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Adeslon Donation to Trump Inauguration Stirs iGaming Controversy

Adeslon Donation to Trump Inauguration Stirs iGaming Controversy

April 22, 2017 · Filed Under Casinos, Online Gambling News 

A $5 Million Donation Made by Sheldon Adelson Leaves Anxieties of Fear for the Online Gambling Industry

Adeslon Donation to Trump Inauguration Stirs iGaming ControversyTuesday during the Federal Election Commission filing several documents were leaked that Sheldon Adelson donated $5 million to Trump’s inauguration. The election and campaigning happened over the course of the last couple of years with the news just now hitting in the industry. The news has left for a level of feared anxiety for many reasons. This ‘donation’ is on top of the $11.2 million of previous donations made by Adelson.

The news brings concerns with all aspects of online gambling as the main response being that of a gambling ban at a federal level now. Although these are rumors and speculations, the news of the released documents, or that of the actions it’s being said the DOJ will revisit the opinion on online gambling in the US.

Adelson is a sneaky rat, if you will! He sneaks in and slithers his lump sums of money to political parties with everyone thinking he’s donating to good cause, when in all actuality, he’s donating for everything he believes in just like his $20 million he sent to a GOP super PAC that was called the Senate Leadership Fund last year. This was done just a few days before the Restoration of America’s Wire Act was reintroduced into the Senate.

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Bitcoin Popularity Rises Among Gamblers with Over $4Billion Wager Since 2014

April 14, 2017 · Filed Under Bitcoin, Gambler's Report, Online Gambling News 

$4.5 Billion Wagered in Bitcoin on Gambling Over the Last 3 Years as Gamblers Giving Popularity in the CryptoCurrency

Bitcoin, the digital cryptocurrency has continued to rise in popularity over the years. Recent reports confirm the virtual currency is one of the more popular and most used forms of payment to gamble online. There have been $4.5 billion wagered with bitcoins since 2014, so over the last 3 years.

Statistics show that most all gamblers strongly believe that bitcoin is the perfect payment option for online transactions. Using bitcoin has made it possible for more confidential and privatized gambling with faster transactions, anonymous and more secure transfers. Just last year more than $45 billion in bitcoin was purchased, sold and transferred, this is a remarkable volume for the industry.

According to a bitcoin tracker website that tracks the value of BTC and more, reports that more than 24.5 billion wagers were placed just in the last two years. There are more bitcoin gambling websites that have appeared over the last couple years too.

Amongst 60 bitcoin websites there are close to 337 wagers being placed per second with 3 BTC being the average per minute. At the time of the report, 3.7 million BTC was wagered which equals out to be right around $4.5 billion.

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Ukraine Looking to Capitilize on Gambling Revenue Benefits

April 14, 2017 · Filed Under Online Gambling Laws, Online Gambling News 

Ukraine to Re-Legalize Gambling by 2018 as Prime Minister Makes Point in Regards to Missed Revenue

The Prime Minister of the Ukraine has finally accepted a letter promising the re-legalization of gambling by the Ministry of Finance. The promise is supposed to allow gambling in the region by 2018.

Aleksandr Danilyuk, Finance Minister of the Ukraine said, earlier this year, that there has been $370 million missed out on with taxes over the past two years because of delays to opening back up the market.

Gambling was outlawed just about 8 years ago in the region. Previous legalization proposals have failed over the last two years because of tax rates and licensing fees were extortionate. Back in 2015 when the proposals were denied, it was suggested that the regulations would allow iGaming activities as well as land-based, lotteries and sports betting generations to accumulate more than $1.5 billion worth of revenues annually.

The acceptance of new regulations and legislations have been seen before. Back in 2009 there were legitimate interests with Ukrainian players with the lift of the ban being considered. There has been, since then, more issues arise with gambling addiction, licensed operators and so on, so it has caused the banning of gambling to continue. Hopefully the acceptance of the promise letter is a step in the right direction.

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Michigan’s Legalization of Online Gambling is a Bit Absurd

April 11, 2017 · Filed Under Online Gambling News 

Michigan’s Senate Bill 203 Will Only Legally Allow Players Online Gambling within Land-Based Casino Walls

Michigan's Legalization of Online Gambling is a Bit Absurd

While Michigan may become the fourth state behind Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware to legalize gambling, players will still not be able to play online in their homes. The Michigan online gambling bill that was introduced back in March seems to offer an unusual twist that some say will drastically limit the potential payoff to the state.

State Senate Majority Leader Mike Kowall introduced SB203 which has gained the support needed in the capital, but this week the gambling expansion must be approved by voters, not just lawmakers making for a huge setback with arguments considering the bill to be unconstitutional.

“Under Article 4, Section 41 of the Michigan Constitution, any law enacted after January 1, 2004, that authorizes any form of gambling must be approved by a majority of voters in a statewide election,” says details of the latest analysis that was completed this month.

Details of Kowall’s bill would allow the three commercial casinos with the Native American groups and in Detroit to engage in online poker and gambling.

