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Gaming Contributed €1.56bn to the Economy of Malta

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Esports Technologies Announces Expansion with Addition of Third Office, in Malta
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The economy of mga  received €1.56bn from gaming in 2019, which represents a 9.6% year-on-year growth according to data from the 2019 report of the Malta Gaming Authority AKA the MGA.

According to the report, there’s been an ongoing enforcement drive by the MGA, during which it has succeeded in cancelling 14 casino licenses in 2019 alone. There’s also been a 3.9% increase in the number of casino firms and sites in operation – on which you can do things like play online blackjack and crowd favourite slots on – taking the total number to 294, which is still below what it was in 2017.

A look at the €1.56bn additional profit and the total value of the goods/services that the casino industry produces, minus the total consumed value, placed the gaming sector at the third position in the list of the private sectors that contributed highest to the economy of Malta. It stands just behind the retail, food, and accommodation industry at number one and professional services at number two.

Talking about this, the MGA also proposed that gaming also helps in the generation of added value through other ancillary and affiliate services to other main sectors like the real estate, distributive trades, catering services and hospitality, ICT activities, financial sector and professional services sector.

In 2019, the gaming industry provided up to 7,417 jobs, which is a 9.2% year-on-year increase. Out of the total number of jobs mentioned above, the online gaming industry had 6,593. Now, the MGA did not announce the total gaming revenue for the industry, but it went ahead to announce the revenues gained by different types of games.

The first set is made up of the ‘player versus house casino games,’ and this accounts for more than 56% of the total revenue, against the 55.4% of the previous year. In this category, the games that took the centre stage were slots, and they accounted for more than 74.4% of the revenue made by this category. The table games stood at a distant 21.5%.

The second category is made up of sports betting, and this raked in 36.3% of the total revenue, signalling a drop in the 39.0% that it generated the year before. The most prevalent game in this sector is the game of football, which brought in 76.4% of the total revenue, while the contribution by tennis stood at 7.7%, and basketball contributed 5.9%.

For the third category, we have ‘player versus player,’ games and this raked in 7.7% of the total revenue. Poker contributed 81.9% to this, and betting exchanges brought in 10.3%.

The body also has another category of games that it gives licenses for, and this type 4 license is given for controlled skill games. But because the revenue that came through this was very minimal in the scheme of things, it wasn’t added.

There was also a 12.7% growth in the number of active player profiles in online casinos operating with a license from Malta, with the number standing at 20.4m at the moment.

14 casinos were cancelled while the MGA was enforcing its regulations in 2019. This is an increase from the 8 that were cancelled in 2018 and 3 that received the same treatment in 2017. Also, the regulatory body sent 11 licensed casinos into suspension, the same number they did in 2018.

They placed great emphasis on ensuring that the increase in enforcement and compliance they are embarking on reflects its structure and governance. According to the chief executive of the MGA, Heathcliff Faruggia, they committed more money to compliance, to ensure that the risk-based approach to enforcement and regulation is implemented.

There was an increase in the total number of companies operating with licenses in Malta as well, going from 283 in 2018 to 294 in 2019. But this is still not up to what was the case in 2017 when they had 296 companies. There was also an increase in the total number of active licenses from 286 to 298.

They issued new licenses to 53 out of 89 applicants. This is below the 93 that were handed licenses in 2018, and the explanation given by MGA about this is that it was because of the alterations they made in their licensing system from August 2018. The new provision holds that there wouldn’t be any need for new licenses for operators who already possess the critical gaming supply or gaming service license when they want to start offering products that are captured by a different class of license.

The MGA also delved into ad hoc responsible gambling audits in 2019.

For Faruggia, through these audits, the firm has been able to ensure that the lawful safeguards that each license enforces are effective and that they keep relaying information to the authority on how best to protect the vulnerable in the sector.

In 2019, the regulator gained €81.7m, which is an 8.6% increase. Most of the funds were from levies and compliance contributions, and it had an 8.1% increase. Also, €8.1m was made in license fees, which is a 16.1% growth, while fees for license application brought in €477,605 revenue, which is a 16.6% growth. The other sources capped this up with €817,276, which is a 14.9% drop.

When it comes to expenses, the MGA spent €13.2m – with staff costs totalling €7.2m, while depreciation and amortization, plus general and administrative costs stood at €1.2m.

In order to be ready for the future, the MGA did a survey of the licenses in April 2020, to study the impact of the current health crisis on the gaming sector. From a poll conducted for 151 B2C operators, there would be a drop of 12% in gaming revenue in 2020, and this is because of the drop in sports betting revenue. The revenue is predicted to experience a 40% decline. Also, 64 B2Bs were surveyed, and they also pointed to an expected 20% decline in revenue.

