Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Crown Limited AGM: Rev Up 6%, Hit By Singapore, by Greg Tingle - 30th November 2010

G'day punters, casino and gambling millionaires and billionaires, poker nuts, politicians, super whales, journalists, ... one and all. Today we have the run down from Crown Limited's annual general meeting that took place in Perth, West Australia. Media Man and Gambling911 report from beautiful Perth...

What a huge 24 hours its been for our friends at Crown Casino. Earlier today the Crown Limited AGM was held, Crown Casino remaining the Aussie crown in the jewel, and tonight Crown Casino hosts the Sports Performer Awards. Drinks have been flowing all around, and the pokies have been happily singing along. Cleopatra and Queen Of The Nile never sounded so good, and Shane Warne's positive impact and buzz has been bouncing off the walls and is on the tip of everyone tongue.

Crown powers that be tell us revenue from its Australian casino and hotel operations since the commencement of the financial year are up on the same period in 2009, so that's the good news. We'll give you the bad new later.

The combined gaming revenue from Crown Casino in Melbourne and and Burswood Entertainment Complex in Perth between July 1 and November 24 was up roughly 6%, chief executive Rowen Craigie told the gathering.

Craigie was speaking at the group's annual general meeting in Perth, Western Australia, earlier.

Non-gaming revenue in the same period was up by roughly 5% on the same period last year, not including the impact of the newly opened Crown Metropol hotel, pretty much next door to Crown Casino.

Including the Metropol, non-gaming revenue was up a modest 13% on the previous corresponding period, Craigie advised.

The Singapore Effect...

Ok, so overall Crown Limited is still one of the strongest gaming and gambling companies on the planet.

Crown has spent more than $1 billion over the past 4 years, and is to spend another $800 million to update and expand its facilities over the next few years.

Competitors, Tabcorp, is in the midst of its own redevelopment of Star City which, with the cost of the extra licence payment to the New South Wales government to make way for the work, represents about $1 billion of capital expenditures. That redevelopment is understood to be a key factor in the proposed de-merger of Tabcorp’s casino and other gambling interests. Getting ready for Packer in a few years maybe?

A key factor for both firms investing so much in their casinos was a goal to protect and expand their VIP customer bases, while they face stiff competition from the new casinos in Macau and, more recently, the 2 new "complexes"...Crown refers to them as "integrated resorts"...in Singapore. Star has wrestled to attract a reasonable share of VIP revenues, but maybe the tide will soon turn.

Crown had been pretty cool, no fussed about the 2 new Singapore resorts, based on its experience of the opening of the Macau casino resorts. Despite compound annual growth of 34.7% in Macau’s gaming revenues since the last quarter of 2005, Crown and Burswood have been pretty much unaffected, but who really knows what is around the corner.

It had initially appeared that the explosion of gambling capacity in Macau...there has been more than $17 billion spent on building the Macau complexes – was actually benefiting Crown by significantly expanding the pool of VIPs in the region. Crown was optimistic the opening of the Singapore resorts earlier this year would have a similar impact, but the jury is out for the moment.

It could well be too early for that sort of effect to show up...the Singapore casinos, which opened in January and April, would still be fresh an in their honeymoon period, like a new bride.

Packer and Craigie are understood to be concerned that those complexes are hurting Crown’s VIP visits and volumes.

Packer made noise of the government support the Macau and Singapore complexes receive, both the supporting infrastructure and promotional activities, because of their perceived capacity to help stimulate tourism. Tourism growth in Singapore is up 22% this year and Singapore has set a target of increasing tourism numbers from a modest 9 million visitors to 17 million by 2015, Crown says. Some segments of the Australian news media were keen to dismiss the tourism aspect of land based casinos, but now most newsrooms have come to their senses, despite the still odd media "beat up" on casinos, gambling and all that.

Crown is calling on the federal and state governments, the tourism industry and Asian-focused tourism operators to work more closely to lift Australia’s stagnating tourist numbers.

Despite Crown’s claimed status as the largest non-airline tourism operator, it is unlikely at this stage of the game it will get any direct government assistance in the current political climate, particularly given the anti-gambling stance taken by at least two of the independents in Canberra.

The strong Aussie dollar, the depressed state of the local industry and the increased regional competition for high net worth tourists, however, means there out to be an increased focus and spending on tourism generally.

Regaining its share of the international VIP market is critical to Crown Limited. So is increasing its 16% share of VIP revenues is crucial to Tabcorp’s casino strategy and massive investment. Crown estimates more than 35% of its revenue...more than $850 million a year...comes from international visitors. Don't even get us started on "funny money"... you know, the allegations of money laundering and "cleaning" of money via Crown (and pub) pokies.

Bad News...

Ok, the bad news. He said turnover from VIP high roller punters aka "whales" at the Melbourne and Burswood casinos in the first 21 weeks of the financial year was down 10% on the same period last year, which is enough to raise some concern, especially when one joins the dots and analyses the likely cause, and its not just the global financial crisis, or crunch, if your prefer.

"We are continuing to see an impact from the opening of the two new integrated resorts in Singapore and are yet to capitalise on the opportunity to capture the new business that Singapore potentially offers," Craigie said reading off his notes.

Good News...

The Metropol Hotel, which opened last April, was achieving better than expected occupancy rates and room rates were "firming'', he disclosed.

Melco Crown Entertainment, Crown holding a 33.5% stake, has disclosed a "broad-based improvement" in the performance of its champion resort City of Dreams, Macau, the meeting was made aware.

In some much needed good news, Melco reported improved revenue and earnings in the 3 months to September 30 compared with the same period last year, Craigie said.

Crown Limited shares finished off down 3 cents at $8.21.

Awards...

It's been a big month for casino awards.

PartyGaming's PartyCasino has also come back with seconds, picking up another Media Man 'Online Casino Of The Month Award' for November, and also the parent company, PartyGaming, picked up the prestigious EGR Slots Operator Of The Year Award ...Some other top picks of ours who picked up awards at the EGR night of nights were:
Virgin Games (Affiliate Programme)
Betfair (Innovation, Mobile Operator and UK Sports Betting Operator)
Bwin (European Sports Betting Operator
PKR (Poker Operator)

Australian Land Based Casino Of The Month: Crown Casino, Runner Up: Star City

Oh, we almost forgot...Media Man and Casino News Media 'Casino Babe Of The Month': Jenny Woo, 'Poker Babe': Kara Scott, 'Gambling Babe Personality': Pamela Anderson.

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Wrap Up...

Readers... er, punters, how did you like our report? Tell us in the forum.

If you have a bet, please bet with your head, not over it, and for God's sake, have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. They cover a dozen industry sectors including gaming and offer political commentary and analysis.

*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited

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Crown Casino: Sports Performer Awards, by Greg Tingle - 30th November 2010

G'day punters, sports nuts, casino and gambling millionaires and billionaires, poker nuts, politicians, super whales, journalists, ... one and all. Today we dish up sporting feast as Melbourne's Crown Casino plays hosts the annual Sports Performer Awards. Media Man and Gambling911 hunt down the hottest sports stories in the world just for you...

Tonight's the night, at Crown Casino, if your into sports that is, and we don't mean poker.

Very cleverly James Packer owned Crown Casino continues to put on a bush tucker bag of activities, events et al... some gambling related, some not. It's all part of his 'World Of Entertainment' which JP has been selling for a few years now.

