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        1. Monday, March 1, 2021

          Converged experiences: U.S. operators blend land-based with digital

          In a report last year, ratings agency Moody’s predicted a surge in merger and acquisitions between online and land-based gambling operators as the latter seek to cement new revenue streams after the chaos wreaked by Covid-19.

          Packer-linked Crown director resigns

          Crown Resorts’ Perth-based director John Poynton is the latest Crown director to resign from the board after the NSW regulator deemed he was too closely linked to the pany’s largest shareholder James Packer.?

          Kerala bans online rummy

          The Indian state government of Kerala has joined Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, and Tamil Nadu in specifically banning online rummy or other games played for stakes.

          Aristocrat mulls M&A to expand in digital

          Aristocrat Entertainment CEO Trevor Croker said the pany plans to “significantly escalate” its focus on convergence products and services, which may involve mergers and acquisitions.

          Interview with Jennifer Song: Optimism after Chinese New Year [video]

          Jennifer Song, equity analyst with Morningstar, speaks with Asia Gaming Brief managing editor Sharon Singleton about visitation to Macau during the recent Chinese New Year period and the outlook for recovery. The longer-than-usual May holiday may be a key catalyst for growth.

          Macau, Cambodia to lead gaming recovery: Colliers

          Macau GGR recovery will be driven by premium mass, whilst Cambodia’s gaming recovery will be driven by the VIP segment, according to analysts at Colliers International.?

          Paradise Co. pany losses in 2020 reach US$97.8 million

          Paradise Co. has reported its fourth quarter and full year financial results for the year 2020, recording full year net losses on its controlling interest of KRW109.8 billion (US$97.8 million).

          Melco/Galaxy turn EBITDA positive, upbeat on recovery

          The last two of Macau’s operators released Q4 results on Thursday, with both returning to profit at the EBITDA-level and expressing confidence in the market recovery.
          Authorities in Sihanoukville have warned visitors not to e to the city and urged its residents to stay in place to curb the spread of a new outbreak of Covid-19.
          Moody’s Investors Service has confirmed Crown Resorts' current issuer credit rating of Baa3, but has revised the rating outlook from review for downgrade to negative.
          Galaxy Entertainment Group has signed an accord with Accor to bring storied hotel brand, Raffles, to Macau with the opening of an exclusive all-suite tower, Raffles at Galaxy Macau in the second half of 2021.
          Macau's gross gambling revenue was down 39.2 percent in February from the prior year period at MOP7.31 billion ($914 million) and was also lower than the MOP8.02 billion recorded in January.
          State-backed Grand Korea Leisure has announced that it is once again extending the Covid-related business suspension of its two Seoul casinos, this time to March 15.
          Delta Corp has revealed plans to build a replacement casino ship valued at about INR1.5 billion (US$21 million) as a replacement for an older ship on the Mandovi River in Goa. The new ship is expected to e into operation in mid-2022.
          Following a statement issued by the Victorian government, operating conditions at Crown Melbourne were eased with effect from this past weekend.
          Rich Goldman has reported revenues at HK19.2 million (US$2.5 million) for the six-month period from July to December 2020. Losses for the period exceeded HK$18.9 million.
          Aquis Entertainment has reported its preliminary final report for the full year 2020. Revenue from operations decreased 23.7 percent to A$18.9 million (US$14.9 million).
          An unexpected factor may impact the crucial Yokohama mayoral election scheduled for August, and that is the fact that 74-year-old Fumiko Hayashi may be in failing health.
          The Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) has relaxed the registration guidelines for Philippine offshore Gaming Operators (POGOs) as well as for real estate developers and brokers.
          Senate President Jude Hofschneider (R-Tinian) has asked fellow senators to not only focus on the faults of Imperial Pacific International, reminding them that IPI paid a total of US$204.8 million in taxes and fees from 2015 to 2018.
          SkyCity Entertainment has advised that from midnight this evening, it will be closing its Auckland casino and entertainment facilities and implementing physical distancing and hygiene requirements at its Hamilton and Queenstown properties in response to the policies of the New Zealand government.
          Aristocrat Entertainment CEO Trevor Croker says the pany plans to "significantly escalate" its focus on convergence products and has a strong enough balance sheet to support mergers and acquisitions in the sector.?

