Each week, CasinoBeats breaks down the numbers behind some of the industry’s most interesting stories. This week we take a look at look at further Dutch fines, a transitional William Hill and the latest addition to the iDEA Growth trade group.
Canadian casino workers held a solidarity rally last week titled #NoJobsNoDice amid job cut concerns, after Canada’s largest union in the private sector expressed outrage at British Columbia-based Gateway Casinos.
Members of Unifor at Casino Rama Resort held the protest to address worker and community concerns about layoffs and cuts to services made by the firm, after it gained control of Ontario’s central gaming bundle.
Coming as part of the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation’s land-based gaming modernisation, the bundle was the seventh in the region to transition to a service provider.
The move saw the firm gain day-to-day operation of Casino Rama Resort on Chippewas of Rama First Nation’s Land and OLG Slots at Georgian Downs in Innisfil, which was later renamed Gateway Casinos Innisfil.
The #NoJobsNoDice solidarity rally took place in Orilla, where the property in question in located, on Thursday 8 August, and comes after the latest strand of jobs cuts saw layoffs include 65 full-time and five part-time Casino Rama workers.
Kansspelautoriteit, the Dutch gaming authority, has imposed a €350,000 fine on ElectraWorks Limited for offering online gambling via the Bwin.com site.
ElectraWorks is the entity that holds the licence to operate the GVC Holdings brand within the Netherlands, and follows a number of other firms who have earned similar penalties from the country’s regulator.
The Ksa said that live casino games, including poker, blackjack and roulette, as well as sports betting was evident on the site, with an investigation finding a primary focus on Netherlands-based consumers through the use of the Dutch language, the .nl extension and use of the iDeal payment criteria.
William Hill has continued to feel the hit from the £2m FOBT maximum stake limit, as increased investment across the US also reflect the group’s period of transition.
Stressing that the firm hit the $1bn wagered mark during 2019’s first half of the year, as well as enjoying 27 per cent market share across seven states, performance during the period was in line with expectations, with full year financials also set to fall in line with previous guidance.
Adjusted operating profit for the period fell 33 per cent to £76.2m (2018: £113.6m), with the firm stressing that the major contributing factor was a increase in start-up costs associated with manoeuvres made in various regions of America.
Lauding its US moves, where William Hill currently enjoys a presence in eight states, with two more to go live imminently, developments concerning the proposed Caesars Entertainment and Eldorado Resorts merger were also addressed.
If completed, the deal would provide access to 34 additional casinos which it’s anticipated would generate in the region of $20m-35m additional retail EBITDA within three years, and to five incremental states including New York.
Kindred Group has become the latest addition to the iDEA Growth trade group, taking its membership to a total of 25 organisations.
iDEA, iDevelopment and Economic Association, which represents all sectors of the US’ burgeoning online gaming industry, is striving to grow jobs and expand the online interactive business in the United States through advocacy and education.
Jeff Ifrah, founder of iDEA Growth, explained: “Since the first igaming bill in New Jersey in 2013, to the Supreme Court ruling allowing states to create their own legislation, a unified industry voice was needed to advocate for and educate lawmakers and the public on the revenue opportunities and consumer protection from regulating mobile betting and gaming.
“With iDEA Growth members representing every vertical in mobile gaming, we have built an effective lobbying force to support federal legislation that is backed by facts and demonstrates data integrity, to educate state lawmakers on the financial benefits and to ensure the best consumer gaming experience that is safe and regulated.”