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Gambling in the USA

IGT and the Plaza Hotel & Casino Celebrate Life-Changing Jackpots with Las Vegas’ Exclusive Wheel of Fortune® Slots Zone

Zoltan Tundik

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Downtown Las Vegas casino unveils dynamic space dedicated to the most famous slots game of all time

International Game Technology PLC (“IGT”) (NYSE:IGT) and the Plaza Hotel & Casino announced today the debut of the Wheel of Fortune® Slots Zone, a dynamic, branded space within the Plaza Casino in Downtown Las Vegas that is dedicated exclusively to legendary Wheel of Fortune slots games.

The vibrantly themed Wheel of Fortune Slots Zone covers more than 2,900 square feet and is conveniently located in the heart of the Plaza Casino’s gaming floor. The space is home to more than 40 IGT Wheel of Fortune slots games, including both new and classic themes in mechanical reel and video reel formats. Accessible to all Plaza Casino guests, the Wheel of Fortune Slots Zone is the ideal destination for players seeking the most famous slots theme of all time and their chance to activate the iconic, multi-color Wheel of Fortune wheel and holler “Come on Big Money!” while taking in signature “WHEEL-OF-FORTUNE!” celebrations.

“When Plaza Casino guests enter our new Wheel of Fortune Slots Zone, it is immediately apparent that they’re in Las Vegas’ epicenter of Wheel of Fortune slots fun,” said Casey P. Adras, the Plaza Hotel & Casino Director of Slot Operations. “We’ve collaborated with IGT to create a compelling space that delivers an exceptional guest experience, features the most in-demand Wheel of Fortune games and embodies the jackpot-paying legacy of the iconic slots brand.”

“In creating Las Vegas’ exclusive Wheel of Fortune Slots Zone, the Plaza Casino harnessed the excitement, appeal and familiarity of IGT’s Wheel of Fortune slots brand to create a venue that players will quickly associate with world-class casino entertainment and life-changing jackpots,” said Nick Khin, IGT Chief Operating Officer, Gaming. “We look forward to ongoing collaboration with our customers at Plaza Casino to ensure that they maximize the performance of this new space through IGT’s latest Wheel of Fortune slots games and casino technologies.”

“The Wheel of Fortune Slots Zone at the Plaza Casino in Downtown Las Vegas captures the excitement of the most acclaimed slot theme of all time on an unprecedented scale,” said Suzanne Prete, Sony Pictures Television SVP Global Licensing & Brand Management. “For decades IGT’s Wheel of Fortune Slots has set the gaming industry standard for life-changing jackpots and there is no better place for this type of winning mecca than Las Vegas, the world’s most iconic gaming destination.”

Wheel of Fortune slots is the most successful slots theme of all time. Since the game’s 1996 debut, IGT has made more than 250 variations of the player-favorite slots theme and distributed them in countries around the world. Wheel of Fortune slots have minted more than 1,000 millionaires, totaling well over $3 billion in jackpot payouts, and have earned dozens of accolades on the merit of attributes ranging from innovation to player affinity.

For more information, visit IGT.com, or go to Facebook at facebook.com/IGT, follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/IGTnews, or watch IGT videos on YouTube at youtube.com/igt.

 

Gambling in the USA

Gaming Americas Weekly Roundup – April 12-18

Niji Narayan

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Reading Time: 3 minutes

Welcome to our weekly roundup of American gambling news again! It was again an eventful week in the USA, despite the still-active virus attack.

Here, we are going through the weekly highlights of the American gambling industry which include the latest news, new partnerships and compliance updates. Read on and get updated.

Latest News

Rush Street Interactive (RSI) has launched its flagship brand and award-winning online casino platform BetRivers.com in West Virginia. Through RSI’s partnership with Century Casinos Inc.’s (Nasdaq: CNTY) Mountaineer Park Inc., West Virginians can now play a fun array of online slot games and popular table games such as blackjack, roulette and baccarat. Similar to other markets where it operates, BetRivers.com plans to consistently add fan-favourite casino games to its site in West Virginia to provide players with fresh content and the same robust library of games it is known for in other states.

Rhode Island-based Bally’s Corp has announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Tropicana Las Vegas Hotel and Casino from Gaming & Leisure Properties Inc for about $308 million. The agreement for the nearly 1500-room hotel, casino, theatre and convention property also involves a sale-and-leaseback transaction relating to Bally’s Black Hawk, Colorado and Rock Island, Illinois, casino properties. The Bally’s-Tropicana transaction is expected to close early next year.

