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Archives for: August 24, 2021

Catena’s US hokey cokey

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first_img Email Address Topics: Casino & games Finance Sports betting Bingo Poker Unfortunate timing in Italy and the reset of earnouts payable on its US assets is indicative of many more twists and turns ahead for affiliate consolidator Catena Media, writes Scott LongleyFlexibility is a good trait to have in business and Catena Media can fairly say it has that attribute in spades going by the announcements it has made since it bought the NJPlay assets back in December 2016.At the time, the deal was structured so that the vendors received $15m upfront, 25% of which would be paid with over 440,000 shares. There was also an additional earnout of up to $45m which would be based on the revenue performance over the subsequent three years.These terms applied to the online casino and poker affiliate sites then operating in New Jersey and Nevada.But the deal came with a kicker related to the potential for further states to regulate online involving a “range of assets” including some esports and DFS titles whereby the vendors would receive 50% of net profit going forward with a series of put and call options in place for Catena to gain full control after three years.The purchase price for these additional assets was set at between 2.5/3 times the net profit generated by these assets in the 12 months previous to the exercising of the options. This, remember, was against a backdrop of DFS being somewhat on the wane. That buyout price was reasonable and both sides were likely happy.The arrangements stood for just over a year, until February this year in fact when, as we all know, there were already rumours that PASPA was in trouble in front of the Supreme Court. With the prospect of the US opening up to US sports, and with the vendors controlling various websites aimed at just such a potential market, the two sides came to a new understanding.This involved a rejigging of the earnout plus a new structure for the put/call options on the additional assets. It restricted the original earnout potential significantly, from $34.5m to $17m with 50% being paid in shares. Meanwhile, and importantly, the buyout terms of the additional assets rose from 2.5 to 3 times to 2.5/3.5 times.This last change would suggest the vendors had some inkling of what might be coming down the track and what that might mean for the revenue and profit potential for those additional assets.This new deal lasted about six months. In the intervening period, PASPA was indeed consigned to the dustbin of history and as we all know the door was blown wide open – potentially at least – for regulated sports betting across the US.Catena Media found it was sitting on a goldmine but one which it neither wholly controlled nor was due the full profits.Back they went to the negotiating table and in the middle of October the company duly announced a new set of terms.As the announcement made clear, the unforeseen “rapid spread of regulated online sports betting” in the US meant that under the new terms from February, the increased revenues projected in the US meant the final cost of the additional assets would “likely exceed the original profit-sharing amounts.”The new terms now will see all earnings between 1 November this year and 31 October next included in the earnout with a third earnout payment due afterwards of up to $45m, of which the majority will be paid in shares.Affiliate um & ah Another decent attribute in business as much as in life is timing. The gods of fortune have favoured Catena in the US, albeit at the price of a hefty earnout, in a way that they have failed to do in Italy.As far as iGaming Business can ascertain, the ASAP Italia deal, announced a matter of days ahead of the new populist Italian government proclaimed a ban on all forms of gambling advertising, marks for now at least a high watermark for affiliate acquisitions.The question of where this leaves the gambling affiliate sector is hard to gauge. In some intriguingly comments on a panel at G2E in Las Vegas, Chris Grove, under the title of acting director US for Catena Media, said that in the US the definition of what an affiliate is, “is going to expand.”“There is a massive amount of sports media that can now act as a sports-betting affiliate,” he added. “The definition will change dramatically. [The percentage of marketing that goes through] traditional affiliates’ channels – like Catena – will be lower than it is with casino. But taking in all new affiliates like sport media and sports bars, it will be a bigger percentage.”The gambling sector has been handed an opportunity that it truly cannot have expected at the start of the year and the speed of developments is indeed dizzying for all involved.Catena will be hoping it now has the structure to drive its US business forward and it will be interesting to hear what the company has to say in the coming months, both about the US and the apparently stalled M&A drive.But if its earnout resets are any guide, we can expect some twists and turns along the way.Scott Longley has been a journalist since the early noughties covering personal finance, sport and gambling. He has worked for a number of publications including Investment Week, Bloomberg Money, Football First, eGaming Review and Gambling Compliance 29th October 2018 | By Stephen Carter Catena’s US hokey cokey Tags: Card Rooms and Poker Online Gambling Regions: Europe US Southern Europe Italy Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Bingo Unfortunate timing in Italy and the reset of earnouts on its US assets suggests more twists and turns ahead for affiliate consolidator Catena Media, writes Scott Longleylast_img read more

