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Wednesday, February 28, 2018

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Passenger traffic at McCarran up again in latest report, officials say

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Passenger traffic at McCarran up again in latest report, officials say

On the heels of a record-breaking 2017, passenger traffic continued to grow at McCarran International Airport during the first month of the new year, the Clark County Department of Aviation reported Wednesday.

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Dennis Blieden Leads 13 Players into Day 5 of WPT LAPC Championship

Casino News Daily
Dennis Blieden Leads 13 Players into Day 5 of WPT LAPC Championship

The field of this year’s edition of the WPT L.A. Poker Classic $10,000 Championship was whittled down to just 13 contenders from a 493-strong field. Dennis Blieden, a player with two previous live tournament cashes, will be leading the pack of survivors into the penultimate day of WPT action at the host venue, Commerce Casino.

Blieden is a Los Angeles-based player. As mentioned above, his HendonMob profile shows only two previous in-the-money finishes in live poker events. They were both tournaments on the schedule of the World Series of Poker.

Being one of the 13 finalists, Blieden has already secured a minimum payout of $57,300 from the WPT LAPC Main Event to boost his current poker bankroll of a little less than $22,000. What is more, the player has a real shot to win his first WPT Main Tour Main Event.

Blieden bagged and tagged 2.88 million at the end of Day 4, which was played on Tuesday at the host venue. The player was the only one of all three survivors to pass the two-million mark and is well ahead of his fellow contenders. Toby Lewis had the second largest chip stack when play concluded last night, bagging a total of 1.76 million. Derek Walters rounded out the top three of the chip counts chart last night with 1.501 million.

Former WPT Champions Still in Contention

One-time WPT winner Zachary Smiley is going for his second title from the series. The player ended Day 4 with the shortest stack, but has every chance to improve on Day 5. Anthony Zinno, holder of three WPT titles, is also still in contention.

If he wins the event, he will become the first player in WPT history to hold four Main Event titles from the series. At present, Zinno is tied with Gus Hansen, Carlos Mortensen, Darren Elias, and Chino Rheem, with each of them being winner of three titles. Zinno bagged and tagged 1.024 million last night and is in the middle of the chip counts chart for Day 5.

Here it is also important to note that he can also become the first player ever to win the same WPT Main Event twice. Zinno captured his first LAPC Main Event title in 2015.

Play is set to resume today at noon local time at the host casino. As mentioned above, each of the 13 finalists has locked a minimum cash of $57,300 from the series. The remaining survivors will play down to official six-handed final table. That concluding stage of the tournament will take place on Thursday, March 1, at the host venue. The finalists will play until a winner is determined. The last person standing will receive a first-place prize of $1 million, a seat into the WPT Tournament of Champions, and a fancy Hublot watch.

The post Dennis Blieden Leads 13 Players into Day 5 of WPT LAPC Championship appeared first on Casino News Daily.

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CJEU Rules Hungary’s Online Gambling Law Runs Afoul of EU Treaty for Free Provision of Services

Casino News Daily
CJEU Rules Hungary’s Online Gambling Law Runs Afoul of EU Treaty for Free Provision of Services

Hungary’s law on the allocation of licenses for the operation of brick-and-mortar casinos and that relating to the grant of licenses for the provision of online casino services are incompatible with EU’s treaty for the free movement of services across the union, according to the Court of Justice of the European Union.

In a statement from earlier today, Europe’s top court detailed its latest ruling on Hungary’s gambling regulations, saying that certain provisions in these were contradicting established EU-wide laws.

CJEU’s ruling was related to a case brought by UK online gambling operator Sporting Odds. The operator had previously been found to have provided online gambling services in Hungary without a license from local regulators.

In 2016, the Hungarian Tax Authority detected Sporting Odds’ breach of the country’s gambling regulations and fined the operator HUF3.5 million (approximately $13,600). Sporting Odds brought the matter to the country’s Administrative and Labor Court (Fővárosi Közigazgatási és Munkaügyi Bíróság), requesting annulment of the tax authority’s fine.