One of the legislative analyst’ who authored the bill’s legal studies, Drew Krogulecki responded to providing the unconstitutional details of SB203 saying the laws in Michigan exempt commercial casinos and Native American groups from Article 4, Section 41.

As David Schwartz director of the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas so plainly stated;

“You’re definitely constraining the market by making people go to a casino to play online,” Schwartz said. “Would you drive to Home Depot to use Amazon to buy something? I probably wouldn’t, as nice as Home Depot is. I want the convenience of getting something at home.”

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Samoa Prime Minister Rejects Gambling Bill Changes, Says Stick to Bingo

March 29, 2017 · Filed Under Online Gambling News 

Bill to Allow Local Bets Rejected by Samoa Prime Minister

The Samoa Prime Minister rejected the bid to approve the bill to allow local bets across gambling and casino facilities. Samoans had their hopes us for a bit, but was steadily shot down when Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi disapproved.

The current law in the country states that foreign passport holders only are allowed to walk into casinos and wager. This, however, was hopefully going to change with the law changing to allow all Samoan passport holders to enter the casino venues.
The Prime Minister was quick to disapprove and reject the request. He commented that locals should stick to playing bingo and not casinos especially women. He also said the main reason why gaming was allowed in the first place was to support the former members of the Parliament when it was first brought up for discussion, because Samoan holders were banned.

“This is because if we allow locals to play Casino, no one might ever want to play Bingo anymore,” he said.

The reason why it has and will continue to be rejected is to protect families from the negative impacts of gambling. The final decision, or final word, benefits the families from the negative impacts of gaming and problem gambling. The bill was deliberated and the final decision will be made by the Parliamentary Bills Committee sometime soon.

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Gibraltar iGaming Industry to Suffer Post-Brexit

March 21, 2017 · Filed Under Online Gambling News 

Gibraltar has a booming economy that has managed to keep its economic growth in double figures, even throughout the economic crisis. The presence of online gaming companies played no small part in this. This small 6.7 square kilometre peninsula in the south of Spain plays host to 33 gaming companies, which make up 60% of all global internet sites in the industry. The sector currently employs over 3,200 people, a number which is continually rising, and generates an estimated 30 billion euros a year. This figure represents 25% of the outcrop’s GDP.

The Rock was the first place to open its doors to online gaming, and the bet certainly paid off. After Victor Chandler upped sticks from London, other companies followed suit, tempted by the advantages that Gibraltar has to offer. It boasts good communication links from within a strong financial environment, corporate tax is at only 10%, and profits from gaming carry just a 1% charge. They maintain their standards by only considering licensing blue chip companies with good financial standing and realistic business plans. It really is a haven for the gaming industry.

At least it was until the United Kingdom threw two very large spanners into the works. The first was a new consumption tax introduced 2014. It required all operators that provide services to UK residents to pay a 15% tax on the GGR (Gross Gaming Revenue). This prompted the Gibraltar Betting and Gaming Association (GBGA) to initiate a case based on the argument that they are a territory of the UK, not an integral part, and that their services were on loan, the same as to any other EU member state. This was overruled in January 2017 with Maciej Szpunar arguing that the UK and Gibraltar are part and parcel of the same package.

This ruling is particularly devastating for a Gibraltar that is now desperate to procure treaties and deals with other EU member states post-Brexit. There’s a simple reason that 96% of voters were Remainers: their economy does not work without access to the single market. It had long been speculated that Gibraltar would be subject to the same treatment as the rest of the UK, despite its geographical position and extremely strong employment links with neighbouring Spain. The ruling was originally limited to the world of gaming, but it’s likely to be applied to nearly all aspects of the economy.

The government of Gibraltar now needs to scramble to reach deals with the UK on several aspects to try to stop the mass exodus of companies that already threatens the peninsula’s economic stability. Ideally, the UK and Gibraltar would keep their access to the single market, allowing Gibraltar to continue enjoying its status as an online gaming hub. However, the Tory government has made their stance on immigration clear, and no freedom of movement means no single market access. This causes a myriad of companies to announce their plans to head to greener, European pastures.

iGaming companies themselves will surely need to start looking for solutions to avoid losing their licences in EU member states due to the recent updates to regulations of some member states.  A quick-fix would be to take the lead from companies already registered or based in Malta, and go about obtaining a licence from the Malta Gaming Authority. Moving the company would avoid the Brexit fallout, but Gibraltar will likely be left languishing behind. A sad turn of events for The Rock.

Author Bio: Jaismin Paul

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West Virginia Makes Move Towards Online Gambling with House Bill 3067

March 18, 2017 · Filed Under Gambler's Report, Online Gambling News 

West Virginia Introduces First Bill for Regulated Online Gambling

House Bill 3067 has recently been introduced into the state of West Virginia in an attempt to legalize online gambling activities. Mike Pushkin, Mike Bates, Shawn Fluharty, Joseph Canestraro and Sean Hornbuckle, are among the delegates to have sponsored the bill with hopes of “authorizing Internet gaming managed and licensed through existing authorized gaming facilities in West Virginia”. The bill is said to fall under the West Virginia Lottery Commission’s responsibilities regulations all relating to legalizing interactive gaming; providing legislative findings and establishing licensing requirements.

