Sunday, January 30, 2011

Crown Casino Demands Aussie Govt Lift Game For Asian High Rollers, by Greg Tingle - 30th January 2011

G'day punters, journos, high rollers - casino whale VIP's, gambling millionaires and billionaires, poker sharks, entertainment and arts news junkies, media tycoons, politicians, insiders, outsiders, legal eagles... one and all. You know who you are. Oriental high rolling VIP's, all 200 plus of them, are the world's most sought after casino clients, and James Packer's Crown Limited is demanding that the Australian government life their own game to help ensure the whales will come swimming (and jetting) to Australia. Media Man and Gambling911 with this high rolling report...

Casino and gambling big wigs have started to force the hand of the federal Government to streamline customs and immigration processing for Oriental high rolling whales flying down under into Australia.

James Packer's Crown Casino, and now Burswood and floating 'Infinity' wants visas made much easier to obtain, more frequent direct flights from Asia and VIP customs lounges at airports so high rolling gamblers can bypass those long queues.

Crown's chief executive Rowen Craigie advised the press the enhancements were absolutely necessary if Australia hopes to plug into the extremely lucrative middle and upper-class Chinese tourism market.

"They are the sort of issues we want to talk about with the federal Government," Craigie said, noting high-rollers wanted first-class treatment (in all aspects of their visit.)

In Singapore, where two world class casino resorts worth $11 billion opened last year, the Government has built a private lounge to fast-track customs and immigration processing for high-rollers. Officials meet and greet VIPs at the air-bridge and escort them through the process, then casino valets and porters arrive.

"It needs to be competitive," Craigie said. "At the moment, it's not."

Craigie welcomed the review that the Government announced last month into education visas. He said a similar process needed to be applied to tourist visas.

In another ultra competitive sector, higher education, the industry won the review into education visa processing after complaining that lack of access was discouraging students from studying in Australia. A spokeswoman for Immigration Minister Chris Bowen would not commit to reviewing tourist visas.

Some insiders say the Immigration Department and some casinos have long-standing, prior arrangements for certain VIPs to access slightly more streamlined immigration processing.

"Australia's migration and visa programs are global and non-discriminatory," the spokeswoman said. "Where possible (we) offer streamlined processing to low-risk clients, primarily through electronic visas but also through preferred processing of applications lodged through trusted agents, as occurs in China."

Packer mate, Sir Richard Branson, king of Virgin (airline included) has casino whales on his radar, however its unclear if RB will be going after the sector this year. Packer's other Brit mate, Damian Aspinall, earlier this week advised he would be closing his Aspinall's (land based) casino, which can't have given the sector much of a confidence boost, but it might have lifted the confidence levels of gamblers, with gamblers obviously chipping away at the profits by winning. And we all thought the house always wins! Well, maybe it does, but Aspinall's house is down. Packer won't want the same luck, nor will Branson.

Stay tuned for more on the high rolling VIP's and Crown Casino management wish list.


Sneak Peak Into The World Of Oriental Casino Whales And High Rollers...

The king of the Oriental casino whales, Stanley Ho, has been in the news a lot lately, so we thought it was timely to offer the loyal readership a glimpse into the world of a whale and his pool of Asia high rollers, who by the way James Packer's Crown Casino (and Tabcorp's Star City) just to be fair, are looking to lure down under to Australia.

This is Lifestyle of the rich (and often not so famous). They don't want to be that well known outside their inner circle casino and poker dens of choice. They are the world's real casino whales and super VIP's.

Stanley Ho is one of the world's most powerful casino super whales, and he's got about 200 other whales to keep satisfied. Australian gambling entrepreneurs are looking for a greater bite of the whales swimming the ocean, and one needs to have the best lure, bait and service to ensure the whale clientele keep coming back for more.

It's the high stakes world of casino and poker tourism, and competition for the gambling and entertainment dollar has never been tougher.

They jet in for free on a $40 million Gulfstream, direct from Shanghai. The family of three is whisked from the airport in a limousine to villa valued at $27,000 a night and occupying the entire 38th floor at Melbourne's Crown Towers.

A team of staff, including a butler and chef, just meet just about any request the whale will have.

On Level 39 just about anything can happen, if the whale desires. There's gaming salons, all private, a croupier, cards and a wooden pallet are at the table. Officially betting limits are $300,000 per hand, but by special arrangement, this high roller could punt $1 million or more on a single hand of baccarat. He's one of the new US-dollar billionaires of China, a group that jumped by double last year. China is home to about 200 billionaires, second only to the United States, sitting on 403.

Casinos from Sydney, to Melbourne, to Macau to Singapore and Las Vegas are investing billions to secure a good part of this rapidly expanding sector. In Australia, the two biggest casino operators, Crown Limited and Tabcorp are spending $1.9 billion and $1.6 billion respectively on their gaming venues across four states. You could call it cash burn on the casinos part, but the rewards can be high for winning casino operators, where money (and world class service and entertainment) are the name of the game.

New six-star hotels, private jets, entertainment rooms, private gaming salons and dozens of celebrity-chef restaurants are all part of the extreme makeovers designed to make the likes of Star City, Crown Melbourne, Perth's Burswood, and Jupiters on the Gold Coast mega entertainment and tourism destinations. James Packer even has his 'Infinity' yacht ready for them off the coast of Western Australia.

The last Kerry Packer was once the king of the whales and only a few casinos in Las Vegas would accommodate him, thanks to his ability to break a casino, if lady luck went his way, and if often did.

Today, high rollers, most of them from China, also play hard and millions of dollars can pass across the table in an hour or two.

"I wouldn't call it war," Crown boss Rowen Craigie said.

"But obviously there's major investments in integrated resorts."

Integrated resorts is a term now frequently used by the newest player on the block, Singapore, to describe the mega entertainment and tourism complexes it has built around casinos. Singapore saw the boom coming, and threw out gambling restrictions in 2004 to invite private investment of $US11 billion in two super ambitious gaming, hotel and convention resorts.

The effect on inbound tourism was virtually immediate, increasing by 22% since Marina Bay Sands and Resort World Sentosa opened in the past year. "When it comes to tackling tourism from China, you have to look at what Singapore is doing," Craigie said.

At Marina Bay Sands, which cost $US6 billion, daily gaming revenue hit $4.5 million late last year, after the mid-2010 opening. It came at a cost to casinos elsewhere, with Crown's VIP revenues at its Melbourne and Perth casinos in the first six months of this financial year taking a hit, down 10% or about $35 million.

Crown's chairman James Packer used the company's AGM late last year to call for state and federal governments to change their attitude from ignoring to instead promoting casinos in official domestic and international tourism campaigns. Packer would like to see heavy private investment in "integrated resorts" matched by government backing in the form of marketing, improved visa access and procedures for VIPs and other gamblers and more direct flights from Asia.

In Singapore, high rollers are greeted by officials at Changi airport, and escorted through a private lounge for fast-tracked customs and immigration formalities. The Singaporean government actively promotes the two resorts through a special branch within its tourism authority. The resorts are a crucial part of the national campaign to rebrand Singapore as a fun place to be.

Packer told the AGM in November "I believe that Australia needs to meet the challenges and capture the opportunities that the fast growing tourism markets from Asia are presenting to this country. In order to progress this, I truly believe that it will be necessary for federal and state governments, the broader tourism industry and key Asian-focused tourism operators such as Crown to work more closely together."

A spokeswoman for Immigration Minister Chris Bowen would not commit to reviewing tourist visas for gamblers. "Australia's migration and visa programs are global and non-discriminatory," the spokeswoman said.

Cashed-up Chinese tourists want to gamble, but they also want to experience the finer things in life, Craigie said. Their preference is for urban attractions, so Uluru, Sydney's beaches and the Great Barrier Reef are not enough.

