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Australian Communications and Media Authority warns int’l operators about breaching new law

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Australia online gambling watchdog warns int’l operators about breaching new lawReading Time: 2 minutes

Australia’s online gambling watchdog has uncovered 19 breaches of that country‘s new gambling law in its first investigation since the new rules took effect.

Last week, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) published its first report into suspected violations of the Interactive Gambling Act 2001, which was amended last year to ban credit betting, in-play sports betting and non-betting products such as online casino and poker.

The ACMA report covers the three-month period starting September 13, 2017, during which the regulator received 108 enquiries and complaints regarding suspected violations of the amended Act. Of these complaints, 38 were found to be valid and led the ACMA to launch 18 separate investigations.

Ten of these investigations uncovered 19 instances of breaches of the Act, including nine related to providing a prohibited interactive gambling service, eight related to providing an unlicensed regulated interactive gambling service, and two related to advertising a prohibited or unlicensed regulated interactive gambling service.

The ACMA doesn’t publish the names of the companies it investigates, but did say the investigations involved a total of 65 distinct URLs. The ACMA said it had “successfully engaged” with the naughty providers, and “a number” of these services restricted access to Australian punters following this engagement.

Some of the affected companies almost certainly were offering online poker products to Australians, which remains popular despite the ban. Some Australian legislators have claimed to be close to convincing the government that online poker should be included in the list of acceptable online activities but tangible progress has so far proved elusive.

The ACMA was given new powers under the amended Act, including the right to apply to the Federal Court to impose civil penalty orders and injunctions against lawbreakers. The ACMA also has the authority to contact gambling regulators in other jurisdictions if one of their licensees is in violation of Aussie law.

The new ban on credit betting took effect on February 17, although telephone betting services with annual turnover of less than A$30m and an on-course Aussie racetrack presence were granted a carveout.

The credit ban and other regulatory changes – including a threatened 15% point of consumption tax – recently caused UK bookmakers William Hill to publicly consider selling its Australian unit.


Source: European Gaming Media and Events

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Swiss Casinos forges partnership with Playtech for online launch

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Swiss Casinos forges partnership with Playtech for online launchReading Time: 1 minute

 

Swiss Casinos, a major land-based casino operator in Switzerland, has signed a partnership with Playtech, the premier gaming software development company based in Isle of Man, for the launch of its online casinos.

The move is significant as the Swiss market will host iGaming for the first time from January 2019.

According to the newly passed Swiss legislation, only the land-based casino operators in the country will be eligible for the licence to run iGaming facility through their online channel from January.

“We are extremely excited to have found an internationally experienced and innovative partner in Playtech,” Swiss Casinos Group chief executive Marc Baumann said. “We will now be able to offer our customers in Switzerland an attractive iGaming offering.”

Playtech chief operating officer Shimon Akad added that his company was pleased to have partnered Switzerland’s leading casino brand.

“Playtech has a long history of success in cooperation with leading brands in the world’s most important gambling markets, and we are looking forward to a long and successful partnership with Swiss Casinos,” he said.


Source: European Gaming Media

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UK may implement cut of FOBT maximum stakes earlier than announced

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UK may implement cut of FOBT maximum stakes earlier than announcedReading Time: 1 minute

 

The British culture minister Jeremy Wright said the government is planning to prepone the implementation of the planned reduction of the maximum stake on fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBTs). Earlier, the date of implementation was October 2019. It could be proposed by six months to April 2019.

It is a real twist in the tale, following the resignation of sports minister Tracey Crouch, who blamed the government of delaying to October the planned the reduction of maximum stake from 100 pounds to just two pounds.

The government had been staring at a possible defeat on its budget legislation in parliament, as many legislators from the governing Conservatives backed an amendment which would have forced them to bring forward the timing of the cut.

Wright said the implementation of the proposed rise in Remote Gaming Duty, paid by online gaming operators, could also be preponed to April to cover the negative impact on the public finances.


Source: European Gaming Media

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SportCaller launches all-new £1m ‘Jungle Jackpot‘ game with Lottoland for new series of hit show

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SportCaller launches all-new £1m ‘Jungle Jackpot‘ game with Lottoland for new series of hit showReading Time: 3 minutes

 

FTP specialist releases £1m Jungle Jackpot, an innovative new free-to-play game with Lottoland, to connect with a fresh mainstream audience


SportCaller, the free-to-play (FTP) game specialist, has broken new ground by partnering with leading bet-on-lotteries operator Lottoland for the launch of Jungle Jackpot, another fresh concept in its ever-expanding portfolio of products and clients.

The £1m jackpot FTP game is set to roll out for the upcoming series of ‘I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!’, hosted by Declan Donnelly and Holly Willoughby.

Jungle Jackpot offers players the opportunity to win £1m if they can correctly forecast the final placings of the celebrities in the smash-hit ITV programme, by predicting the order in which they will leave the jungle. A secondary daily prediction game, once the evictions start, will also provide players with the chance to win smaller rewards and cash prizes, based on their following of the show and what’s happening day-to-day in the camp.

The main jackpot will see Lottoland partner with some of the UK’s biggest digital properties to promote the game and reach a broad and highly social target audience, opening up the opportunity to introduce them to the value and innovation provided across Lottoland’s lottery betting and wider gaming products.

Having cornered the market for free-to-play sporting games, SportCaller MD Cillian Barry said the launch was the provider’s first foray into mass-media events in order to engage a new and truly mainstream audience.

Barry noted: “It’s a real coup to be collaborating with Lottoland on a jackpot product which speaks to a broader demographic, over and above the sports betting community that is our usual focus. Our combined ability to deliver presents a genuine test case for FTP flourishing outside its original sporting-betting domain by bringing to market a game that will appeal to the wider general public. Jungle Jackpot is a genuine industry-first for such a popular TV show.”

“Novelty betting has been around for years with Paddy Power et al, but this game is now redefining novelty appeal for non-gambling-focussed users. Jungle Jackpot sets a new standard for the next generation of online media consumers – it’s fun, fast, accessible and instantly immersive. In a typically standardised market for sign-up promotions and bonuses, SportCaller offers a third way to market. With our jackpot prediction games, we empower operators and media owners by converting traffic into transactional customer accounts, delivering trackable levels of increased player-activity and loyalty, which means clear, measurable payback.”

Nigel Birrell, CEO for Lottoland added: “The ability of SportCaller’s games to organically harness player engagement around sports events made them the perfect fit for this partnership. We’ve no doubt Jungle Jackpot will provide a real and immediate boost to both our acquisition and the cross-selling of Lottoland’s array of popular products.

“The social elements of this game can also deliver significant potential for growth. The main £1m Jungle Jackpot game gives every adult fan of the show the chance to win a lottery-level prize from a simple prediction mechanic. After all, who doesn’t have an opinion on what will happen each year when this rag-tag group of celebs heads into the jungle? The daily prediction games also represent a very accessible way to make a prediction on who will leave the jungle next, giving viewers a chance to test their opinions for rewards, and ultimately a share of a £10,000 cash prize, if proving to be the ultimate jungle judge!”

All games are fully compliant with global regulations, and are available across mobile and desktop channels on http://junglejackpot.sportcallerI’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!.com. The Jungle Jackpot microsite hosting the games is geolocated to UK & Ireland players only, via SportCaller’s geo-restricting tech.


Source: European Gaming Media

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