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Novomatic hands top systems role to Czapkiewicz

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first_img Novomatic hands top systems role to Czapkiewicz Topics: People Strategy AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Tags: Mobile Online Gambling OTB and Betting Shops Novomatic has appointed Bartholomäus Czapkiewicz as its new chief systems officer as part of a wider effort to expand its research and development activities. Czapkiewicz (pictured), who also joins the operator and supplier’s executive board, has worked at Novomatic for the past 10 years, serving in a number of senior roles across various departments. He was previously responsible for coordinating international development projects, and also led the company’s research and development department in his role as managing director of its Novomatic Gaming Industries subsidiary. “As part of the successful executive team, my goal, in particular, is to continue development in system and platform solutions, and ensure that our processes become even more efficient as we look towards the future,” Czapkiewicz said. Bernd Oswald, head of the supervisory board at Novomatic, added: “Over the past few years, Bartholomäus has played a decisive role in successfully expanding our innovative abilities.” “He is an internationally-experienced research and development mathematician and computer scientist, with a focus on system and platform solutions.” The appointment of Bartholomäus comes after Novomatic in October brought in Felipe Ludeña to head up its plans for sports betting expansion in European and North American markets. Ludeña joined from Codere Group, where he had led the sports betting provider’s Spanish online business unit since 2011. The company enjoyed a successful first half of the year, during which sales reached a record €1.37bn (£1.24bn/$1.56 bn). This led to an 11.6% increase in earnings before interest and deductions to €318m.Image: Krischanz & Zeiler OGcenter_img 11th December 2018 | By contenteditor Email Address People Bartholomäus Czapkiewicz has been with the gaming technology giant for a decadelast_img read more

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Caesars and DraftKings seal extensive market access deal

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first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Tags: Mobile Online Gambling DraftKings has agreed a multi-year partnership with Caesars Entertainment that will give the operator access to a number of state gambling markets as and when regulation is passed. Topics: Casino & games Finance Sports betting Strategy Casino & games Caesars will receive an equity stake in DraftKings in return for the route into new state markets, with the operator to also promote Caesars as its official casino resort partner in markets where the companies collaborate.“Caesars’ agreement with DraftKings, their first multi-state partnership, brings together the established leaders in gaming, daily fantasy sports and sports betting to provide customers more options,” Caesars president and chief executive Mark Frissora said.“This alliance is the latest initiative by Caesars to capitalise on our database, generate a new revenue stream in a growth market and raise our profile in sports, in part by creating new sports-themed guest experiences at our resorts across the country.” DraftKings CEO and co-foudner Jason Robins added: “Partnering with such a world class gaming organisation will expedite our national roll-out process and give us the opportunity to work alongside one the largest and most established industry leaders in the world. “We look forward to collaborating with Caesars on creating the most innovative and engaging sports and entertainment products and events for our customers.” Having originally established itself as a daily fantasy sports operator, DraftKings has experienced huge success since expanding out of this sector, following the repeal of PASPA in the US. The operator launched its DraftKings Sportsbook in New Jersey last August and has led the state in mobile betting revenue every month since. DraftKings also ranked first in terms of fantasy sports revenue generated in Pennsylvania last month, despite overall revenue falling in the state’s market. DraftKings has also been seeking to expand its service offering further, having last month entered into a live casino partnership with Evolution Gaming. Caesars has also been busy since last year’s Supreme Court decision on PASPA, entering into partnerships across the US as it seeks to capitalise on the growing market. Last month, Caesars launched a sportsbook at Harrah’s Philadelphia Casino and Racetrack in Pennsylvania via a partnership with Scientific Games. The company also recently secured a partnership with the Oneida Indian Nation in New York, in anticipation of the state legalising sports betting. 26th February 2019 | By contenteditorcenter_img Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Regions: US Email Address DraftKings has agreed a multi-year partnership with Caesars Entertainment that will give the operator access to a number of state gambling markets as and when regulation is passed.This will allow DraftKings to enter markets in which Caesars operates land-based casino properties, on an exclusive basis in certain territories. Caesars may continue to offer its own branded sports betting and online casino apps in each of these states, as well as maintain its own primary access in all of these jurisdictions. Caesars and DraftKings seal extensive market access deallast_img read more

