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Cineplex Inc. and VRstudios Inc. Announce Partnership

George Miller

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Cineplex Inc. and VRstudios Inc. Announce Partnership
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Agreement Includes Equity Investment, Commercial Partnership and Expansion Opportunities. Company Plans to Roll-Out 30-40 Virtual Reality Installations in Canada

 

Cineplex, a leading entertainment and media company, announced a strategic partnership with VRstudios, Inc. (“VRstudios”), the largest provider of turnkey, location-based virtual reality solutions in the world. The agreement includes a commercial partnership and an investment by Cineplex to acquire a significant ownership interest in VRstudios. The financial terms were not disclosed.

In addition to installation opportunities at existing Cineplex-owned properties – including its theatre network and location-based entertainment (LBE) network – the agreement also provides broader expansion opportunities in North America and around the globe. Founded in 2014 and based in Seattle, Washington, VRstudios’ product solutions are sold in various configurations for untethered multiplayer, free-roaming, room-scale and warehouse-scale commercial VR attractions. It features eight unique VR experiences in environments ranging in size from 100 to 2,400 square feet.

With more than 65 systems deployed to customers in 15 countries, plus another 120 commercial VR attractions powered by its AMP management software, VRstudios has the largest global installation footprint today and provides virtual reality solutions to popular entertainment destinations including theme parks, arcades, amusement parks, family entertainment centres, casinos and movie theatre complexes. Cineplex has recently installed a VRstudios attraction at The Rec Room in South Edmonton, Alberta, and plans to open approximately 30-40 additional locations across its theatre and LBE networks in Canada by the end of 2021.

“We are not just deploying VR across our network, we are strategically investing in the market to create new revenue streams as well as critical mass and scale for growth. We are proud to be leading the way in the burgeoning location-based VR market,” said Ellis Jacob, President and CEO, Cineplex. “VRstudios’ product portfolio base has obvious application opportunities across the Cineplex ecosystem, and we are particularly excited about growth opportunities for Player One Amusement Group.”

One of North America’s leading providers of interactive video, redemption and amusement gaming equipment, Player One Amusement Group (P1AG) specializes in solution servicing and design for a wide range of customers in the theatrical exhibition vertical as well as community-based entertainment destinations such as bowling centres, restaurants, arcades, shopping centres and water parks. The agreement announced today creates opportunities for P1AG to work closely with VRstudios to manage the sale, support integration and maintenance of VRstudios’ portfolio of systems in North America.

“Cineplex is one of the world’s leading entertainment companies and we are honoured to be working in partnership with them to drive further innovation in the location-based VR marketplace,” said Kevin Vitale, Chief Executive Officer, VRstudios. “There is great synergy in our respective visions for scaling VR in commercial entertainment and the enterprise-wide strategy to make it happen.”

VRstudios offers a complete, customizable end-to-end virtual reality solution that includes an Attraction Management Platform™ for location-based entertainment businesses. Designed from the ground up, these systems facilitate amazing experiences which cannot be duplicated by in-home consumer virtual reality platforms. Emphasizing turnkey installation, easy-operation, training and support as well as owner profitability, the VRstudios solutions utilizes commercial-quality, patent-pending technology to offer ultimate virtual reality attractions.

Forward Looking Statements
This press release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of applicable securities laws, such as statements concerning anticipated future events, results, circumstances, performance or expectations that are not historical facts. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties, including those described in Cineplex’s Annual Information Form (“AIF”). Those risks and uncertainties include: adverse factors generally encountered in the film exhibition industry such as poor film product and unauthorized copying; risks associated with national and world events, including war, terrorism and international conflicts; natural disasters or extreme weather conditions; infectious diseases; changes in income tax legislation; and general economic conditions. In addition, these risks and uncertainties include: the ability to achieve the expected synergies and the timing of same; the effectiveness of integration efforts and risks related to the satisfaction of the conditions to closing the transaction; and the related financing arrangements, including future general economic and market conditions and the associated debt and equity capital markets. Many of these risks and uncertainties can affect our actual results and could cause our actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in any forward-looking statement made by us or on our behalf. All forward-looking statements in this press release are qualified by these cautionary statements. These statements are made as of the date of this press release and, except as required by applicable law, we undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Additionally, we undertake no obligation to comment on analyses, expectations or statements made by third parties in respect of Cineplex, its financial or operating results or its securities.

About Cineplex:
A leading entertainment and media company, Cineplex (TSX:CGX) is a top-tier Canadian brand that operates in the Film Entertainment and Content, Amusement and Leisure, and Media sectors. As Canada’s largest and most innovative film exhibitor, Cineplex welcomes over 70 million guests annually through its circuit of 165 theatres across the country. Cineplex also operates successful businesses in digital commerce (CineplexStore.com), food service, alternative programming (Cineplex Events), cinema media (Cineplex Media), digital place-based media (Cineplex Digital Media), amusement solutions (Player One Amusement Group) and an online eSports platform for competitive and passionate gamers (WorldGaming.com). Additionally, Cineplex operates a location based entertainment business through Canada’s newest destination for ‘Eats & Entertainment’ (The Rec Room), and will also be opening new complexes specially designed for teens and families (Playdium) as well as exciting new sports and entertainment venues across Canada (Topgolf). Cineplex is a joint venture partner in SCENE, Canada’s largest entertainment loyalty program.

Proudly recognized as having one of the country’s Most Admired Corporate Cultures, Cineplex employs approximately 13,000 people in its offices across Canada and the United States. To learn more visit Cineplex.com or download the Cineplex App.

About VRstudios:
VRstudios is a pioneer and leader in delivering turn-key large-scale, multiplayer, free-roaming commercial VR attraction systems for the LBE industry. The company offers a product line of complete solutions that can be quickly installed and efficiently operated, VRstudios is a one-stop-shop that makes it easy for owners and operators to offer innovative virtual reality attractions to their visitors. VRstudios launched in 2014 and has shipped over 65 systems to 15 countries.

Source: Cineplex

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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