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Archive for December, 2009

888 Online Casino Group Buys Wink Bingo – 12-31-09

December 31, 2009 Leave a comment

December 31 – 888 is one of the world’s biggest gambling operators, and the acquisition of the Wink Bingo business from Daub Limited further cements their position as a leading online bingo player.

Wink Online Bingo own and operate numerous successful bingo brands WinkBingo.com, PoshBingo.co.uk and BingoFabulous.com, The sites are already operated by 888s Dragonfish, an independent business-to-business division that operated third party gambling websites.

According to 888 reports, Wink was launched early in 2008 and as acquired a customer base of 60,000 active players. Revenues for the last eleven months amounted to 15 million and profits before tax were 1.5 million.

888 pay Daub eleven million pounds up front for the business followed by an earn-out subject to certain adjustments. The earn-out payment will be performance-based between five and six times earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation of Wink Online Bingo during the twelve-month period ending March 31, 2011 and will be paid in cash. 888 stated that the earn-out payment is expected to be made during the second quarter of 2011 and has been capped at 59.7 million.

We are delighted to announce the Wink Online Bingo acquisition as an expansion of our business-to-consumer online bingo footprint in the lucrative UK market, said Gigi Levy, Chief Executive Officer for 888.

The Wink team has a proven track record of excellence in marketing, customer retention management and execution and will be a great addition to our growing bingo business.

In addition, the transaction is financially attractive and will be earnings enhancing.

Read our review of 888 Casino.

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Italian sportsbetting giant SNAI rejects takeover bid

December 31, 2009 Leave a comment

The Italian business media are reporting an unsuccessful attempt to acquire control of the major Italian online sportsbetting firm Sindacato Nazionale Agenzie Ippiche SpA (SNAI) by private equity firms Bridgepoint and Axa Private Equity, who reportedly offered €600 million.

The publicly listed sports and horseracing betting firm has a debt burden of €275 million and recently reported a net loss of €9.5 million for the year to September ’09, although this was a definite improvement on the same period in 2008 when the company made a loss of €20.1 million.

SNAI Servizi Srl, the parent company of the betting firm, received a binding offer from the two private equity firms for its gaming and betting activities in November that would have seen Bridgepoint acquire 75% of the Italian group while Axa would own the remaining 25%.

In addition to its online operations, the Italian giant also boasts 900 branded land outlets and over 2,500 smaller gambling stalls; SNAI racetrack operations in Milan were specifically excluded from the deal.

The two would-be purchasers revealed that their offer valued SNAI at around six times its 2009 pro forma EBITDA, and said that financing for the deal would have been forthcoming from a consortium of banks.

“The board of SNAI Servizi Srl has examined the offer from Bridgepoint and Axa and has believed the offer not in its own interest,” read a statement from SNAI.

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Blotter: Wireless sportsbetting devices heading to Vegas

December 31, 2009 Leave a comment

As popular as sports betting has become with the regular Las Vegas gambler, the process itself can often be a hassle. Players frequently have to wait in line at the sports book window, which takes them away from other activities that the casinos would find more profitable, and they may even miss the opportunity to place their bet before the window closes at the start of the contest.

With that in mind, some Las Vegas casinos are offering sports bettors the use of a new type of portable technology called "eDecks". A player with an eDeck can place his bet anywhere on the property, from a hotel room to a favorite restaurant, without the need to wait in line. The devices, which resemble many "smartphones" on the market today, relay the bettor’s information to the sports book and credit his account when he wins a bet.

In addition to the convenience factor that eDecks offer, they also provide the player with the chance to bet on actions during the game itself. For instance, a player can wager on if a golfer will sink a long putt to win a tournament, or if a basketball player will make his free throws in the closing seconds of the game, complete with odds and payouts. The devices also offer online forms of various table games, including blackjack and baccarat, where the player can use the cash in his account to make his bets rather than buying and selling chips.

These eDecks are currently available at the Venetian and Palazzo casinos on the Las Vegas Strip and the M Resort and Casino in nearby Henderson. Anthony Marnell, CEO of the M Resort, has remarked about how the devices have allowed players to place multiple bets during the course of a contest, which has led to a substantial increase in sports book revenues.

Lee Amatis, CEO of Cantor Gaming, the developers of the eDeck software, noted how the application allows players to "trade" in sporting events in a similar way to how their sister company, Cantor Fitzgerald, trades in financial instruments. The powerful application helps players to take advantage of minute-by-minute shifts in a game, just as stock market applications let investors work through changes in market flows.

Categories: Gambling News

£32 FREE this New Year with 32 Red Casino!

December 29, 2009 Leave a comment

32 Red Casino are one of our favourites here at Gaming Alerts, with their unrivalled customer service, their fantastic promotions and their catalogue of hundreds of amazing games!

32 Red Casino also hold the title of the ‘Best Online Casino’ for every single year in a row since 2003 – that has to stand for something when it comes to choosing an online casino to play at!

Right now, for all new members, 32 Red Casino are offering £32 absolutely free when you sign up and deposit just £10 – it’s as simple as that! What better way to bring in the New Year than with £32 absolutely FREE!

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Categories: Gambling News

Wall Street progressive slot pays Christmas day jackpot

December 29, 2009 Leave a comment

An as yet unidentified online player enjoyed a very merry Christmas this year thanks to the Playtech progressive slot Wall Street Fever, which coughed up a very nice $220,335 jackpot on Christmas Day.

The big win was the second highest jackpot to be hit on this Playtech slot this year, running second to an award of almost twice that size some five months ago.

Due to the holiday season, details are still sketchy and will be reported at more length once the festive season has ended.

Categories: Gambling News

Blotter: Poker playing priest gives thanks for $100k

December 28, 2009 Leave a comment

In other news from last week’s PokerStars.Net Million Dollar Challenge, another runner-up is getting big press for his final round finish. Father Andrew Trapp first made gambling industry headlines when he won $100,000 in the first round of the challenge in October. Last week he boarded another plane to Los Angeles in hopes of winning the event’s $1 million first-place prize. While God was clearly on Trapp’s side in his first visit to the City of Angels, prayers alone weren’t enough to help the priest beat his formidable pro opponent, Daniel Negreanu, at the final table.

But don’t feel too bad for Father Trapp and his hopeful parishioners; he still brought another $100,000 home for the church fund. In an interview following the tournament, Trapp gave thanks for his successful run and expressed hope that his newsworthy attempt would reshape the way some people look at priests. When asked where he honed his skills, the priest admits that he learned to play poker while training with other men of the cloth. Perhaps we should add "seminary" to our list of the best poker schools…

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Blotter: Recent report questions efficacy of German gambling laws

December 27, 2009 Leave a comment

Germany’s highly restrictive online gambling legislation has been widely criticized ever since it was first implemented, and a recent report issued by Bitkom proves that despite the country’s best efforts the laws – while irritating – have been largely ineffective in deterring citizens from enjoying online gambling. Though the survey had a relatively small sample set of only 1000, the results were pretty conclusive; the new laws have only reduced the incidence of country-wide online gambling by a paltry 1%. It’s a small reward for the cost; the country has lost millions in revenue since it stopped licensing and taxing online gambling establishments.

Members of the country’s pro-gambling groups hope that these statistics will discourage the German government from renewing the laws in their current form when they expire in 2011. Hopefully other EU Member States currently considering similar legislation will take note.

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