"You need urban tourist attractions, not just natural resource tourist attractions," Craigie said.

At Singapore's Marina Bay Sands conventions of up to 45,000 delegates can be accommodated, there are 2,560 hotel rooms and suites and a SkyPark which sits like a gigantic ship's deck stretched atop three high-rise towers. The Iron Chef of America Mario Batali, is one of a handful of world-class celebrity chefs running restaurants in the complex. There's an art and science museum and in coming weeks theatre guests can take their pick of The Lion King, Elvis Costello or Slumdog Millionaire's AR Rahman.

In lifting gambling bans in 2004, Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsein Loong withstood considerable community pressure, including claims that the casinos would cost Singaporean families more than $500 million a year due to problem gambling. Locals are taxed $S100 a day to gamble in the casinos.

In 2005 Lee said: "The great majority will not go there to gamble. They will be tourists, executives or businessmen who go to enjoy the resort of attend conventions or conferences."

Tabcorp backs Packer and Crown's sentiment on the need for casinos and government co-operation to boost tourism. Crown customer research found that its clients venture out of the complex to enjoy other tourist attractions during their visit, spending about $40 million (check) outside the Crown site every year.

Tabcorp is spending almost $1 billion upgrading Sydney's Star City and another $625 billion upgrading its three casinos in Queensland. "I absolutely believe Star City will boost tourism," Star's managing director Sid Vaikunta told Agenda.

In Sydney, Tabcorp is making its first serious play for the high roller and luxury tourism market, which for Crown Casino, the market leader on VIPs, means the first real domestic competition.

High rollers collectively plunged $28 billion on Australian gaming tables in the first six months of last year. Tabcorp's share was 16 per cent, or $4.48 billion. Across the 12 months to June 2010, VIP turnover at Crown's two casinos in Melbourne and Perth was $40 billion.

"Our goal is to grow the market," Vaikunta said. The biggest gaming revenue day of the year at Star is Christmas Day and Star's intention with the redevelopment is to continue to look after its main audience of local gamblers, while opening up a new market of VIPs and rich tourists.

"We believe in the city, it has charisma, and we want it to reach that potential, as a charismatic city," Vaikunta said. "We are spending almost $1 billion and a large part of that is a trade-up in quality."

Over the next year or so a new luxury 172-room hotel will open and among the six celebrity chefs fronting 20 new restaurants are David Chang from New York, master of modern Italian Stefano Manfedi and Masterchef star Adriano Zumbo. Last week Star spent the first half of a $100 million budget for two private jets for VIPs: a Bombardier Global Express XRS.

Vaikunta said the exclusive A-list concert with Bon Jovi at Star City in December last year was a taste of things to come, when a $100-million, 3000-seat events centre is completed next year (2012). Take any big act that toured Australia last year - Lady Gaga, ACDC, Guns N Roses - and this is the calibre of musical exclusive the casino hopes to sell, at a premium price, in this new venue, he said.

The complex is being re-orientated to face the harbour, with floor to ceiling glass, outdoor gaming and balconies. Inside will be significantly changed from the windowless maze of gaming rooms that Star has been lampooned for in the past. Also going is the dated and gawdy tropical oasis display and in its place will be chandeliers and contemporary furniture.

Vaikunta hopes that in return the state and federal governments will promote Star, and give it more poker machine licenses. While no formal proposal on increasing poker machine licenses had been put to the NSW Government or opposition, Vaikunta pointed out that Crown Melbourne had 2500 poker machines, about 1000 more than Star. QLD Premier Anna Bligh recently gave the go ahead to increase by 500 the number of poker machines in two of Tabcorp's 3 QLD casinos. The Victorian Government last year gave Crown Melbourne the green light to add another 150 new gaming tables.

Macau, the only Chinese territory where gaming is legal, has just overtaken Las Vegas as the world's biggest destination for gamblers. In recent years $A17 billion has been invested in casino resorts and monthly gross casino revenue hit $US2.4 billion in December. Annual gross gaming revenue hit a record $23.5 billion, trumping Las Vegas strip takings by four fold, according to analysts. Visitors to the modest sized province have increased from 9.5 million in 2001 to more than 23 million.

Singapore is forecast to become the gaming capital of the world by 2012 and national target for visitors is 17 million by 2015. In Australia, Packer told his AGM, tourist numbers had been flat for a decade at around 5 million people.

Packer must be sorry his bid to develop one of the Singapore casinos failed. But he is tipped to raise his hand again, when other markets open up overseas. Vietnam, Japan, Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines are all considering "integrated resort" developments.

Stay tuned for more on the super whales and high rolling VIP's, and if you can't wait for the next plane, feel welcome to browse the casino games and reviews on the website. You don't get a butler online, but at least its private. Might be just the thing to get you in the mood to visit Crown's super whale offerings down under in Melbourne, or take your gambling to a new level of Packer's 'Infinity' floating casino.


Crown Limited and Australian government departments - your throw of the dice. No bluff!

Online Casinos, Online Poker and Sports Betting...

Ok readers, we hear you... you also want to know some of the best places to play online (that accept Aussies) if your in or around the Asia Pacific - Australia (including Tassie) and New Zealand, so here it is...

PartyCasino.com

Captain Cooks Casino

Betfair (sports betting only)

PKR.com (poker, slots including Marvel slot games and sports betting)

PartyPoker.com (online poker at one of the world's most respected poker rooms and gaming brands)

Profiles

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Media Man and Gambling911 remind our readers to keep the following in mind:

Take the time to research and learn games before placing down money

Media Man, Casino News Media and Gambling911 are website portals. Not casinos as such, however are recognised as world leading websites that cover the sector and act as central points to games, news, reviews and more.

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. Gaming is just one of a dozen sectors covered

*the writer owns shares in Crown Limited and Ten Network Holdings

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Friday, January 28, 2011

Crown Aussie Million's Poker $250,000 World First, by Greg Tingle - 28th January 2011

G'day punters, journos, high rollers - casino whales, gambling millionaires and billionaires, poker sharks, entertainment and arts news junkies, media tycoons, politicians, insiders, outsiders, legal eagles... one and all. You know who you are. Australia continues to have Aussie Millions fever, and the poker world continues to stay clued to the action from the felt. We're got huge news from Crown Casino and also from its parent company, Crown Limited, including the one and only 'Our James' (James Packer) and friends. Media Man and Gambling911 with another exciting report...

Australia Leading The Way In High Stakes Poker Thanks To Packer's Aussie Millions!...

It's the world's richest poker tournament in history. Way to go Aussies.

How would you fancy entering the "Super High Roller" event costs $250,000 just to buy in. That's what happened folks.

We saw 20 players take a seat at the table. Some are also rumoured to have "side bets' with other players, agents and industry wheeler dealers.

The casino executive manager of table games, Sean McCreery, advised the amount of entrants took him by surprise.

"We were confident for eight but 20 players is quite unexpected. It’s exactly where we want to take the Aussie Millions in making it more attractive for the high-end players."

In a win - win - win scenario, the winner of the high-stakes event will take home $2.5 million with the 2nd and 3rd place players taking $1.5 and $1 million respectively.

Celeb poker players in yesterday's celebrity games included Shane "Warnie" Warne, known for often playing "poker her" with a certain Liz.

McCreery is wrapt with the way things have worked us thus far. "You couldn’t ask for a better table. The people who are at the table right now are a who’s who of world poker."

The quarter-of-a-million dollar price tag is the highest buy-in price ever offered with the previous record being shared between the Aussie Millions and the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure’s $100,000 challenge.

McCreery said the idea behind the high-stakes game is part of a plan by the casino to make Australia one of the foremost poker destinations in the world. "If you think about it some of these players have to fly 40 hours just to be in the tournament. We try to create a whole experience for them here at Crown. Some of the players have told me this is their favourite event of the season."

