Author - Ben Blaschke

Lifestyle See and do

Melco Crown announces staff pay rise

Melco Crown Entertainment Limited has announced pay increases for its non-management employees ranging from 2.5 percent to 7 percent, effective from 1 April 2017. Eligible full-time employees earning a monthly income of up to MOP$16,000 will receive...

Lifestyle See and do

Macau fiscal reserve grows 27 percent in 2016

The Macao SAR’s fiscal reserves grew 27 percent in 2016 to MOP$438.7 billion. Comprising MOP$132.8 billion of basic reserve and MOP$305.9 billion of excess reserve, it included a total investment income of MOP$3.3 billion, equivalent to an...

Poker

Australia bans online poker and in-play sports betting

The Australian parliament has officially passed a new bill that will see online poker and in-play sport betting banned. Despite a late push from Australia’s poker community, the Senate this week passed the Interactive Gambling Amendment Bill 2016...

Lifestyle

Macau restaurants enjoy big January jump

  A study by Macau’s Statistics and Census Service (DSEC) has revealed that well over half of local restaurants and similar establishments enjoyed year-on-year growth in receipts in January – the highest proportion on record. An impressive...

Gaming

Macau expert warns of Gold Coast IR threat

A new AU$3 billion IR set to be built along the Australian beachside holiday strip known as the Gold Coast could pose a serious threat to local businesses, according to Macau integrated resort expert Professor Glenn McCartney. Speaking to...

Poker

Korea’s missile defence system fails to save poker

When South Korea recently announced it would allow the US army to set up its Terminal High Altitude Area Defence anti-ballistic missile system (THAAD) on Korean land, few would have expected poker to be among its first casualties. Yet that’s...

Gaming

Slot machine hackers proving hard to catch

An international syndicate of slot machine hackers continues to operate across the globe, despite some members having been recently caught in Singapore and the US state of Missouri. News of the syndicate’s ongoing efforts to make millions from...

Gaming insights Gaming

Macau GGR tracking at +10% for first quarter

Macau’s gross gaming revenue is on track to complete a 10 percent upswing for the first three months of 2017 on the back of a better than expected start to the year. According to brokerage Sanford C Bernstein, both mass and VIP gaming have...

Gaming insights Gaming

MGM developing golf skills gambling game

MGM is in the process of developing a unique skill-based golf game combining gambling with a range of typical golf skills such as putting, driving and accuracy. The latest innovation at its brand new Golfstream indoor laser golf course, which opened...

Lifestyle See and do

SJM launches new recruitment center

Casino operator SJM officially launched its new SJM Recruitment Center at a special opening ceremony late last week. Located on the 10th floor of the China Civil Plaza at Alameda Dr Carlos d’Assumpção, the Center intends to wholly support...

Lifestyle See and do

Chow Tai Fook buys Australian energy company

Macau investor Chow Tai Fook Enterprises Ltd has agreed to acquire Australia’s Alinta Energy Holdings Ltd in a deal worth AU$4 billion. The surprise deal is the latest move in Chow Tai Fook’s aggressive overseas expansion plans of late...

Gaming insights Gaming

Alleged match fixer wins back assets

A Singaporean man on trial for match fixing has had assets worth S$550,000 unfrozen by the High Court of Singapore after it was ruled there was no justification to continue seizure. Rajendar Prasad Rai was charged in 2015 for allegedly offering...

The poker industry Poker

Amateur poker player lives the dream

An amateur from Wollongong, about 90 minutes south of Sydney, has lived out every poker player’s dream by turning a free ticket into an AU$265,000 payday. Branko Usljebrka won his way through to last week’s APL Millions Main Event at The...

Gaming

Betsoft aiming for Asian expansion

iGaming platform provider Betsoft will be aiming to expand its Asian reach by showcasing its 3D Slots3 and mobile ToGo games at this month’s iGaming Asia Congress in Macau. Among its recent releases, Sin City Nights and Fa-Fa Twins will feature...

Gaming

IGT announces 2016 4Q results

International Game Technology (IGT) has announced its 2016 fourth quarter results, which saw revenue decline 3 percent to US$1.32 million from US$1.37 million in the fourth quarter of 2015. Adjusted EBITDA of US$422 million was 6 percent below...

Gaming

Paradise City’s Incheon resort set for 20 April opening 

South Korea’s first integrated resort, the Paradise City casino resort in Incheon, will open its first phase on 20 April according to joint venture partner Sega Sammy Holdings. The Japanese pachinko operator made the announcement late last week...

Lifestyle Travel

Angkor Air adds Macau-Cambodia route 

Cambodian carrier Angkor Air has launched a new route between Cambodia and Macau. Scheduled to operate twice a week on Wednesdays and Sundays, the flights will connect Macau with Sihanoukville International Airport. Macau is now one of eight...

Lifestyle See and do

Saipan facing homegrown tourism threat

Saipan, home of Imperial Pacific’s soon-to-open Imperial Pacific Resort, could find its tourism industry hamstrung if basic infrastructure needs – including airport waiting times – aren’t addressed immediately. Those are the findings...

Gaming insights Gaming

James Bond destined for SG slots

Scientific Games has signed an agreement with EON Productions Limited, Danjaq, LLC and MGM Interactive for the rights to leverage all past and future iconic James Bond films, as well as the film’s talent portraying James Bond. The company will...

Lifestyle See and do

MGM Cotai unveils giant golden lion statue

MGM has announced the Chinese name for its second Macau integrated resort, MGM Cotai, by unveiling a huge, 38-ton golden lion statue adjacent to the property’s North Entrance. MGM Cotai, due to open in the second half of 2017, will be known in...

Gaming insights Gaming

China boom driving Macau premium growth

Macau is benefiting from a mini-boom in China’s premium segment on the back of liquidity growth and improving corporate economics, according to a report from brokerage Sanford C Bernstein. Identifying the recent upward push in VIP Gaming...