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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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NSoft brings iGaming Future to february London event

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The sports betting technology provider NSoft will be showcasing its comprehensive suite of products including a full Sportsbook platform, Virtual games and the latest innovations in AI solutions at ICE London 2019.

NSoft’s Self-Managed Pre Match application is fully integrated into Seven Platform and gives the betting operators full autonomy of sports events creation, odds management and risk management. Except for already supported option of importing Betradar Unified Odds Feed, the customer has the ability to manually create any sport, tournament, market and event, as well as to resolve the markets.

The upcoming ICE London 2019 is the only B2B gaming event that truly brings together the international online and offline gaming sectors. During this event, held from February 5 to February 7, 2019, NSoft’s focus shall be on promotion of new products and comprehensive business solutions.

NSoft team is performing the latest product polishing before presenting it to the industry’s leading stakeholders. This year we shall be hosting you on our stand with impressive design and demo zones.

Don’t miss out on the chance to find out more about NSoft’s products. Please meet us at Stand S1-260. Book a meeting with our team or contact sales@nsoft.com.

 


Source: European Gaming Media
This is a Syndicated News piece. Photo credits or photo sources can be found on the source article: NSoft brings iGaming Future to february London event

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PointsBet enters the legal New Jersey betting market

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PointsBet into the legal New Jersey betting marketReading Time: 1 minute

 

PointsBet has launched its online sports betting platform in New Jersey, had become the ninth operator to enter the legal New Jersey sports betting market. PointsBetting is essentially a high-risk form of spread-betting that rewards players with more money.

The company explained how PointsBetting works: “If a user bets $10 on the over, and the total ends 10 points over, that nets users $100. Stop-loss settings are able to be set by a bettor if they wish to limit their win and loss position. Users will still be able to make fixed odds wagers, which give a simple win-or-lose scenario.”

New Jersey residents can access PointsBet in web browsers via PointsBet.com or by downloading the PointsBet mobile app for Android or iOS.

Johnny Aitken, PointsBet US CEO said: “We’re extremely excited to bring PointsBet’s premium and game-changing sportsbook and signature betting options to the US.

“By offering some of the world’s sharpest betting offers and prices, we have the back of all sports bettors, no matter how sophisticated they are, and we’re serious about offering a one-of-a-kind VIP betting experience.”

PointsBet is also partnered with Tioga Downs Casino in New York and will launch sports betting operations in New York if the state moves to legalise sports betting.

 


Source: European Gaming Media
This is a Syndicated News piece. Photo credits or photo sources can be found on the source article: PointsBet enters the legal New Jersey betting market

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FDJ aims digital transformation to fuel its development

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FDJ aims digital transformation to fuel its developmentReading Time: 2 minutes

 

FDJ Group announced €15.8 bn in player stakes in 2018. FDJ distributed €10.7 bn to players, a return rate of nearly 68%, an increase close to 1 point over 2017.

Stéphane Pallez, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of FDJ Group said “The continued growth in player stakes reflects the good execution of our FDJ 2020 strategy around areas such as innovation and digital, enhancing the appeal of our games and distribution channels. 2018 has been characterised by numerous successes, notably Mission Patrimoine games, illustrating FDJ’s redistribution model. These results underpin our ambition to anticipate changes in the gaming and entertainment sector to increase the Group’s leadership with richer and innovative gaming experiences”.

 The FDJ 2020 strategic plan aims at accelerating the Group’s digital transformation to fuel its development. In 2018, the group got benefited from increase in digitalisation of all games. This success confirms our strategic goal of reaching 20% by 2020. This digital growth was driven by online gaming as well as electronic player stakes at points of sale.

ParionsSport sports betting posted strong gains in player stakes. FDJ is one of the Top 10 sports betting operators worldwide. Player stakes recorded during the World cup reached €333 m, an increase of +75% over the 2014 event, mostly attributable to the French team’s performance. The overall trend remained strong, with +8% growth in non-World Cup player stakes.

ParionsSport also signed major four-year partnerships with four leading French football clubs (Olympique de Marseille, Olympique Lyonnais, AS Monaco, and FC Nantes), and launched the “Parions Club” challenge with each of them, giving the top punters in each club a VIP treatment in stadiums or at points of sale, in addition to their winnings.

Player stakes in lottery, instant lottery and draw-based games, grew 1.1% to €12,770 m. Player stakes on instant lottery games (scratch-card games in point of sale and digital) continued to grow, +3.2% to €7694 m.

Digitalisation drives growth in all lottery games, whether instant lottery or draw-based games. On-line lottery games were up +12% thanks to the steady increase in new players, with close to 1.9 million players at the end of 2018, and very frequent marketing events in the online gaming portfolio, with a launch, a relaunch, or a modification every week.

In 2018, FDJ stopped charging rent for point of sale equipment and started paying commission on promotional and free coupons. This year, a new commission structure has been introduced, with different rates across the various product lines and price ranges. In this context, net commissions earned by FDJ retailers were €785 m in 2018, up 5.7% on 2017.

After internalising its sales force and setting up its own logistics, FDJ has completed its business transformation and has direct control of its network.

The Group has continued to make substantial investments in points of sale, specifically in technology and equipment.


Source: European Gaming Media
This is a Syndicated News piece. Photo credits or photo sources can be found on the source article: FDJ aims digital transformation to fuel its development

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