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Free COVID-19 App Shows 1,500+ Casino and Gaming Property Reopenings

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Web app provides instant details and a complete history of all casino and gaming property closings and reopenings in the U.S and Canada since the COVID-19 pandemic

The next generation of a new web app showing the full history of more than 2,000 casino and gaming property closings and 1,500 reopenings was released today at GamingDirectory.com/COVID-19/ as a free service provided by Casino City Press.

The application features interactive U.S. and Canada gaming industry reopening maps color-coded to show the percentage of properties reopened in each state and province. The maps show current reopening status or the status on any day since the pandemic began. They can also be toggled to display commercial vs. Indian gaming property statuses. Drilling down to state and province maps displays individual gaming property locations and reveals detailed property profiles.

The app charts the closing and reopening of the gaming industry over time. On March 1, 2,192 casino and other gaming properties were open. Almost every property was closed for the entire month of April before properties began to reopen in May. By June 1, 744 properties were open and on July 1 that number had more than doubled to 1,583. Separate charts covering Indian, Commercial, United States and Canadian gaming are provided.

A variety of summary tables are also available. One table summarizes the current number of open and closed properties by state and province and property type. The table can be ordered to show which states have the most open or closed properties, or which have the largest or smallest percentage of reopened properties, either for all or for just Indian or commercial properties. Another summary table lists recent reopenings together with property-specific details such as closing and reopening date and property type and location with a news article covering the property reopening.

Comprehensive tables are provided for every state and province. In total, 2,187 properties are currently covered in the tables (2,002 in the United States and 185 in Canada). The tables can be sorted by property name, location, closing or reopening date, current status and property type. Detailed profiles are provided for each property with information ranging from a property’s address, owner and contact information to property demographics like the number of gaming machines to links to articles about changes in the property’s coronavirus status from our vast collection of nearly 2,500 news articles, press releases and other source documents.

“We are pleased to enhance access to our continuously updated information about reopenings as they occur through our enhanced complimentary COVID-19 web application that now offers a new emphasis on the history of closings and reopenings,” says Michael Corfman, Casino City Press CEO. “From the very beginning our dedicated research team has been investigating and chronicling the closing and reopening of gaming properties in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic in the United States and Canada.”

Nevada-based CasinoSoft Hits the Jackpot With Anti-Money Laundering Software Package Built with Mendix Low-Code Platform

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First-in-class tax and auditing application, built in just six months, enables casino industry to streamline workflow, reporting, and compliance with federal mandates

Mendix, a Siemens company and the global leader in low-code for the enterprise, today announced that CasinoSoft, a Nevada-based software development firm, has built a first-in-class, scalable compliance and taxation software package using the Mendix low-code platform. The package, ComplianceCore, digitizes and automates the extensive data collection and reporting required of casinos and card clubs operating under the U.S. Treasury Department’s anti-money laundering auditing rules, also known as Title 31 compliance.

Nearly 1,000 commercial and tribal casinos and card clubs in the United States comprise the $261 billion gaming industry. Those posting annual revenue of $1 million or more are subject to the same stringent oversight by the U.S. Treasury Department’s crime enforcement division, FinCEN, as are U.S. banks and other financial institutions. These federal regulations were put in place by Congress and strengthened after 9/11 to prevent criminal money laundering, terrorist financing, and other suspicious behaviors that would otherwise be obscured by the high volume of casino-based currency transactions. Fines for businesses not complying with FinCEN’s daily  data collection and annual auditing requirements can add up to tens of millions of dollars.

“The majority of casinos are paper factories that generate massive piles of paperwork on a daily basis,” said Matt Montano, CasinoSoft’s CEO. “There is simply too much financial data coming from too many sources on the casino floor for employees to aggregate by hand and review. Regarding the casinos that do have enterprise financial systems, they’re often tied into backend legacy systems that are hard to update when technology improves or regulations change. Resource-stretched IT teams usually limit their upgrades of a casino’s  workstations to once every two years.”

