Scotbet for sale; Hawaii redefines offshore; BC casino builder defines hypocrisy

scotbet-for-saleScotbet, the tartan territory’s biggest indie bookmaker, has been put on the block. Accountants KPMG have been tasked with moving the 74-shop chain, which is part of Kenny Waugh’s Festival Group. Festival’s pubs and hotels sector lost £6.5m in recent years, so they’d clearly like to put some cash back into their depleted sporrans. Haggis ain’t free, ya know…

Land-based casino companies and lazy journalists love to refer to internationally-based online gambling companies as being “offshore.” It’s a dumb adjective, as pretty much any geographical location is offshore from some other one. For UK residents, America is offshore. For most American residents, Hawaii is definitely offshore. But Hawaii – one of only two US states to not permit any form of gambling – is attempting to reclaim the term ‘offshore gambling’ in its most literal form. A state House committee has voted 10-1 to allow gambling to take place on large ships traveling between the islands in the Hawaiian chain. They haven’t worked out exactly what kind of gambling would be permitted onboard, but we figure Crown & Anchor games would be a given.

The Canadian city of Vancouver is embroiled in a debate over the proposed construction of what would be the city’s largest casino. In order to allay concerns that his gaming facility would attract a criminal element to the city’s downtown area, Scott Menke of Las Vegas-based Paragon Gaming told city residents that his company’s casinos were “safer than shopping malls.” Perhaps, but then Menke decided to take an unnecessary shot at his online kin, saying he “would be more concerned about internet gaming” doing harm to society. Hey, dude… As your new facility would be regulated by the British Columbia Lottery Corporation, which exposed players’ private data via its online offering and turned a blind eye to money laundering at its (ahem) land-based casinos, you might want to think twice about tossing stones around your shiny new glass house.