In the past, Bovada/Bodog has stubbornly resisted all calls to respect the country’s Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) of 2006, but now seems to have revised its usually defiant stance on the issue. As Kevin Horridge from casino.org, explains:  “It’s certainly an about-face from a company that has always dug in its heels in the face of anti-gambling legislation, stubbornly persisting in offering bets to Americans, despite federal legal threats and domain seizures.”  According to PokerScout, Bovada is currently the largest US-facing poker site with around 1,350 cash game players over a seven-day period, followed by Merge (425 players), Winning (260), Chico (260), and Equity (160). Bovada’s exit from Nevada therefore means its ex-customers will have to seek their poker action on the state’s most popular regulated online poker site, WSOP.com. However, they are likely to find the experience a lot less satisfying for now, as WSOP.com has just 140 players at any one time, while Nevada’s second site, Ultimate Poker, has just 60 players.  It is believed Bovada’s exit from six US states represents an attempt by the company to head off potential litigation from authorities further on down the line. It has been suggested Bovada may also be trying to limit the kind of damage done to its reputation as that experienced by such companies as PokerStars and Full Tilt.
PGRI Note: This is not an official legal opinion, but other news articles make the point that the Supreme Court declined to hear the case as opposed to ruling that states are in violation of federal law if they legalize sports-betting.  The distinction could be quite material, as it appears that NJ is proceeding with regulating and legalizing sports betting without a ruling from the Supreme Court.  That’s when the U.S. Dept of Justice will need to decide whether to sue the state of NJ to force them to prohibit sports-betting.  If that happens, then this case may be referred back up to the U.S. Supreme Court to settle this question once and for all.  At issue is whether PASPA, the federal law that prohibits sports-betting in all but four states, is constitutional and would be upheld in a court of law, with the ultimate court being the U.S. Supreme Court.
The lottery corporation now plans to offer a license to sites like Poker Stars, in return for lucrative income.  Loto-Québec accounts for only 10% to 12% of the online casino gaming market in Quebec, including poker and other gambling.    Montreal-based Amaya Gaming Group, which bought Poker Stars and Full Tilt Poker last week to $ 4.9 billion, could be the first company to receive such a license.  The company is already a supplier of Loto-Québec for devices in casinos. However, Marie-Claude Rivet says that talks with Amaya are still in their "infancy".
"As a member of the convenience store industry, I'm most concerned with the impact that the DOJ decision has had on the sale of lottery products," Lyle Beckwith, NACS senior vice president of government relations, told the online political news source. "Lottery tickets should not be sold interstate on the Internet. Those sales risk letting kids buy them, letting people gamble in states that don't want gambling, and pulling money and sales out of some states into others. … If Congress does not act to pass this legislation, states will open the floodgates to Internet gambling and it will become difficult or impossible to turn it back."   
PGRI Note:
Of course, NACS needs to resort to these ridiculous assertions and scare tactics.    Notice that none of the claims they make is true, that these are social issues that NACS members are not actually concerned about anyway, and that the actual concern of NACS members is not even stated here. NACS just wants to protect their distribution monopoly over lottery products.  Of course, they can’t say that because the U.S. Congress is not supposed to take legislative action to protect monopolies.  The U.S. Congress is not tasked with the job of denying the rights of consumers to buy online, they are not supposed to take legislative action to require that a product be made available only in retail stores because store-owners want to protect their distribution monopoly - The notion that NACS’ actual agenda is to pressure the U.S. Congress to intervene to prevent the natural disruptions in a dynamic market-place by protecting their monopoly and denying consumers the right to choose is not a political platform that would work.
PGRI Note: Classic case of politicians unwillingness to support Lottery colliding with their dependence on lottery funding to make the budget work.  And the lottery director being caught in the middle with the unenviable job of explaining the facts to politicians who prefer not to accept reality.  The interesting thing about this story is that it is being played out on the public stage.
Maryland casino revenue climbed nearly 10 percent in May , with the bulk of gaming coming from Maryland Live Casino. The state’s four casinos brought in $75.8 million during the month, up $6.6 million from $69.2 million in May 2012. Maryland Live, the state’s largest casino, generated $59.5 million, up 8.1 percent from $4.5 million a year before.
The chief sponsor of a bill that would have provided financial breaks to the casinos at a cost of more than $20 million says the measure will be amended before a Senate vote next week.
"Imagine if all those tickets had advertisements on them that could have raised revenue for New York state," she said. "That is less money we need from your pocket in taxes to run schools and colleges throughout New York. Everyone wins."  Michigan and Massachusetts both allow for ads on lottery and keno-style "quick draw" games, the lawmaker said.  Michigan estimates that the ads generated $45 million for state coffers in 2013.  A recent Gallup Poll on gambling in America found that 57 percent of American adults reported buying a lottery ticket in the past 12 months.  Ms. Savino has long advocated for government and authorities to produce revenue through advertising on their assets, including buses and bridges.
The province of New Brunswick has awarded a consortium comprised of GTECH Canada, T4G, New Brunswick Community College, and First Mobile Education, to develop a technology platform to deliver game content and features across a broad range of mobile and web-based devices and land-based gaming machines.
Mobile game revenue will grow by 38 per cent over the next two years as games developers change focus to zero in on increasing user lifetime value.  “Under the new strategy, which brings mobile analytics to the fore,  developers are increasing lifetime value through analysing, [re]engaging and monetising users, allowing for higher overall returns on investment,” read a release accompanying the report.   PGRI Note: Very interesting article re the future of Mobile gaming.
Specifically, the law firm will focus on support of a bill from Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) called the Restoration of America’s Wire Act, which would reverse a 2011 Justice Department decision that opened the door for states to allow the practice.   Las Vegas Sands Corporation wrote a draft bill prohibiting the games nationwide, which circulated around K Street.  The company owns multiple hotels in Las Vegas including the Venetian and the Palazzo, as well as resorts in Pennsylvania and Macao, China. In addition to the Keelen Group, the company has also hired five other lobbying firms this year to focus on anti-Internet gambling legislation.
We may learn on Monday, June 23 whether the Supreme Court will take up New Jersey’s case to legalize sports betting in the state, but state Sen. Ray Lesniak said racetracks could open wagering on games by football season even if the court declines to do so.  New Jersey is trying to overturn the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act – a law that restricts all but four states from sponsoring betting on sports, and one that is supported by the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL and NCAA.  Should the Supreme Court decide against hearing the case, Lesniak said he will push state lawmakers to sanction sports betting at New Jersey racetracks in time for the NFL season.





