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Emily D. Swoboda

Nambling Notes - Apr 21, 2000

21 April 2000

Tidbits from Oz - The battle between the state and federal government in Australia over the legality of Internet gambling presents a very interesting dilemma: On one hand, the regulation of gaming lies in the hands of the states. The federal government, however, controls communications, and Prime Minister John Howard, adamantly in favor of prohibition, told Melbourne radio 3AW that the federal government will use its authority over communication matters to stomp Net betting. "This country has sent a very clear signal, the community has," Howard said, "and it's there for the world to see that we have enough gambling opportunities already."

E-Commerce Times reports that Australia's federal government is taking a close look at privacy legislation that aims to strengthen consumer privacy on the Internet. If passed, the Privacy Amendment (Private Sector) Bill 2000, would require that commercial databases containing personal data be secure, available for examination, up-to-date, and free of mistakes. The bill also seeks to prohibit companies from selling their customer lists to third parties, unless permission has been granted, and forces direct marketing lists to contain an opt-out scheme for consumers. Additionally, websites would be required to post privacy policies, give notice to Internet users and allow users to correct their own data. Plus, Internet companies would have to use encryption or other safeguards to protect consumer data from intruders.

Makin' Deals -- The Premiership Lotter-e, a U.K.-based Internet lottery benefiting Premier League football clubs, has added a new club to its rolls. Leeds United joins seven other Premier League clubs, with several more expected to become part of the month-old lottery site, Premiership Lotter-e officials announced.

Global Net Entertainment Corp., a gaming company that develops and provides Internet software technologies, broadcasting and information for traditional and online gaming industries, has announced that a wholly owned subsidiary has been granted exclusive rights to begin TV Bingo operations in Great Britain through its joint venture agreement with NorAm Gaming & Entertainment Co. NorAm has been granted an exclusive license by Pennan Consulting AB of Sweden to operate its proprietary bingo gaming software throughout Great Britain. Pennan's bingo software represents a 'best of breed' solution in the specialized field of TV Bingo. The software system prints specially prepared bingo tickets that are sold directly to the public or distributed through third party marketers, such as major grocery chains, for promotional purposes. The ticket distribution is followed by a draw conducted live on Television. The TV Bingo system can process, print and monitor up to 70 million tickets in a single game, allowing live bingo game programs to be conducted on a regional or national basis. Pennan's has operated TV Bingo in Yugoslavia for over 12 months. During this period, up to 3.5 million tickets have been sold per week. The company also recently launched its TV Bingo system in Kazakhstan. Within 14 weeks of its launch date, it has surpassed all other local lotteries in popularity and is currently selling an average of over 1.4 million tickets per week at a ticket price of $.60 USD each. Global Net Entertainment and Noram Gaming are currently in negotiations to acquire additional rights to operate TV Bingo in at least two other major countries.

TrackPower Inc., an interactive race wagering service provider, announced Tuesday the acquisition of the Harness Tracker Service (Harness Tracker), a leading online harness racing search tool, and its associated Web address, The Harness Tracker Service utilizes "Push" technology to provide individual horse owners, trainers and handicappers with the ability to track one hundred horses they wish to monitor on a daily basis. The service currently has almost 200,000 registered account holders and will be incorporated with TrackPower's overall online strategy of developing a fully integrated portal website aimed at horse racing enthusiasts throughout the world.

According to a Reuters article, Gaming Internet, an online gambling and games company, says it is in advanced talks about acquiring the Australian online and telephone bookmaker Consolidated Gaming Corp.

Interactive race wagering service provider, Inc. announced Wednesday the signing of new contracts with 10 U.S. and Canadian racetracks, increasing the number of partner tracks available on the The Youbet Network to 49. The new tracks include Bay Meadows in California; Hialeah Park in Florida; Suffolk Downs and Plainridge in Massachusetts; Beulah Park, River Downs and Thistledown in Ohio; and Canadian tracks, Elmira Raceway, Western Fair Raceway and Windsor Raceway.

Breakin' Deals -- eLOT, Inc., a developer and operator of Internet lottery systems, has announced the termination of an agreement in which it was to acquire gaming software provider After completing further due diligence, eLOT determined that "an acquisition was not in the best interest of its shareholders." The company also announced that it has proposed to a software licensing agreement and a joint venture to provide capabilities for web-based retail sales of lottery tickets in Argentina when secures a definitive agreement from the state of Chaco.

