Summit of iGaming Malta November 22-25 2017

When it comes to conferences related to online gambling of which there are many the upcoming Summit of iGaming Malta is a must attend. This November 22nd through to the 25th 2017 SIGMA will take place at the MFCC Malta Fairs and Convention Centre. The conference will feature 6,000 delegates, 200 sponsors and exhibitors and 100 speakers.  In an impressive move, the organisers are bringing to SiGMA as many as 1,000 delegates, 500 affiliates and 500 C-level executives.

SIGMA has been presenting a summit since 2014 with speakers delivering informative talks on topics such as Daily Fantasy Sports, Affiliates and CMOs, Regulatory, Payments & Disruptive Technology and Human Capital & Resources including an iGaming Academy Forum. Attendees will include digital games representatives,  remote gaming and land based operators, regulators and related government entities, recruitment agencies, industry vendors and suppliers, affiliates,  lottery, racing, sports betting and skill game representatives, marketing, media and communications firms, as well as legal, financial and consultancy firms, B2B I.T. and software providers.

The summit has an all out agenda that can be seen on the SiGMA web location which includes socializing and having a good time while making deals and learning about the specific requirements presented by this challenging industry. The first day presentation is a full day free to attend course featuring Gary Beal of Vanguard Online Media Group that will take participants through the process of creating a new SEO Team.

On Thursday November 23rd the networking continues as attendees will have time visit the presentations on the expo floor. This conference will also explore the popularity of fantasy sport and its compelling role in the gaming markets in depth. Interested participants will on the 24th of November between 2pm and 6pm, will open up the opportunity for graduates and IT developers looking for a  career in iGaming to network with possible employers.

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William Hill Scientific Games Court Battle Looming

The potential for profit in the USA for online sports betting operations is massive if the Supreme Court sides with the state of New Jersey in its bid to open up sports betting to the rest of America.

The battle lines are being drawn between William Hill and Scientific Games. William Hill has filed a legal challenge that looks to disrupt the acquisition by Scientific Games of NYX Gaming. William Hill is a minority shareholder in NYX Gaming and has threatened to convert a sizable minority stake in NYX Gaming preferred stock which could spoil the proposed acquisition of the NYX property. This action is in the face of the fact that NYX is an active partner in its deal with Scientific Games.  

The stock conversion would give William Hill 32% of the voting stock in NYX, producing a reasonable opportunity to block the Scientific Games purchase. The loss is great for William Hill which intends to cause a loss for all of NYX’s current shareholders by converting the outstanding preference shares. The conversion will ultimately stop NYX shareholders from acquiring a premium made available by the Scientific Games offer and instead will make William Hill “lose approximately $50M and perhaps even more than double the amount.” The firm is working hard to bring appropriate legal action or actions against William Hill to protect NYX shareholders.

It was announced in September that Scientific Games had agreed to purchase NYX for approximately €525m/US$609.2m, in a deal it said would lead to a “global digital gaming and lottery powerhouse”. William Hill said “no decision has been made at this time” and, despite reports, “refutes in the strongest terms that any anti-competitive measure have been requested or is being demanded”.

NYX is prominent on the B2B side of the online gambling industry and it offers a number of software platforms to many of the industry’s biggest participants including NYX’s sports-betting solution, Open Bet.


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Belgium’s Gambling Laws Too Restrictive

Regulations are always trying to keep a lid on the internet and what is available through it. Governments all over the world are struggling with enforcing the regulatory platforms for online gambling which they insist are for the protection of the general public. Most of the regulatory regimes are in place by law and are necessary to give the industry direction in particular jurisdictions.

The issue however is the uncontrollable internet that provides all forms of entertain without restriction. It is only imposed laws that attempt to control the exploitive nature of the web. The European Union has been trying to unify the rules for international online gambling operators to include all of the nations. Unfortunately the task is failing due to certain jurisdictions not willing to comply.

