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Hong Kong police cracks down gambling dens arrests 48 persons

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Hong Kong police cracks down gambling dens arrests 48 persons
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Hong Kong police has detained 48 persons, including gamblers and sex workers, following a three-month-long crackdown process targeting a suspected gambling den in the city.

The police officials also seised HK$25,500 (US$3,200) and four arcade game machines, along with two accounting books.

The 18 men and four women, aged 25–56, were picked up when officers raided two residential units on King’s Road and Chun Yeung Street in North Point that was used as gambling dens.

Police said two of the male suspects, aged 28 and 36, were arrested on suspicion of operating the betting establishments while the others were arrested for gambling. They were being held for questioning.

In Hong Kong, operating a gambling establishment carries a maximum penalty of seven years in jail and a HK$5 million fine. Gambling in an illegal establishment carries a maximum penalty of nine months in jail and a HK$30,000 fine.

Separately, 26 female visitors from mainland China were rounded up in an anti-vice operation jointly mounted by police and immigration officers in Yau Ma Tei on Tuesday. The women were arrested in brothels and hotel rooms on Temple Street, Shanghai Street, Portland Street, Reclamation Street, Jordan Road and Nathan Road when the raids began at about 4 pm on Tuesday.

The raids in North Point and Yau Ma Tei were part of a three-month operation code-named “Thunderbolt 18”, which ended on Wednesday.

In the first two months of the operation, police arrested more than 3000 people, seised HK$220 million in betting records, illicit goods and illegal drugs, and closed down more than 3000 illegal gambling dens, drug distribution centres, vice establishments and unlicensed pubs across the city.

The operation was carried out in tandem with an annual cross-border “clean-up” against organised crime syndicates and triad activities and was led by police from the city, Guangdong province and Macau.

On the first day of the operation, officers from the Organised Crime and Triad Bureau arrested two elderly sisters suspected of running a prostitution ring out of their Mid-Levels home. Police seised HK$10 million in cash inside the flat.

In June, police in Hong Kong and Shenzhen arrested 50 people and confiscated HK$77.7 million in betting records in their joint operation targeting a cross-border bookmaking syndicate during the World Cup.

Last month, police arrested more than 100 people in connection with gold-trading scams in which attractive, sweet-talking female brokers as well as male brokers posing as women were used to coax clients into making investments. Police said there were more than 160 victims in one of the cases, resulting in HK$100 million in total losses.

 

Source: scmp.com

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SOLAIRE RESORT NORTH MARKS NEW ERA IN GAMING, TOURISM

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Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) Chairman and CEO Alejandro H. Tengco on Saturday hailed Bloomberry Resorts Corporation for its latest luxury development, the Solaire Resort North, which he said is an instant landmark destination in Quezon City.

During the formal opening of the second Solaire-branded leisure and entertainment property in Metro Manila, Mr. Tengco said Solaire Resort North “marks a new era not only for the Philippine gaming industry but also for the tourism industry.”

“This will definitely become a leisure and entertainment destination in this part of Metro Manila,” he said.

Situated on a 1.5-hectare site in Quezon City, Solaire Resort North is the first and only five-star integrated resort and casino to serve northern Metro Manila and adjacent provinces.

Mr. Tengco also noted the huge efforts made by Bloomberry to bring the project to life.

“This jewel was not created overnight; It took years of meticulous planning, hundreds if not thousands of workers toiling day and night, immense resources poured into it, to bring us this development that is a class of its own,” the PAGCOR chief said.

According to Mr. Tengco, by raising the bar incredibly high, Solaire Resort North instantly becomes the benchmark upon which future integrated resorts will be measured against.

“For this we owe our gratitude to the vision and unwavering determination of Mr. Ricky Razon and his entire team,” he said.

“We at PAGCOR, just like Bloomberry Resorts Corporation, are continuously inspired by the hard work and commitment of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., to pursue projects like Solaire Resort North so that we can provide more jobs and better opportunities for our people, especially those in the tourism and leisure industries,” the PAGCOR chief added.

President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. and First Lady Liza Araneta-Marcos led the Solaire Resort North’s inauguration. Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte also graced the event.

For his part, Bloomberry Resorts Corporation Chairman and CEO Enrique Razon Jr. said Solaire Resort North aims to elevate the entertainment experience in Quezon City.

“We hope to serve the burgeoning tourism demand north of Metro Manila and the nearby provinces that are enjoying rapid commercial and residential development. We hope to bolster economic activity in Quezon City by encouraging visitors – both Filipinos and foreigners — to explore and discover the city,” he said.

“We are bringing only the exceptional to Solaire North – from architecture, interiors, accommodation, gaming, cuisine, art, to entertainment,” Mr. Razon added.