Leaders from the global games industry who participated in #PlayApartTogether have committed to reactivate the initiative launched one year ago, which encourages gamers everywhere to follow World Health Organisation (WHO) health advice on COVID-19 prevention. As part of #PlayApartTogether, a large number of gaming companies agreed to disseminate evidence-based health messages from WHO to help slow the spread of COVID-19. To promote these messages, hundreds of game industry leaders in the interactive entertainment space have encouraged their vast network of users to follow the WHO’s health guidelines.

Wynn Las Vegas has announced a new COVID-19 vaccination and testing policy for its employees. As per the new policy, all employees must get vaccinated or undergo weekly COVID-19 tests. The company said that 60% of its employees have already been vaccinated. The announcement comes as the Nevada Gaming Control Board says it will only consider expanding capacity beyond the current 50% limit if casino-resorts take “measurable and material steps” to get employees vaccinated.

Financial Results

Sports wagering revenue in Iowa reached a new record of $13.5m in March, while the US state’s handle also hit a new monthly high of $161.4m. The revenue total represented a 1,025.0% increase on the $1.2m reported in the same month 2020, the month in which the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic shuttered the state’s casinos and saw major leagues suspended. It also marked a 75.3% month-over-month rise on the $7.7m posted in February this year, as well as breaking January’s $11.3m revenue record.

The casinos in Atlantic City saw an 80% drop in profits last year. According to the state Division of Gaming Enforcement, Atlantic City’s nine casinos collectively posted $117.5 million in gross operating profits in 2020, down from nearly $594m in 2019.

New Partnership

Online casino content developer Spinmatic has entered into a new partnership deal with the Mexican operator BigBola. Through the deal, Spinmatic has strengthened its presence in Latin America, particularly in Mexico, where Big Bola has twenty casinos, apart from the Big Bola Online platform. Spinmatic has a strong interest in the Mexican market, with several of its games already dedicated to this country’s culture. Some of these Mexican-themed slots are El Fuego, Mayanera Return, Día de los Muertos and the most recent 3 Amigos.

Appointments and Promotions

Leading US gaming company DraftKings has appointed Brian Angiolet as its first-ever Chief Media Officer. Most recently, Angiolet served as SVP and Chief Business Officer at Verizon Communications. During his tenure at Verizon, Angiolet spearheaded a number of high-profile, multi-billion-dollar content and advertising initiatives including broadcasting, sports and digital entertainment deals across Verizon’s Fios and media properties, partnerships with premier sports leagues like the NFL and NBA, and oversight of Verizon Wireless’ advertising and media portfolio.

Gaming Laboratories International (GLI) has announced multiple promotions within the company. Promoted to senior vice president are Christine Gallo, Compliance and Quality Assurance, and Kevin Mullally, Government Relations and General Counsel. Promoted to vice president are Elizabeth Harrison, Human Resources; Mackenzie Haugh, Engineering; Sangeeta Reddy, Engineering; and Angela Zografos, Vice President, Legal, Corporate and Regulatory Compliance. Throughout the company’s global laboratories, dozens of engineers have also been promoted.

Compliance Update

A pair of bills in the Florida Senate would create a state gaming commission and allow pari-mutuel facilities to offer certain forms of gambling without holding live horse races or jai alai games to bet on. Senate President Wilton Simpson announced that the Regulated Industries Committee will consider SB 7076 and SB 7080 during their meetings next week. The move comes while officials are engaged with negotiations with the Seminole Tribe over a new gaming compact. SB 7076 would create a five-member “Gaming Control Commission” which would oversee all of the state’s gaming activities. Currently, the Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering oversees Florida’s commercial gambling market.

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Gambling in the USA

Gaming Americas Weekly Roundup – April 5-11

Niji Narayan

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

Welcome to our weekly roundup of American gambling news again! It was again an eventful week in the USA, despite the still-active virus attack.

Here, we are going through the weekly highlights of the American gambling industry which include the latest news, new partnerships and compliance updates. Read on and get updated.

Latest News

Scientific Games has launched Mural cabinet, the most visually dramatic gaming cabinet in the company’s range of industry-leading products. The Mural cabinet captures the imagination with its stunning dual 55-inch, 4K resolution curved display, immersing the player in the game and creating an eye-catching attraction on the casino floor. Following the successful launch of Kascada, the next generation of the top-selling TwinStar J43 cabinet, the Mural cabinet’s massive display takes the evolution of Scientific Games’ cabinet building prowess a step further.