At approx 5pm EST the tourney leader was Sam Trickett, with $1.17 million in chips. Organisers were expecting the tournament to run as late as 4am. Stay tuned.


Eric Seidel Wins Aussie Millions $250,000 Super High Roller Game; Sam Trickett Comes In 2nd...

Seidel might just be the world's most famous poker player as we go to press, and Sam Trickett isn't far behind.

The winner is an American professional poker player from Las Vegas, Nevada with 8 World Series of Poker bracelets and a World Poker Tour title. He is also a member of the Poker Hall of Fame. A bit of history...Seidel was born in New York City. Originally a tournament backgammon player for eight years, he eventually started playing the stock market, and then moved on to poker. He was one of the group of now famous players from the Mayfair Club, including Howard Lederer and Dan Harrington. In his first major tournament, Seidel was runner-up in the 1988 World Series of Poker main event to Johnny Chan. This final hand was featured in the movie Rounders. Seidel made the WSOP main event final table again in 1999, finishing in 4th place in the event won by Noel Furlong. He won his first WSOP bracelet in 1992 and won his eighth and most recent bracelet in 2007. Seidel has won bracelets in five different games, including Hold'em, Omaha, and Deuce to Seven Draw. Only four players in the history of the WSOP, world champions Phil Hellmuth, Doyle Brunson, Johnny Chan, and Johnny Moss, have won more bracelets than Seidel. During the sixth season of the World Poker Tour, Seidel won the 2008 WPT Foxwoods Poker Classic, earning $992,890. In January 2008, Seidel finished in second place in the Aussie Millions $10k main event and won $1,000,000(AUD). In March 2010, Seidel finished in second place in the National Heads-Up Poker Championship and collected $250,000 after a 1-2 loss to Annie 'The Hunt' Duke in the final. His total live tournament winnings exceed $13,700,000, plus add on the 2011 Aussie Millions winning to this total. $4,352,051 has been won at the WSOP. His 60 WSOP cashes put him in 4th for all time, tied with Berry Johnston. What an ace.


Sam Trickett...

Tricket has already won just under $3 million in tournament earnings this month which puts him up to $4.5 million career earnings overall, just behind Devilfish and Roland De Wolfe on the England all-time money list.

Aussie Millions Poker Trivia...

A number of Australia's have previously won the Aussie Millions. Interestingly, the last 2 champions were both Aussies and both ending up securing sponsorship with PartyGaming's PartyPoker.com We're talking about 2010 Champion Tyron Krost and 2009 Champion Stewart Scott.

Poker pro Van Marcus, currently in Melbourne for Aussie Millions, is the chap who has his red rare Ferrari nicked from the Crown valet parking last year, in a story that generated massive international headlines. In the past days Marcus has been seeing driving around Melbourne in what looks to be the same card, but this time reportedly with a hot blonde or brunette in the passenger seat. Hows the ride girls?

Next year, Network Ten Australia is interested to have the entire or a very comprehensive showing of the Aussie Millions tournament broadcast on one or both of their TV channels. The network currently has Network Ten and Eleven. James Packer, big wig at Crown Limited and major shareholder at Network Ten and his army is keen to see Aussie Millions generate substantial TV coverage, and some at the network and casino think it may also lend itself to a reality TV show and or interactive gambling content, and we mean more than just satellite qualified steering only players from PartyPoker or Doyle's to Aussie Millions, if you follow our lead. Sounds like great business movies fellas.

Marketing and gaming advisers to James Packer have leaked that they see merit in having an Aussie Millions branded online slot game. They saw the popularity of Cleopatra and Sinatra in an online environment, and well as PartyGaming's World Poker Tour slot in land based casinos. They have not confirmed a Kerry Packer themed slot game, with some concerns it may be a uncomfortable proposal for one or two of the Packer family, however many punters and insiders think that Kerry would have loved the idea, and further would have loved the concept that a slot game will his likeness via tribute slot would actually make Crown Limited money. PartyGaming, WMS and IGT are keen to talk turkey with Crown Limited with their online plans, which may also compliment what's in store for the further development of Packer 50% owned Betfair. Who is tipped to the the contract? We think PartyGaming, based on their strong US land based casino deals, ink still drying over the last few days, but you will just have to keep watching the space.

The first Aussie Millions was held in 1998 with a $1,000 buy-in and $74k prize pool and 10 international participants mainly from New Zealand. Since then, the tournament has grown year on year, to now be a major event if not the major event (Aussies think so) on the international poker tournament circuit, and a 'must do' for any serious poker player.


Crown Limited and Network Nine powers that be - your throw of the dice. No bluff!


Online Casinos, Online Poker and Sports Betting...

Ok readers, we hear you... you also want to know some of the best places to play online (that accept Aussies) if your in or around the Asia Pacific - Australia (including Tassie) and New Zealand, so here it is...

PartyCasino.com

Captain Cooks Casino

Betfair (sports betting only)

PKR.com (poker, slots including Marvel slot games and sports betting)

PartyPoker.com (online poker at one of the world's most respected poker rooms and gaming brands)

Profiles

Australian Casinos

World Casino Directory

Global Gaming Directory

Casino Travel

Casinos

Australia

Media Man and Gambling911 remind our readers to keep the following in mind:

Take the time to research and learn games before placing down money

Media Man, Casino News Media and Gambling911 are website portals. Not casinos as such, however are recognised as world leading websites that cover the sector and act as central points to games, news, reviews and more.

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. Gaming is just one of a dozen sectors covered

*the writer owns shares in Crown Limited and Ten Network Holdings

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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

PartyGaming stages a US comeback - 26th January 2011

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The International Gaming Exhibition, the most comprehensive and international business-to-business (b2b) gaming exhibition on the world stage, got underway in Earl's Court yesterday.

It's one of the most important dates on the calendar for any company active in the online, mobile, betting, bingo, casino and street gaming sectors.

They just have to be there to show their wares and hopefully drum up millions of pounds worth of business.

Whispers from the exhibition suggests that Gibraltar-based PartyGaming (1.8p easier at 190.6p), which is soon to merge with Austrian gaming group bwin to become the world's largest gaming group, has pulled off a coup on the first day of the three-day event.

It has signed a lucrative b2b deal with one or even two Big Daddy US casinos - Boyd Gaming, MGM, Las Vegas Sands and Caesars - to provide them with an online poker platform for the US market when it is finally regulated.

PartyGaming has often said it will be ready to re-enter the US games online market via such agreements once regulation allows, in the state or federal level.

New Jersey and California are two states that have made progress towards online gambling regulations.

Leisure analysts believe other states will follow and companies such as PartyGaming will gain some of the licences. The US is the top online gaming market in the world.

Many European players, including PartyGaming, withdrew form the market after the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act was created in 2006.

PartyGaming have since settled a legal dispute with the US and is raring to return to the US once regulations are installed.

Rival online gaming group 888 Holdings shed 1.75p to 47.75p. It has yet to strike a deal with US authorities to give it immunity from prosecution over its activities in America prior to the industry being outlawed in 2006. Nevertheless, it has been holding prolonged takeover talks with Britain's biggest bookmaker, Ladbrokes, 0.7p off at 130.3p.

The odds on an early rise in UK interest rates lengthened considerably following shock news of a 0.5pc contraction in fourth-quarter gross domestic product, much worse than the positive 0.5pc that the market expected. The Footsie lost an initial 20 point gain to trade 39 points lower before closing 'only' 26.14 points down at 5,917.71.

Charles Davis, economist at the Cebr, said: 'The data point to a complete loss of momentum-in the recovery at the end of the year. It is too early for the Bank of England to be thinking about interest rate rises despite inflation remaining above target. We expect rates will remain on hold at 0.5pc until 2012 and have not ruled out additional quantitative easing as fiscal tightening takes hold in earnest this year.'

