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Gambling in the USA

Melissa Riahei the new President of SBTech US

George Miller

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Melissa Riahei the new President of SBTech US
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Pioneering gaming and lottery industry veteran to help lead and grow US business as sports betting continues to gain momentum across the country

 

SBTech, a leading global supplier of sports betting and gaming technology, today announced that seasoned gaming and lottery executive, Melissa Riahei, will join the company as President of SBTech US. In her new role, Riahei will oversee and lead the US business, focusing on building out the groups’ US infrastructure to support SBTech’s existing customers and establishing its presence in additional states.

“I’m thrilled to join SBTech at such momentous time in our industry. As legalized sports betting rapidly takes root across the nation, I look forward to leading SBTech’s US expansion, establishing our operational footprint in new states, and contributing our global expertise to the growth and success of this emerging market,” said Riahei. “SBTech has already seen great success here through our valued partnerships with Churchill Downs, Golden Nugget, Resorts and most recently – the Oregon Lottery. We plan to build on that success and solidify SBTech’s position as a market leading supplier in the US.”

“We are delighted to have Melissa on board leading our US business, as we assemble a world-class team to steer us into the next chapter of the company’s growth. Melissa is an extremely talented executive, with a rare blend of business, legal and political acumen and a varied breadth of experience across all sectors in gaming,” said Richard Carter, CEO of SBTech. “I’m confident that she will serve as a great leader for our US team on the ground and our partners. This appointment demonstrates our continual commitment to the US market by providing dedicated leadership of our US teams to support our partners’ ambitions.”

Riahei has more than 20 years of experience spanning across the highest levels of state government, from serving as Deputy Chief Counsel to the Office of the Governor in Illinois, to managing the legal affairs of a $2 billion annual gaming enterprise as General Counsel to the Illinois Lottery, and serving in executive roles at on-line gaming and horse race wagering companies.

Notably, Riahei was instrumental in paving the way for the emergence of legal online gambling in the US. As General Counsel to the Illinois Lottery, she spearheaded the initiative to challenge the US Department of Justice’s federal prohibition on online gambling under the Wire Act on behalf of Illinois. Her efforts, in coordination with the New York Lottery, resulted in the monumental 2011 DOJ decision that has enabled states to legalize and regulate most forms of online gambling, leading to the emergence of the growing market in the US today.

“Melissa has made valuable contributions to the advancement of our industry and will be a great asset to SBTech as we grow and cement our US presence and leverage the unprecedented opportunities that lie ahead,” said Gavin Isaacs, non-executive chairman of SBTech. “We’re excited to have Melissa joining our team, and I look forward to working with her.”

About SBTech:
SBTech is a global leader in omni-channel sports betting and gaming solutions, with more than 1,100 employees in 10 offices worldwide, including its newest offices in Las Vegas, Nevada. Since 2007, the group has developed the industry’s most powerful online sports betting and casino platform, serving licensees in more than 15 regulated territories.

SBTech’s clients include many of the world’s premier betting and gaming operators, state lotteries, land-based casinos, horse racing companies, and igaming start-ups. The group supplies highly flexible betting and gaming solutions to clients looking for exceptional configurability and the quickest route to market, complemented by proven business intelligence and reporting capabilities.

The SBTech offering includes its seamless sportsbook, Chameleon360 igaming platform, managed services, on-property sportsbook and omni-channel solutions that provide players with constant access to sports and casino products across all online, mobile and retail channels.

Supported by unrivalled expertise in trading and risk management, acquisition and CRM, and the highest standards of regulatory compliance, SBTech’s partners consistently achieve rapid growth, enhanced brand loyalty and record revenues.

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

Sports Betting Bill of Michigan Moves Forward

Niji Narayan

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Sports Betting Bill of Michigan Moves Forward
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A sports betting bill would allow organised sports betting in Michigan casinos and online was passed out of a state house committee. State Representative Brandt Iden of Kalamazoo is sponsoring the legislation.

“Because this is already going on in the market place so we can protect those people who want to play and want to play legally, and we can, you know, make the state a little bit of money, which I think is also a positive,” Iden said.

