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Anne Lindner
 

Nambling Notes - Feb. 8, 2002

8 February 2002

A Tidbit from Asia -- The weeks of speculation about whom Macau will give its three available casino licenses to are finally over. On Friday Macau awarded the licenses to two U.S. companies and Macau Gambling Co. Ltd., a business owned by Stanley Ho, who for 40 years held a monopoly on the enclave's gambling business. The other licenses went to Wynn Resorts (Macau) Ltd. and Galaxy Casino Co. Ltd. , which is controlled by Venetian. Venetian is owned by Las Vegas Sands Inc. Meanwhile, a joint venture of Park Place Entertainment, Mandalay Resort Group and Macau telecommunications executive Jose Manuel dos Santos is still holding hope for one of the Macau licenses. The two Las Vegas companies and Santos have formed MP Entertainment Co., which was named an alternate licensee by Macau should any of the enclave's three initial choices fall through.

New Stuff -- Sungold Entertainment Corp. and its subsidiary, Horsepower Broadcasting Network (HBN), launched a new virtual horse race wagering site aimed at the Asian marketplace this week. The site, Horsepower2, offers races every 90 seconds with bets starting at $2. The Asian-language version of the site will be marketed by Doubleclick and Sina.com in Southeast Asia. HBN is looking into marketing partnerships for the Asia Pacific area.

Tidbits from the US -- The Cato Institute released a report this week that outlines what it's calling "The Digital Dirty Dozen," a list of the 12 most ill-conceived tech bills proposed during the current session of Congress. One bill on the list is none other than the anti-Internet gambling proposal introduced by Rep. James Leach, R-Iowa. Leach's bill would ban the use of bank instruments such as checks and credit cards to pay for Internet gambling. The St. Louis Rams weren't the only Super Bowl losers. Reuters reported this week that Nevada's sports books only won 3.3 percent of the $75.1 million bet on Sunday's game. Nevada Gaming Control Board spokesman Frank Streshley said casinos had offered odds between 4-1 and 6-1 that the Patriots would win. Television Games Network has taken $598,271 in bets from account holders in California since Jan. 25, the day it received its advance deposit wagering license. That means TVG has handled 48.4 percent of the total amount of money spent on advance deposit wagering since Jan. 25, despite not being able to take bets on the two California Thoroughbred tracks in operation. Magna Entertainment's XpressBet service has handled the remainder of the bets.

Makin' Deals -- Roberts Communications Network Inc. is teaming with Magna Entertainment Corp. and Greenwood Racing Inc. to form a company that will telecast horse races from racetracks operated by companies including Magna and Greenwood. The service will be carried on a direct-to-home satellite horse racing service called the Racetrack Television Network. RTN will offer up to eight channels of horse racing for which customers will pay a monthly subscription fee. Aspinalls is hoping to cash in on statistics that show that as many women as men gamble online. The casino site is set to promote itself on the Web site of a popular women's television show called GMTV. Aspinalls has a year-long revenue-sharing deal to transform a part of GMTV.co.uk into a Caribbean casino. U.K.-based I-gaming software developer World Gaming plc said this week that it has been chosen by Casino Cortez to power a new online gaming site targeted at Greek and English gamblers. The site, which is now live, uses World Gaming's Version 3 software that includes casino games, sports book, pari-mutuel wagering, scratch lottery and scratch bingo. Poker.com has signed eleven new licensees. The Vancouver-based company is selling casino licenses to Sunset Enterprises Ltd. , Noir Capital Inc. , Bradbury Enterprises, Virgin International Productions, E-bizonline Ltd. , The Privilege Club Inc. and Game Labs Inc. In addition to those, it will be providing poker sub-licenses to Sunset Enterprises Ltd., First Euro Gaming Ltd. , Virgin International Productions and E-bizonline Ltd. Rimpac Resources Ltd. acquired Internet LOTO Inc. , a global lottery that offers online wagering and Web casts of weekly drawings. Thomas Johnson, the president and CEO of Internet LOTO, is the sole officer and director of Rimpac.

New Stuff -- Swedish software maker Lemonbox said this week that its ClusterTraffic marketing system is now available as a hosted solution. The system allows Web sites to benefit from visitors that leave their site without doing business there. The TaipeiBank said this week that it will provide its lottery players with smart cards so they can buy lottery tickets via the Internet. Retailers face a security risk by selling the tickets because they have to keep too much cash on hand, the bank's president, Jesse Ding, told the Taipei Times. Mondex, a smart-card provider, will be partnering with the bank to launch the service, which is scheduled to begin in the next six to 12 months.

A Tidbit from Down Under -- A charitable organization in Australia is urging the government not to lessen Internet gambling restrictions despite the continued use of offshore gaming sites by Australians. The Rev. Chester Carter of the Wesley Mission said Australians' use of foreign gambling Web sites does not mean laws should be changed. This week the Australian Casino Association called the government's efforts to stop online gambling in Australia a lost cause.

Nambling Notes - Feb. 8, 2002 is republished from iGamingNews.com.
Anne Lindner
Anne Lindner