CasinoSoft built the three ComplianceCore modules in just six months, from scratch, using the Mendix low-code software development platform. Low-code is a visual development approach to application development that enables developers of varied experience levels to create applications for web and mobile, using drag-and-drop components and model-driven logic through a graphical user interface. CasinoSoft chose Mendix particularly for its open architecture and its collaboration and rapid development capabilities.

“Mendix’s underlying architecture enables our solution to integrate all the disparate sources of data generated by casino operations into a Mendix-built backend,” said Montano. “We can deploy quick functionality enhancements on the fly and do system upgrades five or six times a year.”

ComplianceCore dramatically reduces the amount of time casino staff spends on data collection and reporting for each gaming “day” (equal to a twenty-four-hour period).

“Data that formerly required days to crunch and organize is now completed in two to three hours. This gives the staff more time to focus on enhanced due diligence and other suspicious activity,” said Montano. CasinoSoft’s software package has been deployed in 12 casinos nationwide.

Three Modules Tackle Federal Reporting Requirements

The ComplianceCore software package consists of three standalone modules:

  • ●  Title 31 reporting package integrates disparate streams of financial transactions into a Mendix-built backend that is aggregated daily.
  • ●  Tablet Tax Forms digitizes and automates the IRS reporting requirements of any prize or jackpot above a $1,200 threshold.
  • ●  Document Automation automatically sorts and files scanned paper documents according to a player’s profile, account and federal filing status.

Zeroing in on Potentially Illegal Transactions

Casinos document every transaction above a minimum threshold, excluding food, beverages and merchandise. An individual’s aggregated daily spending of $10,000 or higher requires a Title 31 CTR filing. “Imagine trying to aggregate that from all the pit bosses and cage tellers into a single, cohesive property-wide log,” said Montano.

The ComplianceCore package also flags patterns that FinCEN classifies as suspicious activities. These include chip walking, which is when a player leaves without redeeming a large number of chips. Players who slowly redeem a large number of chips over a period of days are said to be structuring — perhaps to underreport IRS filings. Another red flag, called minimal play, is triggered when a customer buys a large number of chips with cash and places a few minor bets before cashing out a near majority of the chips. These behaviors may be an effort to disguise illegally received, traceable currency as a gambling win — in other words, money laundering.

Montano added “Casinos must intercede. They have no choice. Our platform gives casinos the tools and the horsepower to efficiently handle this regulatory burden.”

“We are glad CasinoSoft’s developers could leverage the Mendix platform to streamline and improve the industry’s data monitoring, aggregation and reporting,” said Johan den Haan, Mendix’s chief technology officer. “CasinoSoft’s ComplianceCore application package is a great example of how the truly open architecture at the core of our low-code platform enables developers to leverage core and legacy systems and data with brand new technologies that push the envelope of the possible. In today’s world, we know there’s no such thing as a free-standing, self-contained or isolated software application. A high degree of enterprise-grade interconnectivity is imperative to address ever-evolving needs within disparate technology landscapes.”

 

SOURCE Mendix

Kalamba Launches New “Bullseye” Brand

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Kalamba Games has launched its new brand named “Bullseye.” The new brand incorporates Kalamba’s proprietary remote gaming server (RGS) and promotional tools product offerings.

The Bullseye launch cements the Malta-based firm’s position as a next-generation supplier as it continues to invest in creating a strong brand and further expanding the company.

The new brand incorporates a range of Kalamba’s new promotional tools, which will initially be made available to partners that are directly integrated via the Bullseye RGS. The roll out is set to begin in H2 2020 and gives direct access to over 35 unique Kalamba titles.

“We’re very excited to bring the Bullseye brand to market as it reflects the team’s hard work in bringing the company further towards maturity and underlines our commitment to supporting our partners’ success,” Steve Cutler, CEO and co-founder of Kalamba, said.

“Bullseye represents the next stage in the core strategy and vision we established back in 2016. Naturally we look forward to building further on our games portfolio, but making titles interconnected via meta features and layers will ensure we build a market leading slots experience for the ages,” Steve Cutler added.

Swintt celebrates launching games with Rootz

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Swintt, the rapidly rising game provider with a focus on localised content for key markets, is celebrating the launch of their games with Malta-based operator Rootz.

