William Hill See Profitable 2018, But Worries About Australia

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Sunday 21 January 2018 3:14 pm


2017 was a good year for William Hill and its global gaming operations saw plenty of profit. But the company is moving into 2018 with a note of caution as a regulatory clampdown Down Under threatens to make operating in Australia a major headache.

William Hill is stepping into 2018 on a very positive note. According to a William Hill trading statement released on January 15, the company saw an adjusted operating profit of £290 million ($ 399.5 million USD) for the year that just ended. That’s up 11 percent over the previous year. The company credits the boost to strong earnings in both the UK and the United States.

Company officials said that sports betting operations were positively impacted by strong action in horse racing and, of course, football. Outside of the UK, William Hill’s sports betting division saw double digit growth in the US, but was particularly concerned about what 2018 will look like for its Australian operations.

In stark contrast to the company’s mostly positive report, company officials said that due to changes in the regulatory environment in Australia (particularly a ban on deposit bonuses and a slew of new taxes) that their Down Under operations will be under particular scrutiny in 2018. In a statement to the press, a company official had this to say about the matter:

Given the credit betting ban in Australia and the likely introduction of a Point of Consumption tax in a number of states, it is clear that profitability will increasingly come under pressure and therefore we are undertaking a strategic review of our Australia business.

Judging by the tone of the statements coming out of William Hill, it appears as though company officials are not so sure that Australia will continue to be a reliable source of revenue for gambling operators in the future. But only time will tell how big an impact Australia’s new regulations will have on William Hill and its competitors in Australia.

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Delaware Online Gambling Revenue Sinking Like a Stone

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Friday 19 January 2018 3:15 pm


Delaware’s entry into the microscopic US online gambling market has always been a bit of a mystery to gaming industry observers. After all, with a population of just 961,939 it’s the 45th smallest US State. From the beginning it was unclear whether or not that was big enough to support a robust igaming market.

Despite its tiny pool of potential online players, state officials forged ahead with their bold experiment in the hopes that the rest of the US market would catch up to them and, hopefully, enter into some lucrative interstate gambling compacts. Unfortunately, as the state’s online gambling revenue report for 2017 indicates, that scenario has failed to materialize and the state’s three online operators are suffering serious revenue losses.

According to a report released by the State of Delaware, and reported on by gambling media such as CalvinAyre.com, the state’s online gambling revenue was just $ 2.4 million in 2017. That’s down a whopping 18 percent from the previous year. (On an up note, Delaware online gambling revenue in 2016 was up 62 percent over 2015.)

As seems to be the case in most of the US igaming market, online slots were the big cash cow in Delaware producing about $ 1.57 million. That’s down 10 percent from 2016. Table games, which are a small portion of all US online markets, produced just $ 559,000 in revenue for the year. That’s down an astonishing 28 percent from the previous year.

Unfortunately, for Delaware, online poker turned out to have the biggest revenue losses of their online gambling market sectors. For the year, online poker revenue was down 38 percent, producing just $ 231,000.

The question now is how long Delaware online gambling can handle this sort of decline? Unless the Supreme Court delivers a positive verdict on sports betting in June, the Delaware online gambling market could wind up being a failed experiment.

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Is Nick Xenophon Chilling Out When it Comes to Gambling?

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Wednesday 17 January 2018 3:16 pm


Is Nick Xenophon, Australian gambling’s biggest enemy, softening his stance on pokies in 2018? That’s the impression that the long time anti-gambling agitator is giving to some of Australia’s biggest news outlets.

According to a report in the Australian, as reported on by CalvinAyre.com, the man who has fought hard to pull pokies and sports betting out of public life, is now whistling a different tune. As recently as last week, Xenophon was quoted as saying:

Reducing the harm caused by poker machines is ­pretty fundamental, but it would have to be a suite of measures, including more people getting assistance and reducing the number of people getting hurt in the first place, but most people just don’t get help when they have a serious gambling problem.

Are those the words of the same man who said the following at the end of 2016?

I will never give up, whether I am in politics or not. If I was not in parliament, I would probably be litigating it in the courts every way I could. Gambling reform is part of my DNA now.

