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AsianLogic inks Kambi pool betting deal; Chinese gamblers hate koalas

TAGs: AsianLogic, Australia, China, Kambi Sport Solutions, Singapore, South Korea

asianlogic-kambi-pool-bettingThe AsianLogic Group has inked a two-year pact with Kambi Sports Solutions, the B2B arm of Unibet. The deal provides AsianLogic’s Philippines-licensed online operations with access to Kambi’s pool betting products, Supertoto and Superscore, joining existing European clients including Paf, Expekt, Nordicbet and Interwetten. Dimitris Karatzas, online gaming director at AsianLogic subsidiary Dafabet, said the addition of Kambi’s pool betting complemented its existing fixed odds offering by “giving our customers a chance to win big on small stakes.”

Unlicensed gambling operations in the Philippines – both online and land-based – are drawing the ire of Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, chairman of the Senate committee on games and amusement. Pimentel wants the Senate to study “not only the legality of these new forms of gambling operated around the country, but their effects on law and order.” Pimentel intends to summon execs from both the state-owned Philippine Amusement & Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) and the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) to help clarify the state of the country’s gambling operations.

The white-hot casino market in Singapore saw a 32% increase in tourism revenue in the first half of 2011, doubling the 15% growth in visitor arrivals over the same period. Accommodation revenue was up 25%, food and beverage revenue rose 23%, while ‘sightseeing and entertainment’ (including gambling revenue) rose 136%. Take a bow, casinos.

If Australia hopes to mimic Singapore’s ability to attract deep-pocketed tourists from China, they’d do well to stop promoting cuddly koalas and white-sand beaches and start pimping their casinos. Hong Kong-based tourism consultant Pierre Gervois says affluent Chinese tourists have two priorities: shopping and gambling. The first thing brand- and status-conscious Chinese tourists want to do after touching down on foreign soil is “go to a big shopping mall and buy gifts for all their family.” Once that’s out of the way, they want to hit a casino. After that, assuming they still have any energy left, maybe then they’ll pet a damn koala or two. Now, if you could teach the koalas to deal baccarat…

Another country eager to woo Chinese tourists is South Korea. Global Betting and Gaming Consultancy recently detailed the government’s launch of a ‘special task team’ designed to boost the number of Chinese tourists to 3m by 2012. Sixteen of the country’s 17 casinos are only accessible by foreigners, and the percentage of Chinese patronizing those casinos quintupled between 2005 and 2010. Over that same period, the percentage of foreign casino visitors from China rose from 18.6% to 30.1%. Remember when you were a kid, and you were told that you could dig a hole all the way to China? Nowadays, you just build a casino, and the Chinese will dig toward you.

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