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Gambling Tycoon Stanley Ho Retires

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Stanley Ho, the legendary gambling tycoon of Hong Kong has retired from his position as chairman and executive director of SJM Holdings. He called it a day of his long career yesterday. The 96-year-old’s career has influenced and even shaped the gambling industry in Hong Kong and Macau.

Although Ho has not been actively involved with SJM these days and his public appearances have become increasingly rarer due to falling health, he is still called  “The King of Gambling” In these parts, especially Macau.

But while Ho’s retirement marks the symbolic end of an era for Macau, for the Ho dynasty it’s the beginning of another chapter, with Daisy Ho stepping into her father’s shoes at the helm of SJM. Ho’s daughter will be facing heavy competition from players like Sheldon Adelson and Lui Che Woo as she seeks to restore SJM’s crown as the top casino operator in Macau.

Rising To The Top

The great-nephew of Sir Robert Hotung, a prominent early 20th-century Hong Kong businessman and philanthropist who held the distinction of being the first Chinese person to live on the city’s prestigious Victoria Peak, Ho is perhaps one of the more enigmatic of Hong Kong’s 20th-century tycoons. Born into affluence and privilege, Ho would experience poverty by the time he was in his teens as the Great Depression of the 1930s decimated his family’s fortunes, before the Japanese invasion forced him to flee his native Hong Kong for Macau in 1941.

Ho made his fortune over the next 20 years as a trader, establishing a reputation as a bold opportunist – a temperament that made him perfect for the casino industry. His decisive roll of the dice came in 1962, when he led a consortium that secured Macau’s sole gaming licence from the government, thus beginning a highly successful 40-year monopoly that lasted until 2002, when the territory opened up its gambling trade to foreign casino operators such as Las Vegas tycoons Sheldon Adelson and Steve Wynn.

As well as a string of casinos – including the Lisboa, which was Macau’s most lavish attraction when it opened in 1970, and the towering Grand Lisboa, which opened in 2007 – Ho’s empire also encompasses Hong Kong-based Shun Tak Holdings, which is involved in shipping, property, hospitality and investments. He stepped down as chairman of Shun Tak in June 2017.

Ho’s Legacy

A keen ballroom dancer, Ho demonstrated an irresistible swagger in both his business and personal life during the latter half of the 20th century. He calls four different women his wives, and fathered at least 17 children, three of whom will now sit at the helm of companies that account for half of Macau’s six gaming licences. While Daisy Ho will follow in her father’s footsteps as chairperson of SJM, Pansy Ho, who succeeded her father as chairperson of Shun Tak Holdings, has an estimated personal fortune of $5.3 billion, according to Forbes. She’s also the co-chairperson and executive director of MGM China Holdings. Lawrence Ho, meanwhile, is chairman and CEO of Melco International, which owns and operates City of Dreams, Studio City and Altira Macau.

Daisy will be taking up the reins of SJM following a tumultuous few years for casino operators in Macau. Chinese President Xi Jinping’s crackdown on corruption deterred high rollers from the mainland and sent revenues tumbling, although the territory has been on the mend more recently, with the Gaming Inspection and Co-ordination Bureau announcing year-on-year growth of around 20 per cent in the first quarter of 2018.

Appointed executive director of SJM in June 2017, Daisy has also served as deputy managing director and CFO of Shun Tak Holdings since 1999. Her leadership of SJM will be shared with Angela Leong, her father’s fourth consort, and Timothy Fok, son of Stanley Ho’s former business partner Henry Fok, who have been named co-chairpersons and executive directors. It’s a succession plan that follows a dispute in 2011 when family members engaged in a power struggle over control of Ho’s empire for several months.

As the chairperson of the Hong Kong Ballet, Daisy will no doubt wish to sidestep any further such troubles as SJM prepares to carry on the legacy of the man who made Macau dance to his tune for more than half a century. 

Source: Forbes


Source: European Gaming Media and Events

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SLS Las Vegas to launch sports betting tournament during football season

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SLS Las Vegas to launch sports betting tournament during football seasonReading Time: 1 minute

SLS Las Vegas Hotel & Casino will launch a special sports betting tournament during the upcoming football season. The resort will offer fantasy drafts, food and beverage specials, viewing parties and more during the matches. Starting Thursday, 6th September, whether watching pro football Thursdays, Sundays and Mondays or college football Fridays and Saturdays, Umami patrons can enjoy a variety of game day specials.  The Sayers Club will also host viewing parties Saturdays and Sundays throughout the season on six big-screen televisions.

Guests aged 21 and up are invited to stop by the state-of-the-art William Hill Sports Book to place bets on their favourite teams. Sports book patrons have access to innovative wagering technology, including William Hill’s market-leading mobile betting platform available on iPhone, iPad and Android devices. Additionally, the sports book features an expansive HD video wall for viewing of sporting events and betting odds, as well as fully automated InPlay wagering.

 

Source: focusgn.com


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Authentic Games obtains UK gambling license

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Authentic Games obtains UK gambling licenseReading Time: 1 minute

Authentic Games, the Malta-based Live casino specialist has obtained a service provider license from UK Gambling Commission. The license will allow it to provide its whole range of games and products to UK operators and players.

The company’s product range includes the flagship Authentic Roulette product, which live streams from roulette tables located on the floors of premium casino resorts in Malta, USA, Romania, Georgia, Italy and Denmark.

Authentic Gaming recently opened a new Arena studio in Malta, and has a client list that includes Leo Vegas, Mr Green, and all Kindred Group brands including Unibet.

The studio contains six Live Auto Roulette tables with four different game formats: Classic Roulette, Speed Roulette, VIP Roulette and a never-seen-before variant, Blaze Roulette.

Blaze Roulette is set against a game show backdrop. The game table is lit with LED lights, and a giant video wall that completes the showbiz theme. Blaze is the only “game show” style Live Roulette game dedicated to roulette players.

Jonas Delin, CEO of Authentic Gaming, said in a statement Monday: “The UK is a key market for us as we continue to expand into regulated jurisdictions around the world. With nearly half of our client base holding a UKGC licence, we are eager to bring our games to market.”

 

Source: reviewed-casinos.com


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Crown Resorts’ profits suffer massive dip

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Crown Resorts’ profits suffer massive dipReading Time: 1 minute

The company has reported its full-year results, which fell to US$558.9 million.

Crown Resorts, one of the biggest gaming and entertainment groups in Australia, reported a steep fall in its profits. According to the latest financial results, the company’s profits have decreased by 70 per cent to US$558.9 million. This is significant because the company sold its facilities and business ventures in Macau last year.

This has been a problem year for Crown Resorts. Its board member James Packer left the company and 19 of its executives were arrested in China. However, not everything is lost. Despite the 70 per cent dip in net profit, there is a 12.7 per cent increase in normalised profit to US$385.6 million. It also registered a 5.4 per cent increase in operating revenue to US$3.4 billion.

John Alexander, Executive Chairman of Crown: “Crown’s full-year result reflects a solid performance from our Melbourne operation and continued subdued trading in Perth. VIP program play turnover in Australia of US$51.5 billion (up 54.5 per cent) was a pleasing outcome, particularly at Crown Melbourne (up 73.9 per cent), given the difficult trading conditions.”


Source: European Gaming Media Latest News

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