Gaming platform and services provider Nektan has rolled out a new mobile-first bingo product across its network of white label casino sites. Tags: Mobile Online Gambling AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Gaming platform and services provider Nektan has rolled out a new mobile-first bingo product across its network of white label casino sites.Supplied by Pragmatic Play, the bingo product features a selection of side games that players can access alongside the main community bingo offering.Nektan works with more than 160 casino sites through its network and the new bingo product will now be offered alongside existing slots and live dealer games.“The launch of bingo allows our partners to attract and acquire new player segments, as well as giving our current players more content choice,” Nektan chief operating officer, Jane Ryan, said.“The large majority of our players are on smartphones and we’re confident that the mobile-specific UX and in-game lobby will drive increased mobile traffic.“We look forward to delivering incremental gaming revenue to existing white label casino partners as well as working with new bingo-focused partners.”The expansion of Nektan’s white label offering comes after the business issued a profit warning to investors, as its decline in player deposits continued into the final quarter of its financial year.Image: Max Pixel 27th June 2019 | By contenteditor Bingo Topics: Casino & games Tech & innovation Bingo Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Nektan launches new bingo product with white label partners Email Address
Gauselmann Group’s Merkur Sportwetten subsidiary has begun its overhaul of the recently-acquired Polish betting and gaming business Totolotek, with a number of enhancements made across retail and digital channels. Email Address Casino & games Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Tags: Mobile Online Gambling OTB and Betting Shops Gauselmann Group’s Merkur Sportwetten subsidiary has begun its overhaul of the recently-acquired Polish betting and gaming business Totolotek, with a number of enhancements made across retail and digital channels.This has begun with Totolotek shops in the country’s capital Warsaw being renovated and fitted with new betting terminals, as well as Merkur’s sun logo being added to the signage. The enhancement of retail locations throughout Poland will continue over the coming months.The operator’s online offering has also been enhanced, with the Totolotek.pl site migrated to Gauselmann’s platform. The website has been revamped with a new user interface, designed to allow customers to quickly and easily place bets, with a new Android app also rolled out.“A comprehensive modernisation project has never before been seen in the Polish betting market,” Totolotek chief executive Adam Lamentowicz said. “Our parent company’s great commitment is paying off: the response from our customers, both in the betting shops and online, has been overwhelming.”The overhaul follows Gauselmann acquiring Totolotek from Intralot, via Merkur Sportwetten subsidiary XTiP Polska, with a deal agreed in March this year.Image: Gauselmann.de“Totolotek is one of the most renowned sports betting companies in Poland,” Merkur Sportwetten managing director Niko Steinkrauß said. “With its integration into our corporate structure, we would like to further promote the success of Totolotek and sustainably strengthen its position in the market.“We are convinced that this will be possible with our innovative products as well as our experience and financial strength.” Topics: Casino & games Sports betting Strategy Social gaming Merkur begins Totolotek overhaul 29th July 2019 | By contenteditor AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Regions: Europe Central and Eastern Europe Poland
Regions: Europe Central and Eastern Europe Slovakia Sports betting Fortuna migrates Slovakian sportsbook onto Playtech platform Email Address Topics: Sports betting Tech & innovation Central and Eastern European betting operator Fortuna Entertainment Group has migrated its Slovakia-facing sportsbook onto the Playtech IMS platform, with its sportsbooks in the Czech Republic, Poland and Croatia to follow. Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Tags: Online Gambling Central and Eastern European betting operator Fortuna Entertainment Group has migrated its Slovakia-facing sportsbook onto the Playtech IMS platform.Fortuna customers can now access sportsbook funds across retail and online channels, while Fortuna will be able to utilise Playtech’s Engagement Centre and responsible gambling tools across its omni-channel offering.The launch marks the next stage in Fortuna and Playtech’s omni-channel deal that was extended in November 2018, with migration of its sportsbooks in the Czech Republic, Poland and Croatia to follow.In addition, once the casino licensing process is complete, Fortuna will launch Playtech’s casino suite and selection of third-party gaming content across the platform. The Playtech front-end portal framework will enable Fortuna to both integrate and personalise content using data-driven customisation tools.“Our strategic partnership with Playtech is central to growth plans and success so far,” Fortuna chief executive Per Widerstrom said. “Fortuna customers can now enjoy a sophisticated and seamless user experience.“Playtech’s data-driven toolset allows for real time player messaging and engagement, immediately improving the quality of the player experience and taking our responsible gambling capabilities to the next level.”Shimon Akad, chief operating officer of Playtech, added: “Fortuna’s continued growth trajectory is highly impressive and we are proud to be a strategic partner to one of the foremost operators in Europe.“This partnership firmly leverages the power of the Playtech ONE solution, both from a marketing and player tracking perspective, and we believe there is further growth ahead as Fortuna continues to extend its omni-channel leadership.”The migration comes after Playtech last month also expanded its relationship with Swiss Casinos-operated Casino Zürichsee to launch a new online live casino service and jackpot casino games in Switzerland.Playtech supported Casino Zürichsee with the roll out of its platform earlier this month, and the operator will now bolster this offering by becoming the first online casino in Switzerland to launch both live casino and jackpot casino games.Image: Max Pixel AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter 3rd October 2019 | By contenteditor