The bill will also allow gaming for states who are authorized for online gambling as well as prohibit strong or strict penalties for unlawful activities with up to $300,000 in fines and three years in prison for unlawful acts.

If the bill is approved, licensed facilities will be able to apply for an online license which will come with a tax rate of 14% towards all gross gaming revenues and a license fee of $50,000. Operators who are approved will be expected to set up their own policies and monitor its players.

Additional detailed information found in the bill include that all operators are responsible for making certain players are permissible to play, meaning residing in the state; as verification must be enforced that players are 21 years or older and protocols must be in place for responsible and problem gambling.

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New Jersey State Senator Jim Whelan Resolution to Protect iGambling

March 5, 2017 · Filed Under Online Gambling News 

New Jersey State Senator Moves to Protect the State’s Online Gambling Industry through Resolution

Jim Whelan, New Jersey State Senator makes a move to protect the state’s online gambling industry through resolutions by calling on the US Administration and Congress to “oppose any actions that would prohibit states to conduct Internet gaming,” by introducing an approved resolution.

Whelan is and always have been a strong supporter of online gambling in the state and his SJR 102 bill is very similar to Assembly resolution AJR 137. Vincent Mazzeo, an Assembly man filed AJR 137 earlier this year which details state legislature for unified protection against federal interference.

Concerns, or worries are congregating that the Trump Administration’s new US Attorney General will review the Department of Justice 2011 opinion negatively and won’t apply the necessary coverage to online casinos and poker, and just sports betting.

Whelan’s resolution has been sitting with the Senate State Government, Wagering, Tourism and Historic Preservation Committee. There are at least six co-sponsors included in the committee which Whelan has strongly supported and hopes there will be some kind of movement with progression soon. Included in the resolution it says there have been recent measures taken, and if pursued it will invalidate the state’s implementation of online gaming which has been regulated and authorized since 2013.

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MGM’s Confirmation of Plans for Online Gambling Site in New Jersey

March 2, 2017 · Filed Under Gambler's Report, Online Gambling News 

MGM Resorts’ Senior Vice President of Business Development, Tom Mikulich, Confirms Rumors of Interest in the Online Opportunities; Hopeful to Launch MGM Resorts Brand in the Near Future.

There has been rumors throughout the industry that MGM Resorts was planning on opening up an online gaming site in New Jersey. Well, with confirmation the rumors are true! MGM Resorts confirmed the plans without going into details or giving a date when the planned site was to launch.

MGM made the decision to open up an online site after gaining full ownership of Borgata back in August. MGM had joint ownership of Borgata for 13 years before finalizing full ownership. The new online venue will most likely be connected with Borgata-Bwin-GVC-PartyPoker license and network.

If MGM pulls off of the above mentioned licensed it will bring the total number of online sites operating under the Borgata license six. NJ.com reported that four of the sites are unique brands. The New Jersey news site also reported that they were unsure whether the rumors of PartyPoker being dropped was true or not and that it’s unclear if MGM’s online site will be powered by GVC or if MGM will find other alternatives to power the games.

“THERE IS NOT A SPECIFIC TIMELINE BUT IF IT COMES TO FRUITION, IT LIKELY WOULD BE FOR BOTH POKER AND CASINO GAMES.” – Tom Mikulich

If, and when MGM launches its online gambling product in the state it clarifies that the gaming giant is committed to online gambling and is making a clear statement.

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Pennsylvania Online Gambling Revenue Projections Future Looking Good

March 2, 2017 · Filed Under Online Gambling News 

Online Gambling in Pennsylvania Seeing Positive Results Thus Far in 2017 with Projected Annual Revenues at $230 Million

Recent reports released in the state of Pennsylvania claim that the state could receive more than $400 million in tax revenues within the next 5 years if they were to legalize online gambling, but not everyone is on board, mainly the naysayers that are against online gambling. The state would collect upfront $126 million in licensing fees from online gambling sites, and more than $45 million each year for the next 5 until 2022.

Projected revenues amount to $230 million just the first year and $364 million after. If the state proposed a tax rate at 20% they would collect $426 million the first five years. These figures are based on predictions and what New Jersey collected the first couple years after legalizing online activities.

Of course, the predictions were criticized by Sheldon Adelson’s anti-online gambling action group. Adelson’s The Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling groups spokesman, John Ashbrook said,

“These predictions are about as reliable as Warren Beatty’s best picture envelope. It’s not surprising that online gaming consultants would exaggerate numbers to help their business.”

Other comments being said include “There’s no voodoo involved in these projections (which are) based on New Jersey’s experience and adjusted for Pennsylvania’s casino industry and demographics.”

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