Luxury goods retailer Burberry strutted its stuff with a gain of 33p to 1063p. It recently forecast full-year profits at the top end of market expectations after beating analysts' expectations with a 27pc leap in third-quarter revenue.

Finally convinced that the recent hefty share price rise has been nothing more than a mega bear squeeze ahead of next week's results, punters sold online grocer Ocado 11p lower to 227.6p. Rumoured bidder Wm Morrison dipped 2.9p to 264.7p.

Growing concern about the UK economy and continuing fears about a possible major government upheaval of the banking sector left the part-nationalised Lloyds Banking Group down a further 1.9p to 63.14p.

Despite bullish comments from broker Oriel Securities, Taylor Wimpey cheapened 1.38p to 35.89p. The broker recommends TW and is overweight on the housebuilding sector. It believes 2011 will be a more stable year for the UK housing market than 2010. Without the distractions of a General Election and a Comprehensive Spending Review it reckons a sense of normality will return to the market.

A positive trading update showing a robust order book worth £12bn and a growing new business pipeline valued at £6bn, helped Babcock International climb 8.5p to 579.5p. Investec has a sum-of-the-parts target price of 650p a share.

Forbidden Technologies added 3.5p at 33.5p after signing an agreement with global systems integrator Ericsson which will allow Ericsson to build Cloud services running Forbidden's FORscene video editing platform.

Plus-quoted Oracle Coalfields jumped 8pc to 10.625p. The coal developer and explorer has a 1.4bn tonne coal resource of lignite coal in the South Eastern desert of Singh Province, Pakistan. Interest in the stock has increased because of the potential Indonesian coal export ban and the floods in Australia.

Hand-held computer group Psion lost 5p to 94.5p after warning that it will post an operating loss for 2010 because of foreign exchange losses.

The board forecast that operating losses would be in the region of £1.5m to £2.5m but it remains confident of strong growth in the current year.

It also reported that French software services group Atos Origin had placed a €1.2m order for its rugged Workabout Pro 3. (Credit: Google News, Wires)

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Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Media Man - Casino News Media - Global Gaming Directory: News Update

PartyCasino Wins Media Man 'Online Casino Of The Month' Award

Online gaming companies in for huge 2011

Online Gaming Heating Up in Australia

Crown Aussie Millions; James Packer Special

Running out of Internet Addresses: We Were Right

Tingle: 3D Movies And Slot Games Not Dead Yet

Tingle: Australian Underbelly History and the Anti Pokie Song

Aussie Celeb News; James Bond Casino Icon Connection

Real Life Underbelly in Sin City Sydney

Australian Gambling: Deals, Art, Politics And Vice

Australian Gambling On Pre-Commitment Pokies: Lovers vs. Haters

International Gaming Technology vs. Aristocrat Leisure Legal Battle Ensues

Australian Casino Tourism Smoking Hot Report

Gambling On Australia's Anti-Money Laundering Counter Terrorism Hit List

Tingle: Australian Gambling Regulation Won't Wipe Out Problem Gambling

Australia To Get Sports Stadiums Branded By Gambling and Gaming Companies

Australia Pokie and News Media Wars for January 14, 2011

Australia Remains In Top 10 For Gambling

Australian Pokies Saviour Or Villain; Lovers VS Haters

Crown Casino Refuse Jackpot Payment; ClubsNSW VS PokieAct

Lasseter’s Hotel Casino Getting Tough On Violent Drunks

Australian Kids Copy Parents Gambling Habits

Aussie Media Man Talks Domain Names: Gambling.com, Poker.com.au

Australian Casino, Sporting And Gambling Round Up – January 8

Brendan Fevola Released From Jail: Adelaide Clubs Get Tough On Gambling

Costigan Commission Going After Kerry Packer

Australian Land Based Casinos Rank Among The Best In The World?

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Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Australian Casino Tourism Smoking Hot Report, by Greg Tingle - 18th January 2011

G'day punters, journos, high rollers - casino whales, entertainment news junkies, politicians, insiders, outsiders, legal eagles... one and all. Today we cover the subject of Australian casinos tourism, smoking policy in Aussie casinos, pubs, hotels and the like, and what it all means to the Australian bottom line. We've also got a bit of Aussie sports and gaming news gossip and more. Media Man and Gambling911 with another fair dinkum Aussie style report maties...

Gambling On Australian Tourism: Casino Sector Important To Down Under...

Tourism operates in a globally competitive market and is experiencing tough conditions, but things are on up upswing. Tourism operators who focus on key strengths and niche areas, be it the casino tourism or sex tourism sector are performing better (pardon the pun) than most.

A current trend is that Aussies are still heading off overseas, and the good news for the casino sector is the Macau, the Philippines and also Las Vegas are still pulling in the punters for their style of casino entertainment.

Currently, the equivalent of 30.2% of the population is taking an overseas trip each year, and this may rise to about 50% by 2015-16. To become more competitive, the Australian tourism industry needs to recognise this trend. A more aggressive approach could be taken in the international travel market to attract more visitors and improve industry revenue and profit growth.

Domestic tourism accounts for roughly 75% of total industry revenue. While trip growth will remain low, expenditure will rise gradually, particularly as business and corporate travel rebounds. Operators are set to continue to discount tourism products to maintain cashflow.

It is projected that the Australian tourism industry will generate $84.2 billion in revenue during 2010-11, which represents real growth of 2.3% over 2009-10. However, Australia will continue to lose its share of the global international traveller market, as many new destinations emerge.

In the coming years the industry is expected to experience ongoing bloody tough competition in most areas, particularly in the domestic and international airline industries, as discounted tickets continue to dominate passenger air travel markets.

The introduction of expanded domestic services by discount airlines, such as AirAsia, provides increasing opportunities to expand tourism in Australia. Airfare competition for Qantas and United Airlines on the Pacific route to the United States has escalated significantly with the introduction of services by Virgin Airlines and US operator Delta since mid-2009. The industry will be negatively affected by the trend in the accommodation industry towards fragmentation, however, as travellers shift their preferences towards serviced apartments and other smaller styles of accommodation. The increasing ageing of the population may see some rising demand for newer forms of purpose-built, long-stay and comfortable accommodation in major tourist regions, which will benefit the industry.

It is expected that there will be far fewer traditional shopfront travel agents, particularly independent ones, as the online travel information, booking and payment revolution becomes part for the course and just the way its done for most travellers by 2015-16.

Casino And Gaming...

Growth in gaming-linked establishments is tipped to take a dive as the proportion of disposable income allocated to gaming, betting and gambling et al continues to decline.

Australian Casinos List...

Punters, we know your just begging to get your current Australian land based casino hotspots back on file, many of which are massive tourist attractions, so here it is...

New South Wales
Star City Casino (Sydney)

Victoria
Crown Casino (Melbourne)

Queensland
Conrad Treasury Casino (Brisbane)
Jupiters Hotel & Casino (Gold Coast)
Jupiters Townsville Casino (Townsville)
The Reef Hotel Casino (Cairns)

South Australia
Skycity Adelaide (Adelaide)

Western Australia
Burswood Entertainment Complex aka Burswood Casino (Perth)

Tasmania
Wrest Point Hotel Casino (Hobart)
Country Club Casino (Launceston)

Australian Capital Territory
Casino Canberra (Canberra)

Northern Territory
Lasseters Hotel Casino (Alice Springs)
Skycity Darwin (formerly MGM Grand Casino) (Darwin)

Media Man International Profile On Australia
http://www.mediamanint.com/profiles/australia.html

Tobacco Industry VS Government Wars: Australian Sinners Key Target...