Regular G911 and Media Man readers will recall other events that are hosted by Crown included Warnie tapings, 'The Logies', Brownlow Medal awards, and the upcoming 'This Is Your Life'.

Well, tonight (Tuesday) Crown does elite sports.

Let's see... we've got Alicia Coutts (swimmer) and Mark 'No Bull' Webber (F1 ace) in the mix of a world class line up of elite sports men and women.

The winner of the super cool sports performer of the year will get a handy $50,000 payday and a Raymond Weil timepiece valued at $3900. The watch might end up on eBay, but that's another story punters.

The top individual award line up is: Webber, Huegill (swimming), Coutts, Mitchell, Torah Bright (snowboarding), Todd Carney (NRL), Stephanie Gilmore (surfing), Lydia Lassila (aerial skiing), Chris McCormack (ironman), Neil Robertson (snooker), Dane Swan (AFL) and Steve Hooker (athletics).

Who will be Australia's top athlete? We've got Cadel Evans, Matthew Mitcham and Craig Alexander.

F1 legend Webber is a fav of ours and finished third in this year's F1 championship. Webber's performance is amazing when you consider the Red Bull team appeared to treat him as their #2 driver for the season, and you can look up the history on this website.

Collingwood midfielder Swan was a awesome performer all year and significantly assisted the Magpies end a 20-year premiership hiatus.

Snooker ace Robertson grabbed the world championship before going on to top the rankings and win the World Open. Readers will recall some of the history when the favorite got stuck in a sports betting scandal, but enough of that for now.

Aerial skier and Vancouver Olympic gold medallist Lassila went on record that she was was "surprised" and "very grateful to be nominated". Lassila won this year's The Don Award at the Sport Australia Hall of Fame induction ceremony, so she's on a roll.

The nominees for the team performance of the year are the Matildas (soccer), Kookaburras (hockey), St George Illawarra (NRL), Collingwood (AFL), Queensland State of Origin (NRL) and Team Vodafone (V8 Supercars).

How about coach of the year? Ok, we've got Ric Charlesworth (hockey), Gai Waterhouse (horse racing) and Mick Malthouse (AFL) in the field of contenders.

Young performer of the year? Try on for size Melissa Wu (diving) and Jessica Watson (sailing), and swimmer Matthew Cowdrey for the sports performer of the year (with a disability).

Crown Casino Mate To Call And World Class Cricket (And Business) Spinner...

Shane Warne TV News...

Warnie sweetly beat Channel Ten shows The Good Wife and House. Australian TV critics expressed some optimism after viewing the first Warnie. Herald Sun's TV writer Colin Vickery went with the show "a solid first innings". "Warne doesn't have the skills of the famed British interviewer (Michael Parkinson) but the former Aussie spin king has a knockabout charm that brought out the best in his guests," Vickery said. Veteran interviewer and radio host Derryn Hinch told the newspaper he was pleasantly surprised after initially fearing the show "had bogan written all over it". "Take it for what it is, it's entertainment and I think Shane Warne has, what I've seen at this stage, done a pretty good job," Derryn 'The Human Headline' Hinch said. "It's just straight up and down, it's folksy and chatty, it's light and entertaining and it will go quite well." Professional blogger Karl Quinn, from The National Times, a Fairfax Media publication scribed the program as "neither a disaster nor a world-changing event". "It was exactly what you might expect from Shane Warne: affable, blokey, and not to be taken too seriously," Quinn said. Other celebrities to feature on the show include Sting, Pink, Chris Martin and Daniel Radcliffe. Quotes From Warnie And Guests...Warne: "Did you ever think, 'I wish I could be a plumber for a day, or drive a truck and deliver beds or deliver pizzas?'" Packer: "To be honest, not a lot. I sometimes wished I was you, but if I can't be you I'm happy being me." Sam Kekovich: "A life spent making mistakes is more honourable and more useful than a life spent doing nothing," he said. Claiming he was quoting George Bernard Shaw, but everyone knew who he was really talking about. Our rating: 9.5 out of 10. Yep, Warnie hit em for 6, with Packer chipping in being a good sport, making sure it would be a success. Not quite a Packer whacker, but not a puff piece either. Warnie could well be heading for a jackpot next week. Don't change your dial, and always remember to spin to win.

Awards...

It's been a big month for casino awards.

PartyGaming's PartyCasino has also come back with seconds, picking up another Media Man 'Online Casino Of The Month Award' for November, and also the parent company, PartyGaming, picked up the prestigious EGR Slots Operator Of The Year Award ...Some other top picks of ours who picked up awards at the EGR night of nights were:
Virgin Games (Affiliate Programme)
Betfair (Innovation, Mobile Operator and UK Sports Betting Operator)
Bwin (European Sports Betting Operator
PKR (Poker Operator)

Oh, we almost forgot...Media Man and Casino News Media 'Casino Babe Of The Month': Jenny Woo, 'Poker Babe': Kara Scott, 'Gambling Babe Personality': Pamela Anderson.

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Wrap Up...

Readers... er, punters, how did you like our report? Did you enjoy the Crown Casino sporting news? Tell us in the forum.

If you have a bet, please bet with your head, not over it, and for God's sake, have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. They cover a dozen industry sectors including gaming and offer political commentary and analysis. They also publish Australian Sports Entertainment http://www.australiansportsentertainment.com

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Sunday, November 28, 2010

Casino Cheat Gang In Court: Australia, Italy, UK, USA..., by Greg Tingle - 28th November 2010

G'day punters, casino and gambling millionaires and billionaires, poker nuts, politicians, super whales, journalists, politicians... (and cheats!) one and all. Two of the world's most successful casino cheats have been stopped in their tracks, sort of, having had their day in court. They hit Australia, Britain, China, Italy and god knows where else, cheating casinos across the globe out of millions of dollars. Media Man and Gambling911 play Pink Panther, and Cluedo and Heist with this special report...

Two of the world's most successful international casino cheats have had their day in court.

The rumour mill says the duo, understood to be part of a larger casino crime group, enjoyed time down under in Australia, having a soft spot for both Crown Casino in Melbourne and Star City Casino in 'Sin City' Sydney.

Last Friday they faced court and admitted they possessed hell of a lot of fake IDs, which they used in land based casinos they were banned from across the world. It's understood they didn't target online casinos.

Using a clever global strategy, the pro active gang upper ranked Francesco Baioni, 64, and Frank Camilleri, 61, travelled the world cheating casinos out of a bucket load of money.

Police and other law enforcement had described them as "notorious" and "professional". The crooks have served time in America after cheating their way to "vast" amounts of cash.

Baioni, of Rackstraw House, Primrose Hill, was handed down a 12-month sentence suspended for 18 months. Camilleri, of Derrick Road, Beckenham, was sentenced to nine months suspended for the same duration.

Both were also issued with an 18-month curfew between 11pm and 6am and were barred from all premises regulated by the Gambling Commission for 18 months.

Police would not discuss the tactics that landed the Italian duo so much money over the years but did reveal they had operated in countries including China, Australia America and Britain.

Roulette is understood to be a favorite of the duo, and industry talk is one of them would distract the dealer, and the other would move chips on the table into winning positions.