According to Faruggia, there has been an increased emphasis on the need to protect vulnerable players, especially now that our daily lives and finances have been heavily disrupted, and many are in the dark about their financial future. But then, the industry is also experiencing huge pressure through operational costs, and they have to consider this in line with the new reality.

The body is making efforts to ensure that operators with licenses adhere to the guidelines, while those without licenses, who are out there to make illegal money and put the public in danger are stopped.

Gaming

Brenda and John Romero to be presented with ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ at GamerFest for their outstanding contribution to the gaming industry

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  • 5,000+ gamers will gather at GamerFest in the RDS on October 22nd and 23rd to celebrate an epic weekend of gaming
  • Special guests lined up include content creators DeeBeeGeek, Antitinkerbell, Jamie Jay Car, The Gara Show,  Miss Audrey and many more

Gaming legends Brenda and John Romero have been announced as the recipients of the inaugural GamerFest Lifetime Achievement Award for their outstanding contribution to the gaming industry both in Ireland and internationally.

Brenda and John, founders of Romero Games, were chosen as recipients for this award as a result of their unparalleled success in the game development world and their tireless work supporting gaming related projects and initiatives in Ireland.

Brenda Romero is a BAFTA award-winning game director, entrepreneur, artist and is currently game director and creator of the ‘Empire of Sin’ franchise. She has worked on 50 games and contributed to many titles, including the well-loved ‘Wizardry’ video game and the ‘Jagged Alliance’ series. John Romero is an award-winning game designer, level designer and programmer who has worked on over 130 games including legendary games ‘Wolfenstein 3D’ and ‘DOOM.’

After visiting Ireland in 2014, the husband-and-wife duo decided to move to Galway permanently and founded Romero Games, a move that has transformed the gaming industry in Ireland by offering career opportunities in the sector and contributing to the overall growth of gaming in Ireland. The Romero Games team released ‘Sigil’ the unofficial fifth episode of the 1993 video game ‘DOOM’  in 2019 and ‘Empire of Sin’ in 2020 which was directed by Brenda herself.

GamerFest takes place in Dublin’s RDS on October 22nd and 23rd and promises to be a jam-packed weekend of all things gaming including the latest games, esports, VR, special guests and live stage content. 5,000+ gamers will gather to celebrate the weekend for the first time since Covid in the RDS.

As well as Brenda and John Romero, content creators DeeBeeGeek, Antitinkerbell, Jamie Jay Car, The Gara Show and Miss Audrey will be special guests at GamerFest, Ireland’s biggest gaming and esports festival.

GamerFest CEO Stuart Dempsey said:

“John and Brenda are absolute giants of the gaming world and we are incredibly excited to welcome them to GamerFest this year. We couldn’t think of anyone more deserving of our inaugural GamerFest Lifetime Achievement Award. Since arriving in Ireland and establishing Romero Games, they have been wonderful supporters of the gaming community here, regularly making time in their busy schedules to support a huge array of gaming projects and initiatives. It’s fitting that they be honoured this way and we can’t wait to see them on the GamerFest Live Stage.”

Brenda and John Romero said:

“We are both so honoured to receive these awards, especially here in our adopted home of Ireland. The game development scene here is only going from strength to strength and we are delighted to be a part of it. More and more new developers join the industry each year, taught by the excellent institutions all around the country. We love seeing the excitement building as gaming gets bigger.”

GamerFest takes place at The RDS, Dublin this October 22nd and 23rd

with tickets on sale now at GamerFest .ie.

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Australia

Cricket NSW, Wanderers and Macarthur FC continue to help fans to reclaim the game

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Cricket NSW, Wanderers and Macarthur FC continue to help fans to reclaim the game
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Sports fans are set to enjoy more games free of sports betting ads with Cricket NSW and A-League football clubs Western Sydney Wanderers FC and Macarthur FC extending their partnerships under the NSW Government’s Reclaim the Game initiative.

CEO of Hospitality and Racing, Anthony Keon, said the extensions are a major boost for Reclaim the Game, which is challenging the idea that betting is a normal part of sport.

“The extended partnerships are a strong show of faith in Reclaim the Game as sporting franchises realise the importance of rejecting sports betting advertising and promoting gambling awareness among their supporters,” Mr Keon said.

“We now have fourteen teams from five codes turning down sports betting sponsorships and making gambling awareness and education an important part of their work.”

Cricket NSW’s two-year extension will see the rejection of sports betting advertising at home games of the men’s and women’s Big Bash teams, the Sydney Sixers and Sydney Thunder and also their state teams NSW Blues and NSW Breakers.

