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Gaming Innovation Group partners with SKYCITY Entertainment Group Limited

George Miller

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Gaming Innovation Group partners with SKYCITY Entertainment Group Limited
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Gaming Innovation Group Inc. (GiG), has signed a long-term agreement with SKYCITY Malta Limited, a subsidiary of New Zealand based SKYCITY Entertainment Group Limited (SKYCITY), for the provision of its turnkey online casino solution including a gambling licence. The turnkey solution includes the technical platform, fully managed services, gaming content, front end development, CRM, compliance and marketing. GiG will operate the online casino site from Malta on behalf of SKYCITY, offering online gambling to consumers in New Zealand.

GiG will support the expansion of SKYCITY’s growth in its new vertical of online casino, powered by GiG’s cutting-edge technology, flexible architecture and industry know-how.

SKYCITY is a listed company in both New Zealand and Australia and is New Zealand’s largest and most renowned tourism, leisure and entertainment company with casino gaming facilities in both countries. There are currently six land-based casinos operating in New Zealand, of which SKYCITY owns four.

The vision for SKYCITY, is to be the leader in gaming, entertainment and hospitality in its communities. One of the cornerstones in its corporate responsibility mission is the importance of responsible gaming.

All gambling which takes place in New Zealand is regulated by the country’s Department of Internal Affairs. The general expectation is that the country will regulate online casino gambling in the foreseeable future.

The launch of the online casino offering is planned for Q3 2019, GiG does therefore not expect a material impact on its revenues this year. However, this partnership is expected to make a significant positive contribution to GiG’s revenues from 2020 onwards.

Graeme Stephens, Chief Executive Officer of SKYCITY says: “SKYCITY is delighted to be partnering with GiG to establish an online casino offering, based in Europe. Growing and diversifying our earnings is a key component of our group strategic plan and developing an online presence to complement our existing land-based casinos in New Zealand will enable us to offer an enhanced gaming proposition for customers. GiG are an exciting and innovative technology company with best-in-class teams, systems, platforms and products and importantly share our focus on responsible gaming and host responsibility. We look forward to working with Robin and the team as we enter an exciting phase of growth at SKYCITY.”

Robin Reed, Chief Executive Officer at GiG says: “I am delighted that GiG is partnering with SKYCITY, we share the same high standards and ambitions for a safe, responsible and entertaining gaming experience for the end users. With this landmark deal, we are also entering a completely new continent where we can build on our ambition as the global partner for strong brands in iGaming.

We look forward to supporting SKYCITY in its expansion into the online space, where our full suite of products and solutions all form part of a very competitive offering to its online customers. New Zealand is preparing for the regulation of online casino gambling and we are there to support our partner further when it happens.”

Australia

Australia’s COVID-19 Lockdown Gives Windfall to Gamblers

Niji Narayan

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Australia’s COVID-19 Lockdown Gives Windfall to Gamblers
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The lockdown in Australia due to the COVID-19 crisis has given gamblers an unexpected windfall.

Facilities that offer electronic gambling machines have remained closed because of restrictions designed to slow the spread of the virus.

“That means that Australians are saving one billion U.S. dollars a month. And that is money that is appearing in people’s bank accounts and they are able to pay the bills and put food on the table, and for many people who are gambling heavily, this has come as a huge relief,” Tony Mohr, executive director of Alliance For Gambling Reform, said.

Australians lose more money to gambling than people living in any other country, almost 25 billion Australia dollars (about 16.3 billion U.S. dollars) a year. More than half of that money is pumped into electronic gambling machines.

“A woman at Easter had told me that she had money to buy Easter eggs for her children without trying to work out where to get the money from for the first time in years,” gambling reform advocate Anna Bardsley, who had a 10-year addiction to electronic gambling machines, said.

“The time is a huge loss to me. I’ll never get that time back and time that I could have been doing much better things, time that I should have been spending with my children. It was such a huge waste of time,” she said.

The shutdown has hit Australia’s gambling industry hard financially.

NSW Clubs, which represents more than 1200 facilities in New South Wales that offer electronic gambling machines, has reportedly estimated a loss of more than 35,000 jobs.

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Australia

Australia’s ACMA Moves to Block 10 More Illegal Gambling Websites

Niji Narayan

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Australia’s ACMA Moves to Block 10 More Illegal Gambling Websites
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The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) is set to request Australian internet service providers (ISPs) to block 10 more illegal offshore gambling websites.

The sites to be blocked are Grand Fortune Casino, Raging Bull Casino, True Blue Casino, Free Spin, Two Up Casino, BoVegas, Cherry Gold Casino, Slots Empire, Red Dog Casino and Wild Joker.

ACMA received over 30 complaints about these services that are accessible in Australia. ACMA’s investigations found that these sites breach the Interactive Gambling Act 2001.

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Australia

Aristocrat Prices New US$500 Million Term Loan B Facility

Niji Narayan

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Aristocrat Prices New US$500 Million Term Loan B Facility
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Aristocrat Leisure has priced a new US$500 million term loan to strengthen the group’s liquidity and balance sheet.

Aristocrat said the proceeds of the loan will be used for general corporate purposes and was strongly supported by existing and new investors. The maturity date of the loan is October 2024.

“We are very pleased with the outcome of this debt raising which was significantly oversubscribed. The TLB market continues to provide Aristocrat with flexibility and competitively priced debt on a covenant light basis and we are grateful for the ongoing support of this important debt market,” Julie Cameron-Doe, CFO of Aristocrat, said.

“The transaction is part of our ongoing strategy to further enhance our liquidity, continue to invest for growth and position the group to emerge strongly from the current COVID-19 related challenges,” Julie Cameron-Doe added.

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