Both were busted on CCTV cameras at various central London casinos conducting reconnaissance visits, testing the water, and attempting to sign up for membership, using false identities. In one case, Baioni was filmed being refused membership at a casino after the false identity he was attempting to use was flagged up on the operator's computer system as "barred".

The daring pair were caught following an intelligence-led operation by officers from the Metropolitan Police Service's Human Exploitation and Organised Crime Command. On August 9 search warrants were executed at their homes and Baioni was arrested.

Detectives discovered "a large quantity" of fake Italian identity papers containing pictures of Baioni and Camilleri. All had false names.

There were also tons of false identities awaiting pictures and individual passport photographs of both fellas prepared to be attached to the documentation. On August 23 Camilleri was arrested at Gatwick Airport when he flew back from Malta.

Casino crooks and shady figures in the gambling industry have often come unstuck at airports, and this helps explain why some casino tycoons in the likes of Malta, Cyprus and Antigua do not travel on commercial airliner. Sometimes their private aircraft have also been intercepted.

Both crooks were charged and just last month Baioni admitted 9 counts of possessing false documents with intent, possessing articles for use in fraud, and making articles for use in fraud. Camilleri admitted 8 counts of possessing false ID documents with intent.

Remember, crime doesn't pay, unless you're very good at it. You're throw of the dice.

Awards...

It's been a big month for casino awards. Ok, as you read earlier, Macau's Altira Macau was awarded the prestigious Forbes Five Star Ratings for the second year in a row, so Packer and the Ho family continue to work their magic.

PartyGaming's PartyCasino has also come back with seconds, picking up another Media Man 'Online Casino Of The Month Award' for November, and also the parent company, PartyGaming, picked up the prestigious EGR Slots Operator Of The Year Award ...Some other top picks of ours who picked up awards at the EGR night of nights were:
Virgin Games (Affiliate Programme)
Betfair (Innovation, Mobile Operator and UK Sports Betting Operator)
Bwin (European Sports Betting Operator
PKR (Poker Operator)

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Wrap Up...

Readers... er, punters, how did you like our report? Did you enjoy learning all about the international casino fraudsters? Tell us in the forum.

If you have a bet, please bet with your head, not over it, and for God's sake, have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. They cover a dozen industry sectors including gaming and offer political commentary and analysis.

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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Australian Gambling And Entertainment News, by Greg Tingle - 24th November 2010

Welcome to another jam packed news update from down under in Australia. We're got pro casino and gaming VS the haters, news media players, politic, entertainment goss and lots more. Media Man and Gambling911 take bring you the best in Aussie gambling and entertainment news. Lights, camera, action...

Biggest Police Raid In Victorian History; Gambling And Pokies Connection; Real Life Underbelly...

34 people, mainly Aussies and some Chinese and Taiwani are locked up after the biggest drug operation in Victoria's history sent 650 police storming into scores of properties allegedly linked to a $400 million cannabis-farms syndicate. Police raided 68 properties all allegedly connected to a cannabis cartel producing indoor hydroponic crops – each worth $80,000. Deputy Commissioner Sir Ken Jones revealed the raids would have happened sooner but US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's visit to Melbourne had diverted too many resources. But Sir Ken said suggestions the raids had been timed to benefit the State Government days before the election were "absolute rubbish". "We're not going to threaten our operations to suit any political cycle," he said. Today's raids are part of a long-term police investigation codenamed Entity.
Many of the properties raided today were used as hydroponic "farms’’. As part of the investigation police have previously raided 50 properties in Victoria and New Zealand, seizing more than $20 million in assets. The investigation involves Victoria Police, Australian Federal Police, customs, tax and immigration officials. Investigators say the main targets are members of the Vietnamese community. Police say some of the funds reaped from the marijuana crops have been used to buy heroin in Vietnam, which has been imported into Australia. Detective Superintendent Gerry Ryan said early reports were the operation was going well. Police have long maintained there is a direct link between Vietnamese syndicates trafficking in both cannabis and heroin. Police have identified seven major heroin syndicates, which have recruited more than 100 Melbourne-based couriers. Police were ready to raid the houses two weeks ago, however the operation had to be delayed because of US Secretary of State Hillary Ms Clinton's visit. Drug Taskforce investigators say the syndicates target members of the Vietnamese community with gambling debts who are susceptible to pressure from loan sharks. Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade figures show 25 Australian nationals are in Vietnamese jails on drug charges. Since 2003, seven Australians sentenced to death in Vietnam have had their penalty commuted after pleas for clemency from the Australian Government. A police taskforce of drug taskforce detectives, Customs and Border Protection officers, the Australian Crime Commission and Australian Federal Police has been set up to investigate the syndicates. Operation Ripsaw has resulted in the arrest of more than 30 suspects in Australia and Vietnam in the past two years. In August police seized commercial and residential properties valued at $20 million they allege had been purchased through laundered funds made by the syndicates through heroin trafficking. More than 20 suspects have been arrested and $3 million in cash seized during the raids in Fitzroy, Brunswick, St Albans, Maribyrnong, Footscray, Sunshine and Collingwood. Detectives say heroin couriers fly into Melbourne from Vietnam every week and some have made several trips.
They have identified one female syndicate leader in her 30s, who bet $3.7 million at Crown Casino in six months and regularly wagered $50,000 a hand. Another key figure bet $12 million in Australian casinos in just over five years. Couriers are paid up to $24,000 to import four 70-gram heroin pellets (80 percent pure). Syndicates can net more than $700,000 from the drugs sold on Melbourne streets. On June 4, 2006, Australian Federal Police arrested Vietnam Airlines pilot Van Dang Tranas at Sydney International Airport with more than $540,000 concealed in his cabin luggage. The Australian Crime Commission money-laundering Taskforce Gordian found that he had smuggled $6.5 million out of Australia in less than 12 months. He pleaded guilty and in 2007 was sentenced to a minimum of two years' jail. It is alleged that crime syndicates used the Long Thanh Money Transfer Company in Footscray to launder more than $93 million.

Shane Warne Has Nerves About New TV Show...

Warne has he and Aussie gambling and media king, James Packer, were nervous before his interview before new show, Warnie. The interview is Packer's first one-on-one TV interview in 20 years and a real coup for Warne. Speaking at Channel 9's Ashes launch this week, Warne said the two had been friends for two decades, which contributed to the nerves. "Not many people know James Packer that well," he said. "He is a wonderful guy. He's been a good friend to me for 20 years." Warne's interview subjects for his new show include Dannii Minogue, Coldplay's Chris Martin and Sting. He said he just tried to be himself when interviewing the big names. "I think the one thing about this show is, when I'm doing the interview, I'm not one of those guys who ask those silly questions about the past and that sort of crap. "I want to know how you spend your life away from this, how you relax and have a bit of a laugh. "I think people will see a good side to so many different people." Joining Warne on the show is his old mate Merv Hughes, who will be a reporter on the street, and Nine's rising star in the world of news, Today reporter Alicia Gorey. The first episode of Warnie airs on Wednesday - that's tonight on Channel 9, of course! Ok, it could of been Network Ten, but 10 out of 10 for 9, for putting this show together.

Poker Machined Banned From Shopping Centre...

