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The WEEK in REVIEW
A Weekly Snapshot of the Top Lottery and Gaming News Stories





Vol. 79 No2- Monday April 10, 2017


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IGT Spotlights Next-Generation Technologies at Indian Gaming Tradeshow & Convention 2017

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LONDON, UK (April 4, 2017) -- International Game Technology PLC ("IGT") (NYSE: IGT) will showcase a diverse portfolio of solutions for its valued tribal gaming partners at the Indian Gaming Tradeshow & Convention (NIGA), April 11-13, 2017 in San Diego, Calif. IGT's theme "Innovation at Play" will represent the compelling mix of innovation, content and new player experiences that NIGA attendees can enjoy in the Company's booth 1035.

"IGT's commitment to tribal gaming extends deep into the history of the Company," said Renato Ascoli, IGT CEO North America Gaming & Interactive (DoubleDown Casino).

"At the Indian Gaming Tradeshow & Convention, IGT will present a diverse suite of solutions that is anchored in innovations that our tribal partners can leverage to differentiate their casino floors and drive play. Tribal casinos have been the first to adopt many pivotal gaming technologies over the years, which makes it even more exciting to spotlight IGT's next-generation solutions at NIGA such as SPHINX 4D, Cardless Connect, the S3000XL cabinet and PlaySpot."

IGT will showcase a range of premium solutions on new and proven hardware solutions:

  • The award-winning SPHINX 4D™ game on the CrystalCurve™ TRUE 4D™ cabinet offers a multi-sensory experience that enhances its glasses-free 3D technology. Mid-air haptic and gesture-based technologies enable players to touch and manipulate 3D objects emerging from the screen.
  • The Voice Video Slots on the CrystalCurve ULTRA™ cabinet delivers an immersive player experience. The game features popular songs and video footage from the worldwide TV hit series, bank-wide win celebrations, and a symbol set that features several The Voice Coaches from around the world including Blake Shelton, Adam Levine and Ricky Martin.
  • The Fort Knox® Diamond Vault® Video Slots, Fort Knox Cleopatra® Video Slots, and Harley-Davidson™ Video Slots games will be featured on the CrystalCurve™ cabinet. Boasting a 43-inch curved touchscreen display with ultra-HD 4K graphics, the CrystalCurve cabinet delivers pristine visuals and a dynamic player experience.
  • Themes from IGT's TRUE 3D™ product portfolio such as the ZUMA® 3D, Jurassic World™ 3D, and Return of the Sphinx® 3D games.
  • Wheel of Fortune® Gold Spin™ Triple Gold® Slots on IGT's large format mechanical reel MEGATOWER™ cabinet, which stands 11 feet tall and incorporates scaled-up design elements from the S3000® cabinet. IGT's booth will feature other Wheel of Fortune themes such as the Wheel of Fortune Wheel Across America California Coast slot game.
  • The Super Red Hot Jackpots™ four-level linked progressive game on the award-winning S3000® cabinet, available in three different themes. Jackpot 7s Slots, Sizzling 7® Slots and Double Sizzling 7s™ Slots put a new twist on the classic five-reel, 20-payline game.
  • The Megabucks® Double Gold game on the CrystalDual™ + Stepper cabinet is designed to deliver mega-sized jackpots and fully utilize the cabinet's intelligent mechanical reels and LCD top box.

 

IGT will spotlight a mix of innovative core cabinets and game content for the video and mechanical reel slots segments. NIGA portfolio highlights include:

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  • IGT's CrystalCurve cabinet with exclusive themes such as the Dreams of Egypt™, Star Rise™, Wild Fury™, and Dream Pool™ games. NIGA will be the first trade show where IGT will showcase the CrystalCurve cabinet with for-sale game content.
  • Majestic Gorilla®, King of Macedonia™, Lulu & Luigi® and Legend of Chang'e® on the CrystalSlant™ cabinet have all achieved "Proven Performer" status in the Company's global test bank process.
  • A variety of themes for the high-limit S3000 cabinet will be demonstrated, such as the Double Diamond® Pinball® and Lucky Rapid Pays™ games, in addition to the highly anticipated, commemorative Double Diamond Silver Anniversary game. The cabinet offers a more subdued lighting and celebrations package, and is backed by the S3000 cabinet's extensive content pipeline.
  • IGT's large format S3000 XL cabinet that is a colossal version of the Company's S3000 cabinet, features three oversized mechanical reels, and is designed to be compatible with the vast S3000 cabinet content library.
  • IGT will showcase its tournament capabilities by hosting spirited Spin Ferno® tournaments on the S3000 cabinet and Spin-Splosion! ® tournaments on the CrystalDual® cabinet. Both solutions are fueled by IGT's Tournament Manager product and give operators a turnkey tournament solution for single or multi-site slot tournaments.