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Promoters stake sale of Nazara Technologies Limited to existing investor, Plutus Wealth Management LLP

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Mitter Infotech LLP, a promoter of Nazara Technologies Limited (“the Company”), has sold 48,84,000 equity shares, representing 6.38% of the issued share capital to Plutus Wealth Management LLP through an on-market transaction in the block deal window of the stock exchange (“Block Trade”) on May 27, 2024.

The Block Trade will provide liquidity for the promoters who have dedicated 25 years to the Company’s growth. The promoters will retain control of the Company, with Nitish Mittersain continuing in his current role as CEO & Jt. Managing Director. The promoters remain confident that the Company is strategically and financially well positioned to capitalize on the numerous opportunities ahead.

Plutus Wealth Management LLP, an investor in Nazara since 2020 (pre-IPO), has demonstrated strong confidence in the Company’s prospects by increasing its shareholding via this Block Trade.

“Plutus Wealth Management LLP has been a long term investor in Nazara since the pre-ipo days and has actively participated in subsequent fund raises as well”, said Vikash Mittersain, Promoter, Nazara Technologies Limited. “This transaction represents a resounding vote of confidence by Plutus in Nazara’s long-term growth prospects, its promoters and management”, he added.

Mr. Arpit Khandelwal, Managing Partner of Plutus Wealth Management LLP, said, “We are extremely delighted to announce that we have increased our stake in Nazara Technologies Limited, India’s leading diversified gaming and sports media platform. This decision underscores our strong conviction in the phenomenal growth opportunity that the sector offers and our confidence in Nazara’s diversified product portfolio, talented team, and unique competitive position. With its expanded presence in various international markets and global partnerships, Nazara is a notable example of an Indian games company that has been successful in going global. In continuation to our philosophy, we look forward to actively supporting the management team as they execute on their growth strategy and aggressively accelerate progress towards achieving their long-term objectives”.

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Nazara FY24 EBITDA increases by 16.6% to INR 127.9 Cr, Operating Cash Flow of INR 131.4 Cr

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Nazara FY24 EBITDA increases by 16.6% to INR 127.9 Cr, Operating Cash Flow of INR 131.4 Cr
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Nazara Technologies Limited a diversified gaming and sports media platform announced its unaudited Standalone and Consolidated results for the quarter and Fiscal Year ended 31st March 2024.

Key Consolidated Financial Highlights for FY24 are as follows:

Revenue grew by 4.3% to INR 1,138.3 Cr as against INR 1,091.0 Cr in FY23

EBITDA increased by 16.6% to INR 127.9 Cr as against INR 109.8 Cr in FY23

EBITDA margin increased by 110 bps to 11.2% in FY24 from 10.1% in FY23

Operating Cash Flow (pre-taxes) was INR 131.4 Cr in FY24

PAT (from continuing operations) increased by 41.2% to INR 89.5 Cr in FY24 as against INR 63.4 Cr in FY23

PAT including discontinued operations increased by 21.8% to INR 74.8 Cr in FY24 as against INR 61.4 Cr in FY23

Net Cash Balance of INR 1,449 Cr as of March 31, 2024

 

Key Consolidated Financial Highlights for Q4FY24 are as follows:

Revenue of INR 266.2 Cr as against INR 289.3 Cr in Q4FY23

EBITDA increased to INR 29.3 Cr as against INR 27.8 Cr in Q4FY23

EBITDA margin increased by robust 140 bps to 11.0% in Q4FY24 from 9.6% in Q4FY23

PAT (from continued operations) of INR 17.1 Cr as against INR 11.9 Cr in Q4FY24

Commenting on the Q4 & FY24 performance, Nitish Mittersain, Founder, CEO & Jt MD of Nazara Technologies stated:

FY24 has been a year of building a strong foundation for rapid future scaling. We achieved a 4.3% revenue growth and a 16.5% EBITDA growth, with our margin improving by 110 bps YoY to 11.2%. Notably, our Operating Cash Flow increased to INR 131.4 Cr, reflecting the company’s strong underlying performance.

We raised INR 950 crores at Nazara and subsidiaries, our largest fundraise to date, resulting in a net cash balance of INR ~1,450 crores.

Key initiatives from FY24 are set to yield results in the coming year, including our new publishing platform, new game launches through existing studios, IP partnerships, and a strong M&A pipeline. Subsidiaries are also successfully adopting our M&A playbook, with Absolute Sports (Sportskeeda) acquiring Pro Football Network (PFN) in March 2023, doubling PFN business post-acquisition and turning it profitable. Nextwave acquired UTP (a casual card game) in April 2024, and NODWIN Gaming acquired Comic Con India.

We are optimistic about FY25, expecting accelerated growth in both revenue and EBITDA. With substantial cash reserves and a robust M&A pipeline, we are well positioned to seize further growth opportunities and enhance our growth trajectory through strategic M&A over the next 12 months.

We have also announced acquisition of 100% stake in Nextwave Multimedia Private Limited, developers of the popular mobile cricket games under the “World Cricket Championship” franchise.”

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