Electronic gaming machines have been banned from the Mansfield strip shopping centre. The amendment to the Mansfield Planning Scheme banning the machines has been approved by the Victorian Department of Planning and Community Development. A survey conducted by the shire found 87 per cent of respondents did not want gaming machines in the Mansfield Shopping Centre. The CEO of Mansfield Shire, David Roff, says the shire's research shows the amendment is in line with community beliefs. "Effectively, what the amendment does is it identifies the Mansfield strip shopping centre as an area where gaming machines are prohibited but it recognises that gaming is a legitimate activity but for areas not so close to the centre of town," he said.

Candidates’ Each Way Bet On Casino; Says National Party...

All of the data used by Mildura accounting academic Larry O’Connor in his report Gambling With Mildura’s Future was sourced from publicly available information material. “The pro-casino Independent candidate claims that I used statistics from Mr O’Connor’s report in the week before it was released,” says Member for Mildura Peter Crisp. “Actually, I’ve been using facts and figures on casino operations for much longer, because they’ve been available in documents produced by the Productivity Commission and in a report produced for the Australasian Casino Association by the Allen Consulting Group. “For example, I said via a news release on October 26 that: “More than 80% of customers of casinos in Australia are drawn from the city/state in which the casino is located, according to a 2009 report to the Australasian Casino Association by the Allen Consulting Group”. “I was making the point that a casino would drag patrons away from local community-owned clubs, which I reiterated throughout the campaign. “The Workers Club made the same point in a full-page advertisement in the Sunraysia Daily in early November. “Had the pro-casino Independent candidate done even a scrap of research he would know that a casino in Mildura would bankrupt a number of existing community-owned clubs.

Murdoch Media Power; Sarah Murdoch Fires Production Company After Model Mistake...

If you stuff up big time at work, the firm you work for decide to sack you: that's how it usually works. Not if you're Sarah Murdoch, part of the powerful media family dynasty it doesn't. If you're Sarah Murdoch, you fire the company. Foxtel, which is partially owned by the Murdoch family, had, at her insistence, dumped Granada Media Australia, the production company behind the past 6 series of Australia's Next Top Model...which Murdoch presents and executive-produces...to slide in with a new production company for the show's 11th series. Media Man has been hitting the phones... AAP, Fairfax Media, News Limited, and this amazing news is confirmed. Exactly what new production company will get the gig now open is not known at this time, but the favourite was Shine, which is owned by sister-in-law Elisabeth Murdoch. When called Granada, where a spokesperson couldn't confirm that it had lost the show. Calls were also placed to to Foxtel, explaining the nature of the enquiry, but no one called back. Then Murdoch went on record, confirming the change in production company and gave the following: "Granada produced Australia's Top Model for six years. I worked with them for two years. They are a very talented and hard working crew. But after what happened this year I thought very hard about it and decided it was probably time for a change." The readerership might recall that on the final live episode of the show, Murdoch momentarily panicked after a breakdown in communication with the backstage production team, and announced the wrong model as the series winner. It was a simple, embarrassing and pretty exciting misunderstanding that had everyone in a bit of a fluster, but also generated extra publicity. Murdoch is understood to be a driving force to firing Granada. So Sarah's stirred up things, and husband Lachlan now involved with Network Ten, Elisabeth at Shine and old man Rupert still plugging away, there's a Murdoch's everywhere. We expect James Packer to enjoy much smoother sailing with his Lachlan Murdoch and Network Nine dealings, and even Shane Warne wouldn't likely get a gaffe as rough as this one.

'Grandfather' Of Australian Paparazzi Peter Carrette Dies At 63...

Good friend of Bondi Beach's Media Man, Peter Carrette, and friend to many, died on the weekend we are sad to report. Veteran paparazzo Peter Carrette, who infamously fired a water pistol at Heath Ledger, has died in his Bondi Beach office. The man dubbed the "grandfather of Australian paparazzi" was discovered by a friend slumped at his desk at his home at Bondi Beach in Sydney's eastern suburbs. "They found him this morning - he was still at his computer," said his friend of 11 years, journalist Natalie O'Brien. The 63-year-old Carrette had worked around the world, including Paris and New York, and is survived by a son and a daughter. "He was just a beautiful guy," O'Brien told AAP. "In a dog-eat-dog world, he was a very kind man." Asked about the key to his success and long career, O'Brien said: "He knew everybody and everybody trusted him. They would come to him with information and he did the right thing by people. Everyone who knew him loved him."

Man Man Tribute To Peter...

RIP Peter Carrette. Peter, you were an angel among us. I feel blessed to have known you. Glad we caught up at the Bondi Beach Sea Shepherd on Friday. It was strange how we first met at Kerry Packer's funeral in 2005, at the Sydney Opera House, on a day which was more a celebration of life, rather than a focus on his death. When I moved to Bondi Beach in 2008 our friendship blossomed, and you were always an attentive ear, and a wonderful source of information and humor. Your Packer and nightlife stories were fantastic and music to my years. Being able to make modest donations to your orphanage in Cambodia was and always will occupy a special place in my heart and memory, as it will for our dear friend, Eva, who also just loved your presence, generosity of heart and sprit, and your photos of course. Eva and I just loved the gifts we got from you at the beach on the weekend, having been sent over from your orphanage in Cambodia. Your Tony Abbott costume you wore to the Sea Shepherd No Compromise! event on Friday night was a classic, just as you were. Knowing you enriched my life, and that of so many of my friends and acquaintances. You were one of the Australian media's great guys, and I think you knew that I saw you as a bit of a father figure or uncle also, even though I never said those words. You were smart enough to know. The visits to the "best office in the world' at the pad at Bondi Beach were also a fun and memorable experience. Your beautify energy, passion and warmth will always be remembered. You made me, and others, probably look so much better than we actually were, thanks to your artistic and creative gifts. Your colorful shoes will be hard to fill. Always in my mind, and whenever I walk down the hill to the beach I will continue to think of you fondly. You were way too good, in too many ways, to only be remembered as a great photographer. You were a wonderful human being. Another legend has been lost, but will never be forgotten
Greg Tingle, Founder and Director, Media Man

Australian Media and Photographer Legend Dies, by Greg Tingle

One of Australia's most colorful and successful photographers Peter Carrette has died of a heart attack this past weekend. Regarded as one of the good guys in the pap and photography biz, London born Carrette first came to prominence when he photographed a sick Marianne Faithful in a drug coma in her hospital bed circa 1969. Faithful had tripped to Australia with musician Mick Jagger who was to star in a film about Ned Kelly. She had over-dosed after, it was claimed in the British press, she had discovered Jagger in bed as it were, with another woman. Carrette donned a white doctor's coat and stethoscope and sneaked into Faithful's room, snapped the photo that was flashed around the world as one of the first examples of intrusive photography. Earlier this year when Faithful was in town for the Sydney Festival, she advised new media outlet 'The Shuttle' she'd still like to give the snapper a "quick boot in the backside". However she later revealed she had forgiven him. After a stint of studying photography in London, Carrette traveled to Sydney and picked up gig as Sir Frank Packer's copy boy when the media baron owned Daily Mirror newspaper. Once established he worked for various publications photographing news. He ambushed the US invasion of Grenada by hiring a smuggler's boat while the world's news media waited for official transport in downtown Barbados. He also did well in New York for 6 years and photographed for leading fashion title Vogue in Paris for 2 years. A few years back here in Sydney he and another pap squirted the actor Heath Ledger with water pistols at a Sydney film premiere. The images of a startled and wet Ledger was flashed around the world. He was ever so briefly banned by film companies from movie premieres and the like, but later made peace with Ledger shortly before he died in New York. Carrette also supported an orphanage in Cambodia by donating the fees received from his exclusive candid photos of celebrities often taken around Bondi Beach. He ran his own studio and photo biz from a Bondi Beach flat, "The greatest office in the world" he said, where he had lived for the past 20 years. The flat is owned by his good mate, Jack Thompson. Carrette was well liked in the industry, a keen philanthropist, and gave a lot back to the industry. He attended the Sea Shepherd Bondi No Compromise! event at the beach on Friday night at the invitation of Media Man, who has collaborated closely with Peter over the past 3 years, usually at Bondi Beach and often on community based projects. It's understood he passed away on Sunday evening from heart failure while working at his computer.