The tobacco industry has launched a fresh and "backdoor" type attack on legislation to make plain packaging of cigarettes compulsory, using a regional FTO (free trade agreement) to which Australia is expected to sign up to.

Tobacco giant Philip Morris has used Australia's plain-packaging laws, set to come into effect next year, to debate the need for "investor state" provisions in the upcoming Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. This would basically facilitate companies to sue member governments if they pass legislation curtailing business activities!

Thomas Faunce, an Australian Research Council future fellow at the Australian National University, called on the federal government to resist the inclusion of investor state provisions in the agreement. He said the provisions duplicated ground that had already been covered in the 2005 Australia-US free trade pact.

"Australia can rebut such attempts on the basis that they reopen the (free trade agreement) negotiations where an investor-state clause was expressly excluded," Associate Professor Faunce wrote in a critique published today in the Medical Journal of Australia.

Negotiations on the trade agreement - between the US, Australia, New Zealand and six South American and south-east Asian countries - intensified last year and are expected to be completed in September.

In a submission on the proposed trade agreement to the US trade representative, Philip Morris cited Australia's plain-packaging laws among "initiatives of concern".

The company said it supported laws to reduce any harm caused by tobacco, but opposed "extreme and disproportionate regulation … which has the effect of violating international law and expropriating intellectual property rights".

Simon Chapman, a professor of public health at the University of Sydney, said the company's stance was consistent with the tobacco industry's history of attempting to use trade agreements to defeat individual countries' health laws.

"It's yet another sign of the degree to which the industry will go to to defeat and delay any measure that will actually work (to cut smoking rates)" he said.

The World Trade Organisation's Uruguay Round had established the right of countries "to put health considerations above international trade considerations".

Patricia Ranald, of the Australian Fair Trade and Investment Network, which advises on human rights, and the environment, said Australia would receive little export benefit from the treaty because the free trade agreement was already in place.

"What we want to say to our government is that we should negotiate about trade issues but not about social policies," Dr Ranald said.

Craig Emerson, the Minister for Trade, would not commit on excluding investor-state provisions from the trade pact, saying he was not prepared to make policy on the run.

But he said Philip Morris would be "whistling in the wind" if it tried to undermine national anti-tobacco laws.

The tobacco industry ie: smoking, has long been linked to other industries such as gambling (where punters often chase land based pokies where smoking is allowed), the sex and fetish industry, fashion (models smoke instead of eat correctly, not to put on weight) and motorsport (especially F1), but exposure of tobacco products on cars has been massively reduced - more than halved, over the past 5 years, with energy drinks like Red Bull picking up some of the slack.

Aussie Millions Update...

Crown Casino - Event 4: $1,100 No Limit Hold'em Shootout! The famous poker tournament is already 5 days in punters. An Aussie and a South African gent have got their gold rings.

The shootout format is the talk of the poker world, at least as far as Aussie Millions goes. To progress through to the next stage, a player must best all punters at their poker table in a shootout fashion. This is the virgin time a shootout tournament has been run at the Aussie Millions The jet setter pros have been arriving at James Packers' Crown Casino and world class poker room.

Names who appear to be lock ins include Annette '16' Obrestad, James Akenhead, Scott Montgomery and Jonathan Karamalikis.

A 4th Aussie Millions gold ring is up for grabs, and more likely than not, within the next 48 hours we can report on who snatches it.

Aussie Test Side Visit To Crown Casino Just Not Cricket; Or Not?...

Ex crick test stars have defended Michael Clarke and Phil Hughes after visiting Crown Casino leading up to the ill fated match against the Pommies. Cricket Australia boss James Sutherland ridiculed the decision by vice-captain Clarke and Hughes to attend a 7.30am breakfast function at Crown Casino during the Boxing Day Test as "a supreme error of judgment". Immediate past Australian Cricketers' Association president Darren "Boof" Lehmann argued with Sutherland's media bashing advising it was "off the mark". "It was for charity and charities need as much as support as they can. I don't have a problem with it," said Lehmann. "Who is going to tell the charity that they are going to miss out on $20,000 or $30,000? I was disappointed with the criticism. It is wrong. As you have seen in Queensland over the past few weeks, there's more important things than a game of cricket." Dual World Cup winning batsman Lehmann advised attending a breakfast function had no impact on the pair's below-par batting in the crushing fourth Test defeat to England at the MCG. "I have done those breakfasts before Test matches. You literally walk in and sometimes only speak for 10 minutes and then you walk out. It is a big hoo-ha that doesn't affect the players but does make a big difference to the charity." Clarke and Hughes are also being called to account re an alleged drinking session at Melbourne's World Bar the evening before Australia was bashed by an innings and 157 runs. Ex Australian batsman Greg Blewett said players should be permitted to have a couple of beverages at night but it was safer to do it at the team hotel. "I am sure because they are losing people will pick on whatever they see as inappropriate behaviour," said Blewett. "I personally haven't got a problem with it, having a couple of beers after play, as long as they were not out to all hours. I guess that is why, even after a Test has finished, a lot of the guys now prefer to stay indoors at the ground or hotel and have a few beers as they don't know what will be happening with photos that end up on social networking sites."

Cricketers Drinking On Eve Before Ashes Defeat: Good Or Bad, Or No Difference?...

A second witness has come to light, leaping out of the shadows, claiming he witnessed Aussie cricketers Michael Clarke and Phil Hughes drinking at a Melbourne bar well into the night on the eve of their brutal Ashes series defeat at the MCG. A photo has surfaced of the cricketers posing with fans at The World Restaurant and Bar in Southbank, reportedly taken 12 hours before the Australian team took to the field on the 4th and final day of the Boxing Day Test. The outcome was England retaining the Ashes on Australian soil for the 1st time in 24 years.

National Leisure & Gaming Manager Appoints CEO - Director...

National Leisure & Gaming Ltd appointed Daniel Brady as chief executive officer (CEO) and a director on January 17, 2011. Brady has acted as the company’s general manager since the resignation of CEO and managing director Andrew Jolliffe in June 2010. He will receive a fixed remuneration of $272,500 per annum including superannuation and a bonus of $100,000 subject to performance conditions. He currently holds no shares in the company.

National Leisure & Gaming - snapshot

Price at 4:20 pm: 0.70c
Price change from previous trading day: 16.7%

Cairns' Reef Hotel Casino Host Benefit For QLD Flood...

The famous Reef Hotel Casino has announced welcome details of its Bring on The Sun Australia Day benefit to raise much-needed funds for Queensland's devastated flood victims. All money raised at the event on January 26 will go to the Premier’s Flood Relief Appeal, with the casino already pledging a generous $15,000 to boost up donations. The gambling den joins the many local businesses continuing to open their spirit and purses to raise funds for fellow Queenslanders in their time of need.
Entry is free to the event which will feature the city’s best female entertainers from 2pm until late, giveaways and fundraising activities including the humble Aussie sausage sizzle. Entertainment manager Bruce Stewart advised casino staff were looking forward to doing their part to help flood victims. "We actually have some staff donating their time to come in on Australia Day, including some of the management. There will be a roster of raffle sellers and sausage sizzle sellers, which is a really nice gesture from the staff. A lot of the entertainers are coming on board to donate their time and talent to raise funds." Cazalys Cairns is also encouraging businesses and residents to support their Cairns Gives Back: Flood Relief Appeal.
Marketing manager Maddy Ellis said the Red Cross had requested cash instead of food, clothing or linen. "So Cazalys is putting together a mega raffle that will run until Australia Day to raise money for the appeal," she said. "Prizes have been generously donated by local business." Tickets are $5 each or 10 for $45 and can be purchased from Cazalys reception, over the phone on 4054 1464 or online at the website. Ms Ellis said local businesses which wanted to donate prizes should contact the club.
Mareeba business Coffee Works will donate $1 from every purchase to flood victims.
"This isn’t pity money … it’s about new beginnings and putting out a helping hand to get people back on their feet," owner Annie Webber said. "I was in Brisbane for the 74 floods and I remember what it was like." Media Man and Gambling911 commend the great spirit of Australians who are chipping in to make a positive difference. A Media Man spokesperson said "In times of dire need Aussies are known for getting together to help out their fellow Aussies and mates. It reminds us of the Anzac spirit You put your life on the line and your own needs on the back burner to help our your mates in need. Media, mums and dads, construction companies, casinos, emergency services... folks from all walks of life are coming together to help each other see the devastation through. Aussies have see the light at the end of the the tunnel and are making significant progress to getting things back to normal".