The Hungarian court, in turn, turned to CJEU to rule whether the country’s existing regulations for the provision of games of chance at brick-and-mortar facilities and via the Internet were in breach of EU regulations.

Hungary’s Gambling Law and CJEU’s Latest Ruling

Under Hungary’s gambling regulations, only operators of land-based casinos across the country are able to obtain licenses from local regulators to provide online casino games. CJEU ruled today that that particular provision in the country’s gambling law represents a “radical restriction” of EU treaties for the free movement of services across Member States.

Europe’s top court also pointed out that Hungary’s gambling law discriminated international online casino operators without physical presence in the country and prevented them from entering the local market.

Hungarian gambling regulations contain provisions for the organization of calls for tender for interested operators. However, the country has not launched any such calls, as noted by CJEU. The court further pointed out that another provision that required operators to be present in the local market for at least a decade so as to be eligible for a license without having to participate in a call for tender further disadvantaged international companies.

CJEU issued a similar ruling in a case involving major online gambling operator Unibet last summer. Unibet had been fined by Hungarian regulators for providing unlicensed gambling services to local players. The operator, in turn, brought the issue to court, arguing that Hungary’s gambling regulatory framework put it at a serious disadvantage to local gambling operators and seeking to have the penalty dismissed.

CJEU ruled that the Hungarian Tax Authority could not impose fines as the country’s restrictive gambling system was not compatible with treaties for the free provision of services within the European Union.

The post CJEU Rules Hungary’s Online Gambling Law Runs Afoul of EU Treaty for Free Provision of Services appeared first on Casino News Daily.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

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Atlantic City Labor Union Pens Agreement with New Trump Taj Mahal Casino Owner

Casino News Daily
Atlantic City Labor Union Pens Agreement with New Trump Taj Mahal Casino Owner

Officials for labor union UNITE HERE Local 54 and casino operator Hard Rock International have signed a “card count neutrality” agreement, the Press of Atlantic City reported.

The agreement could help the union return at the former Trump Taj Mahal casino resort, which Hard Rock is currently converting into what would be Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City. The property is scheduled to be reopened in June.

Under the agreement between Local 54 and Hard Rock, the operator should agree as an employer to recognize the labor union as the official “bargaining agent of the employees” if a third party confirms that the greater number of employees have signed UNITE HERE Local 54 membership cards.

Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City is currently taking shape at the site of Trump Taj Mahal, once owned by US President Donald Trump. The lavish casino resort closed doors in the fall of 2016 amid a workers’ strike involving Local 54 members. They picketed the property for over a month, asking to have their previous health insurance and pension packages restored. In the early 2010s, workers gave up on certain benefits to save the ailing Trump Taj Mahal from bankruptcy.

The property was owned by New York businessman Carl Icahn back in 2016 when it was shuttered. Mr. Icahn blamed the closure of the hotel and casino complex namely on the strike, arguing that it had hurt Trump Taj Mahal’s profitability beyond repair.

New Job Opportunities

The closure of Trump Taj Mahal left 3,000 people unemployed, including 1,000 Local 54 members. The property was purchased by Hard Rock International in the spring of 2017 for a reported price of $50 million. The Florida-headquartered casino operator pledged a $500-million investment into the India-themed resort, promising to convert it into a typical Hard Rock property, replacing its iconic minarets with rock’n’roll features.

The redevelopment project is expected generate over 1,000 jobs during construction and more than 3,000 jobs once fully operational.

Under the “card count neutrality agreement” Unite 54 local members, who were previously employed at Trump Taj Mahal, could return to the redesigned property.

Under the neutrality clauses of the agreement between the labor union and Hard Rock, the latter has agreed not to prevent its staff members from joining Local 54, if they wish, and the Union and its members have agreed not to disrupt their workplace through strikes and similar initiatives.

