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Galaxy first-half profit surges on new resort, Yogonet

Galaxy first-half profit surges on new resort, Yogonet | Poker & eGaming News | Scoop.it

Galaxy Entertainment Group’s first-half profit climbed nine fold after the Macau casino operator drew more Chinese visitors to a gambling resort it set up last year. Net income for the six months ended June rose to us$ 445 million from us$ 48.7 million a year earlier. Adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, or Ebitda, surged to us$ 605.8 million from us$ 232 million for the six months.

 

The company opened the Galaxy Macau resort on the city’s Cotai strip in May last year. It plans to invest us$ 2 billion to almost double the size of that gambling center in the Chinese city to compete with rivals including Sands China, Wynn Macau and Melco Crown Entertainment First-half revenue doubled to us$ 3.64 billion.

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Investigation of leading Republican casino money man, Las Vegas Sun

Investigation of leading Republican casino money man, Las Vegas Sun | Poker & eGaming News | Scoop.it

Some of the methods Adelson used in Macau to save his company and help build a personal fortune estimated at $25 billion have come under expanding scrutiny by federal and Nevada investigators, according to people familiar with both inquiries.

 

The company's general counsel and an outside law firm warned that the arrangement could violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. It is unknown whether Adelson was aware of these warnings. The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act bars American companies from paying foreign officials to "affect or influence any act or decision" for business gain.

 

The internal Las Vegas Sands documents were obtained by reporters working for the University of California's Investigative Reporting Program as part of an ongoing collaboration with ProPublica and PBS Frontline. The documents shed new light on an issue separate from Alves' work: the company's difficulties in avoiding contact with Chinese organized crime figures as it built its casino business in Macau.

 

Gambling is illegal in mainland China, as is the transfer of large sums of money to Macau. The junkets solve those problems, providing billions of dollars in credit to gamblers. When necessary, they collect gambling debts, a critical function since China's courts are not permitted to force losers to pay up. Weidner said junkets are a natural result of China's controls on the movement of money out of the country, channeling as much as $3 billion a month from the mainland to Macau. "To Westerners, the junkets mean money laundering equated with organized crime or drugs," he said. "In China where money is controlled, it's part of doing business."

 

Allegations about the company's dealings with Alves as well as its purported ties to organized crime are prominently mentioned in a 2010 lawsuit filed by Steven Jacobs, former CEO of Sands China.

 

"Maybe in a roundabout way, foreign money is coming into an American political campaign," said McCain, an Arizona Republican.

 

Other sources:

http://www.gambling911.com/gambling-news/rachel-maddow-sheldon-adelson-justice-department-would-make-%E2%80%98macau%E2%80%99-probe-go-away-vide

 

From MSNBC.com:

Discussion about Adelson's motivation for backing the Republican Party usually rotates around two things: his support for Israel's government and his opposition to labor unions. But a new investigation finds that there may be a third motivation: saving himself from a Department of Justice investigation.

 

http://www.yogonet.com/english/2012/07/19/adelson-fires-back-at-china-prostitution-claim

 

Prostitution is legal in Macau. But in the email, Jacobs told top Las Vegas Sands executive Michael Leven that before beginning a planned crackdown on soliciting for sex on the casino floor at Sands Macau properties, he wanted to make sure Adelson agreed. Jacobs said in the email that another executive told him Adelson personally approved allowing prostitution "as it would help our overall gaming revenue."

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Ultimate Gaming predict US online poker in 2013, Steven Stradbrooke CalvinAyre

Ultimate Gaming predict US online poker in 2013, Steven Stradbrooke CalvinAyre | Poker & eGaming News | Scoop.it

Asked to predict a timetable for when real-money online poker might come to the US, Breitling said it’s “going to happen in 2013.” Breitling cited two “watershed moments” for the sector in the past seven months, including the US Department of Justice’s pre-Christmas Wire Act rethink, which Breitling said equated to a “full fledged endorsement” of states’ rights to offer online wagering other than sports betting. The other event was Nevada “continuing its leadership position” among states by issuing the nation’s first interactive gambling licenses.

 

Breitling says his company “would prefer a federal bill for poker-only,” a preference threatened by other states like Delaware and New Jersey, which were moving “super fast” to introduce “full-blown” online gambling. 

 

UFC corporate counsel Epstein, whose family owns and operates the El Cortez casino in Las Vegas, said “the education process” amongst federal politicians “is continuing.”

 

Breitling said “millions” of Americans were already playing online in “the most unsafe, unregulated environment” and thus “anything would be better than what exists today.” Breitling played the “consumer protection” card, which he said was the product of “technology, process and law.” Breitling said the “proven operators” in Nevada (like, er, himself) were the only ones who could be counted on to “respect” the regulatory “line drawn in the sand” to prevent abuses like minors playing online.

 

When Ralston brought up Las Vegas Sands CEO Sheldon Adelson’s vociferous opposition to online gambling over concerns that the existing technology wasn’t sufficient to block children from accessing the sites, Epstein basically called Adelson an old fogey who doesn’t understand the internet.

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Macau’s record growth is slowing down, Michael Robinson Innovate Gaming

Macau’s record growth is slowing down, Michael Robinson Innovate Gaming | Poker & eGaming News | Scoop.it

Gaming is still expected to expand in Macau, but analysts believe these first signs of slowing growth rates will see operators face a tougher challenge in the decade ahead. This year’s revenue growth has so far been running at just over half the 2011 rate, before the abrupt slowdown in May.