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William Hill strikes tribal partnership in New Mexico

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first_img Email Address Casino & games Tags: OTB and Betting Shops Race Track and Racino William Hill strikes tribal partnership in New Mexico Regions: US New Mexico Topics: Casino & games Sports betting Tribal gaming Horse racing William Hill US is to enter the New Mexican gambling market through a new partnership with the Mescalero Apache Tribe, operator of the state’s Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort & Casino. William Hill US is to enter the New Mexican gambling market through a new partnership with the Mescalero Apache Tribe, operator of the state’s Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort & Casino.The tribe has selected William Hill to power the launch of a new sportsbook within the venue, the operator and supplier’s first partnership in the state, and its first tribal agreement outside of Nevada.“Over the years, our customers have come to expect a high level of service and the best casino offerings possible,” Inn of the Mountain Gods chief operating officer Frizzell Frizzell Jr said. “Our sports book will be no exception.“Together with William Hill, we will offer state-of-the-art betting technology, and innovative wagering opportunities including in-play options.“We know this is something our customers have been looking forward to and we’re thrilled to be able to partner with the best in the business to bring it to them.”Based southeast of Albuquerque, Inn of the Mountain Gods will open a new sportsbook powered by William Hill’s proprietary technology later this summer.Read the full story on iGB North America. 25th June 2019 | By contenteditor AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Subscribe to the iGaming newsletterlast_img read more

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Oregon Lottery sportsbook launch could miss NFL kick-off

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first_imgSports betting 21st August 2019 | By contenteditor The Oregon State Lottery has insisted that “a smooth player experience” is the priority with its new sportsbook, even if it means launching after the start of the new NFL American football season. Topics: Sports betting Regions: US Oregon Oregon Lottery sportsbook launch could miss NFL kick-offcenter_img The Oregon State Lottery has insisted that “a smooth player experience” is the priority with its new sportsbook, even if it means the launch misses the start of the new NFL American football season.The lottery had previously planned for its mobile sportsbook to be up and running by the beginning of the new NFL campaign on September 5, with the second-phase retail offering to follow in early 2020.However, in response to a report that the schedule has been pushed back, with the retail offering now likely to launch in the middle of 2020, the lottery’s public information manager, Matt Shelby, told iGamingBusiness.com that the focus is on fine-tuning the product, rather than cutting corners.Read the full story on iGB North America. Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Email Addresslast_img read more

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Raketech appoints Mühlbach as new chief executive

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first_imgMarketing & affiliates Online affiliate and content marketing provider Raketech has appointed Oskar Mühlbach, its former chief operating officer, as its new chief executive and president. Tags: Online Gambling Topics: Marketing & affiliates People Strategy Online affiliate and content marketing provider Raketech has appointed Oskar Mühlbach, its former chief operating officer, as its new chief executive and president.Mühlbach, who held the role of COO since April this year, will replace Michael Holmberg as CEO with immediate effect.Prior to his time with Raketech, Mühlbach spent just under three years with Mr Green, first serving as COO before going on to become chief ventures officer.Earlier in his career, Mühlbach also had spells with Swedish shoe store chain Footway AB and Nordic online beauty store eleven AB.“Oskar has a clear vision of how Raketech will develop towards becoming a global partner to players in the igaming industry,” Raketech chairman Christian Lundberg said. “With his excellent skills in the company’s core business, I am confident that we will ensure the right balance between organic development and expansion.“As we now enter a new phase in the company’s development, I am convinced that he is the right person to execute on our strategy and to lead the company through the challenges that we and the entire industry experienced in 2019.”Lundberg also paid tribute to the outgoing Holmberg, praising the impact he had on the business during his time as CEO.“Michael Holmberg has been a driving force in the transformation of a young and fast-growing company into one of the market’s leading players in affiliate marketing,” Lundberg said. “He has also been a leader in the process of preparing and taking the company public on Nasdaq First North Premier Growth Market.“I am very grateful for his efforts and wish Michael the best of luck in his future career.”Confirmation of Mühlbach as CEO comes after Raketech in October announced the appointment of Måns Svalborn as its new chief financial officer, replacing Andreas Kovacs.Svalborn joined the business in November, with Kovacs stepping aside from the role in order to take up the position as director of business development at the performance marketing specialist. 12th December 2019 | By contenteditorcenter_img Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Raketech appoints Mühlbach as new chief executive Email Addresslast_img read more

