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Mark Balestra

Nambling Notes - Mar 31, 2000

31 March 2000

Tidbits from the U.S. -- The Public Sector Gaming Study Commission, a non-partisan group of U.S. state officials assembled to address issues involving gaming in the U.S., released its final report on gambling in the U.S. today, although it won't be made available to the public until Monday. In its draft report, released in February, the PSGSC recommended a ban on Internet gambling. A spokesperson from the Commission told IGN to expect some changes in the final version. Don't bet on a change of philosophy regarding Internet issues.

Once again, the hearing for U.S. Rep. Bob Goodlatte's federal online gambling prohibition bill has been postponed, presumably because Goodlatte is having a heck of a time satisfying enough of his colleagues to get the bill moving. The big day, assuming it isn't postponed again, will be Tuesday, April 4. Giddy-up.

The state bills are seeing their share of delays as well. Tennessee Senate Bill 2287, scheduled for action this week, was placed the Judiciary Committee calendar for April 11. Further action on its House companion bill, HB2151, has been rescheduled for April 19.

Meanwhile, an April 10 hearing date has been set for California Assembly Bill 2179, a Net betting prohibition act introduced February 23 by Rep. Herb J. Wesson, Jr.

In case you didn't know it, March is the month that the Nevada State Gaming Control Board tests the telephone wagering systems of the handful of Nevada sportsbooks that offer phone betting to make sure that controls to prevent bets coming in from out of state are in place. A little bird told IGN that several of the books didn't pass the test. Board Chairman Steve Ducharme wouldn't confirm nor deny that bets were successfully taken across state lines, but did say that some "fine tuning" was needed. He also said that no disciplinary action would be taken against any Nevada sportsbooks regarding telephone wagering. In a related story, widespread panic in the Southwest over the rumored volcanic eruption in southern Nevada has been quieted by the confirmation that the source of the thick clouds of black smoke engulfing the Grand Canyon was actually the ears of American Wagering Inc. President Vic Salerno.

Have you noticed, amid Nevada's no-tolerance approach toward online gambling and's legal troubles in California, there hasn't been much noise lately about developments in the partnership between, Inc. and Station Casinos Inc.? Well, finally there's noise, but it's entirely incomprehensible. You Bet announced this week that it has restructured its relationship with Station, however, no details of the restructuring were supplied. You Bet stated that it "intends to continue to develop an interactive website to provide a broad spectrum of information on live sporting events, including handicapping information and live odds and spreads" and that it "plans to invite major Las Vegas strip and local casinos to participate." How or whether Station will be involved was left out of the statement. You Bet is still waiting for Nevada gaming authorities to approve the service.

Makin' Deals -- The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday that Havas Interactive, the world's number two in computer games and educational software is purchasing Prize Central Networks Inc. Havas, a California-based subsidiary of France's Vivendi, will merge Prize Central's Web site,, with its own site to create an online games Internet site called Financial details of the deal, which is scheduled to be concluded in April, were not disclosed. Combining the two rival sites will leave with more than 4.2 million registered users and 60 online games.

Fraud prevention software developer e-Success Incorporated reports that it has completed its first round of financing with an investment from Gibralt Capital Corporation. The funding will provide e-Success with the initial resources it requires to continue its rapid growth and expansion into new markets. e-Success, a subsidiary of Riptide Technologies, was recently formed to focus on enhancing its products related to real time transaction auditing and Internet fraud detection and prevention. The funding from Gibraltar is the first capital injection into the e-Success to provide funds for increased marketing activities and continued product research and development.

Online casino Omni Casino has formed a strategic alliance with Lifestyle Vacation Incentives in which Omni will provide free travel awards to its customers. Omni and Lifestyle will share their respective market resources and expertise to provide free travel, free companion tickets and deeply discounted fares to players. Through the partnership, Omni will offer travel rewards including Air Check Travel Vouchers (up to $100 in discounts off airline tickets), free Companion Tickets to any one of 64 cities within the continental U.S., complimentary airfare for two to one of 11 of vacation spots (including Jamaica, Hawaii, England and Mexico) and a VIP Las Vegas vacation.

