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Gambling in the USA

BMM Testlabs may yet find out whether it will crack tough Illinois market

George Miller

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BMM Testlabs may yet find out whether it will crack tough Illinois market
Reading Time: 3 minutes

 

These should be the best of times for BMM Testlabs.

By its own count, the independent gaming device testing laboratory is licensed in more than 420 jurisdictions. It is relied on to provide accurate examination of programs and gaming and lottery devices for a wide variety of markets.

But for some intriguing reason, it hasn’t been able to crack the Illinois casino market. On Friday in a hearing before the Illinois Gaming Board (IGB), the company hopes to change that after what figures to be a fascinating exchange of testimony. The licensing matter is officially called BMM Testlabs vs. Illinois Gaming Board.

If that sounds contentious, there’s be a good reason: BMM alleges it has been treated unfairly in its attempt to crack the lucrative Illinois market after losing out to rival Gaming Laboratories International (GLI), a behemoth in that end of the business. Following a 2016 bid for services, BMM found itself shut out of Illinois after the IGB issued an exclusive, three-year contract to GLI.

In a growing market at a time in history the gaming industry is exploding with technological advancement, it was a substantial knockdown. BMM is now attempting to rise from the canvas.

To say the least it’s coming back swinging. In raising the issue of potential favoritism by IGB staff members that have since resigned from the regulatory agency, BMM’s shots promise to sting.

Then there’s the exclusive agreement itself. BMM argues that Illinois is the only substantial jurisdiction in which it has been shut out. Of course, you might counter that GLI isn’t a heavyweight in the test lab business for nothing. It has generated a lot of satisfied customers across the country and beyond.

Of course, it’s also possible that two warring corporate entities aren’t above hitting below the belt to secure contracts. It’s clear BMM contends this is the case at GLI – an accusation denied by the lab giant.

But let’s just say BMM has been in this position before, several times, in fact. By its count, it came up against substantial opposition in Indiana, Arkansas, South Dakota, and Missouri before prevailing with regulators. In each of those states, it contends, its strongest opposition didn’t come from the governing bodies, but from representatives of GLI lobbying for exclusivity.

But did I say these should be good days for BMM?

CDC Gaming Reports reported that GLI had agreed to pay $125,000 in July to Nevada authorities to settle a three-count complaint it faced alleging a failure in testing and certification it performed on a product for Interblock. GLI’s attorney responded that the company was extremely efficient over the last six years and had a minuscule error rate.

Which is great news, overall, but lacks much meaning to real regulators. It’s like saying Mrs. O’Leary’s cow gave great milk until it kicked over a lantern and started the Great Chicago Fire.

It was the first time in Nevada history that an independent testing lab had been fined by the Gaming Control Board and Gaming Commission.

It’s not, however, the first time GLI has been fined.

Back in 2011, Tennessee lottery regulators entered into a substantial monetary settlement with the company after a civil dispute over quality control issues. In another settlement the following year in Missouri, gaming regulators in that state fined it $25,000 for testing errors.

In fairness, that’s still not much bad news for a company that tests thousands of devices and systems each year and controls nearly three-quarters of the industry’s independent testing lab market.

So, the idea that GLI is on the ropes is simply not true. In fact, the issue really isn’t about GLI at all. It’s about whether Illinois gaming authorities did credible due diligence and didn’t play politics before awarding an exclusive deal to a test lab giant.

Win or lose, if the BMM-IGB hearing establishes that much, it will have done a service not only to itself, but to the industry as a whole.

About BMM:
BMM is the longest established and most experienced private independent gaming certification lab in the world, providing professional technical and regulatory compliance services to the gaming industry since 1981.

At its core, BMM is a systems-expert company that has provided consulting for and tested many of the largest gaming networks and systems over the last 36 years. In addition, BMM has been successfully testing and certifying the full scope of Class III casino products for over two decades.

BMM authored the first set of independent gaming standards in 1992 and the first set of online gaming standards in 2001.

BMM employs some 325 people in 14 global locations and serves over 440 jurisdictions.

BMM’s world headquarters are in Las Vegas (USA), with offices in Mexico City (Mexico), Lima (Peru), Melbourne and Sydney (Australia), Singapore, Macau (SAR, China), Moncton (Canada), Buenos Aires (Argentina), Barcelona (Spain), Vienna (Austria), Bologna (Italy), Midrand (South Africa) and Bucharest (Romania).

For more information on BMM Testlabs, please visit bmm.com

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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Gambling in the USA

ATG partners with USA’s biggest TV network for horse racing

George Miller

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Photo Source: ATG/swedishhorseracing.com
Reading Time: 2 minutes

ATG has come to a partner agreement with TVG, the largest TV network for horse racing in USA.

 

Starting September 17, 45 million American households has will be given the possibility to bet on ATG‘s products.

“This is a unique possibility for ATG to reach out to horse racing bettors in USA and will also be a great way of showcasing the great sport we have here in Sweden” says Lars Nemeth, head of international sales at ATG.

TVG is a Los Angeles based company, founded in 1987. TVG has today two TV channels and broadcast up to 15 hours of horse racing daily to 45 million American cable and satellite households. Since 2009 TVG is a part of the Irish Paddy Power Betfair betting concern.

“TVG is a strong trademark on the American market and they broadcast around 50,000 races a year from around the world. The main intention with this cooperation agreement is of course to create revenue for both parts but like I said, I also see it as a unique possibility to showcase Swedish horse racing” says Lars Nemeth.