An example of this issue is obvious in Belgium where a recent court ruling may create an even more restrictive environment for operators there. Belgian media reported recently that there is a challenge to the Belgian Gaming Commission and the Constitutional Court which prohibits different types of games of chance on the same internet site. It is said that the Belgian Gaming Commission had no authority to issue a single gambling license to any online operator that offered more than one type of gambling product using the same web domain location.  Licensing practices imposed by the Belgian Gaming Commission were brought into question by terrestrial gaming operator Rocoluc NV, which offers online casino games utilizing the domain. Rocoluc is asking why online gambling operators are not treated the same as terrestrial operators under the current laws.

Belgium’s gambling laws are probably the most restrictive in the world and are it seems about to become even more restricting. Recently lawmakers approved a plan that would ban gambling advertizing on television while sporting events are taking place and the possible removal of all online gambling affiliate marketing.


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Patagonia eZugi Team Up For Live Dealer Offering

Online casinos are exciting and sometimes profitable for participants and those who engage in the activity are attracted to live dealer casinos often. The growth of internet betting has reached a technologically advanced level offering a casino experience that some say rivals the real thing.

Patagonia Entertainment has recently announced it has enhanced its offering by integrating eZugi’s next generation live dealer casino content. Technology provider Ezugi specializes in live dealer casino gaming. Live Casino Gaming allows players from anywhere see, hear, and interact with actual casino tables and dealers. Live Dealer games offered include blackjack, baccarat, roulette, and bet on numbers that were developed for specific markets. The live casino specialists will deliver the games portfolio to Patagonia’s platform focusing on Latin players in Mexico and Brazil through integrations with Big Bola and MundiFortuna.

Patagonia Entertainment a Video Bingo game development company well known for creating innovative solutions for the internet betting industry. Video Bingo is a cross between Bingo and Slot games. The firm offers a comprehensive solution across a bingo platform, back-end software, simple integration into existing systems and marketing services.

Pedro B a spokesperson for Patagonia Entertainment’s commented on the partnership,  “eZugi’s is one of the leading live dealer casino providers and we’re thrilled to be working together. Live casino forms a major part of a true omni-channel offering and will enable operators to capitalise on Latin America’s huge market potential.”

Commercial Director of Ezugi, Sagi Ifrach, also talked about the arrangement, ‘’This strategic partnership with Patagonia strengthens Ezugi’s presence in the LATAM market which has phenomenal potential, making this an obvious and very beneficial move for both companies. We look forward to a profitable and successful partnership with Patagonia’’

Live online casino action is one the fastest growing activities offered on the web with technology creating real time events for an engaging virtual experience.  



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Czech Republic Grants First Online Sports Betting License

Back in August of 2017 the Czech Ministry of Finance gave credit to the countermeasures against illegal gambling and increased taxation of slot machines for driving a 38 percent increase in state revenue from gambling over last year.

The gambling operators that are looking at that market data in the Czech Republic have made a sincere commitment to being able to offer Czech punters legal betting.

In February of 2017 PokerStars became the first online gambling operator to receive a live games gambling license in the Czech Republic’s newly regulated market. In January the jurisdiction liberalized the market  allowing for the licensing of  foreign online betting operators.Guy Templer, Chief operating officer of Rational Group, said then,  “We are very proud to be the first online casino and poker operator to be awarded a license and support the newly regulated Czech market.” Adding, “This underscores our commitment to supporting local regulations and obtaining local licenses wherever possible.”

Now only a few months later that commitment that Mr. Templer mentioned is gaining traction with the recent announcement that BetStars has marked a first with the receipt of a new sports betting licence in the Czech Republic. Under the provisions of the regulated Czech environment however the BetStars operator’s license will not include free bets or the ‘Spin & Bet’ products.

Parent firm Stars Group said that it is expecting to launch very soon after the Czech State Supervision of Gambling and Lotteries approvals are obtained.

BetStars’ managing director, Zeno Ossko, commented,  “We’re proud to be the first international sports betting operator to be awarded a license under the Czech Republic’s new licensing regime.

“After extensive development, I am also very pleased that we are now able to begin offering players our exciting next generation mobile betting app, an integral part of our ongoing efforts to improve our product and overall offering for both existing and new customers.”