The launch of Swintt’s series of land-based content popular across European markets including Germany includes the top games Master of Books, Seventy Seven and Fresh Fruit. Other land-based games scheduled for release include Heart of Earth, Perseus and Fruit Fever.

The agreement also covers Swintt’s proprietary portfolio of games to be launched soon, with top titles Immortal Monkey King, Panda Warrior and Royal Golden Dragon among the most popular.

Rootz Limited is known for delivering its flagship brand Wildz, an online casino that delivers a wide range of games built upon a robust platform optimised for a quality player experience through the Levelz and Spin Back functionalities.

Rootz also launched Caxino in June 2020, their second online casino brand using the powerful Rootz platform and utilizing the same retention and bonusing mechanics to reward loyal players.

Commenting on the agreement, David Flynn, CEO for Swintt said “I’m very happy to see the hard work of the Swintt team, reflected in this partnership. The team at Rootz are an entrepreneurial and high paced team with a focus on local markets. This matches our philosophy at Swintt and I’m looking forward to our launch in the near future.”

Lasse Rantala, CEO at Rootz when asked about the deal stated, “We are extremely excited to be an early partner in the Swintt journey to make the most of their approach to delivering high-quality, localised content. With both Swintt and Rootz being young companies with many shared values, we can grow together through close collaboration and form a formidable partnership. The range of games will perfectly suit our players at Wildz.com and Caxino.com.”

We must be guided by the education sector to deliver effective prevention programmes to young people

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YGAM Chief Executive Lee Willows reflects on some of the key topics to emerge from three reports published last week and highlights the valuable contribution the charity is making.

Last week was a significant week for everyone connected the gambling industry. Reading the Advisory Board for Safer Gambling (ABSG) annual progress report; The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) report and the Lords Select Committee report, it was pleasing to read these reports all featured insight from people with direct experience of the tragic harm that gambling can cause some individuals, such as the YGAM Founders. As Chief Executive of the YGAM charity and personally as someone who lost everything to a gambling addiction, I was grateful for the opportunity to contribute my insight and experiences. Such inclusion would have been unheard of five-years ago. Having three incredibly helpful reports published in quick succession over a period of five days is in many ways helpful and timely as YGAM continues to evolve our strategy. I congratulate everyone involved in producing three fascinating reports that will inform the debate moving forward.

At YGAM, we strongly believe that prevention, including education is an essential component to reduce gambling-related harms. We engage with the education sector daily and we are constantly listening to the needs of teachers, practitioners and young people. It is very clear from these conversations that teachers and practitioners need and appreciate our resources more than ever. The feedback we get from teachers, practitioners and young people and the insight from external evaluations is overwhelmingly positive and there is an enormous demand for information on gambling and gaming. Whilst it was pleasing to see education feature in all three reports, the voices of the professionals working in that sector should also be taken into consideration. We must continue to be guided by professionals working in the education sector to deliver effective prevention programmes to young people.

The focus on the blurred lines between gaming and gambling is welcomed. The YGAM workshops help build digital resilience and educate people on the different types of games accessible to children. We agree with the DCMS Select Committee and the Children’s Commissioner that loot boxes that contain the element of chance should not be sold to children under 18. The concern about allowing children to access loot boxes is that it is conditioning them to gambling behaviour from an early age. Building on our discussions with DCMS we look forward to contributing to the government’s call to action on loot boxes which will hopefully lead to consideration of an appropriate regulatory intervention.

The debate around gambling advertising and the impact it has on younger generations is imperative. You do not have to work in this sector to notice that gambling adverts dominate the promotional spaces at most sporting events. The YGAM resources tackle this topic head on as we continue to raise awareness of the potential harms and the support available. We believe concerns about marketing and sponsorship should be addressed by evidence-based analysis that puts the safety of young people first and we look forward to contributing to this debate.

