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internationalcasinoreview
Sands linked to Venetian Madrid
Las Vegas Sands has been tentatively linked to a project in
News
Spain having reportedly sent directors to Ajalvir council near
Madrid. Local papers claim that Sands boss Sheldon Adelson,
is interested in opening a replica of the Venetian in Las Vegas
on land close to Madrid and that directors have been
analysing the feasibility of several locations.
INTERNATIONAL Two casinos are already operating near Madrid in
Torrelodones and Aranjuez.
Axe falls on casinos, slots and
jobs as crunch hits Olympic
The effects of the
Olympic GGR (€) % of Change Venues Slots Tables
credit crunch have
2008 Group on 2007
moved east with
Baltics based
operator Olympic
ESTONIA 43.6m 26.5 -14.3% 35 1,415 22
being forced to take
LATVIA 38.6m 23.4 -5.2% 33 1,112 36
evasive action and
LITHUANIA 25.1m 14.8 -7.9% 16 640 74
close a number of
casinos, more
UKRAINE 19.9m 11.9 +77.9% 24 1,138 25
closures are on the
POLAND 35.1m 19.6 + 50.0% 9 391 61
way too as 2009
pans out the same
ROMANIA 2.5m 1.5 - 9 344 -
as its financially BELARUS 2.2m 1.2 +172.4% 5 261 -
fraught predecessor.
SLOVAKIA 2m 1.1 - 1 61 11
The idea is for less
jobs, less hours, less
rent and less slots as
numbercrunching market average: during the The group’s operating mately nine per cent.” quarter 2009. As a result of
ESTONIA year the market share of OEG earnings were 135.9m On the plus side, Olympic this, the fixed costs related
the group looks to
increased from 42 per cent kroons in 2008 (E8.7m plans to significantly modify to the gaming tax will fall sig-
streamline to see out
With the gaming market in to 45 per cent in Estonia, euros), however, pre-income its casino entertainment nificantly. In addition, the
the Baltics contracting by from 15 per cent to 16 per tax loss for 2008 amounted concept by transforming group plans to shorten the
the storm.
twenty percent in the fourth cent in Latvia and from 51 to 446.1m kroons (E28.5m) most casinos that it operates opening time of several
quarter of 2008, a survival of per cent to 54 per cent in due to funding the cutbacks. into casino lounges. Venues casinos. Previously all
the fittest is being raged with Lithuania. Poland and Slova- Results in 2008 were will be given wider floor casinos operated by Olympic
slot halls as the weakest rev- kia provided the group with strongly affected by fluctua- areas where customers can Casino were opened 24
enues are being wiped out. its biggest gains in income. tions in foreign exchange spend leisure time without hours a day.”
Olympic Gaming, a master October was the most suc- rates with the Ukrainian gaming. In addition, the range The group is also looking
of expansion in previous cessful month for the Group grivna, the Polish zloty, and of products on offer in casino to reduce its rental costs of
years, has been forced to in 2008. the Romanian leu. bars will be expanded signif- property. At the end of 2008,
close ten loss generating slot During the year the Group The cut backs have carried icantly with a food menu the Group had 133 casinos,
halls, taking its total number implemented an extensive on so far this year. The group with favourable prices. The with a total area of 38,877
of gambling venues down to efficiency programme, stated: “In the first quarter first casino lounges comply- square meters. At the end of
133 in eight countries. closing 10 casinos with neg- 2009 Olympic reduced the ing with the new concept 2007 the number of casinos
Almost all the markets in ative cash flows and reduc- remuneration payable to will be completed at the was 122 and their total area
which the group operates ing its workforce by 288, employees by 20 per cent. beginning of the second was 33,828 sqm. Within the
are in strong decline, approximately seven per During the first quarter of quarter 2009. current year, 21 new casinos
meaning more closure and cent. 2009, we will additionally The axe will also fall on were opened and 10 casinos
job losses may be on the way. Olympic had to front cash close 15 casinos that have slot numbers. The group were closed. 15 casinos were
But in light of all this it is still to the tune of 17.7m kroons negative cash flows and con- stated: “In light of shrinking renovated, including four
keen to modify its offering (E1.1m) to oversee the cut- tinue to closely monitor the demand and with the aim of former Kristiine Kasiino’s in
with a series of changes to its backs and closures but is con- profitability of several other implementing a new Estonia, six former Baltic
casino concept. fident of a positive impact casinos. During the same concept, the group plans to Gaming casinos in Latvia,
In its latest set of financial on earnings in 2009, when it period, the number of group reduce the number of slot four former Eldorado casinos
results, Olympic said it had is hoping to save 166m employees will decrease by machines in most of its in Ukraine and one casino in
managed to outperform the kroons or E10.6m 356 positions or approxi- casinos during the first Poland.
New forum for UK casinos
Casinos
Adam Thomas Vega, who
worked at the Desert
warned
Diamond Casino in Arizona
as a slot attendant, is due to
phoenixforum support and information to is the forum’s new director.
UNITED KINGDOM British casino operator
over
be charged after pleading
Forum members currently guilty to stealing
members covering national include Genting UK, LCI, US$644,422, the biggest
UK casinos have a new repre- and international matters.” Aspers Group, Ladbrokes, Cler-
sentative body, the National The statement continued:
Arizona
employee theft in Arizona
mont Leisure and Las Ambas- casino history.
Casino Industry Forum, estab- “NCIF’s aim is to offer sharply sadeurs, as well as other
lished on 1 April. It steps into focused working forums that organisations that provide
jackpot
He fraudulently obtained
the passwords of supervi-
the recently vacated shoes of have respected representa- services to the sector.
the British Casino Associa- tive voice for the casino indus- The inaugural NCIF Opera-
scam
sors and generated 585
jackpot tickets in amounts
tion, which ceased trading at try, building strong tions Forum meeting is being ranging from $100 to
the end of March when its relationships with other held towards the end of April desertscam $1,199. Vega had kept the
chairman Lady Penny industry operators and stake- and will bring in industry com- UNITED STATES amount under $1,200 to
Cobham stood down. holders including the Gam-
Tracy Damestani, director of
the new National Casino
pliance and operations execu- avoid generating a federal
According to the statement bling Commission,
Industry Forum
tives together with Casinos have been warned tax withholding form. He
announcing its inception: government departments, representatives of the UK’s off the latest scam to come avoided paying around
“NCIF will provide forums for gambling industry advisory gambling industry links.” Gambling Commission. out of the United States $205,077 in taxes and could
the discussion of casino indus- charities and local authori- Tracy Damestani, erstwhile A Strategy Forum aimed at involving fraudulently gener- be jailed for up to 20 years
try specific topics, technical ties, as well as strong cross- projects manager for the BCA, CEOs is to follow. ated jackpot override tickets. and fined $1m.
2 May 2009 • internationalnews
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