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DraftKings EuroLeague Basketball Team Up For Streaming

Daily Fantasy Sport Betting has s certain appeal for those who want a skill based challenge when they put their money on the line.  

DraftKings the Boston USA based DFS operator has recently announced in partnership with Euroleague Basketball that it will begin live-streaming events to players in North America. The majority of U.S. states consider fantasy sports a game of skill and not gambling, although a number of jurisdictions have banned or created unique laws that make daily fantasy spots illegal.

Euroleague Basketball is operating as an organizer of competitions in European locals as well as its premier Euroleague tournament. Customers will be able to access coverage of Euroleague basketball games using the DraftKings mobile application. The participant will be able to switch from the action to fantasy sports contests.

Along with original content supplied by DraftKings the operator said it expects the streaming service to be available in the US and Canada from early next year. Customers will be able to stream one game per week gratis or watch multiple games by playing in a $3 (€2.60) or above DraftKings fantasy sports competition.

DraftKings co-founder and chief executive officer Jason Robins commented on the initiative,  “Our goal is to become the one-stop destination and mobile companion for sports fans globally,” Robins continued to say, “Adding a live streaming component allows us to provide the best and most seamless product for our customers; this is what the future of sports looks like.”

Jordi Bertomeu, President and chief executive officer of EuroLeague Basketball, also commented on the partnership deal,  “Combining fantasy with live-streamed games is a perfect match, not only for the countless passionate Euroleague fans we have already, but for the many new ones who will now discover our unique brand of basketball through DraftKings.”



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Skill and Knowledge Benefits Online Gamblers

There is wisdom in the responsible bet because there is a calculated risk. Betting operations depend on odds making wisdom which has turned into algorithms for predicting outcomes. Information is power in the virtual world because there is little or no delay now in the transmission of data.  In fact the faster data is collected and distributed the more edge is gained.

Broadband internet along with smart phones provide instant send and receive capabilities to access the latest information required to place a stock order or place a bet on a sport or event. The online gambling industry has one big advantage over the casual player and that is access to big data on sports teams or political events or the many other betting opportunities presented.

Considering that data is a gold mine for a punter who follows the stats on baseball, basketball, hockey football or cricket or any of the other things to bet on its surprising there aren’t more professional sports gamblers. The closest thing to teams utilizing all the sports information are the daily fantasy sports betting products available. The interest in blackjack has surged too because of mathematics it became beatable using card counting techniques.

A skillful or knowledgeable player can gain an advantage at a number of games. For example some video poker games, such as full pay Deuces Wild, allegedly can be beaten by the use of a strategy card devised by computer analysis of the game. It has been suggested that some slot machines and lotteries with progressive jackpots can eventually have such a high jackpot that they offer a positive return or overlay when played long term, according to the gambling mathematics.  The idea persists that online games can be beaten with bonus hunting. All the winning strategies require research and some knowledge to find a personal comfort level for a responsible gambling experience.




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LeoVegas Launches ‘LeoSafePlay’ Responsible Gaming Platform

LeoVegas is a Swedish mobile gaming company and provider of internet casino betting and sports betting services in a number of international markets. LeoVegas has core markets for its gambling products in the United Kingdom Sweden Norway and Finland. LeoVegas casino games are powered by software developers, NetEnt, Yggdrasil, Evolution Gaming, IGT, Play N’ Go, Playtech, Microgaming,  Authentic Gaming, Bally and WMS.

Leovegas was founded in 2011 and had the aim of becoming the ultimate mobile gaming experience and be number one in mobile casino offerings. LeoVegas has now unveiled a responsible gambling initiative, strengthening  the company commitment to responsible gaming by launching ‘LeoSafePlay’.

The new platform is designed to promote responsible gaming by offering consumers new services to help them gamble responsibly. The platform can be used to become more aware of the signs and dangers of irresponsible betting, as well as providing access to a self-assessment tool that measures the participant`s  gambling habits.