When the Gambling Commission launched the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling-Related Harms, there was real hope for change and there has been some positive change; yes more can be done and some actions need to move in a more expedient manner, but change does take time. I also worry that in the desire to affect structural change, or radically change strategic direction part way through a national strategy may result in valuable insight being lost. I do see many people and organisations coming together to deliver the strategy which is superb and that is where we will continue to have a relentless focus.

Certainly in my time in YGAM I have seen Safer Gambling teams within operators increase from one employee, who led Safer Gambling work on a part-time bases, to now large Safer Gambling teams with twenty plus employees working full-time in this area of work. In that time, I have also seen and been fortunate to work alongside others who have been affected by gambling-harms set up their own organisations and I have witnessed the rise of passionate campaigners who demand change, often following tragic circumstances. At the heart of all this work is a shared commitment to reduce-harms and it would be so oxygenating if more time can be spent finding common goals and delivering the national strategy.

As a prevention charity we will continue to focus on the delivery of education, building and sharing insight and demonstrating impact. This is a crucial period for the future of this sector and everyone at YGAM looks forward to working collaboratively with all stakeholder groups to ensure all young and vulnerable people are safe from gaming and gambling related harms.

Finally, YGAM has published its strategic plan 2019 – 2021 and within our annual review filed with the Charity Commission and Companies House we share progress against our strategic goals and insight. However next week, we will have a dedicated page on our website which will also show this progress, insight, and our impact in a succinct manner. I am incredibly proud of the YGAM team and many colleagues from all parts of the sector (inc charities, trade bodies, operators, regulators, ABSG, DCMS, teachers, young people, EbEs); working hard to make a difference in this space.

Lee Willows
Chief Executive, YGAM

Esports Entertainment Group Engages Akur Capital for iGaming Mergers and Acquisitions Advisory

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Esports Entertainment Group, Inc., a licensed online gambling company with a focus on esports wagering and 18+ gaming, engaged Akur Capital (“Akur”) as the Company’s iGaming mergers and acquisitions advisor. Akur Capital is a leading cross-border M&A advisory firm, specializing in the iGaming and sports betting sector.

“We just signed with Akur and are already evaluating multiple potential M&A opportunities they’ve introduced to us,” commented Grant Johnson, CEO of Esports Entertainment Group. “The Akur team has years of iGaming and gambling experience and an extensive network of industry contacts. As the first US-based iGaming company to list on NASDAQ, we’re in a great position to capitalize on these highly fragmented markets and believe Akur will prove to be a valuable partner in our ongoing success.”

Esports Entertainment Group CEO Grant Johnson has been invited to present at The emergence of eSports webinar, presented by Maxim Group and M-Vest on Thursday, July 9, 2020.

Johnson will participate in a webinar panel discussion on the emergence of eSports. In contrast to many other industries that have and continue to experience significant setbacks as a result of COVID-19 – the global pandemic has arguably served as a positive catalyst for the world of eSports – an industry that continues to evolve and further expand to new audiences. During the panel discussion, Johnson will discuss the eSports industry, its major players, and factors driving market growth.

888 Extends iGaming Contract with Delaware Lottery

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Online gambling operator 888 has extended its exclusive iGaming contract with the Delaware Lottery for a further two years.

888 has powered the state’s iGaming platform since 2013. Through 888’s unique technology platform, customers in Delaware are able to enjoy online casino games and play online poker in a safe and secure environment.

“This contract extension demonstrates the strength of our relationship with the Delaware Lottery as well as the quality our of outstanding technology platform. The State of Delaware has been a pioneer in the developing U.S iGaming market and we are delighted to further extend our partnership,” Yaniv Sherman, SVP Business Development at 888, said.

“888 has been committed to the U.S. iGaming market for several years. We remain incredibly excited by the growth potential for the business across both our B2B and B2C operations in this developing and potentially significant market,” Yaniv Sherman added.

“888 has been a valued partner since the Delaware Lottery launched its pioneering iGaming offering through the websites of Delaware’s three casinos,” Vernon Kirk, Director of the Delaware Lottery, said.

“In another first, 888’s poker platform enabled the Delaware/Nevada/New Jersey Multi-State Internet Gaming Association to offer peer-to-peer poker liquidity and further enhance the player experience across all three jurisdictions,” Vernon Kirk added.