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Hard Rock launches GiG-powered sportsbook in Iowa

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first_img Companies: GiG Regions: US Iowa Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Topics: Sports betting Tech & innovation AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Sports betting Hard Rock launches GiG-powered sportsbook in Iowacenter_img 16th December 2019 | By contenteditor Hard Rock International has launched a mobile sportsbook in Iowa, powered by Gaming Innovation Group (GiG), complementing the bricks-and-mortar offering rolled out in September.Iowa becomes the second state into which the partners have entered, having rolled out a sportsbook in New Jersey in January this year. “The project went live smoothly after many weeks of hard work from both GiG and Hard Rock,” GiG chief information officer Chris Armes said of the mobile launch.“We are pleased to entertain consumers with a safe and exciting first-class omnichannel sports betting experience.”Read the full story on iGB North America. Tags: Mobile Online Gambling Hard Rock International has launched a mobile sportsbook in Iowa, powered by Gaming Innovation Group (GiG), complementing the bricks-and-mortar offering rolled out in September. Email Addresslast_img read more

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Everi highlights Q3 recovery following H1 losses

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first_img Gaming technology and payment solutions provider Everi Holdings says its business is showing signs of recovery in the early weeks of the third quarter, after seeing revenue plummet and losses mount in the first half of the year.Revenue for the six months to 30 June declined 40.0% to $152.0m (£115.9m/€128.3m), with the business posting a loss of $81.9m for the period, compared to an $11.3m profit in the prior year.This followed a 70.2% year-on-year decline in revenue for the second quarter of 2020 to $38.7m, which Everi noted reflected the impact of casino closures across the US from mid-March. During this period, the business saw revenue decline to zero – which already impacted first quarter performance – before venues began to reopen in May, ramping up through June.As a result of the industry shut-down, Everi began to implement cost-saving measures in March, to lower its cash burn rate, with these largely in effect by the beginning of Q2, from 1 April.For the three months to 30 June, games revenue amounted to $20.8m, down 70.0%, with a further $17.9m coming from Everi’s financial technology arm, 70.3% less than the prior year.Read the full story on iGB North America. Casino & games Everi highlights Q3 recovery following H1 losses Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Gaming technology and payment solutions provider Everi Holdings says its business is showing signs of recovery in the early weeks of the third quarter, after seeing revenue plummet and losses mount in the first half of the year. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Email Address Tags: Payments Slot Machines 5th August 2020 | By contenteditor Topics: Casino & games Finance Tech & innovation Slots Regions: USlast_img read more

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HKJC betting shops to remain closed indefinitely

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first_img18th August 2020 | By Conor Mulheir Hong Kong Jockey Club (HKJC) is to keep all its off-course betting branches closed indefinitely, despite originally planning to allow the venues to reopen from early August.The news comes in response to a sharp increase in cases of novel coronavirus (Covid-19) in the jurisdiction, which shares a land border with China where the spread of the virus began in late 2019.Total cases of the virus in Hong Kong have increased some 267% in around six weeks, from 1,234 on 1 July, to 4,525 on 17 August.HKJC’s betting branches were originally closed in February, around the beginning of the pandemic, however they reopened briefly on 22 June.Between this date and 19 July, customers were able to place bets, manage accounts and make deposits and withdrawals in-branch, in line with safety measures including social distancing and the use of masks and hand sanitizer stations.However, a resurgence in cases of Covid-19 forced the shops to close once again in July, with plans to reopen them early in August, before the latest extension.Despite difficulties caused by the pandemic, HKJC reported 2019-20 as its third most successful season in history, as it saw revenues bolstered by international and online growth.It reported that total racing turnover in the season that ran from 1 September 2019 to 15 July 2020 was HK$121.6bn (US$15.7bn/€13.8bn/£12.2bn), a 2.6% decline from the previous season.While turnover dipped by almost 26% in early February, wagering rallied through the latter part of the season and climaxed with a record HK$1.6bn being taken in the season finale at the Happy Valley course on 15 July. There was a slight increase in the number of local races year-on-year with 828 compared to 812 in 2018-19.The first meeting in the HKJC 2020-21 season is currently expected to take place on Sunday, 6 September, with the season expected to run until 14 July 2021. Regions: China Hong Kong Topics: Sports betting Hong Kong Jockey Club (HKJC) is to keep all its off-course betting branches closed indefinitely, despite originally planning to allow the venues to reopen from early August. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Tags: OTB and Betting Shops HKJC betting shops to remain closed indefinitely Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Sports betting Email Addresslast_img read more