Finance Gamesys Group makes £40m debt repayment 3rd March 2020 | By contenteditor Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Email Address Gaming operator and content developer Gamesys Group has made a repayment of £40m (€46.0m/$51.1m) towards its debt balances, reducing total outstanding debt by 7%.The first debt paydown represents more than 15% of the operator’s outstanding GBP debt, as well as a significant portion of total debt.Gamesys’ chief financial officer Keith Laslop said the repayment forms part of the operator’s ongoing strategy to operate in line with its peers in terms of financial performance.“As we’ve stated previously, a key strategic goal for the Board is to have our long-term leverage ratio in-line with our peers, which is currently in the range of 1-2 times adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA),” Laslop said. “Our significant cash generation allows us to rapidly de-lever and today’s paydown is an important first step in attaining that goal.”Gamesys’ most recent quarterly results, published at the end of the third quarter last year, revealed that at the time, its net debt stood at £484.7m.However, last month, Gamesys also announced that its existing credit facilities – comprising a £250m first lien term loan, a €336m first lien term loan and a revolving credit facility – were successfully re-priced to lower the overall cost of debt by 50 basis points.Gamesys noted that it was able to maintain the interest rate step-downs, based on future leverage ratios, and estimated it would make an annualised interest saving of approximately £2.7m, based on debt balance at the start of February.The repayment comes after Gamesys in January also said that it expects revenue and EBITDA to be at the upper end of expectations, after it was boosted by a strong performance in Q4.The operator said in a pre-close trading update that strong growth in overseas markets and progress made by its UK brands in the second half of the year mean 2019 looks set to be a “landmark year”. Gamesys is due to publish its full-year results on 17 March.The new-look Gamesys Group was formed in September last year after JPJ Group, the owner of the JackpotJoy brand, completed the £490m acquisition of various assets from long-term technology partner Gamesys. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Gaming operator and content developer Gamesys Group has made a repayment of £40m (€46.0m/$51.1m) towards its debt balances, reducing total outstanding debt by 7%. Tags: Online Gambling Topics: Finance Strategy
26th May 2020 | By contenteditor Oscar Karlsten has left his senior executive role at Catena Media to become the chief operating officer at rival affiliate Raketech.Karlsten has been charged with overseeing Raketech’s central operations, product development and investments, whilst also focusing on the group’s creative content, SEO and UX.The online affiliate and content marketing provider said Karlsten was selected due to his experience in the industry, which includes more than 15 years of working in product management, digital marketing, business intelligence, web analytics and technology.The appointment comes six months after previous COO Oskar Mühlbach was promoted to the role of president and chief executive officer.Mühlbach said: “Oscar’s extensive experience within the digital marketing industry brings many valuable insights and expertise to Raketech.“With him onboard, we have now secured the last piece of the management puzzle and I am very much looking forward to seeing him accelerate our transformation from affiliation to the iGaming performance marketing partner.”Karlsten spent four years at Catena, initially as chief product officer before becoming chief information officer in 2018. He was responsible for the group’s product strategy and roadmap towards scalable growth.Karlsten also spent four years as CEO of digital agency Avantime Group, and also worked for digital studio Toca Boca and web giant Google.“I’m incredibly excited to be a part of Raketech,” he commented. “There’s such a positive buzz in the company and after meeting all of the people I can’t wait to add my experience into the mix. With the team and strategy we have in place – I truly believe we will reshape performance marketing as we’ve seen it.”Earlier this month, Raketech revealed a 25.7% year-on-year decline in EBITDA during the first quarter of 2020.Total revenue during the three months to 31 March amounted to €6.5m (£5.7m/$7.0m), an increase of 1.4% on the corresponding quarter last year. However reported earnings before interest, tax, deprecation and amortisation declined to €2.6m, as a result of the acquisition of Lead Republic, as well as investments in the organisation and product mix. Topics: Strategy Email Address AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Raketech recruits new COO Karlsten from Catena Media Strategy Tags: Online Gambling Oscar Karlsten has left his senior executive role at Catena Media to become the chief operating officer at rival affiliate Raketech. Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter
