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Macau Gaming Revenue Drops 87.8% in February Amid Casino Shutdown

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Macau Gaming Revenue Drops 87.8% in February Amid Casino Shutdown
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Macau gross gaming revenue (GGR) has declined 87.8% in February in year-on-year terms.

The GGR was MOP3.10 billion (US$387 million), according to data issued on Sunday by the city’s casino regulator, the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau, a body also known as DICJ.

The latest monthly result puts the market’s accumulated 2020 year-on-year decline at 49.9%, to MOP25.23 billion. The GGR decline coincided with the city’s government announcing that the city’s casinos would have to close for a 15-day period from the stroke of midnight on February 5.

Some of the city’s casinos started to reopen on February 20, but the government gave operators the option of applying for a grace period of up to 30 days before relaunch.

Only 29 of the 39 active casinos in the city reopened on February 20, with eight additional venues resuming operations last week. As of Friday, only two of the city’s active casinos were yet to reopen, according to the casino regulator.

Brokerage Sanford C. Bernstein Ltd had estimated February casino GGR in Macau “to be down 90 percent,” with March potentially “down 80 percent,” assuming no significant improvement in travel arrangements.

Asia

GEMS Secures 50M Investment Commitment from GEM Digital Limited

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GEMS has announced that it has secured a $50 million Investment Commitment from GEM Digital Limited (GEM Group), a digital asset investment firm based in The Bahamas. GEM Group actively sources, structures and invests in utility tokens listed on over 30 CEXs and DEXs globally.

The new capital will be used to further enhance GEMS products and expand the ecosystem globally, with a primary focus in Asia.

GEMS, the Esports 3.0 Platform, currently has more than 80 blockchain and Esports companies as partners, most of which are pioneer, top-tier investors or world class leaders in the industry. As its expansion plan is inclusive and aggressive, GEMS welcomes new GameFi partners to join in.

“GEMS is a promising Esports 3.0 GameFi Platform with a unique O2O (online-to-offline) system. It propels Esports into 3.0 by integrating GameFi, Metaverse and SocialFi elements,” a spokesperson for the GEM Group said.

“We are about to experience fundamental change in how we perceive the blockchain and Esports world. We definitely see great potential in GEMS Esports 3.0 platform and would like to give our ultimate support to GEMS.”

“We are honored to sign the $50 million Investment Commitment agreement with the GEM. This agreement with GEM notably positions us for our next stage of development as we continuously innovate and evolve our products. GEM’s capital commitment provides strong support to future development and expansion of our platform, especially in Asia. Part of the capital will be used to fund user acquisition,” Andy Koh, CEO of GEMS, said.

“The $50 million funding commitment from GEM will foster the growth of GEMS, as well as its partners. With LABS Group and Arena Esports Hotel as our founding partners, our next step is to wisely deploy these capitals to nurture our O2O ecosystem, as well as explore new and exciting opportunities for GEMS,” Yuen Wong, co-founder of GEMS and CEO of LABS Group, said.

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Asia

Representatives Propose Legalisation for Land-based and Online Casinos in Thailand

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A group of parties led by the Thai Local Power Party has suggested changes to Thailand’s Gambling Act to allow both land-based and online casinos. They propose allowing four casinos in Thailand’s busiest areas.

Chutchawan Kong-u-dom, leader of the Thai Local Power Party and his party members along with 20 representatives of smaller parties have submitted the draft amendment to House Speaker Chuan Leekpai through political working group member Pongsri Tarapoom.

Chutchawan said the draft amendment aimed to generate revenue amid an economic downturn and thus help reduce Thailand’s national debt.

Kovit Puangngam, a party list-MP of the Thai Local Power Party, said legalising online casinos would let authorities collect taxes from licencee holders and decide how to punish illegal casino operators.

Kovit said that under the proposals 90% of tax revenue collected from licence holders, including their application fees, would fund state welfare initiatives. This would include debt relief in the agricultural sector, as well as student loans and occupational development. Kovit said the other 10% will go to the Ministry of Finance.

He said Thailand could earn THB 1.5 trillion in revenue from tax collection and application fees from online casinos.

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Asia

React Gaming to Offer LOOT.BET Esports Wagering Skin via HHRP in the Philippines

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Generationz Gaming Entertainment, a subsidiary of the React Gaming Group, has signed a white label revenue sharing agreement with HHRP Inc to operate LOOT.BET’s esports wagering platform in the Philippines, pending successful certification of the LOOT.BET platform by Gaming Laboratories International.

“We are thrilled to have HHRP as a partner for the Philippines market, HHRP being one of only four companies holding online gaming licences in a country of more than 109 million people,” Laurent Benezra, President and CEO of React Gaming, said.

“This agreement is part of our two-pronged growth strategy to expand LOOT.BET’s reach into the B2C and B2B markets. The advantage of the B2B market is that LOOT.BET’s platform will be offered to established customer bases, thus involving no customer acquisition cost on our part. Our partner will offer our white-label platform as its own to its customers and we will receive a portion of the revenue generated when those customers use the platform. The more popular our platform, the more revenue it will generate. The great thing about this model is that we can replicate it in multiple markets and with multiple online gaming providers at minimal cost,” Laurent Benezra added.

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