LOTTERY EXPO 2014

Co-Hosted by PGRI and the Florida Lottery  Eden Roc Hotel South Beach Miami, Florida Wednesday and Thursday, September 10 and 11
PLATINUM SPONSORS
                

Silver Sponsors
       
            

Exhibitors 
       

Lottery Expo Basic Agenda:
Conference Sessions to be held 9:00 am to 5:00 pm on Wednesday and Thursday, September 10 and 11
Receptions to be held 5:00 to 7:00 pm on the evenings of Tuesday, Weds, and Thursday, Sept. 9, 10, and 11
Luncheons and coffee breaks to be held on the conference days of Wednesday and Thursday
Friday: Networking Day

Limited Number of Rooms in our Block available from $199 Click here to reserve    - Rooms almost sold out call or email us if you get a sold out or rate over $199 and we will try to get you in.
Early Bird Vendor Conference Registration Click Here      Complimentary Government and Lottery Registration Click Here


Check out website www.PublicGaming.org for conference updates.Venue:  Eden Roc Miami Beach
Lottery Expo Conference Schedule (Notice that there are NO sessions on Friday.  Conference is on Weds and Thursday, and closes with the Reception on Thursday evening):
--  Tuesday September 9:  5:00 pm. Opening night reception
--  Wednesday, Sept. 10:  Conference Sessions followed by Reception at 5:00 pm.
--  Thursday, Sept. 11: Conference Sessions followed by Reception at 5:00 pm.
Our receptions traditionally end at 7:00 pm., so do not conflict with dinner plans. 

 LOTTERY EXPO 2014 Panel Discussion Topics :  

--  Maximizing Net Funds by balancing the mix of high and low margin products  Looking at how consumer products marketers apply category management principles to maximize sales of their high-margin products.  How do consumer products companies manage this systemic capitalist dynamic of finite product life-cycles, margin erosion, customer migration to lower-margin products, etc.?  What are the marketing principles that others apply to produce the optimal balance between high and low margin products, and use the consumer appeal of some products to drive traffic to others?   How does the consumer interact with the entire category of lottery products, what drives their behavior towards one set of product attributes over another, and how can Lottery appeal to those drivers such that we are channeling the maximum volume towards the high-margin products, and/or at least extracting maximum net profit from the category, etc.? 

