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Gambling in the USA

Casinos Across the U.S. Continue to Close as COVID-19 Spreads

George Miller

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USA casinos are closing amid covid-19
Photo Source: Rogelio V Solis/AP/Shutterstock
Reading Time: 3 minutes

 

More and more casinos across the United States are closing their doors as the nation goes into shutdown following the coronavirus outbreak.

Over the past few days, the rapid spread of the virus has forced millions of citizens to quarantine themselves at home. Offices, hotels, and venues across the country have had to cease operations, unclear when they can open again. The country is facing an economic crisis as a result and the gambling industry could be one of the worst-hit.

Both Wynn Resorts and MGM Resorts International shuttered their Las Vegas casinos last week. However, full-time employees have been given assurances that salaries will continue to be paid during the period. The move follows recommendations from the CDC to limit public gatherings to no more than 10 people.

Speaking to CNBC, Vegas-based race and sports manager Duane Colucci of Rampart Casino highlighted the industry’s struggle to prepare for such a situation. “It’s so hard to fathom. You can’t prepare for something like this, especially in the race and sportsbook industry,” she said. She hopes that work-from-home regulations will be relaxed to allow casinos to take bets online.

On the east coast, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy has closed all casinos, bars, and restaurants in Atlantic City, rendering the popular gambling hub a ghost town.

 

A move online

Online gambling has managed to continue through the struggles largely unaffected, with many digital casinos accepting US players around the world. Virtual horse racing also continues to operate online, along with certain sporting events in less-affected countries like Mexico and Russia.

Sportsbooks across the country have begun taking bets on all-and-everything in an attempt to pick up the slack. For example, the popular Costa Rican-based betting site Bovada has even been taking bets on the maximum temperature in various U.S. cities.

Sports betting sites like FanDuel and DraftKings are investigating new events on which to take bets. They both took some bizarre wagers on last week’s U.S political debate, including the amount and frequency of Trump’s tweets. Some other online betting sites have come up with some questionable solutions, like hosting simulated versions of real-life sports events that have been canceled.

Across the pond in the United Kingdom, physical casinos are also feeling the pinch. However, with the UK’s more favorable online gambling regulations, many are surviving through their online partner sites. eSports, where players compete entirely online, is another industry that has garnered increased popularity. Many sports betting sites are now enticing players to redirect their bets to eSports as a way to mitigate lost revenue on real-life sports.

 

A drain on savings

While online gambling might solve the problem of social distancing that COVID-19 presents, it doesn’t solve the problem of dwindling capital in most households. The longer that citizens are kept away from their work, the less likely they are to spend their savings on unnecessary activities. While gambling may be a favorite past-time for many, risky investments tend to reduce significantly during times of crisis.

The overall casino and gambling industry will struggle to survive this outbreak if the lockdown continues for too long. According to the UK paper The Guardian, around 35 companies are currently investigating a COVID-19 vaccine. However, it’s an arduous process that involves several critical testing phases in order to gain regulatory approval.

Annelies Wilder-Smith of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine believes a COVID-19 vaccine will take at least 18 months to develop, under the best possible conditions. During that time there is no telling how far the virus could spread and how devasting the effects on the economy could be.

Gambling in the USA

Gaming Americas Weekly Roundup – June 29-July 5

Niji Narayan

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

Welcome to our weekly roundup of American gambling news again! It was again an eventful week at the USA, despite the still-active virus attack.

Here, we are going through the weekly highlights of the American gambling industry which includes casino reopening, financial Reports, recruitments, partnerships and latest approvals. Read on and get updated.

Casino Reopening

MGM National Harbor Resort and Casino has resumed its operations on June 29. The casino has implemented many safety measures such as “contactless” check-ins, single-use baccarat cards and Plexiglass at the casino.

Recruitments

Scientific Games Corporation has appointed Eileen Moore Johnson as its Executive Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer. Eileen joins Scientific Games from Caesars Entertainment.

Sportech PLC has announced key changes to its Bump 50:50 team. The changes include the promotion of Dave Kurland to the position of President.

Jamul Casino has promoted Benjamin Petell to Vice President of Non-Gaming Operations. In his new role at Jamul Casino, Petell will oversee retail, food & beverage, facilities, security, and environmental services.

Financial Reports

Bragg Gaming Group has released its financial results for Q1 2020. Bragg reported revenue growth and Adjusted EBITDA growth for the period. The Group achieved revenue of €8.8m during Q1 2020. The Group’s AEBITDA was €0.8m, representing 100% growth over Q1 of 2019.

Casino table games developer and distributor Galaxy Gaming has published its financial results for the fiscal quarter ended 31 March 2020. The report shows that revenue decreased 15.9% to $4494K, AEBITDA decreased 25.7% to $1501K1 and net income decreased 74.7% to $117K.

Partnership

BenQ America’s esports division ZOWIE has partnered with Helix eSports. As per the deal, ZOWIE will outfit Helix eSports’ gaming and virtual reality centres with top-performing esports monitors and provide prizes for upcoming competitions.

Penn National Gaming has entered into a deal with sports data and content provider Sportradar to use official National Football League data on its sports betting platforms.

