Philippines

 

Arsenal Football Club reached a three-year, "multi-million pound" deal to enlist Bodog as its official Asian betting partner. The British soccer team said Bodog will be able to "generate content with Arsenal first-team players" for its marketing and "utilise the club’s database to provide fans in Asia with tailored betting offers around matches".

 

Magnum Leisure Holdings Inc. reached a deal to buy two casino resorts from Thunderbird Resorts Inc. for a net after-tax price of $26.5 million. The resorts, the Thunderbird Poro Point in San Fernando City and the Thunderbird Rizal in Binangonan, generated $160,000 in pre-tax profit in the first quarter, down 89.7 percent from a year earlier, while gaming revenues declined 5.6 percent to $10.8 million as the VIP hold rate dived to 9.6 percent from 30.7 percent.

Net profit for Travellers International Hotel Group Inc., operator of the Resorts World Manila casino hotel complex, rose 24.9 percent for the first half of the year from the same period in 2012 to 2.31 billion pesos ($53 million). Manila-listed Alliance Global Group Inc., which co-owns Travellers with Malaysia's Genting Group, said gaming revenues rose 27.7 percent to 17.4 billion pesos on increased capacity and a 12 percent rise in visitation, which it credited to a series of shows, holiday promotions and concerts.

Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. chief Cristino Naguiat Jr. said the government regulator will revoke Universal Entertainment Corp.'s gaming license for its planned $2 billion Manila Bay Resorts casino hotel complex if it is found guilty of seeking to circumvent restrictions on foreign ownership of land by using front companies in assembling parcels for the project. The Justice Department last month recommended criminal prosecution of chairman Kazuo Okada and 25 others. Naguiat said Universal's license could be retendered if it is taken back.

Entertainment Gaming Asia Inc.'s second quarter consolidated revenue dropped 5 percent to $5.8 million from a year earlier, with drops in both its chip making and Philippine slot business contributing to the decline. The chip and plaque business generated $162,000 in revenue, down 83.4 percent as the company shifted production to Hong Kong from Australia between March and May. EGA, controlled by Melco International Development Ltd., said the new factory is fully operational, with 24-hour production underway on $2 million in orders though it incurred $166,000 in start up costs.

Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. has an annual intelligence budget of 250 million pesos ($5.74 million), according to Rufus Rodriguez, a congressman from Cagayan de Oro who spoke at budget hearings for the government-owned casino operator. He urged Pagcor to utilize law enforcement agencies for investigations instead and put the savings into greater charitable support. Rodriguez also criticized Pagcor's annual 460 million peso advertising budget, saying the company lacks competition.

The Philippine Stock Exchange allowed shares of Leisure & Resorts World Corp. to resume trading following a three-day suspension after the company began implementing a pledge to help investors unwind trades made when the company misstated the dividend it would pay. Fifteen times as many shares changed hands as usual after the company said July 29 that it would pay a dividend of 40 centavos a share when it meant to say 4 centavos.

Melco Crown Entertainment Ltd. will announce branding for the hotel portion of the Belle Grande Manila Bay casino complex next month, Willy Ocier, vice chairman of Belle Corp., told the Philippine Star. The $1.3 billion project is a 50/50 joint venture between Belle and Melco Crown's local unit. “(The hotels) are five and six-star brands. Solaire is five and six-stars so we cannot be less than that,” he said, suggesting Melco Crown might carry over some brands from its Macau properties.

Noli Romana, the new police chief of Cebu city, said he will crackdown on illegal gambling in the city, responding to critics who had noted that he was previously relieved of his position as director of provincial police in Negros Oriental for failing to curb illegal gambling. Two of his subordinates there are under investigation for allegedly taking bribes from gambling operators.

SBOBET, the Philippine-based online bookmaker, signed an agreement to be the official Asian betting partner of Norwich City, the English Premier League club, following a similar deal last week with Swansea City. Bill Mummery, executive director of SBOBET, said the company can "help lift the profile of Norwich City in the Asia region".

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