The TVG customers will be able to bet Win, Place, Show, Exacta, Trifecta and Daily Double right in to ATG’s Swedish pool.

“Swedish Trotting, Swedish Gallop and ATG will be able to deliver world class products, therefor it’s fantastic to be able to offer our viewers both broadcasts and betting from Sweden. Business wise and also editorial we’re emphasising on the best races Wednesday through Sunday. In our regular broadcasts we will have lots of live updates and latest news about the races and in cooperation with Kanal 75 show stories about both the sport of trotting and gallop in Sweden” says Stephen Kennelly, Vice President of Product and Exchange, TVG FanDuel Group US.

On the international betting market so called rakebacks, where bettors will receive discounts based on how much they bet, very common. However, in all of ATG’s partner agreements no rakebacks are allowed, also in this deal wth TVG.

“Both us and ATG are interested in creating a sustainable long term deal. TVG has basically the same broad spectrum of customers as ATG, we focus on incentivizing and gaining new and existing business by providing access to high quality content and service, not through high volume rebates to a limited audience.” says Stephen Kennelly.

Facts, TVG
• USA’s largest TV network for trot and gallop horse racing – reaches 45 million households.
• Owned by the betting concern Paddy Power Betfair, Irland.
• 320 employees, most of them at their TV head quarter in Los Angeles, California.
• Broadcasts around 50 000 races each year from around the world through their TV channels TVG (seven days a week) and TVG2 (five days). the channels are also available online (www.tvg.com) and through Apple TV, Chromecast, Amazon and Roku.
• Will be able to bet Win, Place, Show, Exacta, Trifecta and Daily Double starting September 17, 2018
• TV and marketing support in TVG1 and TVG2 from September 23.

Source: ATG

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Gambling in the USA

Vegas Golden Knights signs deal with William Hill

Niji Ng

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Vegas Golden Knights signs deal with William Hill
Photo Source: ingingitinmotown.com - Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

World’s leading betting company William Hill and the Las Vegas-based National Hockey League (NHL) franchisee Golden Knights have signed a multiyear partnership. The deal will include in-arena signage and updated league-wide odds displayed on the video board during intermissions at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

This partnership is the first of its kind in North America between a bookmaker and an NHL franchise.

Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

“We are always looking for innovative ways to engage different segments of our fan base and provide a unique fan experience,” Golden Knights president Kerry Bubolz said in a release announcing the deal. “This partnership between a major professional team and a sports book operator is a historic, landmark agreement and we are delighted to be leading the way with William Hill in this space.”

The partnership between sports franchises and bookmakers could be the first of many as more states elect to offer legal sports betting. The NBA recently completed a deal with MGM Resorts, making the company the “official gaming partner of the NBA.”

“We could not be more excited to partner with the Golden Knights,” William Hill CEO Joe Asher said in the release. “William Hill is the leader in the U.S sports betting market and we are proud of the fact that this is the first sponsorship agreement between a sports book and an NHL team in the country.”

Asher said at a recent gaming conference that the U.S. branch of William Hill has been fielding frequent requests from sports franchises asking about partnerships.

The NHL, along with other major U.S. professional leagues, has been an ardent opponent of sports betting, with commissioner Gary Bettman often expressing concerns about how legalised betting would impact the atmosphere in the arenas.

 

Source: ESPN

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Gambling in the USA

Court cancels Pennsylvania’s ban on gambling donations

Niji Ng

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Court cancels Pennsylvania’s ban on gambling donations
Photo Credit: AP
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

A federal judge has annulled legislation in Pennsylvania law that banned casino owners and persons who owns stakes in the gambling industry from contributing to political campaigns in the state. The court observed that the legislation is unconstitutional.

In her 31-page opinion, U.S. District Judge Sylvia Rambo said the provision violates constitutional protections over political association. However, Rambo did not close the door on lawmakers reviving a similar ban that is narrower in scope and tailored to the purpose of fighting corruption.

“The court holds only that the ban in its current form goes much further than necessary to achieve its stated purpose of eliminating corruption and the appearance of corruption,” Rambo wrote.

The U.S. Supreme Court, Rambo wrote, has ruled that preventing corruption, or the appearance of corruption, is the only sufficient reason to justify restrictions on political contributions.

So the Legislature, she wrote, could more strictly define who is subject to the ban by limiting its reach to those with close connections to a casino or imposing a limit on the amount of cash contributions. Right now, law acts as a wholesale ban on contributions of any amount, even $1, by people with “even an attenuated connection” to the gambling industry, far exceeding the necessary scope of such a prohibition, Rambo wrote.

The ban applied to people who own a stake in a casino, a slot-machine manufacturer or a casino vendor, as well as non-owner executives and important employees.

The prohibition has largely stood in Pennsylvania since the state legalised commercial casinos in 2004, touted as a major bulwark against gambling industry influence. A spokesman for the state attorney general’s office directed questions to the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board. A spokesman at the board did not respond to a request for comment.

The lawsuit was filed last year by Pasquale Deon, who owns a 2.5 per cent stake in Sands Casino in Bethlehem, according to gaming board records, and Maggie Hardy Magerko, whose family owns the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in southwestern Pennsylvania that is home to Lady Luck Casino.

With 12 casinos operating and a 13th under construction, Pennsylvania is the nation’s No. 2 state for commercial casino gross revenue, second to Nevada. At $1.4 billion in the most recent fiscal year, Pennsylvania rakes in more tax revenue from casino gambling than any other state, according to the American Gaming Association’s figures.

 

Source: AP

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