DraftKings Inc. has extended its deal with the US-based sports data firm Stats Perform. The deal provides DraftKings access to Stats Perform’s unparalleled sports data feeds for use in its daily fantasy sports contests and DK Live, the company’s play-by-play fantasy app.

The Arkansas Scholarship Lottery has extended its strategic partnership with Camelot Lottery Solutions for a further two years. The agreement will see Camelot Lottery Solutions continue to work with the ASL to help implement its commercial plans, with a greater focus on data-driven insights and business intelligence.

Innovative boutique studio Espresso Games has integrated its gaming content into Rivalo’s network and its games are now available for the Colombian market.

New Approvals

The Nevada Gaming Control Board has approved the amendments that will allow cashless gaming in all casinos. The proposal had been discussed and postponed for a long time, but hygiene concerns due to the Covid-19 pandemic have increased the urgency for the regulation to finally be adopted.

New Study

The UNLV International Gaming Institute (IGI) has announced a new study to assess the sports betting and internet gaming markets in the US. The study will address many unanswered questions on the potential impacts of legalising sports betting and internet gaming across the US.

Lawsuit

The Culinary Union has filed a lawsuit on behalf of Culinary Union members who work in casinos on the Las Vegas Strip in order to protect workers and their families from the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace.

Compliance

Caesars Entertainment Corporation has announced that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has accepted a proposed consent order which concludes the FTC’s review of Caesars’ pending merger with Eldorado Resorts.

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Gambling in the USA

Detroit Tigers Partners with PointsBet

Niji Narayan

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Detroit Tigers Partners with PointsBet
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

Major League Baseball team Detroit Tigers have entered into a new multi-year partnership with sportsbook operator PointsBet to enhance fan engagement and game-day excitement at Comerica Park. The agreement will begin for the upcoming 2020 Tigers season.

“We are thrilled to welcome PointsBet as a gaming partner of the Detroit Tigers. Our incredible fans will love the unique experiences and innovative offerings that PointsBet’s personalized platform provides. We look forward to the fan-friendly enhancements this will bring to the game-day experience in and around Comerica Park for years to come,” Chris Granger, Group President, Sports & Entertainment, Ilitch Holdings, said.

“The PointsBet team is excited to announce our groundbreaking deal with the Detroit Tigers and Major League Baseball, becoming the first legal sports betting operator in U.S. history to partner with an MLB franchise. PointsBet operates in rare space within the industry by owning our technology environment from end to end, which allows us to be extremely nimble on product innovation and personalized offerings to complement our app’s market-leading speed. We offer the most betting options in the world on MLB games via our unique PointsBetting product, and we are excited to inject a unique and robust betting proposition into the great state of Michigan,” Johnny Aitken, CEO of PointsBet USA, said.

The announcement is made possible by the recent agreement between PointsBet and Major League Baseball, designating PointsBet as an Authorised Gaming Operator of MLB, and granting them rights to use official MLB data along with MLB marks and logos within PointsBet products.

As part of the multi-year deal, PointsBet will have television broadcast-visible branding at Comerica Park and will be featured on the Detroit Tigers Radio Network. PointsBet will also have a sponsored presence on the Tigers’ digital platforms and be regularly featured on The Word on Woodward, a twice-weekly fan-favourite live streaming show that airs on the club’s channel. PointsBet will also be integrated into The District Detroit app and the MLB Ballpark app.

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Gambling in the USA

Grover Gaming Announces Ramping Up Hiring Efforts

George Miller

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Grover Gaming Announces Ramping Up Hiring Efforts
Reading Time: < 1 minute

 

Grover Gaming, Inc., an industry leader in electronic gaming design and software development, announced today that it is ramping up its efforts to hire talented system and game development professionals.

Grover Gaming is looking for Passionate, Adaptable, Reliable, and Team oriented system and product developers to be a part of an exciting and fast paced company. These system and product developers will be responsible for building the critical system framework for new markets and products aligning with the Grover Strategic Plan to support the continued rapid growth. The ideal candidates will have experience in the slot/pull-tabs gaming industry and enjoy being a hands-on developer. Grover Gaming’s systems and games, known throughout the industry for exciting design and high-resolution graphics, are all created in-house at its development and design facility.

Grover Gaming seeks to add over 40 system and product development professionals in the next 6 months. To assist new employees’ relocation to its headquarters in Greenville, NC, Grover Gaming is offering relocation stipends and signing bonuses. “We recognize the difficult times many people currently face, so Grover Gaming wants to do all it can to attract the best professionals and ensure our new team members start their new careers here on the best footing possible,” said Gerren Brown, Director of Human Resources for Grover Gaming. “Here at Grover, people come first,” added Brown.

Grover’s products and games benefit charities across the country. It was recently announced that Grover Gaming has surpassed $150 million in monies raised for charities through their charitable gaming and fraternal partners across the United States. Inc. magazine has also recognized Grover Gaming this year as one of the fastest-growing companies in America.

Grover Gaming develops software, game content and gaming systems for lotteries and charitable gaming jurisdictions and is licensed in OhioNew HampshireKentuckyNorth DakotaSouth DakotaMontanaWashingtonVirginia, and Ontario Canada.

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