In comments to the Press of Atlantic City, both parties have said that they were content with the agreement. Bob McDevitt, President of Local 54, praised the Hard Rock management, saying that the company seemed to understand how Atlantic City’s market worked. Hard Rock officials, in turn, pointed out that their work with the labor union would help them enter Atlantic City successfully.

The post Atlantic City Labor Union Pens Agreement with New Trump Taj Mahal Casino Owner appeared first on Casino News Daily.

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Gus Hansen loses $500,000 pot from King's Casino Owner

BankrollMob News - Poker / Casino / Betting
Gus Hansen loses $500,000 pot from King's Casino Owner
A week after Viktor 'Isildur' Blom won the Main Event at the partypoker LIVE MILLIONS Germany Main Event for $1,048,153, the high stakes cash games continued at the King's Casino Rozvadov, Czech Republic. One of the players who decided to just immerse himself on the excitement that only juicy high stakes cash game action can bring and entirely skip all the tournament events at partypoker LIVE MILLIONS Germany is Danish poker pro Gus Hansen. He had just recently returned to his home cou[...]
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Ladbrokes, Paddy Power, bet365, and CrownBet Bid for William Hill’s Australian Gambling Business

Casino News Daily
Ladbrokes, Paddy Power, bet365, and CrownBet Bid for William Hill’s Australian Gambling Business

William Hill has received four offers from fellow gambling operators for its Australian business, the Australian Financial Review reported on Monday. The winning bidder is set to undergo due diligence before the end of the week and is expected to assume control over the Sportingbet brand next month.

William Hill acquired the Australian and Spanish operations of Sportingbet as well as the Centrebet and Tom Waterhouse online wagering brands in 2013 for the total amount of £485 million. Last month, the British bookmaker announced that it was reviewing its Australian business and that its sale was under consideration.

It then became clear that William Hill has hired financial services firm Citi to set up a formal bidding process for its Australian operations and law firm Clifford Chance to guide the operator through the sale process.

It was understood that Paddy Power Betfair’s Australian business Sportsbet, Ladbrokes, and bet365 have all made offers for William Hill’s Australian betting brands, each valuing these at around A$200 million. According to the Australian Financial Review, Australia’s CrownBet was the fourth bidder. The online sports betting business of local casino operator Crown Resorts is itself in the middle of a change of ownership.

Late last year, Crown Resorts agreed to sell its 62% stake in the wagering business to a group of investors that included CrownBet’s CEO Matt Tripp. The deal was expected to be finalized by the end of February.

UPDATE: The Stars Group, parent company of PokerStars and online sports betting operator BetStars announced today that it has partnered Mr. Tripp to buy Crown Resorts’ 62% stake in CrownBet.

What’s Next for Tom Waterhouse?

As mentioned above, William Hill entered Australia in 2013 with the acquisition of the Sportingbet, Tom Waterhouse, and Centrebet brands. All three were led by popular Australian bookmaker Tom Waterhouse at the time. In 2014, Mr. Waterhouse was appointed CEO of William Hill’s Australian business.

His future is still unclear in case a sale takes place. However, many believe that the preferred buyer would likely keep Mr. Waterhouse on board due to his extensive experience and connections within Australia’s betting scene.

Mr. Waterhouse made the headlines a few years ago due to what many considered too aggressive promotion of his Tom Waterhouse online betting business.

According to analysts from Macquarie, William Hill’s Australian business currently represents a 5% share of the nation’s betting market. The company’s Australian operations have underperformed for several years now. It is believed that latest regulatory developments within the country’s gambling landscape have further encouraged the British bookmaker to reconsider its presence in Australia.

Several states have recently introduced or confirmed that they would introduce a 15% point-of-consumption tax that would require bookmakers to contribute tax money to the jurisdictions where they provide their services in and not just in the jurisdictions where they are licensed.

