proposal to legalize marijuana in Arkansas by West Fork resident Larry Morris is ambiguous and mirrored a later proposal submitted by Summit resident, Mary Berry, according to the Associated Press. Rutledge reportedly made the suggestion to Morris that he and Berry consider working together. Separate from the marijuana opinion, Rutledge reportedly wrote that the name of the casino proposal by Hot Springs resident Barry Emigh is not only misleading but "confusing to the point of being nonsensical." The attorney general also wrote that Emigh’s proposal does not provide an explanation as to who the members of a committee would be that would be issued gambling licenses or how said committee would be created, according to the report. In October last year, a ballot referendum that would have given Arkansas voters the opportunity to decide whether or not casino gambling could be allowed in Boone, Miller and Washington counties, was rejected by the Arkansas Supreme Court. The state’s high court ruled at the time that the measure be removed from the November 8 ballot due to the fact that the title of the ballot referendum did not relay to voters that the measure would be in violation of current federal sports gambling laws.

Posted on Monday May 22, 2017

Crown Resorts Limited selling off Alon Las Vegas site

After agreeing to offload its remaining 11.2% stake in Melco Resorts And Entertainment Limited earlier this month, Australian casino operator Crown Resorts Limited has now reportedly completely given up on its plan to build a $2 billion integrated casino resort on the Las Vegas Strip. According to a report from The Australian newspaper, Melbourne-based Crown Resorts Limited first announced plans to build its Alon Las Vegas scheme in 2014 and the development had been set to feature a 50,000 sq ft casino offering just over 1,100 table and electronic gaming seats as well as a 80,000 sq ft pool area, a 65,000 sq ft ballroom, a 56,000 sq ft nightclub and more than 160,000 square feet of retail space. However, the newspaper reported that Crown Resorts Limited canceled their participation in the Las Vegas project in December while today has seen the firm engage commercial real estate firm CBRE to offload the 35-acre parcel of land on which the 1,100-room Alon Las Vegas was to be built. “Crown [Resorts Limited] will now be more focused on driving greater returns in Australia and ensuring the company is well prepared to deliver Crown Sydney in 2021,” read a statement from Crown Resorts Limited. The Australian reported that the site on Las Vegas Boulevard, which sits opposite the luxury Wynn Las Vegas casino resort and just north of the Fashion Show Mall, features about 1,300 feet of Las Vegas Strip frontage and traded for approximately $894 million in 2007. John Knott, Executive Vice-President for CBRE, told the newspaper that the land, which was once home to the New Frontier Hotel And Casino until its demolition in 2007, “is one of the most exciting properties to become available in Las Vegas in a long time”. The Australian reported that Crown Resorts Limited purchased the Nevada land through a subsidiary in 2014 before partnering with Andrew Pascal, the former President for Wynn Las Vegas, and investments firm Oaktree Capital Management in hopes of opening the Alon Las Vegas by 2018. But, the firms struggled to secure sufficient funding for the development and now hope to recoup at least $400 million for the land.

Posted on Monday May 22, 2017


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Posted on Wednesday December 31, 1969

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