James Packer Likely Inspired Australia's Richest Woman Share Raid On Network Ten...

It all happened at the event to celebrate Alan Jones's 25 years in radio. Gina Rinehart witnesses history, and decided to play a big part in it. Australia's richest woman was in the mix of the 1100 media and political in crowd who gathered at Sydney's Darling Harbour on November 5 to toast Jones and witness tributes from the likes of former prime minister John Howard, Liberal powerbroker Michael Kroger, opposition Treasury spokesman Joe Hockey, NSW Premier Kristina Keneally and British conservative icon Jeffrey Archer. An emotional address from gaming and media mogul James Packer clearly made an impression. In a rare public display, Packer opened up about Jones. "Alan, no one will ever take your place," he said. "You are without peer, my friend." Packer had just raised his already considerable public profile by grabbing 18% of Ten Network Holdings in a shock sharemarket raid. Here was confirmation he was back in town after some moments of severe doubt during the global financial crisis. Rinehart was paying attention. It is understood the mining heiress wrote to her fellow billionaire afterwards, congratulating him on his speech, expressing her support for Jones and wishing Packer luck with his $280 million Ten investment. Within days, traders noticed that Morgan Stanley Smith Barney...a retail brokerage that accounts for less than 1% of Ten trading on an average day...was responsible for a whopping 24.3% of turnover. That was November 10. The brokerage continued to soak up stock in the following days. Seek co-founder Paul Bassat, adman John Singleton and media company News Limited (publisher of The Australian) were all rumoured to be behind the trades. But this week the mystery buyer was revealed as power woman Rinehart. Nobody could have guessed, except perhaps Packer, who received another letter from Rinehart yesterday, telling him she had spent more than $150m on 10 per cent of Ten. Without being too specific, Rinehart indicated broad support for the Ten shake-up and said she liked the look of the new board. Here was confirmation that Georgina Hope Rinehart was not content to confine her $4.5 billion fortune to the mining sector. Rinehart is said to resent the description "mining heiress", believing she deserves credit for building on her father's legacy. She also does not want to be remembered as the person who took Porteous to court. Some associates believe she wants to make her mark on a bigger stage, much as fellow iron ore magnate Andrew "Twiggy" Forrest has in championing the cause of indigenous Australians in recent years. She hinted at issues of national interest in the short statement released on late Monday. "Our company group is interested in making an investment towards the media business, given its importance to the nation's future, and has selected Channel 10 for this investment," it said. So notions of legacy and influence perhaps explain why Rinehart jumped on the truck to help lead the big crowd in a chant of "axe the tax". She used a megaphone to do it that day. Others have found owning part of a media company is another way to open doors in Canberra. Media Man will be following up the fun, games and media power plays of Australia's Richest women and think she might be the source of more major news for media friends and partners across the global, especially for the good folks at the always hard hitting and switched on Gambling911.

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Readers... er, punters, how did you like our report? Tell us in the forum.

If you have a bet, please bet with your head, not over it, and for God's sake, have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. They cover a dozen industry sectors including gaming and offer political commentary and analysis.

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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Crown Casino Forced To Defend Reputation In Press, by Greg Tingle - 23rd November 2010

Crown Casino, Australia's leading land based casino and prize jewel of gambling and media tycoon James Packer, is publicly fighting back against a number of serious allegations being thrown at them. Media Man and Gambling911 play devil's advocate as we bring you this special report on the cafe and pub talk about Crown...

In the past year or so most of the media reports on James Packer owned Crown Casino have been balanced, with a number of even positive reports, but now a new batch of negative stories, allegations and even a spot of "attack journalism" is starting to read its ugly head again.

Casino Casino bosses are not happy in the least about a bush tucker bag of allegations being leveled at their gambling and entertainment premises.

One of the more gross allegations is that Crown was accused of letting desperate gamblers urinate at machines during 24-hour pokie marathon sessions!

Other leaks say Crown throws fights into the street and tries to cover up crimes and other unwanted attention.

The hard hitting allegations are found in a report based on interviews with 225 current and former Crown casino staff who spoke out about their impressions of the level of violence, problem gambling and alcohol abuse inside Australia's biggest gambling venue.

A number of Australian media and gambling commentators believe the reports may have been geared to generate negative results for the casino, and that a large number of former staff and disgruntled current staff may have been tricked into focusing on negatives, and that somehow the Uni compiled report was designed to make Crown Limited look bad.

The so call "study" was conducted by Deakin University researchers, sphere headed by Associate Prof Linda Hancock. Liquor, Hospitality and Miscellaneous Workers Union staff agreed to participate in the industry-wide research.

The most disgusting allegation was that some one armed bandit players stood by the same pokies for up to 24 hours, with one respondent saying they "sit there and just wee, go to the toilet at the machine"

Crown Casino advises that allegation is not true.

Some staff also allege that Crown Casino is:

Permits patrons to gamble when drunk, even though it is against the law in Victoria

Calling taxis RSL cabs, Silver Service etc) for injured patrons and staff to avoid an ambulance incident report.

Permitting punters to stay on pokies for 24 hours plus marathon sessions or more.

Forcing drunks onto the street.

Covering up up 20 to 30 brawls per evening, with up to 40 punters a night being escorted out onto the street. This is mostly due to fighting, and sometimes patrons used knives and bottles.

Dr Hancock states her research showed a "systematic breakdown between Crown, government and regulators who don't enforce codes of practice".

The report that some say is bias, was rigged, and not accurate, also demonstrates poor awareness among staff of problem gambling, with half of those interviewed saying they wouldn't intervene if a gambler was in a distressed state.

A media spokesperson at Media Man said "The results of the report are not a total surprise. It's well known that there is an agenda from certain parts of the educational and political sector to get negative press on Crown Casino. Whispers are that the report was focusing on negatives and that they interviewed people who were not happy at Crown and has an axe to grind. They have used this report to try to create a media beat up, and also trying to generate attack journalism. University reports are often used to try to give certain agendas more credibility Do not believe everything you read, including from University reports. We know Crown Casino to do an excellent job of dealing with problems and are a very responsible employer. The report smells of a rat".

Crown casino spokesman Gary O'Neill said the comments in the report were all false and did not deserve to be described as "research: (a term also used to describe Japanese whaling).

"Crown absolutely denies that staff are encouraged or allowed to permit patrons to gamble while intoxicated," he said.

O'Neill said ambulances were regularly called to Crown and he denied claims that responsible gaming codes were being ignored.