A recently introduced ban on credit betting further restricted operators in their efforts to acquire bettors. Under the latest amendments to Australia’s Interactive Gambling Act, bookmakers can no longer extend credits to betting customers. The click-to-call betting feature introduced by offshore betting operators to circumvent previous gambling regulations has also been banned under the recent amendments.

The post Ladbrokes, Paddy Power, bet365, and CrownBet Bid for William Hill’s Australian Gambling Business appeared first on Casino News Daily.

Monday, February 26, 2018

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Interblock Names New Account Executive for Northeast United States

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Interblock Names New Account Executive for Northeast United States

Luxury gaming manufacturer Interblock® announced today the appointment of Brian Hartmann as Account Executive, serving the eastern half of the United States. 

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Melco Looks For Cyprus Casino Resort Staff

Casino News Daily
Melco Looks For Cyprus Casino Resort Staff

Casino operator Melco Resorts & Entertainment and its partner Cyprus Phasouri (Zakaki) Limited have begun searching for staff for their €550-million integrated resort, currently under development in the Cypriot city of Limassol.

The developers have recently opened the first job positions for people interested to work at the first casino resort in the Republic of Cyprus. The positions available include slot attendant, dealer, gaming machine supervisor, finance, security, and information technology vacancies. It is also important to note that Melco and its local partner are currently looking for staff for the four satellite casinos in Nicosia, Larnaca, Paphos, and the Famagusta area as well as for the temporary casino in Limassol that are all set to open doors later this year.

Melco has said on the official website of City of Dreams Mediterranean that it is looking for “proactive and passionate talent” to join its team in Cyprus.

The actual resort with the main casino floor is slated to be launched in 2021 in Limassol’s Zakaki area. City of Dreams Mediterranean, as the multi-use complex will be named, will also be located near the My Mall Limassol shopping center, which is known to be the largest property of its kind in the Republic of Cyprus. As mentioned above, a temporary casino will operate in Limassol, until the main gaming floor is finished.

Jobs and Increased Tourist Activity

City of Dreams Mediterranean is expected to generate 4,000 temporary jobs each year during construction. Once fully operational, the resort would employ more than 6,500 people directly and indirectly.

According to analysts, the mixed-use complex could bring an additional of 300,000 tourists each year. Melco has also recently pointed out that it would look to attract visitors all year round and thus turn the tiny Mediterranean nation into a tourist destination that does not rely heavily on seasonality. At present, Cyprus welcomes the greatest portion of international tourists in the period between May and October.

City of Dreams Mediterranean will be the first property of its kind to open doors in this part of Europe. However, it seems that the €550-million complex could face competition from another casino resort in the region shortly after its opening.

It has recently emerged that Greek developer Lamda Development, together with a group of international developers, is planning to build an $8-billion multi-purpose integrated resort near Athens. Among a number of other facilities, the complex will also include a casino floor.

Last week, Greece’s top administrative court gave the green light to the country’s gambling regulator to launch a bidding process for operators that want to run the casino portion of the mega-resort. According to previous reports from Greek media, Las Vegas giant Caesars Entertainment Corp. has been looking to join the scheme.

The post Melco Looks For Cyprus Casino Resort Staff appeared first on Casino News Daily.

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Doyle Brunson admits to Missing Out on $230M Offer for Doyles Room

BankrollMob News - Poker / Casino / Betting
Doyle Brunson admits to Missing Out on $230M Offer for Doyles Room
The 84-year-old Poker Hall of Famer says the Doyles Room poker site co-owner has 'recurring nightmares about it.' The two-time WSOP Main Event champ is pretty much doing well for himself, but his poker bankroll could have been boosted up with a nine-figure profit if only he had said 'yes' to a business offer proposed to him over a decade ago. In a reply to a Nolan Dolla article entitled "20 Years of Online Poker: Tales of Fast Money, Wicked Beats, and Broken Mice", the American poke[...]