Gaming software provider Online Gaming Systems Ltd. has expanded its current licensing agreement with Total Entertainment Inc., the company's exclusive distributor of software to all non-land based virtual gaming venues worldwide. Under the terms of the expanded agreement, Total Entertainment will add Online Gaming's casino and sports product software to its growing portfolio. Although specific terms of the agreement were not disclosed, Online Gaming will receive up-front revenues in excess of $300,000.

Internet Sports Network, Inc. announced this week that it has entered into a three-year agreement with CTV Sportsnet, Canada's first 24-hour regional sports broadcaster, to design, host and operate fantasy sports contests at The first contest, Intel Hoops Madness, was successfully launched March 1, giving basketball fans an opportunity to make their bracket selections in the men's college basketball tournament. ISN will soon introduce playoff contests for the National Hockey League and National Basketball Association.

A Tidbit from Oz -- The freeze is on in New South Wales--a 12 month freeze on the number of poker machines in clubs, that is. The movement is part of the government's concern over problem gambling. During the freeze, the government will examine how to establish appropriate controls. No such policy has been formally drawn regarding Internet gambling, however, it should be noted that experts on problem gambling in Australia have consistently pointed to Net betting as potentially being even more potent than the pokies.

Investors' Corner --, a provider of Internet solutions to the gaming industry, announced this week its financial results for the year ended Dec. 31, 1999. Gaming revenues increased 77 percent to $485,327 compared to $262,599 in 1998. Net gaming revenues were up 73 percent to $384,673 from $221,192 the year before, and operating expenses were lowered by 24 percent. The net loss for the year fell 31 percent to $3,050,719, or $0.34 per share, on 9,024,792 weighted average shares outstanding, compared with a loss in 1998 of $3,992,153, or $0.58 per share, on 8,880,834 weighted average shares outstanding.

Gaming software licenser, Inc. has changed its trading symbol from "PKER" to "PKERE." The company completed its SEC filing on March 22, 2000, but the reporting deadline was fast approaching. It was determined that would relieve shareholder concerns about PKER being de-listed to the pink sheets by doing a new release to this affect. PKER hopes the "E" will be removed shortly and that PKER's common shares will not be de-listed off the OTCBB.

Total Entertainment Inc. this week filed its annual report on Form 10-KSB with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Net revenues for 1999 reached $581,543 compared to $169,993 in 1998. The company incurred a net loss of $1,190,716 or $0.02 per share on a diluted basis.

Access Gaming Systems Ltd., an Australian gaming software provider, has announced plans for $45 million IPO.

Old Faces, New Places -- Gaming software developer Boss Media announced this week the appointment of Johan Sigvardsson as the company's new president. Sigvardsson will assume office May 12, when the company holds its annual shareholders meeting. The company founder, Joel Wikell, will take office as vice president at this time as well. Lars Mansson, the acting president, will remain with the company and focus on working with larger, international customers. "My primary mission was to introduce the corporation on the stock exchange, which took place in June 1999. With sustained good future prospects, I feel it is the right time to pass the office on to a younger president," Mansson said. Sigvardsson, 33, has served as Boss Media's chief financial officer since the spring of 1997.

New Stuff -- eLOT, Inc. has announced that its subsidiary, eLottery, Inc., has successfully launched the Idaho Lottery Internet marketing program using its Internet Marketing, Analysis, Research, and Communications System (IMARCS). The Idaho Lottery has registered over 11,000 members since it began using eLottery's IMARCS technology on February 25, 2000 as the foundation for its VIP Club. IMARCS technology enables the Idaho Lottery to attract, register and communicate with Idaho residents through advanced Internet technology and deliver one-to-one marketing messages that maximize lottery ticket sales.

Global Entertainment Holdings/Equities, Inc. has announced the U.K. launch of its all-soccer sports wagering website,, a product of Global subsidiary Interactive Gaming & Wagering NV. The initial launch event took place at Wembley stadium, the spiritual home of world soccer, during England's friendly soccer match with Argentina, attracting high profile media interest. accepts bets from everywhere in the world on a wide range of major soccer leagues including U.K. Premiership and Italian Serie A, as well as leagues in Argentina, Spain and Brazil.

Nambling Notes - Mar 31, 2000 is republished from
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.