At the time of press more media outlets are starting to go public saying there are flaws in the "research" and that Crown Casino haters are trying to create media beat-ups.

Crown Casino is understood to be considering some reality TV concepts and also is pursuing more national and international top line acts to add to its overall entertainment experience, as the famous Aussie casino wars continue with its main competitor being the embattled Tabcorp, owner - operator of Sydney's Star City, who are spending roughly 1 million dollars to try to play catch up to Crown - eventually wanting to become #1. Good luck Tabcorp, you will need it in spades.

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Readers... er, punters, how did you like our report? Is Crown Casino good or evil? Tell us in the forum.

If you have a bet, please bet with your head, not over it, and for God's sake, have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. They cover a dozen industry sectors including gaming and offer political commentary and analysis.

*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited

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Saturday, November 20, 2010

Woolworths: The Fast Cash People?, by Greg Tingle - 19th November 2010

Gambling and especially potential harm re "problem gambling" continues to get a strong news run in Australia. Today we explore the business relationship that retailer Woolworths (slogan - 'The Fast Food People') aka 'The Fast Cash People' (satire) enjoys in the Australian gaming and gambling industry. Media Man and Gambling911 take a ride on the shopping trolley jackpot with this special report...

Woolworths on Thursday found itself defending its significant business involvement in Australian pokies, as the echoes that they are causing social harm continues.

What's the one armed bandit link we hear you ask. Woolworths, via its majority holding in the ALH Group venture with Melbourne businessman and Aussie pokies king Bruce Mathieson, is Australia's largest poker machine operator and is likely to face more negative press and noise over "problem gambling" due to the anti-pokies stance of some key federal Independent MPs and senators. It's mainly a small but vocal minority, but it gives they a platform to get noticed.

A Media Man insider said 'For some MP's the pokies thing is gold. Some of them see pokies as the new thing to jump upon. Rather like pokies is the new porn to jump up an down about. For the past few years in Australia porn and also the environment were big issues for polies, then mining, not pokies gets a lot of heat. Next year it will be something else".

Woolies Chief executive Michael Luscombe, speaking after the company's annual shareholder meeting in Brisbane said it had no plans at all to exit the poker machines business.

Luscombe advised the firm was planning to introduce a policy to help reduce problem gambling, but he could not or would not immediately name the specific nature.

A communications assistant type then went on to describe the voluntary precommitment policy, under which punters can choose to set limits for wager amounts.

Stephen Maybe, political and media commentator, and anti pokies activist quizzed if Woolworths had decided to pursue court action to prevent councils from such a move or had agreed to a deal with the Victorian Labor Party to use legislation to prevent council action if the Brumby Government was re-elected. Luscombe said he was not aware of any agreement with Labor.

Mayne also said nationwide more than $10 billion was lost on pokies each year. He said Manningham council was investigating the possibility of increasing the rate bill of Woolworths' gaming venues from $100,000 to $400,000.

Woolworths' hotels business enjoyed about $176.7 million in fiscal 2010 pretax earnings and added 6 properties, taking its total number of hotels and clubs to 284.

Woolworths issued a special report on its social, environmental and governance policies, however the report's one-page summary of key 2010 challenges did not mention action to address "problem gambling".

The company noted it adhered to gambling-related laws and planned voluntary measures.

Woolworths also came under fire over its approach to executive pay, with the Australian Shareholders Association citing concern over lack of transparency as the reason for rejecting the remuneration report.

The outfit had good news on its latest trading, with Luscombe stating there had been no direct impact on its business from the latest official rate rise. He expected Christmas trading this year would be "reasonably good".

The company continued to expect 8-11% growth in fiscal 2011 net profit.

He said the company was likely to open more than the 150 home-improvement stores targeted. It has secured 90 sites and planned to open the first stores in Victoria from about July..

Chairman James Strong said the company was keeping its eye out for takeover opportunities.

"The board remains open and alert to a wide range of possibilities that could add value for our shareholders," he said.

Woolies shares rose 24 cents to $27.74 yesterday.

By all accounts Woolworths is making a killing with its current links to the Australian pokies business, and shows no sign of slowing down.

Christmas jackpots are on the way, as the pokies lovers vs pokies haters war down under continues.

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Readers... er, punters, how did you like our report? What do you think about Woolworths being involved in gambling? Tell us in the forum.

If you have a bet, please bet with your head, not over it, and for God's sake, have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. They cover a dozen industry sectors including gaming and offer political commentary and analysis.

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Friday, November 19, 2010

This Is Your Life; Crown Casino Style, by Greg Tingle - 19th November 2010

James Packer owned Crown Casino is to be the host of the return of the Australian version of smash hit television show, 'This Is Your Life', in a move that is bound to add spark and cash into both Crown Limited and Network Nine Australia. Media Man and Gambling911 take a stroll down memory lane and reminisce about both the good times and the bad, as we jump the cue with this special report on the return of 'This Is Your Life' and what it all means to you and the powers that be...

This Is Your Life is an Aussie television documentary show based on the American show of the same name, in which the host surprises guests with a show documenting their lives, with audience participation from their friends and family.

Down Under in Australia, the show was aired on the Nine Network on Thursday nights for a relatively short annual season. It began in 1975 on the Seven Network, hosted by Andrew Barbeler. Subsequent seasons were compered by Digby Wolfe (1976), Roger Climpson (1977), and Geordi Hunt (1977 - 1980). The program was re-launched on the Nine Network in 1995, hosted by Mike Munro until 2008.

Now we learn that Australian media legend Eddie McGuire will be hosting the show as we draw closer to the last month of the year 2010, and what a year it has been for Crown Casino, James Packer, and mates in the super inner circle like Shane Warne and David Gyngell.

Ok, it's one of the most loved tv shows of all time, but its undergoing a facelift (so to speak), and hopefully for the better. Our spies tell us that it will be a more contemporary format and done in a way that is basically more "now" and current for the times. Time will tell what exactly that translates into once the show kicks off.

A new set and big name musical acts - performances and a live theatre-style setting will help make This Is Your Life appeal to a whole new generation of couch potatoes, while long-term audiences will likely welcome back its somewhat familiar format with a fresh as a daisy lineup of A-list stars and other entertaining surprise guests.

This Is Your Life will delight viewers to a series of special event shows filmed at The Palms at Crown Casino in Melbourne in front of a live audience, with performances by Australia’s leading music acts and appearances by local and international celebrities.

"The brand new series of This is Your Life will be an entertaining show filled with laughter, tears and surprises," the show’s Executive Producer, Adrian Dellevergin, said.

"We will adopt a whole new look as we celebrate the lives of our most treasured and admired Australians. We’re taking a much loved format out of its studio setting and turning it into major event television."

This Is Your Life honours Australians who have forged brilliant careers and have had extraordinary life journeys.

The new series will include legends and heroes from the fields of entertainment, music, sport and the media.

Host Eddie 'Everywhere' McGuire will surprise the guest of honour with heartfelt reunions, spontaneous revelations and stories from friends and family from around the globe.

Since 1975 almost 400 of Australia’s greatest achievers have been honoured on This Is Your Life, including Peter Allen, Greg Norman, Steve Irwin, Olivia Newton-John and country music legend Slim Dusty.