New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology and Yellowbrick Launch Gaming and Esports Online Education Program

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New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), in collaboration with Yellowbrick, has launched Gaming and Esports Industry Essentials, a program designed to explore the expansive and lucrative world of gaming and esports. The program will help prepare game fans, players, and aspiring designers for the gaming industry, which is expected to generate $196 billion in revenue by the year 2022.

 Gaming and Esports Industry Essentials exposes learners to a full host of roles and career paths, everything from game design to esports team management. The course offers a sequence of project-based activities and assignments analyzing the basics of game design, marketing, and project management. Upon finishing the program, learners receive a completion certificate from FIT.

 “FIT is committed to expanding and diversifying its offerings to meet the needs of the adult and nontraditional learner. These new and customized offerings reflect the depth and breadth of FIT’s unique curriculum, which continues to innovate in an ever-changing environment,” Daniel M. Gerger, director of FIT’s Center for Continuing and Professional Studies, said.

 “Today’s gaming world has torn down preconceived notions and proven itself to be a viable arena for creative and lucrative career paths. We’re thrilled to help open doors for the players, creators, and game enthusiasts who’ve made this movement possible,” Rob Kingyens, president and CEO of Yellowbrick, said.

France’s ANJ Reveals New Leadership Team

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France’s new gambling regulator L’Autorité Nationale des Jeux (ANJ) has announced a number of new appointments to its senior leadership team.

Officially launched this June, the ANJ will serve as France’s “single regulatory agency” for gambling, replacing ARJEL and further industry oversight responsibilities of the French Treasury and the Department of Agriculture.

Led by Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin, the current ANJ Chairman and former French State Counsellor for data protections, the ANJ has been tasked with developing two new frameworks to prioritise consumer protections and the prevention of financial crimes.

Joining Falque-Pierrotin’s executive team, the ANJ confirmed the appointment of former French Treasury counsellor Rémi Lataste as the Director-General who will oversee the agency’s budget responsibilities.

The ANJ’s day-to-day operations and resources will be led by Olivier Tournut as Secretary-General. Tournut is the former Chief Administrator for France’s CNIL IT and data protections agency, the federal department formerly led by Falque-Pierrotin.

Supporting ANJ’s new regulatory mandate, Falque-Pierrotin confirmed that former ARJEL executive Jean Baptiste Menguy will continue to hold the position of HR Director for the agency.

Superbet strengthens IBIA’s global betting integrity coverage

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Retail and online gambling operator Superbet has joined the International Betting Integrity Association (IBIA). Superbet, which was established in 2008, has a growing international online operation and is the largest operator in Romania. The company’s Superbet brand will now feed into IBIA’s unique global monitoring and alert system, and benefit from the platform’s security and business protection measures. It is the third operator to join IBIA in 2020, following five new members in 2019.

Khalid Ali, CEO of the International Betting Integrity Association, said: I am pleased to welcome another company into the growing list of operators in IBIA. Superbet has a particularly strong Central Eastern Europe footprint which will significantly strengthen our coverage in that region.”

Ivan Gojic, Head Of In Play Trading at Superbet, said: “Superbet’s membership of IBIA is an important part of our international expansion and continued investment in technology and partnerships that best benefit our commercial ambitions and responsible gambling goals. IBIA is committed to protecting sporting and betting products, as well as the consumers that enjoy those activities. Those qualities correspond seamlessly with Superbet’s own corporate aims and also those of licensing authorities which are placing increasing focus on the kind of market protections IBIA provides.”

The International Betting Integrity Association is the leading global voice on integrity for the licensed betting industry. It is run by operators for operators, protecting its members from corruption through collective action. Its monitoring and alert platform is a highly effective anti-corruption tool that detects and reports suspicious activity on its members’ betting markets. The association has longstanding information sharing partnerships with leading sports and gambling regulators to utilise its data and prosecute corruption. It represents the sector at high-level policy discussion forums such as the IOC, UN, Council of Europe and European Commission.

NSoft

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