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BGC Warns Permanent Industry Damage Following Delay in Casino Reopening

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BGC Warns Permanent Industry Damage Following Delay in Casino Reopening
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The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) has warned that the UK Government’s last-minute reversal of plans to allow casinos to reopen on August 1 has dealt a wrecking ball to the industry, from which it may never recover.

The casino sector employs more than 14,000 people across the UK in 125 casinos and a further 4000 in the supply chain. Casinos also paid over £300 million each year in tax before the lockdown.

With casinos across England forced to remain shuttered, the BGC warns that up to 6000 jobs may be permanently lost.

In a letter to Chancellor Rishi Sunak MP on July 31, BGC described the decision to keep casinos closed as “highly illogical, inconsistent and deeply damaging to those businesses and the thousands of staff they employ.”

BGC has also rejected the Prime Minister’s categorisation of casinos as “higher risk” during his Downing Street briefing. Casinos have spent weeks and invested millions of pounds to ensure their premises are covid-secure, with measures such as perspex screens, sanitisation equipment and sophisticated track and trace systems, as well as introducing strict social distancing measures and hygiene protocols.

BGC Chief Executive Michael Dugher said: “The Government are swinging a wrecking ball right through the middle of our industry and large scale job losses, which ought to be unnecessary and avoidable, now look inevitable unless ministers act fast.”

“Casinos are a small but fundamental part of our leisure, hospitality, entertainment and tourism industry. They employ over 14,000 people across the UK and indirectly support another 4,000 jobs in the supply sector, and last year casinos paid over £5.7 million in tax per week.

“The ongoing cost of remaining in a holding pattern to reopen is clearly not sustainable, with more jobs and livelihoods being put at risk with every last minute change and delay to reopening.

“The Job Retention Scheme has helped but our members will now be forced to pay National Insurance and pension contributions on top of salaries in August while they remain closed. As furlough payments are phased out, there will be no flexibility for casinos to adapt to the new working and leisure environment and I now fear that many thousands of jobs could be lost.

“We made the all necessary preparations for safe reopening and we were given the green light by Public Health England on the basis of the significant investment made by operators, and having been told by the Government themselves that casinos posed a ‘negligible’ risk compared with the tens of thousands of other places that they have been reopened.”

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NetEnt today launches Space Wars 2™ Powerpoints™

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NetEnt today launches Space Wars 2™ Powerpoints™
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NetEnt has today announced that it has launched a nail biting, galaxy stopping sequel, Space Wars 2™ Powerpoints™. Players who loved the original Space Wars™, will thoroughly enjoy this new iteration that brings back all their extraterrestrial favourites – and throws in a few new features that will keep them on their toes.

A whole range of high-tech features can be activated in this high volatility slot and players should watch out for a myriad of symbols such as Blasters, Zappers, Bombs, Wilds, and win inducing combos that rocket through the reels. With combos, players can get the best this new galaxy has to offer – landing Column/Row Blaster, Zapper or Bomb symbols adjacent to each other makes them combine into a much more powerful feature.

On their own, each feature moves players one step forward to big wins. With the Column/Row Blaster, players can blast away all who stand in their way. A 4-symbol horizontal match awards this Blaster symbol, removing all symbols except Wilds and feature symbols from the reels where the Blaster appears.

But it’s the Powerpoints™ that are this slot’s rocket fuel. Each match awards Powerpoints™ which are then added to the collect meter at the top of the reels. As players fill up the meter, they move up the levels and increase their win multiplier.

James Jones, Head of Business Development at Evolution, said: “This game has it all – an epic intergalactic showdown, fantastic characters, thrilling graphics, and features that make each spin an adventure. The original Space WarsTM found a special place in players’ hearts and we’re excited to be launching the sequel this year.”

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Revel in diamonds, luxury and beauty with Red Rake Gaming’s new video slot game, Mega Rich

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Revel in diamonds, luxury and beauty with Red Rake Gaming’s new video slot game, Mega Rich
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Red Rake Gaming, the leading content provider in the sector, has today released a new 5×3 reel video slot with 25 paylines, multipliers up to x1000 and a free spins feature.

Live the life of a true millionaire with this video slot. Drive around in the best luxury cars, sail the seas in spectacular yachts and fly to your dream destination in a private jet, multiplying your wins along the way.

This video slot has 3 types of Wild and a special multipliers panel for each of these Wilds: car (up to x5), boat (up to x10) and plane (up to x20). Any win with a Wild will activate one of the multipliers from its panel. These can be multiplied by each other if there are multiple Wilds, paying out up to x1000 the original bet.

Three bonus symbols activate an exciting free spins feature. During the free spins feature, one of the symbols on the reels will be replaced at random by an extra Wild at the end of each spin, increasing the total win.

Mega Rich was launched today, the 30th of June, and just like all other Red Rake Gaming slots, it will be included in the tournament tool, further adding to the excitement.

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PRAGMATIC PLAY DELIVERS A REAL TREAT IN SUGAR RUSH™

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PRAGMATIC PLAY DELIVERS A REAL TREAT IN SUGAR RUSH™
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Pragmatic Play, a multi-vertical content provider to the iGaming industry, welcomes players to engage with its sweetest release of the year, Sugar Rush™ 

Featuring reels packed with sugary-inspired symbols, the action takes place on a 7×7 grid, utilising a cluster pays system to land impressive wins in this sweet slot. 

Five or more matching symbols are required to build a winning cluster, and those involved must be connected to each other in either a horizontal or vertical direction.  

Wins also trigger the tumble feature, but players won’t want to miss Multiplier Spots, which ensures that when a winning symbol explodes, it leaves a wrapper in its position on the grid. 

When another symbol explodes on the reels in the same spot as the wrapper, a multiplier is added, with the value doubling each time another explodes in its place until the maximum multiplier worth 128x the bet is reached. 

Landing three or more scatters unlocks the Free Spins bonus round, awarding a number of free spins depending on how many scatters landed to trigger the feature. Instant access to this round can also be bought for the price of 100x the bet. 

The launch of Sugar Rush™ follows recent hit games like Big Bass Splash™, Queen of Gods and Fortune of Giza™ which reside amongst a collection of over 200 titles in Pragmatic Play’s award-winning games portfolio. 

Yossi Barzely, Chief Business Development Officer at Pragmatic Play, said: “We are so excited to deliver a sweet treat to our audiences just in time for summer, arriving in the form of a delectable new slot. 

“The tumble mechanic utilised in the game combines neatly with the Multiplier Slots feature, delivering explosive outcomes and the potential for lucrative wins.” 

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