In betting-mad Britain, bookmakers have been busy taking bets on who will replace Benedict XVI since he announced his retirement earlier this month. The favorite is Ghanaian Cardinal Peter Turkson, who would be the first African pope. He’s the frontrunner at bookies William Hill, at 5/2, and Ladrokes, at 11/4. Other leading contenders include Italian cardinals Angelo Scola and Tarcisio Bertone and Cardinal Marc Oullet of Canada. And for those wanting to gamble on a longshot, Ladbrokes has 500/1 odds on former British Prime Minister Tony Blair a Catholic convert.
Monthly Archives: February 2013
Australian gambling tycoon James Packer may be lining up a bet on Sri Lanka, scouting the Indian Ocean island for potential investments as he seeks to build a global casino empire. Packer met with Sri Lankan ministers this week to discuss hotel and entertainment investment options, according to officials who met with him. “They have not finalized the area and the amount they are going to invest. The government has asked them to come up with a proposal,” Lakshman Yapa Abeywardene, Sri Lanka’s Minister of Investment Promotion, told Reuters. “The government proposed (for) them to invest in a large city hotel in Colombo and go to (the eastern city of) Trincomalee to look into possible investment opportunities.”
The Philippines’ burgeoning gaming industry may surpass Singapore’s $5.6-billion gaming market by 2018 on the back of a larger local mass market and likely spillover of foreign high-rollers, foreign bank Credit Suisse said. In a new equity research dated February 27, “Let the Games Begin,” Credit Suisse initiated coverage of the Philippine gaming sector with a rosy outlook of 28 percent compounded annual growth rate for the industry over the 2012 to 2018 period.
The gaming industry is expecting an adjustment in the ratio of VIP and mass market business as the more profitable high-roller section is unlikely to maintain doubt-digit growth. Although a sudden drop in growth rate is not a possible scenario, according to Pansy Ho… “The gaming industry is expecting an adjustment in the ratio due to more facilities offered by casino-resorts. VIP has been growing much faster than the mass section but we can see a tendency that the discrepancy is narrowing and this is a positive development. I believe all of us would welcome this orderly shift”
MGM China Holdings Ltd yesterday hosted an official ground-breaking ceremony for its new casino resort project in Cotai. The property will cost $2.6 billion to build. It will include 1,600 hotel rooms, as many as 500 gaming tables and 2,500 slot machines. Around 85 percent of the gross floor area will be for non-gaming including restaurants, shops and entertainment. It is scheduled to open in mid-2016.
SJM Holdings Ltd., Asia’s biggest casino company by revenue, reported a 27 percent increase in full-year profit …Net income rose to HKD6.75 billion (USD870 million) from HKD5.3 billion a year earlier…Full-year EBITDA, rose 10 percent to HKD7.6 billion. The company proposed a special dividend of 30 Hong Kong cents a share, on top of a final dividend of 50 Hong Kong cents a share…Macau’s casino revenue climbed 14 percent to a record 304 billion patacas (USD38 billion) in 2012. SJM’s gambling revenue for the year also climbed 4.5 percent to HKD78.9 billion. The former Macau gaming monopoly’s revenue from VIPs, or high rollers, rose to HKD53.3 billion from HKD52.8 billion a year ago, mass market revenue increased 13 percent to HKD24 billion. Slot-machine revenue also rose to HKD1.5 billion.
A new Playboy-brand online gambling casino was launched this week with live Bunny dealers. The 32red online casino powered by Microgaming features a dealer’s room where Playboy Bunny croupiers are on hand to deal the cards and spin the wheels for games including live roulette, blackjack and baccarat…The new casino marks a return to online gaming for the big bunny that had its Playboy Casino shut down in 2010 after around six years of operation. And this is only the beginning. More Microgaming online casinos are reportedly expecting to release their own real-time live casino Playboy sites in the coming months.
Nevada is likely to be the first state to offer regulated online poker in the US. Nine online poker operators have been approved for an interactive poker license in the state. How many of these companies will be successful in the Nevada online poker market? Caesars Entertainment is the majority owner of Caesars Interactive. The interactive division owns the World Series of Poker brand… the World Series of Poker brand has a head start over the others in the US market and Nevada is no different….Fertitta Interactive is closely related to two important Las Vegas brands. One is Station Casinos and the other is the Ultimate Fighting Championship… Several companies have already launched play money sites to help brand their online poker rooms and generate player lists…
The Michigan Lottery plans to sell online subscriptions for games such as Mega Millions and Powerball starting this spring. The state said the move will bring in more revenue for schools and improve the lottery experience for players, but some businesses are concerned it will hurt in-store ticket sales.
Caesars Entertainment Corp. has been crafting a complex plan to use online gambling and a few other growth assets to pull itself out of a financial tight spot-a tactic that could get a boost as New Jersey on Tuesday adopted a regulated market for Internet wagers. Perhaps counter intuitively, the first step in Caesars’s plan is to spin off its online gambling business to raise equity…The proposed gambit from Caesars’s owners is controversial and complicated, particularly because the potential of online gambling in the U.S. remains hazy. But executives say it might give them the best chance of managing a balance sheet hobbled by worsening casino performances and a massive debt load. “We believe it will further improve our liquidity and credit profile, enhance our distribution network and provide additional support for potential new ventures,” Chief Executive Gary Loveman said referring to the tentative plan to create the spinoff, known as Caesars Growth Venture Partners.