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Mark Balestra

Nambling Notes - Sep 29, 2000

29 September 2000

Makin' Deals -- PlayandWin Inc. and Penn National Gaming Inc. have announced the signing of an agreement under which Penn National will act as a wagering hub for all hosting and interface services for Racingo in the United States. Racingo is a pari-mutuel, bingo-type game with the outcome based on a series of horse races that, according to a company release, "combines the ease of bingo and the excitement of horse racing with lottery size jackpots." Bill Bork, president and COO of Penn National Gaming, said, "I have spoken to many tracks regarding this new wager. I have not seen this much excitement about a new bet since the Pick 6."

Boss Media AB of Sweden announced the signing of agreements to develop Internet casinos for Interworld Gaming and Casino Club Inc. Both corporations have extensive experience from the land-based gaming industry. The two casinos will use Boss's multi-player software platform and are scheduled to go live on in winter 2001. The deals bring Boss's total number of licenses up to 34. Twenty of the licenses were acquired this year.

iTV Games, Inc. and RealTIME Media, Inc. have signed a cooperative services digital marketing agreement to develop, market, promote and operate and other similar promotional games. These games will be offered as integrated online and offline promotions to both iTV Games and RealTIME Media clients. PowerBingo.TV, an iTV product, is the first fully interactive digital TV bingo game show developed for the WebTV platform.

Breakin' Deals -- Australian online casino operator Gocorp Ltd. and gaming software developer Gaming & Entertainment Pty Ltd. (GET) have reportedly terminated an agreement calling for GET to supply its gaming technology to Gocorp. Both companies blame the political uncertainty in Australia over Internet gambling for the decision. Software development company Trans-Global Interactive subsequently nixed its plans of launching a GET-powered online casino under the Penthouse brand.

New Stuff -- eLottery, Inc. today announced that it has commenced Internet lottery ticket sales for the Jamaica Lottery at The initial rollout consists of a Pick 3 game that is available to residents of Jamaica and to international jurisdictions where permitted. Future offerings include instant scratch-off games and a semi-weekly lotto game. Internet sales will not be available to U.S. residents.

Littlewoods Leisure and Celtic Football Club this week jointly introduced "The Bhoys PrizeBuster Lottery," a weekly lottery that aims to raise thousands of dollars for the club's youth football development work. Operated by Littlewoods, the lottery is base on National Lottery numbers in the BBC Saturday night draw with players selecting three numbers between 1 and 49. For now, entry forms can be purchased either at Celtic Park or through the mail, but the games will soon be available on the Internet at All entries are processed by Littlewoods Leisure's head office in Liverpool. Celtic receives 20p for every £1 entry--the net proceeds after costs and prizes.

Stock Incorporated (Belize) Ltd. announced today the launch of, a market-style gaming website where gamblers can purchase shares across three groups of companies. Licensed by the government of Belize, the new site gives players real-time information and highly interactive tools for purchasing shares. Information such as transaction history, share prices and current portfolios are all displayed through the trading screen.

In the Courts -- The Globe and Mail reported yesterday that Jack Banks and Larry Weltman, two Canadian businessmen indicted earlier this year on charges of grand larceny and fraud in connection with operations at Internet gambling company Ltd., have been convicted of defrauding a British Bank of $32 million and slapped with $1million in fines. Further, both have been placed on probation for five years and cannot return to the United States unless required by court order. Neither will be allowed to hold more than 9 percent of a publicly traded company or serve as officers. The two were convicted, under the terms of New York's general business law, of stealing the money from the New York office of Coutts & Co. AG, a subsidiary of National Westminster Bank PLC, by artificially inflating the value of their company's stock. The bank was reportedly led by Banks and Weltan to believe that time known as Laser Friendly Inc.--was licensed to operate gambling companies in Washington even though it was not.

Tidbits from the US -- California Governor Gray Davis has one more day to sign, veto or ignore Assembly Bill 2760, an act that provides a framework for regulated account wagering in the Golden State. The bill could be doomed if his track record is to serve as an indication of what he'll do, as he's had a knack for vetoing gambling legislation.

According to an article in, American Horse Council president Jay Hickey called on members of the horseracing industry Monday to contact their legislators in support of the Internet Gambling Prohibition Act. The article also pointed out that the act could be included in an omnibus spending bill late in the session.

Online Gaming Systems, Ltd. (OGAM) has announced that field trials held for the company's "Mini-Touch" (patent pending) slot machine have been successfully concluded and that the Nevada Gaming Commission and the FCC have now approved the product. The product was developed by OGAM's wholly owned subsidiary Excel Design over a two-year span in Las Vegas. The company will officially launch and display the product at the World Gaming Conference and Exposition to be held October 18-20, 2000. Anchor Gaming has been appointed the exclusive North American agent for the "Mini-Touch." The company additionally announced that the reorganization of its management and staff is complete and that its new corporate offices will be located in Las Vegas, Nev., with a satellite development office in Delray Beach, Fla. The move will be completed by October 6, 2000.

Tidbits from the UK -- Following the recent court battle between the U.K. National Lottery Commission and license applicant Camelot, Home Secretary Jack Straw expressed his dismay about the situation. During a BBC television show, Straw was asked whether the Commission should resign. In response, Straw said, "These are serious criticisms and, if they were to have been made of me, I would not have necessarily resigned, but I certainly would have considered my position. The Commission are on notice. They have to get the process and the judgment exactly right for the future." reports that multiple racetrack owner Arena Leisure has bid £320 million for the media rights to British horseracing for the next 10 years. The company originally bid £178 million for the interactive rights, which would enable it to combine Internet broadcasts with online betting services. Yesterday, the company raised the bid to £180 million and added an £140 million for the terrestrial rights. Many believe that Arena's competition in the bidding, Carlton Communications, will match the £320 million offer.

Promotion of the Year? -- Not since Cyberbetz accepted wagers on a dolphin racing exhibition has there been such an exciting sports betting event. Blue Square, an online sportsbook based in the U.K., on Monday held the first ever Internet broadcast of a snail race. According to a ZDNet story, the thrilling contest involved six snails racing up 427 mm poles away from water. Each randomly chosen snail was given 4-1 odds. Races took place at 12:30 p.m. everyday this week and will conclude tomorrow. Presumably, past performance sheets and speed ratings for the participants aren't available.

Pickup of the Week -- eLOT, Inc. announced this week the hiring of marketing specialist Samuel M. DePhillippo, president and managing director of The DePhillippo Group, as a consultant. DePhillippo was the executive director of the Massachusetts State Lottery from 1995-1998. The DePhillippo Group specializes in marketing and consulting services to the retail, e-commerce and lottery industries. DePhillippo's primary responsibility will be in the areas of product development, marketing and domestic business development.

Nambling Notes - Sep 29, 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.