Online Casinos, Online Poker and Sports Betting...

Ok readers, we hear you... you also want to know some of the best places to play online (that accept Aussies) if your in or around the Asia Pacific - Australia (including Tassie) and New Zealand, so here it is...

PartyCasino.com

Captain Cooks Casino

Betfair (sports betting only)

PKR.com (poker, slots including Marvel slot games and sports betting)

PartyPoker.com (online poker at one of the world's most respected poker rooms and gaming brands)

Profiles

Australian Casinos

World Casino Directory

Global Gaming Directory

Casino Travel

Casinos

Australia

Media Man and Gambling911 remind our readers to keep the following in mind:

Take the time to research and learn games before placing down money

Media Man, Casino News Media and Gambling911 are website portals. Not casinos as such, however are recognised as world leading websites that cover the sector and act as central points to games, news, reviews and more.

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. Gaming is just one of a dozen sectors covered

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Monday, January 17, 2011

The Bondi FM Cafe

The home of our broadcast studio since 18th July 2009, The Bondi FM Cafe is the first radio station/cafe/bar in Australia. The aim was to create a funky venue where music lovers can enjoy hearing and seeing the radio shows being presented live in the studio which is situated in the heart of the cafe. And it seems like we've achieved just that. Check out the 'Reviews' tab to find out what people are saying about it.

Station director, Russ Ayres, decided that Bondi FM needed to be in a public domain when he realised how many of the evening DJ's were having their own private parties in the studio, which, at the time was tucked away on the top floor The Bondi Hotel.

With the help of Nathalie Ayres, The Bondi FM Cafe concept was born. However, it took 6 years to find the perfect location that would enable to dream to become a reality. (Credit: Bondi FM)

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Monday, January 10, 2011

Crown Casino Refuse Jackpot Payment; ClubsNSW VS PokieAct, by Greg Tingle - 10th January 2011

G'day punters, journos, high rollers, politicians, insiders, outsiders... one and all. Media Man and Gambling911 with another hardcore news report hot off the desk...

Crown Casino Refuse Jackpot "Winner"; Wrong Rewards Card!...

Crown casino has thus far refused to pay out many thousands of dollars to an elderly mum (when she was found out to have used her daughter's loyalty card on the winning poker machine.) Crown leaks advise the lady won the 800,000 award points jackpot - worth $8000 grand last Friday but Crown management had told her she had in fact committed fraud! Crown also said the winning jackpot could not be converted into cash. The Crown Signature Club provides points for every dollar spent inside the casino, offering patrons rewards such as free parking, meals and hotel discounts. Folks, you have to read the fine print. Take it from us, its hard to beat Crown, and any casino house for that matter. They are smart cookies to say the least, and that's why Media Man owns some shares in them, and we're up front about it too, unlike some other media companies. Crown spokesman Gary O'Neill said the terms and conditions were made clear to everyone who signed up for the rewards program. "On each machine in that area, the rules of the jackpot are clearly stated, plus at the end of each row of the machines the terms and conditions are clearly explained and the vital term is you must be playing with your own card to be eligible to win," O'Neill said. "As far as we're concerned, the conditions are pretty basic and they're pretty straight forward: to be eligible to get the points you obviously have to have your card in the machine." O'Neill denied the jackpot could be converted into cash, despite a Crown staff member is rumored to have told the press the points could be converted at a rate of 1c a point. "The points go on to your card, it is not a cash jackpot. You don't get money for it." Folks, play by the rules or you could end up very disappointed.

Crown Limited AGM 2010 Recap; Crown Limited Earnings Up...

Folks, Crown is powering along. For those who missed it, and since Crown and 'Our James' remains the talk of the town...Australian casino operator Crown Ltd says revenue from its local gaming and hotels operations since the start of the financial year are up on same period in 2009. Combined gaming revenue from Crown's Melbourne and Burswood casinos between July 1 and November 24 was up abut six per cent on the same period last year, chief executive Rowen Craigie said. Craigie was speaking at the group's annual general meeting in Perth. Non-gaming revenue in the same period was up by about five per cent on the same period last year, excluding the impact of the newly opened Crown Metropol hotel in Melbourne. Including the Metropol, non-gaming revenue was up around 13% on the previous corresponding period, Mr Craigie said. He said turnover from VIP gamblers at the Melbourne and Burswood casinos in the first 21 weeks of the financial year was down 10 per cent on the same period last year. "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," Mr Craigie said in a prepared speech. The Metropol hotel, which opened in April, is achieving better than expected occupancy rates and room rates are "firming", he said. Melco Crown Entertainment, in which Crown holds a 33.5 per cent stake, has reported a "broad-based improvement" in the performance of its flagship resort City of Dreams in Macau, the meeting was told. Melco reported improved revenue and earnings in the three months to September 30 compared with the same period last year, Mr Craigie said.

ClubsNSW VS Pokie ACT!; PokieAct Fights Back; Some Documentation Now In Public Domain (Credit: PokieACT)...

Below is my response to an email received on Friday, 7 January around 4:30 in the afternoon. As a matter of professional courtesy, I responded to ClubsNSW's solicitors in the following terms on Sunday morning.

"I refer to your email below. I have not received either your letter nor notification of your letter from Australia Post. My email address is available on the PokieAct.org web site and has been used by the public to contact me.

Please note that because you have stated that your threatening letter is not for publication does not bind me in any way.

The advertisement you attached and commented upon has been revised in accordance with the requirements of Fairfax Media after some debate. To assist you, I have attached the revised advertisement. The revisions may eliminate your concerns.

I reject your suggestion that the advertisement makes any defamatory imputations about ClubsNSW or Mr Newell. There is no allegation that either have concealed anything nor mislead anyone. It is the normal business of ClubsNSW to advocate positions they believe to be in their member's interests and put forward those facts that support that position. In the advertisement, Mr Newell is clearly addressed as chairman of ClubsNSW and in no other capacity. ClubsNSW and Mr Newell as chairman and chief advocate for ClubsNSW are being urged to tell a number of facts that, in my opinion, I consider truths about the pokie gambling pre-commitment reform now being debated.

In substance, you raise four matters of concern to your client. These matters are considered below:

1.
The words you cite ("Casual gamblers won't be inconvenienced. They'll be able to bet safe amounts without a pre-commitment card") as not being presently established are, in fact, an accurate reflection of both the findings of the Productivity Commission and current government policy. Here's the relevant passage from the federal minister Jenny Macklin's speech at Jupiter Casino on 1 December 2010 where she states:

"We also want to minimise the impact on occasional players and overseas visitors. The Productivity Commission’s model would allow occasional gamblers to play outside the pre-commitment system, by purchasing a pre-paid card for example."

This statement was made at the 20th Annual Conference of the National Association for Gambling Studies and was widely reported in the media.

