Quebec securities regulator revealed details of an insider trading kickback scheme involving former Amaya CEO David Baazov; betting tout Adam Meyer pled guilty to felony extortion and racketeering charges; Scientific Games split off its social gaming operations into a separate entity; Caesars Entertainment lost its bankruptcy mediator and said it would test-run Gamblit Gaming’s skill-based games at its Harrah’s Rincon property; Carl Icahn formally requested the closure Atlantic City’s Trump Taj Mahal casino and six-times World Series of Poker bracelet winner Ted Forrest found himself wanted by police for writing $215k worth of bad checks at Wynn Resorts casinos in Las Vegas.
EUROPE and AFRICA
The UK government was said to be readying a review of fixed-odds betting terminals while the UK Gambling Commission said it wouldn’t impose new in-play betting restrictions; Betsson acquired TonyBet’s Lithuanian operations; the German state of Hesse offered temporary online betting permits; Italy’s online sports betting market grew twice as fast as land-based operations while Italy’s prime minister vowed to reduce slots outside casinos by 30%; French online sports betting set new turnover and revenue records; Austria’s competition watchdog blocked Novomatic’s takeover of Casinos Austria; Malta Gaming Authority’s Joseph Cuschieri explained plans to simplify its regulatory regime; Microgame’s Marco Castaldo examined the challenges faced by today’s omni-channel operators; Gidani Ltd’s Dawid Muller reviewed African nations’ push to regulate gambling; FSB Tech’s Dave McDowell discussed new opportunities in virtual sports and eSports while Rebecca Liggero recapped the second annual WrB London conference.
ASIA and AUSTRALIA
Vietnam backtracked on its pledge to allow locals in casinos; Las Vegas Sands’ Parisian Macao was awarded only 150 new tables; the Philippines’ top court struck down casinos’ corporate income tax; Macau junket operator Iao Kun Group said it could close up to three of its five Macau VIP rooms; Betfair Australia shifted its operations to the Northern Territory; Aussie bookies’ TV spending rose one-quarter in H1; Racing Victoria imposed minimum betting limits on its licensees; 154 Chinese nationals were arrested in the Philippines for running an illegal online gambling site; the Hong Kong Jockey Club reported a record year for football betting; Vietnam’s Ho Tram Strip resort got preliminary okay to build a dedicated airport; the Philippines Amusement and Gaming Corp ordered the closure of 53 eGames venues run by Leisure & Resorts World Corp; Rafi Farber warned investors off SJM Holdings and India Bet’s George Oborne explained why setting up a business in India was a “fiddly process.”