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US firm taking over Australian casino company

George Miller

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US firm taking over Australian casino company
Photo Source: CNBC.com
Reading Time: 4 minutes

 

The seemingly permanently advancing nature of the Australian gambling world has recently seen trouble. If you have been keeping an eye out for the news, you know that the recent Beijing crackdowns on the gambling within the Chinese borders have caused many, spenders and investors, to turn away from the industry. This has resulted, in turn, in the decrease in revenues that the Australian gambling firms have been seeing over the years. While real money casinos in Australia are seeing a rise in users the physical casinos have seen a lot of damage done to them. While not catastrophic, the crackdown has had its effect. The large scale divesting by shareholders has resulted in a loss of value for many shares of large companies. Crown, the large casino company from Australia, has also seen itself face trouble as a result. So it came like a fresh breath of air when an American resort company got in touch with Crown with an offer to but them out lock, stock, and barrel, in the past few months.

Wynn resorts makes an offer
Wynn Resorts is a huge American company. It owns and operates resorts and, more importantly, casinos, in some of the biggest gambling hotspots around the world. The company owns and operates large casinos in Las Vegas and Macau, and have been interested in expanding its operations further into the world. The time could not be better, as with the Australian physical casino market looking a little bleak has caused the price of acquiring them to become so much lower.
Despite this, the offer to the owners of Crown is still quite a staggering number. Wynn resorts are offering seven billion US dollars to Crown for the entirety of their operation. The offer seems to be more than generous, and it has been reflected in the share value of Crown. The only recently, the value of shares was only around $14, while after the news was released, the value of the shares jumped up to $24, as people scrambled to get their share of the pie and drove the prices of the shares sky high. And while the markets are going wild over Crown shares, the heads and shareholders of the company sit in their offices deliberating if the deal is good enough for them. Whatever they decide, this deal is a much welcome infusion into the industry, as the markets once more get excited about the casino-related news

A slow year for gambling
The past year has been slow for the gambling industry within Australia, a direct result of some of the more significant changes in the gambling regulations over the past years. The reforms in advertising and requirements have been causing a slow loss of customer base for physical casinos. These users are heading to a more comfortable online experience, but the result is the physical casino industry. The biggest slots machine manufacturer in the country, Ainsworth Game Technology, has already been seeing losses in revenue and is expecting the trend to continue in the near future.
But the regulations do not seem to be abating. Some are expecting even more regulation to hit sometime in 2019 or beginning of 2020, which might again cause some problems for the gambling industry in AU. With the regulation already diverting most of the casino revenue to offshore companies, because of the requirement for online casinos to be from foreign countries. Some companies have already been showing signs that the coming years might be a bit of a struggle.
But the potential of the industry is not getting any smaller. All that is being done is that the energy of the people is directed elsewhere – to non-Australian shores. The issue with regulation is thus quite apparent and obvious, but there isn’t much being done to change it, only the add more regulation. The government has an issue with the citizens gambling but is not taking constructive steps to limit or change the nature of the problem, instead of moving the responsibility for regulation to other countries, which is already damaging to the economy.

A new hope
Despite the issues with regulation, there is no doubt that the current deal that is taking place between Wynn Resorts and Crown is a good sign for the industry. With a large offer such as this being made to the Australian casinos, it must mean that the potential of the market has become of interest to the world’s largest players. And if the largest players are trying to get into Australia, it might be a chance for the industry to be able to revitalize itself. Or maybe the large scale companies such as Wynn Resorts have the necessary funds and economic advantages to be able to compete with international online casinos and offer services that online casinos cannot compete with.
Whatever it is, the current face of the casino industry will need to see some change and revitalization. As Australian casinos lose their users to online casinos from offshore companies, it is important for them to get a chance at operation again with the infusion of new blood and new funds into the industry. It is hard to compete with what online casinos are offering to their users: experience a casino from home. But if the physical casinos manage to figure out a way to offer something attractive enough to the people who play, they might be able to compete with them. Whether this is the experience of the tangibility of the markets, the real world experience of playing at a casino, or something else that a physical casino is able to provide that an online casino won’t be able to, is up for the industry to figure out on itself. But at this rate, the casinos are competing against themselves. After all, who needs to go to Vegas, when you can bring Vegas to you, through your screen?

Other entrants?
Is it possible that there might be other big, international companies interested in the Australian casinos? While there is no way to confirm this at the time, there are suspicions that are international companies are interested in Australia. After all, when 80% of the country is likely to be gambling and some point in the year, it becomes an attractive market for companies that deal in the industry. So it is not surprising the Wynn resorts is interested in entering the already established market, but Crown is not the only company dealing in casinos within Australia, and each one of them has the potential to be a solid way to enter the market.