Sunday, February 25, 2018

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John Misirian Leads after WPT L.A. Poker Classic $10,000 Championship Day 1

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John Misirian Leads after WPT L.A. Poker Classic $10,000 Championship Day 1

The 2018 edition of the WPT L.A. Poker Classic $10,000 Championship kicked off on Saturday at Commerce Casino. As many as 475 entries registered for the prestigious tournament during its first day, but only 282 of them will progress into Day 2, which will be played later today at the host venue.

Action is scheduled to resume at noon local time and players who failed to join the field on Day 1 will be able to do that until the first break of Day 2 or around 1:45 pm local time. The tournament feature a freezeout format, which means that re-entries are not allowed.

John Misirian will be leading the start-of-the-day pack of contenders. The player assumed the chip lead at some point on Day 1 and cemented his position on the very last hand of the day by eliminating poker pro Sean Winter. Misirian bagged and tagged 234,300 worth in chips for the night.

The player comes fresh from a victory in an event that took place earlier during the ongoing LAPC poker festival. Talking with WPT staff, he said last night that that recent triumph had certainly built his confidence. Yet, he pointed out that one cannot be too confident, particularly in cases where the field is packed with poker professionals.

Feeling Comfortable When Playing with Good Players

Misirian revealed that playing with good poker players makes him feel more comfortable on the felt. The player went on to say that playing in an event that involves so many poker professionals provides opportunity to learn a lot.

According to his Hendon Mob profile, Misirian has a total of $268,377 in live tournament earnings. It can also be said that the player has mainly cashed in three-figure buy-in tournaments over the course of his career.

Day 2 of the $10,000 Championship will see the likes of Andy Frankenberger, Toby Lewis, and Richard Seymour take their seats after surviving the eight levels played on Day 1. However, former WPT Main Event champions Ryan Riess, Darren Elias, and Jared Jaffee did not make it through the day.

Registration will remain open through the first stages of Day 2, as mentioned above, which means that the field will certainly grow. Once registration closes, organizers will be able to calculate the prize pool and to announce the places paid and the first-place prize for the last player standing in the tournament.

Daniel Strelitz won the WPT LAPC Championship last year. The player bested a field of 521 entries to eventually scoop $1 million for his efforts. Streilitz entered this year’s event yesterday and survived through all eight levels to bag and tag 66,200 and secure a seat among the Day 2 participants. It is to be seen whether he will be able to win the exciting tournament for a second consecutive year. The Championship is set to be played through March 1.

The post John Misirian Leads after WPT L.A. Poker Classic $10,000 Championship Day 1 appeared first on Casino News Daily.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

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A Casino Could Secure Convention Center for Sunshine Coast, City Council Believes

Casino News Daily
A Casino Could Secure Convention Center for Sunshine Coast, City Council Believes

The possibility for the addition of a casino as part of the Maroochydore Central Business District development project is still being discussed by the Sunshine Coast Council, despite recent comments by Mayor Mark Jamieson that a facility of this type was not on their agenda at the time.

In a letter to the editor of local news outlet the Sunshine Coast Daily, City Councilor John Connolly said that the Council still believes a project, including a casino, under Queensland’s Integrated Tourism Development program was the right path to “securing a regional convention centre”.

Cr Connolly went on to say that the Sunshine Coast Council does not have the means to build a convention and exhibition center as soon as it might wish and that they have to consider different ways to fund a project of this kind.

Local media reported earlier this week that the Queensland Government has confirmed it had promoted a visit by Malaysian casino company NagaCorp to Sunshine Coast. The visit took place last fall. Reportedly, NagaCorp executives and an architect, who had previously worked on the company’s existing casino resort in Cambodia, met the Sunshine Coast Mayor to discuss opportunities for a future partnership.

State Tourism Development Minister Kate Jones said earlier that the meeting taking place did not necessarily mean that a casino would be included in the Maroochydore CBD development project.