Media Man has heard the exciting news that there's a reasonable possibility that some of the names on the list include James Packer, Shane Warne, Ricky Ponting, Jack Thompson, Bryan Brown, John Singleton, Alan Jones, Bert Newtwon or Rupert Murdoch will be appearing. Just quietly, we hope its Warnie, Murdoch, Brown, Singo or Thompson. Packer would be the jackpot, but it might look funny, since he's still young and he owns the venue!

Host McGuire said "This Is Your Life is one of the all-time great television shows. There are so many wonderful stories to be told. I fell victim myself one time, so I know what it is like from both sides. I can't wait to be involved in the stings for which the show is so well known. Every time I walk into someones house, they're going to look to see if I have a big red book under my arm."

Crown Casino is also host venue of the Australian Logie Awards, and home to the Twitter Gate scandal, that a saw an Aussie comedian - writer lose her job from 'The Age' newspaper more than a year ago, after inappropriate remarks were Tweaked towards guests at Crown Casino on 'Australian entertainment's night of nights', as its known in the biz.

This Is Your Life will go to air on the Nine Network in 2011.

Return Of 'This Is Your Life' At Crown Casino Comes At The Same Time As Warnie TV...

Shane Warne Talk Show 'Warne's World'; May Mention Poker, Gambling...

It's going to be called Warne’s World, the chat show is scheduled to air on Thursdays at 9.30pm once the Ashes series kicks off next month. "We’ve secured two or three big-name guests at this stage so things are going well," Warne said. The hunt is on for potential co-hosts. It will also feature a slew of international mates. A production source said, "Warnie knows so many people – there are many closet cricket fans out there – so we’re expecting anyone who’s in town, whether it be a superstar singer or a Hollywood actor, to be called on by Shane." Maybe it will possibly work as a summer cricketing counterpart to The Footy Show? Warne also recently appeared Top Gear Australia, the show he was heavily rumoured to be hosting, but the host gig didn't come off, of course. Warne's World sounds like a better fit for the former spinner.

Australian TV and entertainment fans rejoice. We're in for a treat, and of course, for the ones feeling really positive and lucky, don't forget to take a good look around Crown Casino, with lots of world class entertainment offerings (and casino games).

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Readers... er, punters, how did you like our report? Did it bring back memories for you? Who would you like to see on the Australian version of the show? Is Crown Casino a good, bad or great venue for it, and why? Tell us in the forum.

If you have a bet, please bet with your head, not over it, and for God's sake, have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. They cover a dozen industry sectors including gaming and offer political commentary and analysis.

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Thursday, November 18, 2010

James Packer And Shane Warne Casino Deal; Tiger Gossip, by Greg Tingle - 18th November 2010

What sort of business deals might an Aussie cricket legend and Australian casino king James Packer get up to? How about a Warnie branded poker room, and opening a bar or two, and plenty more win - wins in the works say those in the know. Warnie and Packer have also taken a liking to Tiger Woods, and some more good business is understood to be on the horizon for the daily double, soon to become a trio. Media Man and Gambling911 take a swing with the bats and balls and sink a cold one with this special report...

Shane Warne Expands Business Empire...

Aussie cricket living legend Shane Warne is further expanding his business.

He's the face of a poker brand, might have a poker room named after him, has a hair care endorsement, a venue music deal with Media Man mate Kym Illman, and now word leaks of both a Warnie talk show coming up on Network Nine, and perhaps a drinking bar - watering hole at Crown too. What a party animal, (with brains, and friends in all of the right places).

The champion spinner is coming back from more business deals offered to him from good mate and self appointed mentor, James Packer. Get this, the Crown Casino rooftop bar might also offer cigars and be smoker friendly, but details are a tad sketchy at the moment.

Warne was happy to confirm he and Packer were looking at a joint venture deal but wasn't able to, or willing, to discuss details at this stage of the game.

"Myself and James Packer are going into business and doing something at Crown," he said. "There might be something happening at Crown in the next 12 months."

Quizzed if it would be on the rooftop, cheeky Warne replied with "It should be very good views."

Both Packer and Warnie are smokers and the former cricketer is known to enjoy a good cigar. Warnie new mate, golfer, Tiger Woods, is understood to be keen to spend more time with the spinner, but if he will brave the night air and a ciggy on the roof at Crown Casino is unclear.

A Crown spokesperson yesterday said Crown had "no comment on this matter at this stage".

Warne is also strongly rumoured to have a hamburger business deal in the worlds. We got a report he was seen eating a McDonald's burger, that might have been branded as his own. How hot or not the burger might be is the talk of cafes and bars in Melbourne. On the burger he's understood to have said "I don't do spicy stuff. Too many years in India."

He also said he had no problem endorsing Maccas, noting they offered many healthy options.

"We did a bit of due diligence on McDonalds," he said.

Warne event went as far to say his three kids don't mind a bit of Maccas.

"Once a week I say, 'What would you like to have?' ... eight out of 10 times, it's McDonald's."

Shane Warne Talk Show; May Mention Poker, Gambling...

It's going to be called Warne’s World, the chat show is scheduled to air on Thursdays at 9.30pm once the Ashes series kicks off next month. "We’ve secured two or three big-name guests at this stage so things are going well," Warne said. The hunt is on for potential co-hosts. It will also feature a slew of international mates. A production source said, "Warnie knows so many people – there are many closet cricket fans out there – so we’re expecting anyone who’s in town, whether it be a superstar singer or a Hollywood actor, to be called on by Shane." Maybe it possibly work as a summer cricketing counterpart to The Footy Show? Warne also recently appeared Top Gear Australia, the show he was heavily rumoured to be hosting, but the host gig didn't come off, of course. Warne's World sounds like a better fit for the former spinner.

Warnie Mate Tiger Woods Also Likes His Twitter...

Tiger Woods is now on Twitter. In his first tweet , the world's former No.1 golfer said, "What’s up everyone. Finally decided to try out twitter!" In a second tweet, TigerWoods said, "Yep, it’s me. I think I like this twitter thing. You guys are awesome. Thanks for all the love." Woods' public image has taken a beating since last November, when a car accident outside his Florida home triggered reports of numerous extramarital affairs. Woods and ex-wife Elin Nordegren finalised their divorce in August. Woods has also struggled on the golf course in 2010, failing to win a tournament for the first time in his professional career. He lost the world No.1 ranking to Lee Westwood on October 31. Woods, currently "down under" in Australia, is understood to have a chance of winning the Australian Masters, and insiders reckon his time with Aussie cricket legend and lady lover, Shane Warne, are helping the Tiger mindset. At the Masters - Crown Casino press conference their similar nocturnal habits were brought up, which got a smile and laugh from the "dream team". Granted, with the ladies or the press, Tiger is no Shane Warne, but he doesn't need to be. Go get 'em Tiger.

Warnie Did Not Have Facelift; Hair Treatment Works!...

Warne has denied having plastic surgery after a spat of rumours and innuendo about his appearance. The famous cricketer was finally forced to use his Twitter account to set the record straight after a picture of him at an event in Melbourne sparked a whirl of speculation. "No have not had facelift or any work done to face, training hard and lost 5kg. Yes have had teeth whitened," he tweeted. He later added: "NO have not had hair transplant, have re-grown my own hair with laser therapy!! It works and happy with results!!"

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Readers... er, punters, how did you like our report? How's things looking for a Packer - Warnie, and maybe Tiger Woods deal? Tell us in the forum.

