Nevada and Delaware signed the first interstate online poker liquidity sharing deal; Sen. Lindsey Graham planned a federal bill banning all online gambling; skill gaming operator GSN Games acquired Bingo Bash developer Bash Gaming; Nevada sportsbooks had their best football season ever; Churchill Downs’ gaming revenue topped racing for the first time; Las Vegas Sands admitted that hackers made off with customers’ financial info; Full Tilt Poker’s former US players finally saw some remission payments; the US Supreme Court declined to hear the DiCristina poker case; New Jersey cut its online gambling tax revenue projections by 80%, despite the fact that the state’s online gamblers are playing on the loo; a Mafia snitch gave his blessing on New Jersey’s sports betting push; NBC said there would be no National Heads-Up Champtionship in 2014; Kirby Garlitos pondered the importance of pitchers in handicapping baseball, Mike O’Donnell examined online poker’s effect on land-based poker rooms and Lee Davy suggested poker needed to get back to its minimalist grassroots.
EUROPE, MIDDLE EAST and AFRICA
Alderney regulators officially yanked Sheriff Gaming’s license; Belgian regulators seized €600k belonging to BetClic Everest Group; William Hill had a very good 2013 and added Sir Roy Gardner to its board; Ladbrokes had a very bad year and promised to tie executive compensation to problem gambling initiatives; Bwin.party shareholders approved a controversial senior exec bonus plan; Betfair won a Bulgarian online gambling license; Finland explored ways of preserving its gambling monopolies; Russian bookmaker FON was charged with operating an illegal online gambling site; Black Belt Poker shut off the lights after six years; Kuwait busted a Western-managed illegal casino; Sun International profit fell as South African gamblers cut back; Paddy Power took flak for offering props on Oscar Pistorius’ murder trial; the UK Office of Fair Trading laid out its new principles for online games; BetConstruct’s George Voyatzis discussed the nuances of tapping into emerging markets and Becky Liggero discussed how to organize VIP trips that affiliates will love.
SJM Holdings came within $7m of making a $1b profit in 2013; Las Vegas Sands vowed to spend $10b building a Japanese casino and MGM Resorts said it would match that bid; South Korea unexpectedly delayed its decision on Caesars Entertainment’s casino bid; Bitcoin proved resilient after the spectacular collapse of the Mt. Gox exchange; PAGCOR shut down its aging Casino Filipino and was asked to remit Php 5.8b to cover the unpaid tab left by former CEO Efraim Genuino; Becky Liggero broke down the gambling conference schedule for March, including the upcoming iGaming Asia Congress.