George Miller started his career in content marketing and has started working as an Editor/Content Manager for our company in 2016. George has acquired many experiences when it comes to interviews and newsworthy content becoming Head of Content in 2017. He is responsible for the news being shared on multiple websites that are part of the European Gaming Media Network.

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Australia

Two ALH-run hotels on North Coast to disciplinary complaint over gaming practices

George Miller

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Two ALH-run hotels on North Coast to disciplinary complaint over gaming practices
Photo Source: westowertavern.com.au
Reading Time: 1 minute

 

The NSW Independent Liquor & Gaming Authority (ILGA) will consider a disciplinary complaint alleging that two ALH-run hotels on the North Coast illegally gave free alcohol to gaming machine players to keep them gambling.

Liquor & Gaming NSW has lodged the complaint against Westower Tavern at West Ballina and South Tweed Tavern at South Tweed Heads.

This follows a comprehensive investigation into ALH venues which included inspections of more than 50 NSW hotels, with more focused investigations into four hotels.

The investigation included covert surveillance, coercive interviews of licensees, staff and other witnesses, review of CCTV, and examination of records and systems.

In two cases, where sufficient evidence was obtained, disciplinary complaints have been lodged.

In the other two cases, which involved Sydney metropolitan hotels, there was insufficient evidence to proceed to a formal complaint.

The complaint lodged with ILGA alleges that the practice of supplying gaming patrons free alcohol was systemic at both North Coast hotels.

Under NSW gaming laws, it is illegal to offer or supply free or discounted alcohol to induce gambling.

ILGA has broad disciplinary powers where it is satisfied that any of the grounds on which the complaint was made apply.

For hotels that breach gaming laws, penalties include formal reprimands, fines up to $110,000 and suspension or cancellation of licences.

It is not appropriate to make any further comment until ILGA has considered the complaint.

It is usual practice for ILGA to publish reasons for decisions once it finalises disciplinary complaint proceedings.

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Australia

Have Your Say On NSW Gaming Machine And Casino Regulations

George Miller

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Have Your Say On NSW Gaming Machine And Casino Regulations
Photo Source: abc.net.au
Reading Time: 1 minute

 

The NSW Government is inviting community and industry feedback on a number of minor administrative changes being proposed as part of a mandatory remake of the Gaming Machines Regulation 2010 and Casino Control Regulation 2009, which are due to expire on 1 September.

The proposals seek to align the regulations with modern practice by updating descriptions of compliance processes and general terminology.

There are also plans to update harm minimisation measures to help prevent and reduce gambling harms.

Casinos and venues with gaming machines need clear and effective regulations to ensure they operate with the highest standards of integrity and compliance, and practise responsible conduct of gambling.

The proposed regulations and Regulatory Impact Statements explaining their effects, costs and benefits are available on the Liquor & Gaming NSW website.

Feedback is welcome and will be considered before the proposed regulations are finalised.

Submissions close on Wednesday 17 July.  To find out more about the proposed regulations and how to submit your feedback, visit https://www.liquorandgaming.nsw.gov.au/community-and-stakeholders/have-your-say/community-consultations/current-consultations

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Australia

Community members to share experiences of harm from online gambling to help others

George Miller

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Community members to share experiences of harm from online gambling to help others
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

The Gambling Impact Society (GIS) has launched its Lived Experience Project to help the community better understand harms linked to online gambling by hearing from people with first-hand experience.

The project, funded by the NSW Office of Responsible Gambling, is seeking people from across NSW who have personal experience of online gambling harm to share their story.

Peer educators are supported to deliver one-hour community education sessions across NSW regional centres. Audiences will include community members, welfare services, community groups, health services and corporate organisations.

The Director of the Office of Responsible Gambling, Natalie Wright, said: “We hope to build community awareness of the harm that can be experienced by some people from online gambling through this project, and encourage those struggling to seek help.”

The program harnesses the power of real-life experiences as a powerful tool in helping people understand the impacts problem gambling can have.

“It’s common for people at risk of gambling harm to relate easily to others who have experienced what they are going through and overcome their problem,” Kate Roberts, Executive Officer of GIS, said.

“Starting a conversation can help de-stigmatise the subject of problem gambling and encourage people who are suffering in silence to reach out for help.”

The project is working towards spreading awareness about problem gambling and promoting self-help and professional support to those affected. While helping individuals who may be affected by gambling harm, community and welfare services can also benefit from increased understanding of problem gambling.

This support is part of the NSW Government’s record $25 million funding commitment in 2018/19 to help tackle gambling harm in communities across NSW.

If you are interested in becoming a part of this project, or if you would like more information on the project, please contact Kate Roberts 0401 370 042 or email info@ginsw.org.au.

For more information on the Gambling Impact Society visit www.ginsw.org.au.

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