If you have a bet, please bet with your head, not over it, and for God's sake, have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. They cover a dozen industry sectors including gaming and offer political commentary and analysis.

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Friday, November 12, 2010

Australian Casino News: Burswood Casino Patrons Targets For Crime, by Greg Tingle - 12th November 2010

Australia, namely Perth, and its Burswood Casino aka Burswood Entertainment Complex is the subject of today's extremely disturbing news report. The Western Australian Police Force, the casino and patrons are looking for solutions on how to stop an apparent crime wave that is seeing criminals target Burswood patrons. Media Man and Gambling911 with not what you want to hear, but what you need to know...

Police in Perth, West Australia are confident that criminals appear to be targeting people as they leave the James Packer - Crown Limited owned Burswood Casino.

West Australian Police are investigating a number of attacks on women who were apparently followed home from the casino in the wee hours of yesterday morning and had their handbags and contents stolen.

Sergeant Graham Clifford advised that in both cases the women were about to open the front door at their homes in Fremantle and Cannington when they had their handbags nabbed from their person.

"We don't believe the two incidents are connected with the victims but by the same token it would appear that some of the criminals out there are taking advantage of people when they leave the casino and attacking them when they are by themselves just about to enter their home," he said.

Police are now also investigating a third incident where a woman was targeted by the thieves.

The woman has contacted WA police saying she was attacked just outside her home in Warnbro this morning after returning from the casino.

It is understood she had several thousand dollars in her bag.

Gaming industry insiders strongly believe that the latest string on attacks in Perth will see more people stay at home and play slots, poker and other games online, such is the current perceived risk of a visit to Burswood. Media Man and Gambling911 both feature and review some online casinos available for Australians.

Police say further information about the thieves will be released soon.

WA Police, Media Man and Gambling911 encourage Burswood Casino patrons to please take precautions at the casino and on your journey back home.

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Readers, what would you do with the situation at Burswood Casino? Will this news see you more likely to play casino games on the internet? Tell us in the forum.

If you have a bet, please bet with your head, not over it, and for God's sake, have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. They cover a dozen industry sectors including gaming and offer political commentary and analysis.

*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited

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Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Crown Casino Catches Tiger Woods By Tail Again, by Greg Tingle - 9th November 2010

Tiger Woods has been successful lured by the Australian Open, and more impressively, Crown Casino again. James Packer and his team just keep working the magic that will see 'The Tiger' return to the scene of the crime er action at Crown Towers, that was a significant part of the 'Tiger' scandal that made worldwide headlines last year. Media Man and Gambling911 go Tiger hunting, in a good way. Go get 'em tiger...

Woods' family friendly image was wrecked after his stay at Packer's Crown Towers last year when it came to light that New York party queen Rachel Uchitel was his very special guest.

Uchitel was photographed by a US newspaper pap in the hotel foyer, igniting a scandal that destroyed his marriage and made worldwide headlines, with Tiger jokes still all the rage.

Woods, whose $3 million appearance fee will once again be partly paid for by Victorian taxpayers, was a massive fan of the casino's ultra exclusive riverside restaurant Koko, where he dined up to three times, and hit the gaming tables in private gaming suites.

The world #2 ranked player enjoyed a dream working holiday in Melbourne last year, winning the Australian Masters and picking up some new fans in the process.

Aussie mum Kultida joined Tiger at Crown. After being wined, dined and maybe romanced, at Crown Casino and enjoying a CBD shopping spree, the happy mum told Rupert Murdoch's News Limited she was "loving Melbourne".

Woods is set to attend a dinner at Crown Palladium tonight where he will speak along with other international golf players.

Ticket sales for the Masters are understood to be strong but not totally sold out, which means spectators will now be able to get up close and personal with Woods at the Victoria Golf Club. Good hey.

Crown top brass and especially James Packer are understood to be delighted that Tiger has returned to their famous digs. They should be, last time he brought in up to $10 million bucks to Crown, thanks in part to a group of touring Japanese "whales" and "dolphin" high rollers and sports nuts.

Media Man and Gambling911 wish 'Tiger' all success with his holes and putter, on and off the field, and we are hopeful that his 'woodie' and all returns to champion form.

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Readers... er, punters, odds on Tiger returning to champion form, on and off the field? How will he place in the championship? How many Aussie women might his score this trip down under? Are holes in one or more in line? Tell us in the forum. If you have a bet, please bet with your head, not over it, and for God's sake, have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. They cover a dozen industry sectors including gaming and offer political commentary and analysis.

*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited

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Sunday, November 07, 2010

James Packer Bondi Beach Pad No Jackpot, by Greg Tingle - 7th November 2010

G'day punters, casino and media millionaires and billionaires, politicians and one and all. What's happening with Australia's casino and new media king, James Packer, on the domestic - home front? Well, Packer's Bondi Beach based pay is not enjoying the same financial success and the majority of his other ventures we learn. Media Man and Gambling911 put on the thongs and board shorts checking out the casino kings' property happenings at Bondi Beach...

The sellers wanted in the region of $8 million-plus, but the buyers stopped their bidding at $7 million. It was the Bondi Beach house that a young James Packer, casino and gambling mogul in the making, established as his first home in the 90s.

A total of 3 registered bidders still say it failed to sell at this weekend's Raine & Horne auction when offered by the New York-based Lochtenberg family. It last sold when Packer's former fiancee, Kate Fischer, pocketed a cool $2,825,000 in 2000. The 210 sq m pad had been transferred fee free from Packer's development company into Fischer's name in October 1998, showing his well known generosity of heart and spirit.

Packer and Fischer had been in a 5-year personal relationship during which the Notts Avenue property was purchased for a seemly bargain priced $425,000 in 1995. Subsequently Packer moved into a 3-level apartment on nearby Campbell Parade, which remains his abode. He and his wife Erica have also spent roughly $30 million on a Vaucluse home known in today's lingo as "residential compound", not be be confused with gaming figure Calvin Ayre's 'Bodog Compound'.

Packer began living on the Bondi Beach "golden mile#2) sharing an $800-a-week rental apartment with mate David Gyngell in the beautiful Pacific Terraces complex elsewhere on Notts Avenue. JP's late father Kerry Packer had helped finance the Pacific Terraces development by Bill Shipton in 1983.

The Notts Avenue house has been rented out by the Lochtenbergs at about $2500 bucks a week since their purchase in circa 2000.

Ok readers, we know you want to know more about Packer's gaming and media deals, so stick with us as there's much more of that coming on the horizon. It is a Sunday here at Bondi Beach, Sydney, Australia. With that said, we might pop into Berg's Gaming at the famous Bondi Iceberg's club later on today to breath in the fresh air and view, that our decade of blood, sweat and tears in news media has afforded us.

Media Man and Gambling911 wish the Packer's well with their professional and personal lives, and hope to report a positive result for them on the home front very shortly. With Media Man world headquarters just a stone's throw from the Packer's, you can expect an update on this Packer goss er news, much sooner than later.

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Wrap Up...

Readers... er, punters, how did you like our domestic James Packer report? Tell us in the forum. If you have a bet, please bet with your head, not over it, and for God's sake, have fun.

*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911

*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. They cover a dozen industry sectors including gaming and offer political commentary and analysis. They also publish Property News Media http://www.propertynewsmedia.com

*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited

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