2.
The information about the cost of implementation was obtained as a result of visiting two clubs in Queensland in the company of Rohan Wenn, Senior Adviser to Sen Nick Xenophon. We were both informed by a club manager that the cost of the system in use was $1.50 per day per machine. This system presently provides nearly all of the features of partial pre-commitment as set out by the Productivity Commission. We were informed that alteration to full pre-commitment could be made within the existing pre-commitment system. The present cost of these systems does not take into account the likely economies of widespread adoption or competitive pricing between system suppliers when full pre-committment will be mandated. Those factors are likely to further reduce the cost.

3.
It is open for your client to advocate that the key recommendation and findings of the Productivity Commission about pokie gambling pre-committment are only "conjecture". I do not. I have a high regard for the Commission's research and conclusions. Reports have been published on pre-commitment trials indicating effectiveness that was significant. A report found that for those participating in the system, there was minimal reduction in the pokie gambling spend for recreational and low risk gamblers whereas moderate risk or problem gamblers expenditure was reduced by about 50%. I regard that as significant. In any event, the advertisement prominently indicates that it expresses my opinions. My opinion is reasonably based upon available information.

4.
With regard to the issue of privacy, I again refer to the Minister's speech where Ms Macklin states:

"We will also ensure that the pre-commitment system has very strong privacy arrangements for the data that is collected. The Australian Government has strict privacy legislation to protect people. These are issues that have been successfully resolved in a wide range of areas and we will be applying the highest standards to our gambling reforms."

To speculate that the government will do the complete opposite of what they state is disingenuous. My view is that the Minister is telling the truth.

To indicate that I have any malice whatsoever towards Mr Newell is mistaken. The advertisement addresses Mr Newell strictly with respect to his office as chairman of ClubsNSW. In fact, on the issue of malice, the opposite seems to be the case. Mr Newell declined to attend a meeting with Sen Xenophon if I were to be present. I flew to Canberra and did meet with Mr Ball of ClubsNSW. While there was certainly a conflict of views between myself and Mr Ball, the meeting was cordial and I felt there was mutual respect.

Mr Newell has written an article denigrating my concerns in a ClubsNSW publication. He is recently reported as using the words "panic politics" to describe my endeavours. He is also reported as stating that I have made attacks on his family. This is untrue. As a former editor of the Illawarra Mercury with a high public profile career, I am surprised that, by your letter, Mr Newell seeks to suppress the publication of facts that, in my opinion, are truths of the coming pokie gambling pre-commitment reform even though they run counter to ClubsNSW position. Notwithstanding, I would be happy to meet with Mr Newell at a time and place of mutual convenience. I would welcome a constructive dialogue same as that which has lead to reforms in Woolworths Limited's own pokie policy. Woolworths is Australia's largest pokie operator. My constructive consultation on their gambling policy was publicly acknowledged at Woolworths' recent annual general meeting. My constructive work with Wesfarmers has also been acknowledged.

It is relevant to note the promotional document produced by ClubsNSW that featured former Treasurer Egan was produced while Mr Newell held office at ClubsNSW. That promotion addressed the person ultimately responsible for policy in a similar manner as my advertisement.

Regarding publication, I am informed that it was ClubsNSW itself that provided and therefor published the advertisement to The Australian. I am not responsible for the consequences of that publication let alone Mr Salusinszky's report. In fact, when asked by Mr Salusinszky whether I believed that Mr Newell had mislead ClubsNSW members I stated that he had not. As mentioned above, it is the normal business of ClubsNSW to advocate positions they believe to be in their member's interests and put forward those facts that support that position. In any event, Mr Salusinsky's report is a matter that you should properly take up with the publishers of The Australian based upon my information that it was your client that provided The Australian with a copy of my proposed advertisement.

It is significant that the editorial column of The Australian noted that a mature community debate was under way of pokie gambling pre-committment reform. This characterisation of the advertisement is correct.

Rather than litigation, I respectfully suggest that the better course of action for your client would be to arrange for a public discussion of the issue of pre-commitment reform. Sen Xenophon's staff have informed me that he would be prepared to participate in such an open forum."

Australia's Next Hot Poker Babe; Casino Babes And Media Babes Welcome...

Poker Babes, casino babes, media babes and such have long long a favorite of Media Man and Gambling911. Some poker brands started to pick up the ball (not balls) and run with it, with PartyGaming and Virgin Games touching of things just a tad risque, but now PokerStars is further raising the bar (so to speak). There is now an opportunity for an Australasian-based hostess to follow the PokerStars (.net) Asia Pacific Poker Tour in 2011 and report back all the excitement from each event, capturing every titillating and tantalising moment. Next year you could find yourself partying hard with the boys and girls of the poker tour, celebs and more. It’s not all just fun and games. There's also the bump and grind and travelling from hotel to hotel, give to give, trying you best to keep everyone happy (but there's only 1 of you). Yes, the money is pretty good and some wonderful tips can be garnered for those friendly, open minded and receptive. Yes, you have to work hard, but some say, Party Harder! Cocktails, fine dining, TV cameras, poker gossip, lots of money and fun. Bring your portfolio, career assets and show 'em what you have. If you've got it, flaunt it! Some production exp would be handy, but not required. Lots of on the job training too!!! Bring your passion for poker and party time, and have fun. You might just be the lass (or lad) they are looking for. Oh, check out the Media Man Poker Babes and Casino Babes portfolio. You know you want to. Let Jenny and the girls on the web Woo you, if you follow our lead. Work hard and play harder! Oh, last thing, this month the Media Man Poker Babe of the Month is meeting stiff competition. A 3 way tie thus far between PartyGaming's: PartyPoker's Kara Scott, Australia's Elle Macpherson (coming from nowhere) and Gambling911's Jenny Woo (for her brains and beauty, and ability to get the scoops with her tempting and crafty ways. Carrie Stroup is also making a late charge, and might be in line for the Media Man encouragement award!

Online Casinos, Online Poker and Sports Betting...

Ok readers, we hear you... you also want to know some of the best places to play online (that accept Aussies) if your in or around the Asia Pacific - Australia (including Tassie) and New Zealand, so here it is...

PartyCasino.com

Captain Cooks Casino

Betfair (sports betting only)

PKR.com (mainly poker and some casino and sports betting)

PartyPoker.com (online poker at one of the world's most respected poker rooms and gaming brands)

Profiles

Australian Casinos

World Casino Directory

Global Gaming Directory

Casino Travel

Casinos

Australia

Media Man and Gambling911 remind our readers to keep the following in mind:

Take the time to research and learn games before placing down money

Media Man, Casino News Media and Gambling911 are website portals. Not casinos as such, however are recognised as world leading websites that cover the sector and act as central points to games, news, reviews and more.

Readers... er, punters, how did you like our report? How did you see in the new year? Do you like the poker babes and casino babe feature? Is Crown Casino right or wrong in encouring there terms and conditions? 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. Gaming is just one of a dozen sectors covered

*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited

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Friday, January 07, 2011

Australian Media Man Head Talks Domain Names, by Greg Tingle - 6th January 2011

G'day punters, entrepreneurs, gambling and casino tycoons, journalists... one and all. Today we explore the world of internet domain names. We look at both generic and general domain names as well as those in the news media, entertainment, adult and gambling sector. Media Man and Gambling911 give you the heads up on domain names so you can try to make heads or tails of all the domain name news and gossip currently doing on down under in Australia and everywhere else in the internet universe.

All of this fuss about internet domain names. Well, your reading about it on either Gambling911 or Media Man Int, two very strong domain names and companies, if there ever was.

The week or so everyone's been buzzing about domain names Gambling.com and now Poker.com.au So, just how good are the names, how much is hype, speculative, and how much is of substance and lets call it "real big business", and will deliver profits and return on investment.

MediaManInt.com Says Gambling.com Is High Risk; Name Already Lost Money In Past!...

The internet domain name www.gambling.com, owned by a Pommie casino group, is up for auction and it don't come cheap.

