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Anne Lindner
 

Nambling Notes - Feb. 22, 2002

22 February 2002

A Tidbit from the Caribbean -- Two offshore online sports books called it quits this week, leaving bettors out of millions of dollars and the industry to wonder what went wrong. Aces Gold Casino and Sports-Market, which were both owned by Seinpost Holding of Curacao, had been in business since 1996 and enjoyed reputations for being honest sites. Offshore sports betting information site The Prescription reports that bettors are owed between $10 million and $12 million and that the sites' failure could have a domino effect in the industry.

New Stuff -- CryptoLogic is hitting the market with instant-play Java versions of its 14 most popular casino games. CEO Jean Noelting said the move is a nod toward the casual gambler, offering quick and easy gaming. "People can play right away using Java games, or enjoy a richer gaming experience by downloading our state-of-the-art software," he said. "It's all about choice." TVG recently launched its new and improved Web site. TVGNetworks.com features interactive wagering with real-time odds and betting pool information. The redesigned site features a faster load time, handicapping information, and odds and will-pay information on a split screen.

Tidbits from Down Under -- Ecorp is taking half-ownership of Publishing and Broadcasting's CrownGames.com. Both companies are backed by Kerry Packer and will share operation of the site. Ecorp is contributing AU $2.7 million to the cost of launching the Vanautu-based gambling site. It went live in January. Sportingbet Australia is moving to Darwin in Australia's Northern Territory from Vanautu. The company, which is a subsidiary of the U.K.-based Sportingbet plc, had turnover of more than AU $500 million last year. Syd Stirling, the territory's minister for racing, gaming and licensing, said the move would bring Darwin about 40 jobs and will infuse the local economy with more than $1 million per year. Stirling also recently announced that racing turnover tax in the territory would be reduced to 0.33 percent of turnover. Meanwhile, TAB Ltd. 's Peter Fletcher is saying the move represents a threat to New South Wales' betting revenue.

Tidbit from the US -- The Los Angeles Times reported this week that horse race bettors in California are having problems placing Internet bets even though the practice is now fully legal in the state. The culprit seems to be credit card transaction problems. A reporter for the newspaper was told by First Card Visa that since October it has had a policy that forbids cardholders to use credit to fund a gambling account via the Internet.

British Tidbit -- Two U.K. online betting operations are preparing to launch their interactive TV channels. Gaming Insight's greyhound racing channel, gobarkingmad, is being stress tested on BSkyB. David Sanderson, Gaming Insight's chief executive, said the company is hoping to launch before attheraces can. Attheraces, a horse race betting site that will also offer interactive television betting, has said it will debut in May. Coincidentally, attheraces announced this week that its betting site has landed 10,000 registered subscribers in the two months it has been online. David Bisdee, marketing director, said the company is going to pick up the pace in an advertising build-up to the launch of the interactive TV channel.

Legal Stuff -- The Aladdin Resort and Casino in Las Vegas won its bid to stop an online casino from using its name. A federal judge awarded Aladdin statutory damages of $100,000 plus interest after finding that Giordano Casinos violated an injunction that had been placed against it for linking the Aladdin name to Worldbet.net, an online casino.

Makin' Deals -- World Gaming recently licensed Tamaron International to use its Version 3 software on Tamaron's gambling site, www.playcasino2win.com. The site is supposed to launch in two months. World Gaming powers more than 750 Internet gambling sites. SureFire Commerce said this week it will be processing transactions and providing risk management for the online betting sites of Grupo Codere, a gaming company with land-based operations in Spain and South America.

Names and Faces Changing Places -- Power Leisure is on the hunt for a new chief executive. The Irish bookmaker's chairman, John Corcoran, is retiring this year and the company's present chief executive, Stewart Kenny, has been tapped to replace him. The company's betting business, Paddy Power, said this week it will quit its U.K. telephone betting business before the World Cup this summer to benefit from the more favorable offshore betting taxes.

Nambling Notes - Feb. 22, 2002 is republished from iGamingNews.com.
Anne Lindner
Anne Lindner