 

According to recent Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau figures, year-on-year growth rates have steadily declined in 2012. Gross revenues dropped from 34.8 percent in January, 28.3 percent in February, 27 percent in March, 25.7 percent in April to 7.3 percent in May, which represents revenues of us$3.3 billion last month.

 

Other sources:

http://www.yogonet.com/english/2012/06/13/macau-june-revenue-may-grow-15 ;

http://news.investors.com/article/614514/201206120802/china-mixed-numbers-seen-benefiting-vegas-casinos.htm

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Las Vegas Sands revenues drops 35 %, Gambling911

Las Vegas Sands revenues drops 35 %, Gambling911 | Poker & eGaming News | Scoop.it

Las Vegas Sands Corp. said Wednesday that second-quarter profit tumbled by 35 percent as the casino operator’s table winnings fell at home and in Asia.

 

The company said its net income fell to $240.6 million, or 29 cents per share, from $367.6 million, or 45 cents per share, a year earlier.

 

Excluding items, the company said it would have earned 44 cents per share. Analysts were looking for 60 cents per share, according to FactSet.

 

Revenue rose 10 percent to $2.58 billion, but that, too, didn’t impress analysts, who had expected $2.77 billion.

 

The average daily house “win” per gambling table is much higher in Asia — from $9,500 at the Sands Macau to $22,227 at the nearby Four Seasons and Plaza casino — than in Las Vegas, where it’s $3,402, or Bethlehem, Pa., $2,813. The U.S. casinos usually have more slot machines, although the company’s daily win per machine is generally higher in Asia.

 

Other sources:

http://www.vegasinc.com/news/2012/jul/25/lv-sands-profit-falls-gamblers-win-more/

http://www.gamblingcompliance.com/node/49643

http://www.g3newswire.com/china-macau-costs-drag-sands/

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Foreign prostitution money funds Republican campaign, Martin John Williams GamblingCompliance

A controversial lawsuit against Las Vegas Sands and a union-backed website is offering material for attacks against the sources of major campaign contributions to the Republican Party. A Jewish lobby group announced a petition drive and social media campaign "demanding that Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and the Republican Party reject tainted contributions from Republican mega-donor Sheldon Adelson".

 

That report referred to a statement to a Nevada court by sacked Sands China CEO Steve Jacobs on June 27 that Las Vegas Sands executives and Adelson personally exerted "control and direction from Las Vegas over acts of prostitution on Sands China's properties".

 

His allegations include Las Vegas Sands sidelining the board of its majority-owned Macau subsidiary, violating Hong Kong Stock Exchange rules, associating with known triad members, knowingly hiring and retaining illegal labour, allowing an unlicensed junket room and other dealings that could infringe the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

 

Sands owner Adelson has done multiple donations to Republican-linked Super PACs and non-profit groups, including $20m to the non-profit group Crossroads GPS, co-founded by former White House deputy chief of staff Karl Rove, and $5m each to Super PACs linked to House Speaker John Boehner and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor.   Adelson and his wife have promised as much as $100m to ensure that Romney enters the White House, making the Las Vegas Sands mogul a potential target for Democrat strategists.

 

On June 15, McCain predicted that scandals would inevitably result from the enormous amounts of donated money now washing through the system, including "foreign money", and the "corrupting effects" on elections would make a mockery of the 2010 Supreme Court decision that ended limits on "independent political expenditure" by corporations and unions, he said. 

 

Meanwhile, the other US operator with an interest in Macau, MGM Resorts, has been targeted by the website CasinoLeaks-Macau, an ambitious trade union-funded and controlled project that compiles data, documents and analysis on Macau's junkets.

 

The International Union of Operating Engineers' (IUOE) campaign covers all of Macau's gaming operators, but has singled out MGM Resorts, demanding in writing that its independent directors probe subsidiary MGM China's dealings with the Suncity junket over alleged triad links. Suncity also operates at Sands China and Wynn Macau casinos.

 

Other sources:

http://casinoleaks-macau.com/CasinoLeaks_News_and_Updates.html

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Casino owner Adelson supsected to support loan sharks and prostitution, iGaming Post

Casino owner Adelson supsected to support loan sharks and prostitution, iGaming Post | Poker & eGaming News | Scoop.it

The former chief executive of Las Vegas Sands Macau casinos alleges in court documents revealed Thursday that billionaire Sheldon Adelson personally approved of prostitution and knew of other improper activity at his company’s properties in Macau.

 

Jacobs was fired in July 2010 from his role overseeing the Macau properties. He sued the companies and Adelson three months later. In the lawsuit, he accuses the company and Adelson of breach of contract and of pushing him into illegal activity in Macau.

 

In documents revealed Thursday — including a sworn seven-page declaration that Jacobs submitted along with a summary from his attorneys of problems obtaining documents from Sands — Jacobs describes an effort he launched after arriving in Macau in May 2009 to rid the casino floor of “loan sharks and prostitution.”

 

Sheldon Adelson is besides being one of the richest casino owners most known for being against online gambling and trade unions, which he believes could hurt his casinos. Sheldon supports Romneys campaign in the presidential election.

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