Introducing Media Corporation, which would you believe paid a massive $US20 million ($19.8 million) for the domain in May of 2005 and earned a cool $US5.5 million from advertising on the website a year later, hopes to fetch more than $US10 million for the name.

The domain name's depreciation in value is largely due to a ban on internet gambling in the United States in October 2006. In some other counties such as Australia and New Zealand, some legal eagles talk of "grey areas" (which are legally untested).

It's worth pointing out that for the record our Media Man Int is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. We cover over a dozen different vertical markets including news, political, travel, lifestyle, technology, community, property, entertainment, a wee tad of adult (and games... both land based, video games and online).

As well informed readers might have picked up on, many industries are intertwined. Many brands such as Marvel Entertainment, Sony, News Corporation and yes, Media Man, have a number of business arms. Marvel has books, comics, lunch boxes and super hero costumes. They are pump out DVDs and even new release blockbuster movies. And, who has not heard of Marvel slot games, which can be found across the Media Man website network. Companies such as PartyGaming, Virgin, Playtech and Centrebet feature the branded Marvel games. The games from Marvel are often featured on website portals. See how it gets complicated. Back to matters at hand, no, Marvel.com is not for sale, not is Marvel - they are owned by Disney. Yes, the company famous for Mickey Mouse and friends.

Gambling, sex and the internet go head in hand, pardon the pun.

The porn friendly nation of Germany is home of tech giant and domain name firm, Sedo. It was Sedo in fact that arranged for the sale of www.sex.com for a record $US13 million last November and its now having a crack and flogging gambling.com, pushed along with a big of media buzz by Media Man and Gambling911 we might add! An ambitious reserve price of $US9 million has been set, but how many genuine takers are out there in a financial climate which is pretty depressed, or as they say in Australia, up the shit.

The actual word "gambling" is ranked No. 1 by out friends at Google via searches and the gambling.com site gets more than 300,000 hits each month which is pretty impressive.

Gambling.com yes, a great name, but what's it worth? The market will decide and your can bet your bottom dollar that the Media Man Network and Gambling911 newshounds will be following up in hot pursuit.

Australian Poker Domain Name Sells For $100,000; Good Or Bad Value Compared To CasinoNewsMedia.com and MediaMan.com.au...

The attractive Poker.com.au domain sold for $100,000 less that 24 hours ago, but experts are saying the price tag was reduced thanks to complex online gambling laws down under in Australia.

The Aussie domain name market has continued to heat up with Poker.com.au selling for $US100,000. However some industry experts reckon the names value may have been reduced because of Australia's restrictions on online gambling.

Legislation released a decade or so ago "restricts" the advertising of interactive gambling services in Australia. David Nye, who runs domain name auction house NetFleet, says the laws means Poker.com.au has sold for considerably less than it would have otherwise.

"There is a Canadian equivalent, Poker.ca, that sold for $400,000 last year. Now, Canada has one-and-a-half times the population of Australia and that site commanded a price much, much higher. One of the aspects involved in all of this is the legislation, and the legislation specifically prohibits the advertising of online interactive gambling. In theory, you cannot have an Australian website advertising these interactive gaming services, and the fines are large."

The current laws also state that it is illegal for any online gambling site to offer services to Australians located in the country...but the current law does not make it a criminal act for Australians to engage in these services.

The Australian Government has even restated last year that it would not lift the restrictions, despite a Productivity Commission report recommending the restrictions should cease.

Nye says that if interactive gambling advertising were allowed in Australia, "you might see prices that were worth 10 times the amount... the legislation has obviously deflated the price".

The poker domain name has been purchased by sports gambling company 888, which operates various gambling - (poker, casino and sports betting) websites internationally and sports Shane Warne as an ambassador. So far, the company hasn't used Poker.com.au for any new service but the website states that "a seriously exciting new poker revolution" is "coming soon".

Nye points out that online gambling is one of the most lucrative practices on the internet, and that continued government opposition to liberalised gambling laws will keep prices down.

"There is huge money in online poker. Some of these poker rooms are bringing many thousands of dollars," he said on the record.

But the Government hasn't budged from its position, with communications senator Stephen Conroy saying last year that the online aspects of the Interactive Gambling Act 2001 wouldn't be changed, in fact going against the Productivity Commission's recommendations.

"The Australian Government does not agree with the Productivity Commission recommendation that the Australian Government amend the Interactive Gambling Act 2001 to allow for a liberalisation of online gambling, starting with allowing the provision of online poker games to Australians. The existing rules will continue to apply," the senator went on record with last year.

A Media Man Int spokesperson said "The Australian government needs to get up to speed with the rest of the world. It reminds me a bit like the Wikileaks saga of which Prime Minister Julia Gillard said was illegal, which is complete B.S. The Australian punters and business folks alike are sick of all the B.S and spin coming from the government. The internet is a global industry. Most domain names are dot coms. Most companies in this space have a global presence, global marketing, business and media plan. The world is their audience, whether the founder or director of a companies is a Canadian, American, Australian, South African, Indian or New Zealand resident. It shouldn't matter. The internet is global period, as so is online casino, poker and sports betting. We even have a Casino Legal section on our websites which cover off on some of the legal and technical stuff, but its all pretty complex, and the United States seems to head up much of the confusion, followed by Europe. Someone needs to help the Australian government get with the 21st century".

Now, get this...some have even called for even stricter regulations on the industry. Australia's Independent senator Nick Xenophon said in a submission to the Productivity Commission that the recent arrival of sites such as Betfair, which "allows for an expansion of gambling by virtue of the product that is offered", highlights the need for a more "comprehensive regulatory approach".

Senator Xenophon is currently not returning the calls of Media Man.

Our switched on friend Nye advised the issue is timely given the domain name industry is heating up and approaching red hot, if not white hot levels.

Onto other industry sectors, given Media Man covers basically all of them, it was just last month that retain giant Woolworths (also involved in gambling) purchased Hardware.com.au for $33,000, and Nye expects Electricity.com.au...which just came back on the market – to sell for around $50,000!

"The theory of relaxing these laws is that you're allowing access to poker rooms, you're getting tax revenue which could be in the realms of hundreds of millions per year, and you can regulate the industry. This is one of the most lucrative areas on the internet... but the legislation means the price is lower than it would have been overseas."

For the record, Media Man International is not currently looking to sell any of their domain names in a portfolio which spans of 25 names, many of which are gold and listed on very high ranking website portals and measuring sticks like Hitwise. Media Man has done media coverage and b2b for firms such as Messages On Hold, PartyGaming, Virgin, James Packer's Betfair and Crown Casino, and also Centrebet and Betezy, DGM Affiliates, and more! Oh, readers, if you have what you think is a very attractive offer you can let us know, but don't loose any sleep if we don't get back to you overnight. Still, you have to be in it to win it, so let us know what's on your mind.

Media Man International Profile On Australia
http://www.mediamanint.com/profiles/australia.html

Online Casinos, Online Poker and Sports Betting

Ok readers, we hear you... you also want to know some of the best places to play online (that accept Aussies) if your in or around the Asia Pacific - Australia (including Tassie) and New Zealand, so here it is...

PartyCasino.com

Captain Cooks Casino

Betfair (sports betting only)

PKR.com (mainly poker and some casino and sports betting)

Profiles

Australian Casinos

World Casino Directory

Global Gaming Directory

Casino Travel

Casinos

Australia

Media Man and Gambling911 remind our readers to keep the following in mind:

Take the time to research and learn games before placing down money

Media Man, Casino News Media and Gambling911 are website portals. Not casinos as such, however are recognised as world leading websites that cover the sector and act as central points to games, news, reviews and more. Media Man's Casino News Media covers casino news, reviews, games, multimedia and more.

Know the odds, set limits and 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. Gaming is just one of a dozen sectors covered

*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited

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