Iden hopes the bill continues to make its way through the legislature and onto Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s desk before Superbowl season.

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Gambling in the USA

Gaming Innovation Group extends Hard Rock’s sportsbook in Iowa

George Miller

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Gaming Innovation Group extends Hard Rock's sportsbook in Iowa
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We found in a new press release that

Gaming Innovation Group Inc. (GiG) has reached an agreement with its partner, Hard Rock International (Hard Rock), to support its market entry with sports betting in the US state of Iowa. The sportsbook will initially launch with an over-the-counter solution on the casino floor at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Sioux City in Iowa. This will be followed by the launch of online and mobile sports betting in Iowa, expected in Q4 2019.

In Iowa, Hard Rock will offer a similar seamless and engaging betting experience for its consumers as it has already delivered in New Jersey, with an omni-channel sportsbook solution based on GiG’s modern and flexible technology.

For GiG, this means the Company will be able to leverage its platform in the US adding more scale to its network and revenues to the business. GiG already has the groundwork done in New Jersey after a successful proof of concept suitable and relevant to the American audience.

Iowa is one of the 12 states in the US legalising sports wagering since the US Supreme Court overturned the federal sports wagering ban in 2018. In August this year, the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission (IRGC) authorised the 19 casinos in the state to offer statewide retail, online and mobile sports betting to consumers aged 21 or over. Iowa has approximately 3.2 million inhabitants and should also benefit with visitors from neighboring states such as Nebraska and Minnesota. It has an estimated mature sports betting market valued at revenues of around $160 million based on the total amount of money wagered by consumers. The tax rate on the sports betting revenue is 7.5%.

GiG expects this agreement to have limited impact on its revenues in 2019, with an increasing contribution from the launch of online and mobile betting in 2020 onwards.

Kresimir Spajic, Senior Vice President of Online Gaming at Hard Rock International says, “We’re excited to extend our partnership with GiG to support sports betting in Iowa, and further grow our sportsbook portfolio.”  

“Offering sports betting through GiG provides our players and guests a new level of engagement – we couldn’t be more thrilled to be launching in Iowa,” Jim Franke, General Manager of Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Sioux City.

Richard Brown, acting Chief Executive Officer of GiG says, “After a successful launch in New Jersey, I am delighted to further deepen the relationship with Hard Rock, delivering on our strategy to grow with our partner by entering a new state in the US with our sportsbook. The agreement is both a testament to our know-how and prowess to lead a land-based casino into the digital world of betting, and a strong validation of GiG’s commercial and product delivery capabilities. We are looking forward to growing with our partner long term. We have mutual ambitions to entertain consumers with a safe and exciting first-class sports betting experience.”

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Gambling in the USA

Vegas Golden Knights home opener viewing party at the Plaza Hotel & Casino

George Miller

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Vegas Golden Knights home opener viewing party at the Plaza Hotel & Casino
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The Plaza Hotel & Casino will host a free viewing party for the Vegas Golden Knights home opener against the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday, Oct. 2.

The free viewing party, open to all ages, will be held in the Plaza Events Center, which has 18 large screen high definition televisions, two projectors and a state-of-the-art sound system, making it one of the best sports viewing experiences in downtown Las Vegas.

Guests can toast the Knights with an exclusive $4 12 oz. Training Day draft beer from 7Five Brewing, Ryan Reeves’ Official Vegas Born Beer (while supplies last). A special $2 Irish Whiskey Shot will also be available with any draft beer purchase. The party will also offer pizza and wing specials from Pop Up Pizza and beer buckets: Domestic (5 bottles for $25) or Imported (5 bottles for $30).

Throughout the game, the Plaza will giveaway official VGK licensed Items, such as lanyards, car gear, hats, bags, VGK wine, and select inaugural season Items. One lucky guest will also have a chance to win a 2-night complimentary stay in one of the Plaza’s newly renovated premium Luxe rooms (restrictions may apply). Each guest will receive one complimentary drawing ticket upon entry for a chance to win prizes (21 years of age or older for certain items).

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