-- Content Marketing is the provision of free content for the purpose of engaging the consumer who hopefully becomes a paying customer.  But it is also being used to build a deeper connection with your customer. Connecting Lottery with a new generation of consumers means thinking and feeling like them - and building relationships based on that emotional connection.  It’s about telling a story more than selling.  It’s about re-branding, re-shaping our image so that everyone feels that Lottery “is for people like me”, it’s about integrating digital technology and retail merchandising strategies so that we are talking with our customers rather than at them so that consumers embrace Lottery as part of who they are and want everyone to know it.  How is Lottery evolving its approach to create this emotional connection that drives sales? 

--  Multi-Jurisdictional Games, promotional campaigns, and marketing strategies   Creating truly national brands requires national advertising, marketing, promotion, and distribution.  Forging consensus among 44 + lotteries requires compromise, and the conviction that the goals are worth the effort.  Some might ask: Why should we do that when our markets are confined to the boundaries of our state - and our state statutes, gaming cultures, and consumer attitudes all vary from state to state, and certainly from region to region. Why is it so important for Lottery Directors to work hard to create nation-wide branding and promotional programs?  Multi-state initiatives provide economies of scale not achievable on an individual state basis. That is key to the TV Lottery Game Show.  How relevant is that to the calculus of cost/benefits/ROI for other factors like developing new games, and new promotional and branding initiatives?  What are some actionable ideas for additional nation-wide promotions and marketing campaigns?

--  Retail Modernization drives Lottery Modernization     Retail is changing.  What can Team Lottery do to make sure make sure that Retail Modernization results in increased sales of its products?  Merchandising and POS trends, demand for better data capture and analyses and reporting, transaction processing technologies, increased consumer options like self-serve and digital connections, cross-promotional marketing, adding entertainment value to the in-store shopping experience.  Integrating Retailer products into Lottery promotions, and vice-versa.  How can Team Lottery continue to modernize itself to take full advantage of these trends?   

--  The triumph of Traditional Lottery over i-gaming      The growth of casinos and casino-style i-gaming has flattened-out in the mature markets of Europe.  And sales are falling far short of projections in the U.S states that offer it now.  But not Lottery, which continues to grow. Additionally, casino-style gaming (both on-line and land-based casinos) is rife with intense competition that drives margins lower and lower.  Could the coming two years be the window of opportunity for Lottery to push harder than ever to focus on its strengths, its core competencies and products, and consolidate its position with the traditional games for the traditional lottery markets? The last few years have been witness to some major innovation. How can Team Lottery continue to build on that, add to the vitality and excitement and accelerate the rate of progress and innovation in Lottery’s traditional games? 

--  Leveraging the promotional power of the Internet to drive Retail sales       Is the real power of the Internet is as a promotional tool, much more than as a channel for distribution?  Marketing and promotional strategies are integrating the on-line and off-line worlds to drive sales at land-based Retail, leveraging the power of the Internet as a promotional tool to drive store traffic and lottery sales.    How are digital channels being used to generate maximum consumer engagement that results in increased sales at Retail? 

--  Decision-Driven Leadership: Exploiting the Abundance of Opportunity (or ... don't wait for a crisis to act)      The nation-wide approach to managing the multi-state games is not easy.  Forty four lotteries with different agendas need to manage the games together as one cohesive, unified body of decision-makers.  Creating nation-wide strategies for branding, promotions, advertising, distribution, and whatever else can be transplanted onto the national stage, could be the key to Lottery’s version of the “Next Big Thing."    What is the kind of governance structure that will drive effective decision-making and action? How can lotteries work together to act now to produce the results we need sooner than later in the multi-state gaming space?  

Conference website: www.PublicGaming.org  

Video-recording website: www.PGRItalks.com 

Public Gaming /Paul Jason - pjason@publicgaming.com   / Susan Jason - sjason@publicgaming.com  /Office Phone - + 425-449-3000  
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