Boost to Local Tourism

In his letter, Cr Connolly wrote that Sunshine Coast does not have a large convention center that is paid for by the government, unlike other regions around the state. According to the City Councilor, a project that would include a gaming floor as well as different non-gaming facilities could significantly help the city fulfill its plan for a convention and exhibition venue.

He went on to say in his letter that the Maroochydore CBD development, if it includes attractive enough offering, would boost the region’s construction sector significantly and would then boost the region’s and the state’s tourism sector. The official also pointed out that the city should not rule out that quickly the opportunities that a casino could create.

The Queensland Government has not confirmed that the addition of a casino to the Sunshine Coast development project has been debated. On the other hand, Minister Jones has confirmed that she would visit the Sunshine Coast in March to discuss tourism opportunities with Mayor Jamieson.

Federal and state MPs have fired at the Sunshine Coast Mayor for his failure to end the casino debate once and for all by ruling out the construction of a gambling venue in the city. Mr. Jamieson said earlier this week that the decision about a casino is not within his or the City Council’s power and that such a decision can only be made by the state government.

The post A Casino Could Secure Convention Center for Sunshine Coast, City Council Believes appeared first on Casino News Daily.

Friday, February 23, 2018

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Niki Lauda And Novomatic Agree Long Term Cooperation

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Niki Lauda And Novomatic Agree Long Term Cooperation

Niki Lauda,three-time Formula-1 World Champion and entrepreneur, has agreed a long term co-operation with the NOVOMATIC Group.

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Tyler Groth Wins WSOP Circuit Rio Las Vegas $365 Pot-Limit Omaha

Casino News Daily
Tyler Groth Wins WSOP Circuit Rio Las Vegas $365 Pot-Limit Omaha

Last summer, Tyler Groth captured his first WSOP gold bracelet for winning a $1,000 Pot-Limit Omaha event at Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. Last night, the player captured his first WSOP Circuit gold ring for winning another Pot-Limit Omaha event, a $365 buy-in one, at the very same casino.

Groth defeated a field of 153 entries over two days of play to win the tournament, the precious gold ring, and the amount of $12,850 in prize money.

Winning two Pot-Limit Omaha events, one of which on the schedule of the legendary WSOP, it very much seems that Groth is a Pot-Limit Omaha specialist. However, the player himself does not think so. He believes that Omaha 8 is the game he actually excels in. After last night’s triumph, Groth told WSOP staff that he has not played Pot-Limit Omaha that much to realize how good he might be in the four-card game.

Two years ago, the player quit his daily job to pursue a career in poker. He moved to Las Vegas and has been playing both cash games and tournament poker at local casinos since then. Groth said that as of lately, he has been more active on the tournament scene. It is also important to note that online poker has been a long-time love of his. He even pointed out last night that he has built the greater portion of his poker bankroll namely online.

The player also said that even though he is planning to go to Los Angeles and participate in the LAPC Main Event, set to take place over the weekend, he might go back to Vegas to join the field of the first ever WSOP Online Circuit event. The online gold ring event is scheduled for February 27.

Groth’s Performance in the $365 Pot-Limit Omaha

As mentioned above, the tournament was played over two days and as part of the WSOP Circuit’s Rio stop. The final day of the event took place on Thursday with nine players left to sit at the final table when cards were thrown in the air.

Groth was the chip leader at that point with significant advantage over his remaining opponents. The eventual winner had nearly 600,000 in chips and was well ahead of his fellow player ranking second in the chip counts chart. That player was Andrew Dennis who had a total of 200,000 at the time.

Groth maintained his lead throughout the day to eventually scoop the title and the first-place prize. He faced Benjamin Thomas heads-up as his final challenge before the sweet victory. Thomas, a WSOP Circuit regular from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, collected $7,944 for his runner-up finish in the Pot-Limit Omaha tournament.

The event attracted 153 entries who generated a prize pool of $45,900. The top 16 finishers received a share of the money.

The post Tyler Groth Wins WSOP Circuit Rio Las Vegas $365 Pot-Limit Omaha appeared first on Casino News Daily.