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Gaming Industry News Weekly Recap – Stories You Might Have Missed

TAGs: weekly recap

weekly-news-recap-July-30Full Tilt Poker’s anti-climactic hearing with Alderney regulators
Not since Geraldo Rivera wasted two hours of prime-time TV digging up Al Capone’s vaults has there been such ado about nothing. The Alderney Gambling Control Commission’s much-anticipated hearing with suspended licensee Full Tilt Poker was adjourned until ‘no later than Sept. 15’ with onlookers learning nothing more than the fact that FTP stiffed the AGCC for £250k in license fees. (Get in line, AGCC.) All of which prompted poker player Harry Demetriou to put pen to paper and tear the AGCC a new one – and this was before he learned that FTP had loaned Phil Ivey almost $11m over the past couple years.

New Jersey’s Lesniak explains the situation to his federal counterparts
In the latest skirmish in the state v. feds turf war, New Jersey state Sen. Ray Lesniak told US Senators Harry Reid and Jon Kyl to back off their claims that online gambling was something only the big boys in Washington could handle, especially since they can’t keep their big boy pants on long enough to resolve the country’s looming debt crisis.

NFL lockout ends, bookmakers rejoice
In the end, sanity prevailed. The National Football League guaranteed itself another decade of labor peace when the players union ratified the deal put forth by NFL owners. Perhaps the posturing pols in Washington could learn a thing or two about statesmanship from the pigskin crowd.

Say it ain’t so, Bo! Bodog announces its exit from the US market
End of an era. (Ayre-a?) The Bodog brand announced its intention to let its existing agreement with US-facing licensee Morris Mohawk Gaming Group expire at the end of 2011, after which MMGG will launch its own US-facing offering. Not to be outdone, Sportingbet consider a pullout from Turkey.

US feds using gambling forums, social media sites to prosecute gambling
Call it anti-social media. Court documents stemming from the QuickTender account seizures reveal that US authorities used info gleaned from online gambling forums and social networking site LinkedIn to build their case against online gambling firms.

Jeremy Johnson buries treasure all over Utah
Utah residents are frantically scouring lake bottoms and mountaintops after it was revealed that previously peripheral Black Friday figure Jeremy Johnson has hidden millions of dollars in cash, gold and silver in some rather odd places in case the feds came after him. Which they did.

Land-based casinos launch new pro-poker coalition FairPlay USA
While positioning itself as a ‘grassroots’ organization representing US online poker players, the revelation that it was funded by Caesars Entertainment and MGM Resorts meant FairPlay USA faced almost immediate accusations of being an ‘astroturf’ outfit solely focused on advancing a land-based casino agenda. Kermit was right. It’s not easy being green…

Bet24 reveals it was hacked in 2009
Maltese-licensed operator Bet24 belatedly (19 months after the fact) notified customers that it had been the victim of hackers in Dec. 2009 and that players’ account data had been compromised. Also, their sex tape with Pippa Middleton is missing.

Bwin and SAjOO French kiss
Like two sled dogs huddling together to stay warm in the teeth of a blizzard, Bwin.fr and Amaury Group’s SAjOO.fr announce a merger, which they hope will better their chances of survival in the harsh French market.

Ireland finalizes tax plans
The eyes of Irish gambling firms are definitely not smiling as the gov’t confirms it will go ahead with its plans to double their current tax burden. Not to be outdone, Italian tax authorities cry ‘Forza!’ in their pursuit of poker players’ purses.

Epic Poker League inks TV deal
Bucking the post-Black Friday trend, the Epic Poker League will air 20 hours of primetime poker play split between CBS and Discovery Communications’ Velocity Network. But can the poker sharks compete with Discovery’s Shark Week?

Beware of Greeks bearing promissory notes
Despite having already agreed to sell its 34% stake in gaming monopoly OPAP, Greece now claims it will find other ways of paying off its massive international IOU (and you, and you, and…). Anybody interested in a slightly used Parthenon? Handy man’s dream…

Calvin Ayre goes to Ayr, mayhem ensues
The Bodog brand founder is given a hero’s welcome on his inaugural visit to his ancestral home in Ayr, Scotland. Will Ayrshire maternity wards be doing a brisk business in Bodog branded nappies nine months from now?

More Q2 numbers
Among the companies taking their turn on the financial catwalk this past week were Betsson, Las Vegas Sands, IGT, Boyd Gaming, Rank Group and Lottomatica.

VIDEO PICK
Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the fairest European market of them all? Rebecca Liggero pops the question, online gambling bigwigs respond.

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