Cricket NSW CEO Lee Germon said the partnership extension would allow Cricket NSW to continue to make important inroads in helping to prevent – and reduce – the harm gambling can cause individuals, families, and society.

“Since joining forces with the Office of Responsible Gambling, Cricket NSW has made a meaningful contribution towards changing the community’s attitudes towards betting on sport,” said Mr Germon.

“We’re proud to be able to continue to play an active part in educating children that gambling is not a part of sport, and that gambling on sport is a bad bet.

“Cricket NSW will continue to do all we can to counter the constant sports betting advertising and the adverse effect it has on young people – young men, in particular – and their families.”

Western Sydney Wanderers’ partnership has been extended for a further two seasons and includes the women’s team for the first time, while Macarthur FC has signed on for an extra season. These extensions will be in place for the upcoming A-league season which kicks off on Friday 7 October.

Western Sydney Wanderers CEO Scott Hudson said he was proud to be continuing the relationship for the next two seasons.

“It is important for us to have an impact beyond the field and together with Reclaim the Game we have brought awareness of the impact that sports betting can have in professional sport,” said Mr Hudson.

“We are delighted that this partnership has now extended to our A-League Women’s team, and we look forward to continuing to build our relationship with Reclaim the Game over the next two years.”

Macarthur FC Group CEO, Sam Krslovic said “We are proud to continue our partnership with Reclaim the Game and be part of this positive initiative. Our community wellbeing is our primary focus and we feel it is important to promote a healthy connection between our game and our fans.”

Mr Keon said Reclaim the Game partners play a vital role in educating fans, players and staff about the risks associated with gambling.

“Reclaim the Game is a great way to reach young men who are most at risk of gambling harm with an estimated 41 per cent of regular sports bettors experiencing one or more gambling-related problems,” Mr Keon said.

“Online sports betting is on the rise with one in 20 adults in NSW betting on sports and growing community concern that children and young people are being exposed to too much gambling advertising.

“Research shows that almost 50 per cent of 12–17-year-olds saw gambling advertising on television during sports and racing events on a weekly basis and almost 1 in 3 young people considered betting on sports to be normal.

“Reclaim the Game is about getting back to what sport is all about – watching, enjoying and cheering on your team without intrusive sports betting ads getting in the way.

“We are so pleased that Cricket NSW, Western Sydney Wanderers and Macarthur FC will continue to reclaim the game and provide a family friendly environment for their fans to enjoy games without being bombarded by betting ads.”

If you or someone you care about needs support or advice, please call GambleAware on 1800 858 858 for free and confidential help and support 24/7.

These Reclaim the Game partnership extensions come in the leadup to GambleAware Week, an annual initiative for the NSW community to raise awareness about the risks of gambling and gambling harm. GambleAware Week will take place from Monday 17 October – Sunday 23 October 2022.

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Latest News

Genius Sports launches In-Play MultiBet for the next generation of same game parlay bets

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Genius Sports launches In-Play MultiBet for the next generation of same game parlay bets
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  • Genius Sports to provide sportsbooks with automated, AI-powered live odds enabling bettors to place same-game parlays during live play or game intervals   
  • The new product will be available for the FIFA World Cup, NFL, English Premier League and thousands of other official Genius events

Genius Sports Limited (“Genius Sports”), the official data, technology and broadcast partner that powers the ecosystem connecting sports, betting and media, has launched In-Play MultiBet, providing sportsbooks with a powerful new tool to engage players and grow revenues in time for the FIFA World Cup 2022 and ongoing NFL season.

Same-game parlay bets, which enable bettors to wager on multiple events occurring within the same game, have become an essential part of every major sportsbook’s offering, giving customer’s greater control over their bets and enhanced margins for the operators themselves.

Now, through In-Play MultiBet, these bespoke bets can be placed once the game has begun, enabling players to place bets after every goal, touchdown and during intervals.

Launched in time to give sportsbooks a new dimension at the FIFA World Cup, In-Play MultiBet is powered by the highest quality AI-powered live odds, tried and tested on Genius Sports’ leading LiveTrading service.

InPlay MultiBet will also be available across the NFL, English Premier League, Liga MX, and dozens of FIBA basketball and FIVB volleyball leagues worldwide.

“Combining same game parlays with the unstoppable growth of in-play betting is a breakthrough innovation for us and our partners,” said Jack Davison, Chief Commercial Officer of Genius Sports. “Starting with the biggest sports event of the year, the FIFA World Cup, InPlay MultiBet will enable our partners to unlock bigger margins and drive engagement between key match events and breaks.”

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