Sinclair Broadcast Group and Bally’s Corporation have formally rebranded Sinclair’s regional sports networks as Bally Sports. The rebrand comes on the heels of the November 2020 announcement of the enterprise-wide, long-term strategic partnership between Sinclair and Bally’s.

Scientific Games has launched its online iLottery subscription programme, Subscription Spot, for its longtime Canadian customer, Western Canadian Lottery Corporation. Subscription Spot is available via the WCLC website and is the first instance of a true digital offering for players, allowing the online purchase of lottery games and creating a pathway to digital modernisation with a larger online presence for the lottery.

New Partnership

BetMGM has become an official gaming partner of the Detroit Tigers under the terms of a multi-year sponsorship agreement. Highlights of the sponsorship deal include BetMGM branding on scoreboards throughout Comerica Park, fan-focused promotions, integrated social media content and more.

New Acquisition

Simplicity Esports and Gaming Company has acquired the assets of a gaming centre previously owned by a PLAYlive Nation franchisee in Vancouver. The gaming centre was originally opened in 2013 and has a database of over 17,000 unique customers. The venue is expected to reopen in mid-April.

Compliance Updates

The Brazilian authorities have launched an inquiry aimed at banning loot boxes in the country, on the recommendation of the National Association of Child and Adolescent Defence Centres. The association argued that randomised monetisation mechanics are a form of gambling, which is illegal in Brazil. The inquiry targets companies that sell loot boxes, including Activision, EA, Konami, Nintendo, Riot Games, Ubisoft, Tencent and Valve. If the ban is approved, Brazil could fine violators up to $706,000 per day.

The state of New York has announced it approved a budget for its fiscal year 2022 that would allow for legal online wagering in the state for the first time. Further reporting from the Action Network and the Buffalo News indicates the plan to implement online sports betting will be some form of a limited-operator model that has been championed by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo. The Governor said he wants to run the state’s sports betting industry through the New York Lottery, which is run by the government.

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Gambling in the USA

SoftSwiss Sportsbook launches in-play bets for American leagues

George Miller

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SoftSwiss Sportsbook launches in-play bets for American leagues
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

SoftSwiss announces the introduction of the new functionality on its recently launched Sportsbook solution. Now the platform will allow players to place live bets on the most popular American leagues such as NBA, NHL, NFL, MLB.

The National Basketball Association (NBA), The National Hockey League (NHL), The National Football League (NFL), Major League Baseball (MLB) are some of the most popular leagues which attract audience from all over the world. Previously, American league odds were available only as a pre-match bet option — now it is also provided as a live betting option (in-play betting), diversifying player engagement. As odds fluctuate a lot more frequently with in-play, it brings more variables to the game, whilst also increasing the value delivered when odds drift. The newly extended Sportsbook functionality will be of particular interest to both SoftSwiss B2B clients, as well as their players. The main odds feeds provider behind the platform is the industry leader Betradar.

Alexander Kamenetskyi, Product Owner of SoftSwiss Sportsbook noted: “We are continuously expanding the functionality and enhancing the interface of our product, making SoftSwiss Sportsbook even more versatile, reliable and secure for our clients. With this new in-play bets option SoftSwiss Sportsbook will be able to maximise player engagement, as well as increase interest in the product from the side of operators. Our platform is actively expanding geographically and we would like to thank our partners for their trust”.

SoftSwiss Sportsbook continues expanding its horizons — just since its official launch in December 2020, the solution already signed 5 clients, and is currently in the process of launching several more in April, including third-party clients.

SoftSwiss Sportsbook Platform is an all-in-one solution for managing sports betting operations. The solution comes with full risk management, fraud prevention and high-quality customer support. Sportsbook inherits the company’s extensive experience in the iGaming market and all crucial functionality from the SoftSwiss Online Casino Platform: security, stability, advanced player segmentation, and adaptability to operators’ marketing needs.

About SoftSwiss
SoftSwiss is an international tech brand supplying widely acclaimed, certified software solutions for managing iGaming operations. The company has a vast product portfolio, which includes an online casino platform, game aggregator with thousands of casino games, an affiliate system, and a recently launched sports betting platform. SoftSwiss holds a number of gaming licenses, providing a “one-stop-shop” White Label solutions by taking care of all technical, legal, and financial processes on behalf of its customers. In 2013 SoftSwiss was the first in the world to introduce a bitcoin-optimized online casino solution. The company has thus been regarded as the leading technical expert when it comes to the use of cryptocurrencies in online gaming.

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