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Featured Editorials

European Casino Association: Shared Mission

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Per Jaldung, Chairman, European Casino Association chats with Peter White

Can you provide details on the measures the ECA has taken to assist its members during Covid crisis?

Unquestionably, the Covid crisis found us all unprepared. Faced with such an unpredictable situation, no one initially knew how to deal with a precarious present and an uncertain future, with the only certainty that the crisis would harshly impact the licensed land-based casino industry. In response, we mustered the full resources of the association and its members.

A 33rd Casino for the JOA Group in the Heart of Haut-Jura

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Laurent Lassiaz, CEO, and Pauline Boyer Martin, Operations and Marketing Director of JOA discuss the Group’s latest ‘new generation’ casino with Damien Connelly.

On Wednesday 19th May, 2021, after 17 months of work, 8.5 million euros of investment, and five long months of waiting linked to the pandemic, JOA Group, the 2nd gaming and leisure operator in France with 33 venues and a sports betting website www.joabet. fr, was finally able to open its new casino in the Jura mountains: in Saint-Laurent-en-Grandvaux.

'Irons in the fire' Mohegan Sun

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F. Scott Fitzgerald’s most-famous quote is that there are no second acts in American lives. Not only is Bobby Soper living out a second act (with who knows how many more to come) he’s doing it with the same company where he played Act One: Mohegan Gaming Entertainment. The tribal-gaming titan is reaching across the oceans, and decided that Soper was the man to head up its international operations, particularly those in Korea and Japan.

Soper is relatively new to his remit but has clearly hit the ground running, speaking to his responsibilities with great assurance.

Bang for the buck at Resorts World Las Vegas

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Resorts World Las Vegas will be the most expensive resort in Sin City history. By David McKee

Genting Group is famous worldwide for its casino product but is only now striking into the heart of gambling, Las Vegas.On June 24 it debuted Resorts World Las Vegas, a $4.3 billion metaresort combining three hotels (all Hilton-branded) with a 5,000-seat showroom, a bevy of nightlife and, of course, a casino. The main hotel, the Las Vegas Hilton, brings the brand back to Vegas after it was ignominiously stripped from what is now (under new ownership) Westgate Las Vegas, one of Resorts World’s many signal achievements, which also will eventually include an Elon Musk subway linkup, whereby visitors are shuttled in modified Tesla vehicles to the nearby Las Vegas Convention Center.

A year to forget

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The American Gaming Association looks back on 2020. By David McKee

Bleak.” That was American Gaming Association President Bill Miller’s one-word summation of the gaming industry’s 2020, the year that Coronavirus brought gambling to a grinding halt nationwide. First the bad news: Industry winnings fell to a level not seen since 2003. As for the good news, customers found different—and legal—ways to gamble, as online sports betting and Internet gambling boomed. Sports-betting handle was $21.5 billion, of which operators kept $1.5 billion, a climb of 69 percent from 2019. Meanwhile, I-gaming grew 1,990 percent, as it spread to new jurisdictions and as sheltering-at-home players turned to their computers and mobile devices in search of a fiddle.

Moving Beyond Recovery

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By Lisa Waterfield, The LW Consulting, LLC

With the worst pandemic ever in our rear-view mirror, the gaming industry is on the road to a strong recovery. Vaccines have provided the well needed economic shot in the arm for Vegas, lifting mask restrictions and bringing capacity levels back to 100 percent. Tourism, bookings and gaming win hit the highest levels since February 2020.

Changes made during the early stages of the pandemic, resulted in a flurry of activity with several industry-changing outcomes. With casinos shut down in 2020, online casino play was accelerated together with the rollout of sports betting across North America. The pandemic forced traditional casino operators to embrace online gaming and sports betting in states where it has been legalized.

Japan IR Timeline Update

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By Joji Kokuryo, Bay City Ventures, Managing Director

The land of the rising sun has definitely been taking its time when it comes to implementation of integrated resorts (IR). The long and arduous procedure has reached the very important stage in which local municipal governments select their IR operators through a public tender. The three of the four candidate locations, Osaka, Yokohama and Nagasaki are expected to select their respective IR operating partner between June and October. The fourth candidate site, Wakayama, decided to move forward with the Clairvest consortium in early June.

AGUA CALIENTE CASINOS WELCOMES THE WORLD

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Cultivating Success

Saverio Scheri and his Agua Caliente workforce reap awards for their combined efforts. 

“Team” is a word you’ll hear a lot from Agua Caliente Casinos COO Saverio “Sal” R. Scheri III, a lifelong baseball fan. (Even after years in California, he is still a die-hard Yankee fan.) It’s key to the passion that infuses his leadership of one of tribal gaming’s most exciting ventures. The Coachella Valley-based gaming empire has transformed a patch of bare desert into award-winning Rancho Mirage resort. It’s got a premier night spot in downtown Palm Springs with a cool vibe. And it braved the Covid-19 pandemic to finish and open its Cathedral City casino, a smaller but distinctive variant on the Agua Caliente brand.

Local Gaming in the Coachella Valley

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Bill Healey chats with Augustine Casino’s Jef Bauer

Southern California’s Coachella Valley is well known for its many golf courses, its eight casinos, multiple music festivals, and notably as a winter destination for vacationers from Canada and the northern states. It is also home to the Augustine Band of Cahuilla Indians’ Augustine Casino.

Augustine Casino was the first modern-day business enterprise of the Augustine Band of Cahuilla Indians when it opened in July of 2002. Though a short two hour drive from Los Angeles, the casino remains a draw for locals within a 15-mile (25km) radius.

Casino Life Magazine was fortunate to catch up with Jef Bauer, the general manager at Augustine Casino.

Building the Future

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Give us a bit of a background of your involvement in the casino gaming industry. What led you to Jin Bei Group?

Considering myself still new to the industry, and having the need to continually learn and improve based on vast information and strategies of the business to be executed in this challenging environment. I was recruited by Jin Bei Group to be part of the pre-opening team, now looking after two hotel and casino properties packed with a myriad of entertainment options with a total construction area of 50,000 square meters and 60,500 square meters. We started construction in 2018 and we officially opened on the March 9 2020.

What is your position, and what are your responsibilities with Jin Bei Group?