          INDUSTRY UPDATES

          U.K-based Entain said it has upped its offer to buy Enlabs to SEK53 a share from SEK40 and that the bid is final and won't be improved.
          Hurricane Horse, the third Duo Fu Duo Cai game on the Dualos X cabinet, has now received Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) in Macau.
          Slots from casino game and software developer Red Tiger are now available at leading operator bet365.
          The One Kyushu consortium has announced that Kohei Uchimura, Olympic gymnast and local hero, will be its brand ambassador for its Nagasaki IR bid.
          Information from the Statistics and Census Service (DSEC) indicated that a total of 147 MICE events were held in the fourth quarter of 2020, and the number of participants and attendees was 515,000.
          Sportradar has entered a long-term data and audio-visual partnership with Australia’s professional semi-elite basketball league, NBL1. Sportradar will bee the new partner to NBL1 for these services, taking over from an incumbent.?
          Pragmatic Play has appointed former Rank Digital Head of Gaming Product, Bhotesh Maheshwari, as its new Vice President of mercial Strategy and Operations as the pany looks to further cement its position as a top tier supplier in regulated markets.
          500 . said that it has entered into a definitive agreement with a subsidiary of BitDeer to purchase 1,923 S17 Bitcoin mining machines for a total consideration of RMB31.3 million (approximately US$4.9 million).
          Thai police have shut down a network of online casinos in raids that took place across seven provinces, with nineteen suspects arrested and cash and other goods seized. In total, eight online casino networks have been shut down.
          A draft law has been prepared by the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation that would create a system of self-exclusion from casinos for problem gamblers.

          Regions seen as outperformers

          Regional casinos in the Philippines are likely to resume their outperformance once the global pandemic eases as infrastructure improves and major projects e online.

          Kazakhstan scores own goal with sports betting changes

          Recent changes to Kazakhstan’s sports betting law are likely to fuel black market gambling and slash tax revenue for the government, experts say.

          Will Beijing’s sabre-rattling affect Chinese travel decisions?

          China’s threat to draw up a blacklist of countries targeting gambling is most likely directed at the online industry, though may be enough to deter some travellers even if the government doesn’t follow through with its action.

          Rightsizing Cambodia’s casino industry post-Covid 19

          Through government action and a cultural norm of wearing face masks when ill, Cambodia has seen few get sick during the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the World Health Organization, Cambodia has 275 COVID cases and zero COVID-related deaths as of the last week of September.?

          All set for the FBM slots expansion campaign in Asia

          FBM has been developing its slots offer over the last three years, with operations established in Europe and North America.

          Life After POGOs – AGB Dossier

          This Dossier results from the “Life After POGOs” editorial project by Asia Gaming Brief which culminated with a pop-up digital forum on 9th December to discuss potentials ramifications in the industry.

          Life After POGOs – AGB Pop-Up Forum

          The Philippines and Asia’s online gaming industry is going through uncertain times, with the gaming regulator seeing more and more operators leaving the country for greener pastures.

          Acquiring & Retaining iGaming Customers

          In this AGB Webinar Series, we covered the newest strategies for iGaming player acquisition and retention.

          Asia Gaming Briefings – Feb 2021 Edition

          The world is bouncing back, or at least ing to grips with the fact that going forward not much will be the same as before. mendably, this industry quickly understood the need to adapt to a new normal, and that the days of targeting the low hanging fruit of the VIP sector are gone.

          Asia Gaming Briefings – Dec 2020 Edition

          Over the years, many of the answers have been remarkably prescient in their forecasts for the near-term direction of Asia’s gaming industry. However, we can safely say that no one came anywhere close to guessing what 2020 may have had in store.

          Asia Gaming Briefings – Nov 2020 Edition

          While nowhere in the world has escaped the economic fallout from the Covid-19 crisis, Macau has been hit harder than most, with forecasts for gross domestic product to shrink more than 50 percent this year.
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