Investors' Corner -- Playboy Enterprises, Inc. announced yesterday that it expects its significantly higher investments in its online business to result in the company reporting an increased loss in the first quarter of 2000 compared to the previous year. Excluding online, the company said that it expects to report increased EBITDA versus last year's first quarter for its other operations combined. " is unique in its brand power, global reach and ability to generate high-margin revenues from proprietary content and products, online gaming and, ultimately, interactive TV," Playboy Chairman and CEO Christie Hefner said. "... The increased investments signal our desire to move quickly to take advantage of's many growth opportunities as we continue to prepare for the company's planned initial public offering." The company said that it expects to report an operating loss for its online business of approximately $5.7 million for the quarter ended March 31, 2000, compared to $2 million in the prior year period. Online revenues are expected to grow to approximately $5.8 million from $2.2 million in the previous year's quarter.

Following the completion of its acquisition by Casinos Australasia, My Casino Ltd., operator of a Vanuatu-based online casino, re-listed April 17 on the Australian Stock Exchange. A Shareholders' March 28 meeting approved the acquisition of "My Casino," the placement of 38 million shares and attached options, the change of activity for the Company and a number of other associated resolutions detailed in the notice of meeting. Currently, 34,410,000 shares and options have been issued under the terms of the company's prospectus raising $6,882,000. The acquisition of the "My Casino" business was completed on April 5, at which time 40 million vendor shares and attached options were issued to complete the purchase of the business. Meanwhile, five new directors have been appointed to the board of the company. Gordon McIntosh has been named director elect, while Dr. Andi Reitmeier has agreed to remain as chairman until a new chairman is named.

Global Net Entertainment Corp. announced this week that it is preparing to list its publicly traded stock in London, England on the OFEX market. The company says the listing will broaden exposure of the stock within the European markets, where the company is beginning operations. The company plans to have an office established in London within the next six to eight weeks and continues to be in negotiations with a number of related companies about possible joint ventures for its online initiatives.

Online Gaming Systems Ltd. announced Tuesday results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2000. For the quarter, revenues increased to $2,015,889. Net income also increased during the quarter, generating $543,264 or a $0.04 per share gain on a fully diluted basis. During the first quarter of 1999, the company generated a loss of $274,155 ( $0.02 per share on a fully diluted basis). Income from operations was $558,051 in 2000 versus a loss of $1,759,009 in 1999.

New Stuff -- While the Australian state and federal governments brawl over whether to expand or prohibit online gambling, new sites continue to make their debuts. This week, a site called Newsbet ( opened the doors to an Internet betting service that accepts wagers on sports, politics, religion, show business and everything else under the sun. The site is currently operating in free-play mode, but will begin accepting real-money bets within the next few weeks. The Sydney Morning Herald reports that the company is seeking $5 million from venture capitalists to upgrade its systems and so far received $1 million in funding from two Silicon Valley investors.

TheScottish Premier League has launched an online betting service, Freeserve, that allows punters to wager on results and scorers for football matches throughout Britain as well as internationally. SPL chief executive Roger Mitchell projects six-figure--possibly even seven-figure--profits for the league. "This link-up will bring money straight into the game which was, previously, going out of the game to the bookmakers," Mitchell told PA Sport. "We will now be able to get back the benefit of some of those profits and feed them back into football, which is important." He also pointed out that all monies will go directly to the clubs.

Gaming software developer Boss Media continues to accumulate new licensees. The newest site, Atlantic Casino, made its debut this week. Operated by Atlantic Gaming Ltd., Atlantic Casino is Boss Media's fifteenth original casino to go live on the Internet.

Starnet Communications International Inc. has announced that it has received an initial payment of $460,000 from Kiama Ltd. of Jersey in the Channel Islands for Starnet's adult entertainment division, effectively closing the sale of the division. In accordance with the sale, Starnet is to receive from Kiama $2.3 million in payments, to be made over a three-year period. Doug McClelland, a former employee of Starnet, facilitated transfer of the division from interim holder 596773 B.C. Ltd. to Kiama, acting as nominee of 596773 B.C. Ltd. A leaner, meaner Starnet now focuses solely on Internet gaming.

Another Jackpot -- Microgaming System 's highly successful CashSplashTM online progressive slot system continues to rain jackpots on happy Net bettors. The latest winner, a Chicago man, bagged $127,375 at Caribbean Gold Internet Casino. The progressive system has now paid out more than $3.8 million. The latest win is the tenth CashSplashTM jackpot awarded this month.

Tidbits from Here and There -- Ireland's Minister for Justice John O'Donoghue this week was handed a final draft report reviewing the country's Gaming & Lotteries Act. The report is expected to be used while drafting a replacement of the original 1956 legislation, which could take up to two years time. The report should be published early next month, and may address Internet gaming issues.

Reuters reports that the Chinese government has given Internet regulatory powers to the Internet Information Management Bureau to counter "infiltration of harmful information on the Internet," including gambling and pornography sites, which the government wants to keep its citizens from accessing.

The U.S. Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee this week passed legislation to ban betting on college sports in Nevada. The next step is a vote in the full Senate.

Nambling Notes - Apr 21, 2000 is republished from
Emily D. Swoboda
Emily D. Swoboda