They are, and most observers of the Australian political scene are somewhat confused by the statement. Is the Pokey’s worst enemy getting ready to open his heart and mind to the joys (and tax revenues) of regulated gambling? Or is he just looking to cash in some extra support ahead of Senate elections in March?

Of course it’s possible that Xenophon is simply giving in a little because his efforts to regulate gambling in Australia have been so successful. As of this week, a host of gambling operators, like William Hill, are taking a hard look at whether or not the regulatory environment in Australia is simply too strict to support their operations. The loss of regulated operators would open opportunities for black market operators and Xenophon would have a whole new enemy to deal with.

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Ontario Online Lottery Draws Fire for Frequent Drawings

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Monday 15 January 2018 3:15 pm

Anti-gambling critics and addiction counselors are tearing out their hair over Hit or Miss, a new online lottery product that offers players in Ontario, Canada new drawings every five minutes. Critics of the new game say that its fast pace and continuous drawings are just asking for trouble from players who are unable to control the compulsion to gamble.

The Ontario and Gaming Commission introduced Hit or Miss at the beginning of the month and has been under fire for it ever since. Shontelle Prokipcak, a gambling addiction counselor, explained her beef with the game in an interview with CTV News in Ottawa saying:

A $ 2 ticket doesn’t seem that intimidating right? And the hope that’s attached to it creates a problem.

It’s cycling every five minutes and then there’s the disappointment unless you have a win so that’s going to be constant. It’s right there in their home or at work or wherever they are so that’s going to be probably a challenge for some people.

OLG spokesman Tony Bitonti defended the online lottery saying that standard protections to protect problem gamblers are built into the system:

Because you have to see the draws on mobile or on your laptop, they’re designed with built-in player protections and our responsible gambling information.

He also pointed out that players must buy their tickets from an actual, brick and mortar, retailer and that they’re limited to buying 30, $ 2 tickets at a time. What would stop a retailer from selling the same player $ 30 worth of tickets over and over throughout the day was not explained by Bitonti or anyone else at the OLG.

Despite the criticism, there’s no organized effort to challenge the online lottery in court.

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DraftKings Bucks Downward Trend with New HQ and New Hires

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Saturday 13 January 2018 3:15 pm

Daily fantasy sports giant DraftKings is bucking months of bad news about spiraling revenues and corporate layoffs with by moving into a shiny new corporate headquarters and hiring hundreds of new employees. The move is part of a larger effort to expand the company’s media production capabilities and, maybe, expand into the world of regulated sports betting.

The Boston-based company will be moving its corporate offices to a massive new facility located in the city’s Back Bay neighborhood and, at 105,000 square feet, will be more than twice as large as its current facility. A large portion of that extra space is earmarked to be used as a media production facility.

DraftKings’ employees who are hoping for more elbow room at the new facility might be disappointed to find that they’ll be sharing it with a whole bunch of new co-workers. The DFS shop is planning on hiring 275 new employees. Most of those new hires will be working on the media production side of the business.

So what’s behind Draftkings’ big moves after months of layoffs and revenue woes? According to speculation by credible sources such as Legal Sports Report and Calvinayre.com, DraftKings may be prepping for a move into the regulated sports betting world. With a decision on sports betting from the US Supreme Court slated for June, all that media production capability could be pointed at a shiny, new gaming market. (It’s not tough to picture DraftKings producing live game day segments like the kind that once dominated the Australian sports scene.)

Some in the gaming media are also speculating that the company’s new hires will be focusing on expanding international markets.

The company has not commented publicly on either suggestion.

DraftKings plans to be completely moved into its new facility by middle of 2019.

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Tasmanian Liberals Stand Up as Pokie Protection Party

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Thursday 11 January 2018 3:15 pm


As election time looms in Australia, the Tasmanian Liberal Party has a message for voters; pokies are perfectly legal and should not be banned. It’s a hot topic in the Australian state where Labor would like to ban pokies and say goodbye to the machines (and the tax revenue they generate) by 2023.

