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Mark Balestra

Nambling Notes - Jul 21, 2000

21 July 2000

New Stuff -- Starnet Communications International Inc. has announced the scheduled rollout of its new suite of I-gaming software: Beyond2000. The new package includes multi-player bingo; instant play and downloadable casino and lottery games; pari-mutuel wagering; and sports betting. Starnet President and CEO Meldon Ellis says the software will enable the company to offer "more products than any other I-gaming company on the Internet today."

Reduntantly redundantly named IGN Internet Global Network Inc. announced that its WinStreak subisidiary has launched the latest version of its Internet gaming software: Casinos of the World version 3.0. The new software adds significant front and back-end functionality over its previous version, 2.3. Enhancements to the gaming software include a complete database re-design for faster casino operations and enhanced supporting systems, including customer support, accounting, management and administration. The database infrastructure now supports software licensing and affiliate programs, and WinStreak will soon introduce its first licensed casino: Wild Wild West Casino. Corp. this week (coincidentally around the same time the U.S. House defeated the Goodlatte bill) introduced a new technology designed to enable state lotteries to offer their games over the Internet exclusively to players within specified jurisdictions. The system, "eBorder Control," works on two levels: On a macro level, it blocks players from certain jurisdictions, while on the micro level, it works only within a certain jurisdiction. The Macro eBorder Control technology uses a proprietary database developed by to limit Internet users of certain jurisdictions from doing e-commerce with a specific website. The Micro eBorder Control technology uses a telephone caller origination identifier system together with Virtgame's proprietary Active User Verification Software. IGN will report more on eBorder Control Monday.

Paramount Trading went live with its new website,, on July 17. The company, which purchased the URL for over US$450,000, beta tested the site with over 3 million hands played and over 31,000 registered users for five weeks. To celebrate the launch, the company is offering a promotion--"8 Wonders of the World"--in which players are rewarded 5,000 free "Blackjack Bucks" and the opportunity to win multiple prizes, including a $3,000 grand prize and a trip to one of seven International gambling hot spots in the world. reported this week that British Sky Broadcasting is expected to launch a string of interactive television services after taking control of Open, its interactive TV subsidiary. The company won't reveal its strategy until at least next week, although it's believed that the company will launch its long-awaited digital text service, which will offer viewers extra information and e-commerce opportunities. The company could also be introducing a "contextual betting" service that's linked to Sky Sports.

Windnsea Gaming Services has announced the official launch of its Ladybug Bingo Java bingo game. The new site is the fourth to be launched by the company this year of the 12 that are planned. "We will, by years end, have the most well-rounded portfolio of downloadable and Java casinos and bingo sites, as well as sportsbooks and a variety of very exciting new concept gaming sites to be introduced later this summer," Windnsea President Craig Williamson explained. "We will surprise a lot of people this year." Built by Chartwell Technology Inc., Ladybug Bingo provides four different bingo environments with 3D graphics and digital sounds.

Makin' Deals -- Toronto gaming software developer CryptoLogic Inc. announced that it has licensed its software package to an Australian subsidiary of eBet Ltd. eBet will distribute the software in Australia and New Zealand expanding CryptoLogic's customer base. eBet's clients include New Zealand TAB, an operator of race and other sports betting, and Tattersall's, an Australian lottery operator in existence for over 100 years. Inc. announced this week that it has acquired the exclusive worldwide marketing rights to the Stealth 001 online gaming and financial indexing software package from Mansion Segundo Milenio, S.A. of Costa Rica. The suite was developed exclusively for E-Vegas by Mansion, the owner of the software's intellectual rights as well as its support service provider. As compensation, Mansion Segundo Milenio receives 2 million restricted shares of E-Vegas upon delivery of six licenses from Inc. within 60 days and the ability to earn an additional 250,000 restricted shares of Inc.'s common stock for every additional on-line gaming license sold within the next 12 months. The maximum additional shares Mansion Segundo Milenio can earn is 5 million shares based on an additional 20 new licenses being sold. After the total of 26 licenses have been acquired, Mansion Segundo Milenio will receive 250,000 warrants issued at a strike price of US$1.00 per share for each additional license obtained. Mansion Segundo Milenio will receive a payment of US$3 million for the commencement of this agreement (of which $60,000 has been paid to date). Inc. will receive a one-time $250,000 fee, and a 20 percent royalty from licensees of the Stealth 001 software.

E-Vegas additionally announced that it's finalizing a marketing agent agreement with an international sales organization, which it says will utilize its worldwide contacts in the gaming and financial industry to secure on-line gaming licenses with licensed casinos actively participating in the industry. The company will remit five percent to Mansion Segundo Milenio S.A. of any gross revenue realized through its efforts.

A Tidbit from the Far East -- Casino tycoon Stanley Ho will reportedly be stripped next year of the Macau gambling monopoly he's held since 1962. According to the BBC, the enclave's government will likely bring in foreign experts to advise it on how to open up the gambling sector. Ho's 10 Macau casinos are expected to retain their licenses.

What Others Are Saying -- Monday's surprising House vote was a huge story, and the media accordingly reacted by spewing fodder by the ton. Lots of good stuff, lots of crap, but the story that I found most intriguing was this week's column by Lou at Lou wanted to make sure that Ariz. Sen. Jon Kyl, the man famous for starting the crusade, was not forgotten by pointing out that Kyl's No. 1 1999-2000 contributor--Viad Corp.--has a significant interest in a company called Game Financial. As it turns out, Game Financial provides cash access services--including credit card advances, check cashing and ATM services--in approximately 90 U.S. casinos. You can check out the full story at

Word from the Hill -- U.K. bookmaker William Hill is projecting huge amounts of money to change hands via Internet betting courtesy of this weekend's British Open golf championship. The group says it will be the biggest golf betting event ever and predicts that up to £10 million will be gambled on the tournament. It also says that South African Ernie Els could be the spoiler. They expect to take a six-figure punch if Els, backed from 20/1 to 14/1 joint second favorite, wins the event.

Quote Worthy -- "We're not ready to throw in the towel. We're encouraged by the number of votes that are still out there in support of this."

--NCAA Assistant Director of Federal Regulation Daniel Nestel, as quoted in USA Today, with a reminder that the fight for prohibition hasn't been lost yet and that the NCAA is still strongly supporting the effort.

Turn Back the Clock -- In case you're wondering whether legislators trying to get this thing passed are feeling any sense of urgency, I refer you to June 16's Nambling Notes quote of the week:

"If we don't do it this year, I question whether we will have another opportunity to do it."

--Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., as quoted by National Journal's Congress Daily.

Mark Balestra
Mark Balestra is the Managing Director at BolaVerde Media Group. He previously worked at Clarion Gaming and the River City Group where he was the publisher of iGamingNews. He lives in St. Louis, Missouri.
Mark Balestra
Mark Balestra is the Managing Director at BolaVerde Media Group. He previously worked at Clarion Gaming and the River City Group where he was the publisher of iGamingNews. He lives in St. Louis, Missouri.