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EGBA slams Swedish proposals to tighten igaming regulations

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first_img Topics: Casino & games Legal & compliance Casino regulation Online casino Compliance Licensing Regulation Marketing regulation Sports betting regulation EGBA also pointed to a recent Spelinspektionen-commissioned survey which found Swedish players had very low levels of understanding of the differences between the licensed and unlicensed markets. The survey found only 5% of respondents knew how to check an online gambling site was licenced in Sweden. “Generically imposed deposit limits, despite being well-intentioned, encourage many customers, including those experiencing problematic gambling behaviour, to exit the regulated market and play on black market websites which allow them to circumvent the limit,” it said. Regulation “EGBA members, including BOS, accept their shared responsibility to protect customers, and we are continuously considering what we can do more, but, fundamentally, the best way to protect customers is to ensure they play inside the regulated market with companies who are licensed in and apply the consumer protection laws in Sweden.  “The risks to consumer protection from black market gambling are very real, particularly for vulnerable customers: these websites are readily available, easy to access and do not apply any limits or responsible gambling measures, for example self-exclusion registers such as Sweden’s Spelpaus scheme.” It said the proposals, the latest changes to be put forward since regulation was implemented in January 2019, would not improve player protection in Sweden. Instead, EGBA said, the new measures could potentially create a greater level of risk. Among the Commission’s reccomendations were that the SEK5,000 (£439/€490/$580) deposit cap temporarily imposed on casino games and extended last month, should be made permanent. Maarten Haijer The report also recommended additional measures to stamp out unlicensed activity including a licensing system for suppliers, which EGBA said was “welcome”. Regions: Europe Nordics Sweden EGBA said the continuation of the SEK5,000 deposit cap was an especially problematic policy as it may help the unregulated market and it noted its opposition to the cap when it was implemented. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter 15th December 2020 | By Daniel O’Boyle The association spoke out in the wake of Sweden’s Gambling Market Commission (Spelmarknadsutredningen) making a series of recommendations, including advertising controls and permanent spending caps, to improve player protection standards. EGBA secretary general Maarten Haijer (pictured) said that while the recommendations were well-intentioned, they would decrease channelisation in Sweden, and that this would cause more harm due to the lack of protections in the unlicensed market. Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter EGBA slams Swedish proposals to tighten igaming regulations “The cumulative effect of more restrictions on the Swedish market will be less channelisation and more unregulated black market gambling. Despite being well-intentioned, this would be clearly counter-productive and will damage the safety of the consumer.”  Email Address The European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) has blasted a Swedish report calling for new igaming controls, arguing it would put the success of Sweden’s regulated market “in jeopardy”. Tags: Deposit Cap EGBA Branschföreningen för Onlinespel Spelmarknadsutredningen The recommendations also included a call for regulator Spelinspektionen to ramp up efforts to clarify the duty of care expected of operators in their dealing with customers. This would include a prohibition on advertising between the hours of 6am and 9pm proposed, as part of efforts to protect players from products considered the most harmful, such as slots. “EGBA is concerned that the frequency and scope of regulatory changes in Sweden jeopardises the overall success of the country’s online gambling regulation and its ability to provide Swedes with a safe, attractive and regulated online environment where they can bet,” it said. The association added that the regular changes have already occurred in Sweden since the licensed gambling market opened at the start of 2019. This only served to create an unstable environment for licensees.last_img read more

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