The Liberal Party’s support for pokies was reported on by the Australian Financial Review, early this week and is expected to be a hot topic come election time, which occurs this March in Tasmania. In an interview with the paper, Tasmanian Premier Will Hodgman, a Liberal Party member, affirmed his party’s support for keeping the popular poker machines saying:

We respect the fact the gaming and gambling is a lawful activity.

We fundamentally believe that Tasmanians should be able to exercise choice and to participate in gambling activities in its various forms.

We are not a government or political party that believes in dictating to people.

What the Liberal Party does not support, however, is the Federal Group’s current monopoly on pokies which is scheduled to last until 2023. In that same interview, Hodgman vowed to take the monopoly out of the hands of the Federal Group, which also owns the only two casinos in Tasmania, and put the power of pokies in the hands of individuals. Under the Liberal plan, Tasmania would have up to 2350 pokies operated by individuals licensed for 20 years on each machine.

Tasmania’s Labour Party, on the other hand, has vowed to ban pokies outright in 2023, assuming they’re in power at the time.

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Indiana Sports Betting Bill Includes Payoff to Sports Leagues

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Tuesday 9 January 2018 3:15 pm

An Indiana lawmaker is looking to make regulated sports betting more appealing to professional sports leagues by including a one percent “integrity fee” in his latest effort to legislate legal wagering. The fee would be collected by operators and used by the leagues to combat the kind of game-fixing that doesn’t really flourish in the regulated environment.

HB 1325, which was introduced by ndiana Rep. Alan Morrison would allow for Indiana gaming operators to offer sports betting to players, should the federal government approve the move. The bill also includes language that would require those same operators to pay one percent of the handle on each sport to the “governing body” of that sport. In layman’s terms, that means that professional sports leagues would get one percent of the handle on any given game.

Indiana’s take on paying off sports leagues to get their buy in on regulated sports betting is fairly unique and completely untested in the United States. Spokesmen from the NBA and MLB, the two most sports-betting friendly American leagues, have not commented on the proposal.

The integrity fee would be collected in addition to a whopping 9.25 percent revenue tax on sports betting operators. This rate is through the roof compared to the 6.25 percent that the State of Nevada collects on revenue (along with a .25 percent integrity fee that’s forwarded to the Feds).

While a number of US States are considering adding regulated sports betting to their gaming menu, should the US Supreme Court approve it, so far Indiana is the only one attempting to work with sports leagues on the deal. A similar sports betting bill is winding its way through the Indiana House, without the integrity fee.

The US Supreme Court is expected to rule on regulated sports betting some time this spring.

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UK Ad Regulators Call Out Fruity King for Sexist Tweet

Posted by admin | Casino Affiliates | Sunday 7 January 2018 3:16 pm

Ad regulators at the UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) are calling out Fruity King Casino for sending out a tweet that is, by any standard, incredibly sexist.

The tweet in question was posted on September 8 and the ASA’s description of it in their posted complaint provides a pretty thorough description of it which reads:

A promoted tweet seen on 8 September 2017 featured an image of female presenters in their swimwear from a daytime television show and the text, ‘You can put lipstick on a pig, but it’s still a pig. #LooseWomen18′.

To their credit ProgressPlay, which licenses Fruity King’s casino software, agreed with the ASA and told the company to pull the tweet as soon as possible. They also instructed Fruity King’s social media team to review its policies and procedures.

The company did, however, seem to accept Fruity King’s weak explanation that the tweet was aimed at the overall quality of a certain daytime television that runs in the UK and wasn’t aimed at all women. Fruity King apparently thinks that the show is low quality and that somehow qualifies it as a, “pig.” That said, ProgressPlay did acknowledge that the tweet was clearly offensive and should be removed.

Over at the ASA, however, that argument wasn’t holding much water. In their published response to the claim, they remarked:

Twitter stated their advertising policies prohibited promoted tweets which were low-quality, offensive or hateful and we confirmed that a tweet of this nature would infringe their advertising policies.

UK operators have a rich history of pushing the limits of good taste when it comes to advertising, but they can always count on the ASA to be there

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