 

In addition, IGT's booth will host a series of specialty gaming product such as:

  • The award-winning Cardless Connect™ mobile systems solution that can be embedded into a casino's mobile app. It enables players to initiate patron loyalty sessions using their mobile devices and seamlessly transfer funds from their existing player accounts -- eliminating the need for physical loyalty club cards and TITO tickets.
  • New IGT video poker titles such as the Ultimate X Spin Poker™ and Magic Deal Poker™ games.
  • IGT's award-winning PlaySpot™ mobile app solution which enables players to enjoy a variety of casino experiences such as live table betting on baccarat games from their mobile devices while at a casino property. The solution is compatible with IGT® systems such as Cardless Connect and IGT Advantage® casino management systems.
  • IGT's Dynasty Electronic Table Games (ETG) for live baccarat and roulette.
  • The Texas Tea® Pinball® game from IGT's Video Reel Edge™ (VRE) game family, featuring traditional video slot game base play and the choice of a free games bonus or skill-based bonus event, where performance influences their player bonus reward.

 

For more information, visit IGT or go to Facebook at facebook.com/IGT, follow us on Twitter, twitter.com/IGTnews or watch IGT videos on YouTube, youtube.com/igt.  Play IGT's DoubleDown Casino® app on Facebook or at doubledowncasino.com.

About IGT

IGT (NYSE:IGT) is the global leader in gaming. We enable players to experience their favorite games across all channels and regulated segments, from Gaming Machines and Lotteries to Interactive and Social Gaming. Leveraging a wealth of premium content, substantial investment in innovation, in-depth customer intelligence, operational expertise and leading-edge technology, our gaming solutions anticipate the demands of consumers wherever they decide to play. We have a well-established local presence and relationships with governments and regulators in more than 100 countries around the world, and create value by adhering to the highest standards of service, integrity, and responsibility. IGT has over 12,000 employees. For more information, please visit www.igt.com.

CONTACT:

Robert K. Vincent,

Corporate Communications, toll free in U.S./Canada (844) IGT-7452; outside U.S./Canada (401) 392-7452

James Hurley,

Investor Relations,

T: (401) 392-7190

Simone Cantagallo,

T: (+39) 06 51899030;

for Italian media inquiries

 

 

SOURCE: IGT.

 

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Nederlandse Loterij Rewards Initiative That Makes Netherlands Happier and Healthier with 50,000 Euros

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (April 4, 2017) -- Nederlandse Loterij (the Dutch Lottery) today introduced the 'Dutch Lottery Price Movement.

With this award Dutch Lottery awards an annual initiative which contributes to a happier and healthier Netherlands.

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The jury of the Dutch Lottery Movement Prize consists of a number of prominent Dutch representing different sectors in the field of sports, health, wellness and exercise.

Pieter van den Hoogenband - triple Olympic swimming champion and ambassador of Dutch Lottery - is jury president. The other jury members are Hugo Borst, which much acclaim for his manifesto Focusing on Elderly, Bibian Mentel - Paralympic champion snowboarding and Paralympic Athlete of the Year 2014 - and comedian Guido Weijers, who is currently touring the country with his "Master Luck."

“Dutch Lottery has a clear ambition: make the Netherlands happier and healthier. This new price makes this mission tangible and visible. To bring our contribution to the Dutch sport and charity, we want as many Dutch move and healthier. Because exercise is healthy. And those who feel healthy, is a happier person, "says jury chairman Pieter van den Hoogenband.

"We are very proud today to introduce the Dutch Lottery Price Movement. With this prize we award a special initiative each year contribute to a happier and / or healthier Netherlands. Because every year put countless enthusiastic and involved in Dutch for those who could do with this help, "explains Niels Onkenhout, CEO of Dutch Lottery.

"With the price as much as possible, we hope to encourage people and organizations to report on their initiatives in the field of health and exercise. The winner receives a bronze sculpture and a cash prize of 50,000 euros.”

SOURCE: Nederlandse Loterij.