Swedish operators call for clarity amid deposit cap ‘chaos’ Legal & compliance Email Address 14th July 2020 | By contenteditor Sweden’s gaming industry has demanded clarification of new deposit limits from the nation’s Gaming Inspectorate (Spelinspektionen), claiming temporary deposit limits for online casino have created “chaos”. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Topics: Legal & compliance Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Sweden’s gaming industry has demanded clarification of new deposit limits from the nation’s Gaming Inspectorate (Spelinspektionen), claiming temporary deposit limits for online casino have created “chaos”.Gustaf Hoffstedt, secretary general of the Branscheforenigen for Onlinespel (BOS), said that Spelinspektionen must set out guidance for licensees, as they implement the SEK5,000 (£401/€459/$495) mandatory weekly deposit limit introduced by the Government from 2 July.Hoffstedt said gaming companies have interpreted the new regulations in very different ways, with many feeling obliged to include sports betting despite that vertical not being included in the revised directive from Ardalan Shekarabi, Minister for Social Security.“We are not envious of Spelinspektionen, which did not itself support the changes, but unfortunately it is now their task to clarify very quickly with regard to the deposit restrictions,” said Hoffstedt.“We are now in a situation where neither the private nor the state-controlled companies know how to act and it is obvious that different actors interpret the new regulation in different ways. The question is who really wins this besides the companies that are outside the licensing system?“In light of the above, the gaming industry is looking forward to Spelinspektionen’s clarification regarding the interpretation of the new deposit limit.”On 2 July, the SEK5,000 mandatory weekly deposit limit and a SEK100 cap on bonus offers came into effect, in order to limit player spending during the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis. The restrictions will be in place until the end of 2020.The cap was initially announced in April and meant to apply to all forms of gambling from 1 June, but Minister Shekarabi later decided the limit would only apply to online casino and be implemented in July.The directive was opposed by Spelinspektionen and much of the industry, which claimed the cap would merely push players towards the unlicensed market. The cap has, however, been backed by the former horse racing monopoly Aktiebolaget Trav och Galopp (ATG).Hoffstedt said: “Most of the gaming companies’ lawyers with whom I spoke are of the opinion that the regulation is unworked and poorly written, which has led operators to interpret the regulation differently.“We were many who warned that measures, which were not based on facts and thorough impact assessments, could lead to an aggravated situation for both the licensed companies and their customers. More millions in fines may be handed out and more customers will certainly turn to the unlicensed market.” Regions: Europe Nordics Sweden Tags: Online Gambling
AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Casino & games Macau’s Studio City posts $161.9m loss in first half Macau integrated casino resort Studio City International Holdings has posted a $161.9m net loss for the first half of the year as its operations were severely hit by the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. 20th August 2020 | By contenteditor Email Address Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Regions: China Macau Topics: Casino & games Finance Macau integrated casino resort Studio City International Holdings has posted a $161.9m net loss for the first half of the year as its operations were severely hit by the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. Operating revenue for the six months through to 30 June amounted to $24.7m (£18.18m/€20.9m), down 91.8% from $300.8m in the corresponding period last year. Studio City said its revenue was significantly impacted by the decision by Macau authorities to place travel restrictions on the Chinese special autonomous region in response to the Covid-19 crisis. This led to a sharp fall in tourism for a large period of the first half, which in turn slashed visitor numbers for Studio City Casino, pushing revenue down as a direct result. The venue made a $22.5m loss from its casino operations in the first half, down from a profit of $191.5m in the same six-month period last year.Room revenue plummeted 76.7% to $9.8m, while food and beverage revenue was down 68.4% to $11.0m, and entertainment revenue 91.2% to $891,000. Declines were also seen in services fees, with revenue here falling by 22.1% to $15.1m, and while mall revenue rocketed 392.8% to $9.5m, retail and other revenue was down 34.1% to $758,000. Looking at costs, the temporary closure of casinos, coupled with the drop in visitors numbers, meant operating costs fell 22.4% to $180.6m for H1. Spend was down across almost all of Studio City’s operating segments, including in the food and beverage arm, where costs were lowered from $29.3m to $16.1m, while entertainment costs were slashed by 84.9% to $2.0m. Mall and rooms costs were also down, but gaming related services spend was level at $11.6m. Elsewhere, general and administrative spending fell from $63.3m to $54.6m, property charges were almost halved from $8.3m to $4.2m, while depreciation and amortisation expenses fell 6.0% to $80.9m. However, despite reducing costs, the sharp drop in revenue meant Studio City posted an operating loss of $156.0m for the first half, compared to a profit of $68.1m last year. Studio City also recorded $54.5m in non-operating expenses, including $51.1m in interest costs, which meant loss before tax totalled $210.6m, a stark contrast to the $1.5m loss posted at the same point in 2019. While Studio City received $142,000 in tax benefit and also recorded $48.5m in earnings from participation interest, it ended the first half with a $161.9m net loss, compared to a $1.5m loss last year. Switching attention to the second quarter and operating revenue for the three months to 30 June stood at a loss of $12.5m, compared to a positive figure of $149.9m in Q2 of 2019. Operating expenses were more than halved from $120.0m to $80.2m, but this did not stop Studio City reporting an operating loss of $92.7m compared to a $29.7m profit last year. When accounting for $25.6m in additional expenses, loss before tax amounted to $118.2m, much higher than $5.6m last year. After paying $68,000 and including $27.3m in earnings from participation interest, net loss for quarter was $91.0m, compared to a $4.4m loss in 2019. The nationwide issuance of visas in Macau is not due to recommence until 23 September, which means Studio City is likely to continue to feel the impact of Covid-19 into Q3 and beyond.