Head of customer support at LeoVegas Noel Zammit, commented on the launch,  “At LeoVegas, we are dedicated to the duty of care we owe to our customers, to help them to play safely and responsibly.  Zammit continued, “We are proud to be transparent on our stance in promoting responsible gambling and believe by tackling the issues head on through LeoSafePlay, we can help ensure gaming remains fun for our customers.”

The platform LeoSafePlay will allow customers to limit their time playing and the amount deposited on the, web location. All staff members at have received the necessary online training to ensure they have the all the tools to assist players when needed.

Steps to make online gambling safer and more enjoyable should be mandatory in the online gambling industry. It is a positive step that the LeoSafePlay platform provides in keeping the punter secure in knowing there are tools and help readily available at any time of the day or night.




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ICO Event Amsterdam November 29th 2017

Online gambling has been a big part of the expanding use of cryptocurrencies with more gambling consumers turning to the virtual money while participating in internet betting. Understanding block chain technology and the elements backing the creation of virtual money is relatively simple but watching its volatile swings in value is difficult to grasp. The investment world is keen on understanding what an Initial Coin Offering presents in the way of opportunity.

In order to better equip those who deal with the latest advancements in blockchain technology at the end of November Amsterdam will be host to a conference dedicated to the advanced tool of investing in startups including Initial Coin Offering. The ICO Event Amsterdam will see as many as 300 participants made up of investors, lawyers and developers of blockchain projects.  Cryptocurrency is a digital or virtual currency that uses cryptography for security. A cryptocurrency is difficult to counterfeit because of this security feature. A defining feature of a cryptocurrency, is its organic nature and it is not issued by any central authority, rendering it theoretically immune to government interference or manipulation.

The rise of the well known virtual money Bitcoin to over an outstanding $7000 USD in recent weeks has created enormous interest in the use of blockchain for activities such as internet betting. The ICO Event Amsterdam will feature Sally Eaves, CTO, Professor of FinTech, Strategic Advisor on Global Issues, and founder of Aspirational Futures, project manager at STEM and charitable mentor. Participants will hear her explain to the audience about ICO in a global context. Also on the agenda Esteban van Goor, advisor on venture capital and ICO, will review the real prospects of ICO on the Amsterdam investment market. He will also analyze practical cases on the legal support of ICO from the moment of the project launch.

The ICO Event Amsterdam on November 29th 2017 at the Postillion Convention Centre, be there or be square.


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Greek Government Proposes To Overhaul Gambling Laws

The various jurisdictions for online betting have had a number of issues to overcome but none seem as complicated as the problems facing the Greek government. Greece is suffering from financial stress that pervades its economy. The recent news that the government wants to reform gambling laws to boost revenue is welcomed by Greece’ embattled finance minister Euclid Tsakalotos.

The proposed draft legislation includes a research study by Deloitte, claiming that tax revenue of as much as €1 billion could be realized within the next four years, if the bill becomes law. The seizure of €5 million from illegal gambling over a ten year period was announced by the Hellenic Gaming Commission which has registered more than 18,000 violations of Greek gambling laws.

OPAP, the Greek Organisation of Football Prognostics holds the exclusive rights to offer numerical lotteries and sports betting in Greece. CEO of OPAP, Kamil Ziegler says that there is a massive of amount of revenue estimated to be between €300 million and €500 million annually lost to illegal gambling operators targeting Greek patrons.

The proposed legislation moves to introduce permanent online licensing and overhaul regulation related to terrestrial casinos.  Another law to redress the controversial video lottery terminal (VLT) contract between the Greek state and OPAP will also be addressed in the Greek parliament by the end of the year. The renewed efforts for reform if successfully passed would create a system for licensing interested operators to offer gambling products bringing in much need jobs and tax revenues for Greece.

It was revealed that for every €100 spent in a Video Lottery Terminals, €52 made its way into the state’s coffers with the introduction of 35,000 new machines it is set to increase the amount of money available for the government’s needs. The introduction of the new regulations may run into difficulties once it comes to a vote.


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