How betting fraud is evolving – the current trends in match-fixing and projections for the years aheadHow data, technology and intelligence combined to build successful cases against match-fixing in snooker and dartsHow betting operators can play their part to support integrity investigationsHow betting operators can protect against betting fraud Fraud Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Topics: Tech & innovation Fraud Betting fraud is evolving. New technologies are being utilised, and bad actors are corrupting sport, cheating fans, and defrauding betting operators. Match-fixers are using social media to establish contacts, communicating via instant messaging apps, and hiding behind encrypted services. Using these tools, they are attempting to gain the upper hand against integrity investigators. 6th October 2020 | By Aaron Noy If this threat is realised, it presents a substantial threat to all levels of sport and the betting industry. Covid-19 has already impacted heavily on sports revenues and the revenues of betting operators, and further setbacks such as increases in the prevalence of betting fraud present a significant risk. Betting fraud is evolving. New technologies are being utilised, and bad actors are corrupting sport, cheating fans, and defrauding betting operators. Match-fixers are using social media to establish contacts, communicating via instant messaging apps, and hiding behind encrypted services. Using these tools, they are attempting to gain the upper hand against integrity investigators. Managing betting integrity risks using data, tech and intelligence Viewers will learn: AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter This webinar is sponsored by Sportradar This challenge is being met head-on by those in the sports integrity field, with sporting investigators and betting integrity experts working together in the anti-match-fixing fight. In this webinar, Tom Mace, Jack Kennedy (Sportradar Integrity Services) and Nigel Mawer QPM (WPBSA & DRA) discussed their experiences, presenting real life case studies on betting fraud in football, snooker and darts, showing how data, technology and intelligence combined can help to join the dots, and bring the guilty parties to justice. The latest tools and techniques being utilised in the field will be discussed, including the use of account level betting data in tackling betting fraud and misuse of inside information, and how betting operators can play their part to help support the integrity ecosystem. Email Address
AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter M&A Lottery.com – which allows players to buy tickets for lotteries such as the US’s Mega Millions and Powerball while also providing historical lottery data – is currently live in Texas and nine other US states. Lottery.com to go public through SPAC combination Tags: Nasdaq It plans to expand into more than 20, while it is authorised sell Powerball tickets in 148 different countries. From 2016 to 2019, the business has seen sales grow 279%. Lottery broker and information portal Lottery.com will go public on the Nasdaq exchange through a reverse merger with special purpose acquisition company Trident Acquisition Group which has signed a binding letter of intent to acquire the broker. Email Address Read more on iGB North America. Regions: US Topics: Finance Lottery Strategy Lottery brokerage Online lottery M&A 19th November 2020 | By Daniel O’Boyle Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter “Lottery.com has developed an innovative platform that is revolutionizing the lottery industry and bringing it into the digital age,” Marat Rosenberg, chairman of Trident, said. “The company has developed a world-class safe and secure mobile lottery platform that provides users the ability to play official lottery games right from their phone.
Topics: Casino & games Slots Slots Customers must now to log in to gamble on slots, with this to give them greater control to self-exclude from the terminals. The operator said it expected the new system to cut player losses by around €300m. Veikkaus restarted its slot machines and reopened its gaming halls in Satakunta on 16 January, following the decision by authorities to downgrade the region to basic Covid-19 measures. 29th January 2021 | By Robert Fletcher Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Regions: Finland Gaming halls will need to close by the end of today (29 January), while all slot machines must be switched off by tomorrow morning. Veikkaus said that, as is the case with its activites across all Finnish regions, as soon as measures are relaxed, it will resume gaming services in Satakunta. The operator’s machines across most of Finland were closed in November amid rising numbers of Covid-19 cases in the country. However, after the region was moved back to the ‘acceleration’ phase of Covid-19 phase of restrictions, Veikkaus must again halt activities. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Finnish monopoly operator Veikkaus has again been forced to suspend gaming activities in Satakunta, due to revised novel coronavirus (Covid-19) restrictions in the region. Email Address Veikkaus again forced to halt gaming activities in Satakunta Amid the ongoing interruption of services, Veikkaus this month introduced its new mandatory identity verification controls for players. Tags: Covid-19 Veikkaus Satakunta