 

 

Gambling Commission Remind Fairground Operators to Follow Gaming Machine Rules

BIRMINGHAM, UN (April 3, 2017) -- As we approach Easter, fairground operators are being advised by the Gambling Commission to ensure they follow the rules for buying, maintaining and operating gaming machines.

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Given that the Easter break is the traditional start of season for fairground operators, we are reminding them to brush up on the rules for gaming machine – and comply - ahead of any compliance checks carried out by local licensing authorities.

Key points to remember are:

  • Low-stake (category D) fruit machines can be made available at fairgrounds along with coin pushers and crane grab machines
  • Higher stake gaming machines (category B and C), like those typically played in arcades and pubs, are not permitted
  • Fairground operators must source all their machines from Gambling Commission licensed suppliers
  • All employees working with gaming machines must be at least 18 years old.

 

An easy to print quick guide to the rules for fairgrounds is available on our website, as well as details of the stakes and prizes for category D machines.

SOURCE: Gambling Commission.

 

 

Now “Close Enough” is Good Enough to Win with PICK 2™ AND PICK 5™ 1-OFF®

250 Additional Ways to Win!

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TALLAHASSEE, Florida (April 3, 3017) -- The Florida Lottery’s exciting play type, 1-OFF®, is available on PICK 2™ and PICK 5™ purchases beginning today! With 1-OFF now available on all Florida PICK games, players have 356 more ways to win! The 1-OFF play type allows you to win by matching the winning numbers exactly or by being “1-OFF” any or all winning numbers.

PICK 2 1-OFF players have nine chances to win. Players who match their two numbers in exact order, or Straight order, win $25. Or, they have eight other ways to win $3, if their numbers are off by one higher or lower from the winning number.

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PICK 5 1-OFF players have 243 chances to win. Players, who match their five PICK 5 numbers in exact order, or Straight order, win $25,000. Or have 242 other ways to win if their numbers are off by one higher or lower on any or all of the five digits. The 1-OFF prizes range from $75 - $500 depending on if they are off by one, two, three, four or five digits.

New PICK 2 and PICK 5 playslips are now available at retail locations statewide. All 1-OFF plays cost $1. PICK 2 and PICK 5 drawings will continue to be held twice daily, seven days per week, at 1:30 p.m. and 7:57 p.m. Eastern Time. 

PICK 2 and PICK 5 winning numbers, for both midday and evening draws, are available on the Florida Lottery website, at retail locations statewide, and by phone at (850) 921-PLAY. For more information, please visit www.flalottery.com.

ABOUT THE FLORIDA LOTTERY

The Florida Lottery is responsible for contributing more than $31 billion to education and sending more than 750,000 students to college through the Bright Futures Scholarship Program.

The Florida Lottery reinvests 98 percent of its revenue back into Florida's economy through prize payouts, commissions to more than 13,000 Florida retailers and transfers to education.

Since 1988, Florida Lottery games have paid more than $52.4 billion in prizes and made more than 1,900 people millionaires. For more information, please visit www.flalottery.com.

CONTACT: Florida Lottery Communications, T: (850) 487-7727

SOURCE: Florida Lottery (www.flalottery.com).

 

 

Lottery Launches New Operating System

North Carolina (March 29, 2017) -- Lottery tickets sales and games all across North Carolina are up and running this week on the newest technology in the lottery industry after the N.C. Education Lottery completed a conversion to a new operating system.

The conversion completes a year-long effort by the lottery and its gaming vendors to install a new operating system and instant ticket services. The system provides the technical infrastructure that supports the lottery games and allows lottery tickets sales and payments of prizes to occur simultaneously at more than 6,850 retailers across North Carolina. Until now, the lottery ran on its first operating system that was installed 11 years ago.

This big change is transparent to most lottery players, but it’s exciting to get new technology to support our games and ticket sales,” said Alice Garland, executive director of the lottery. “This will allow the lottery to work more effectively and efficiently with retailers and provide more engaging games for players. Having more effective and efficient lottery operations will help the lottery continue its success in raising money for education.

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The new system is the centerpiece of major improvements as the Education Lottery enters its second decade. Other enhancements include:

  • New lottery terminals or lottery vending machines at all lottery retail locations. The new equipment has large user-friendly touch screens and a faster printer. This should speed up the time it takes for lottery transactions to occur at retail locations.
  • New instant ticket printing and warehousing system. Instant tickets are the most popular lottery games and the new system should make the ordering and distribution of instant tickets more efficient.
  • A ticket checker or a lottery vending machine with a ticket checking function at all retail locations. This allows players to check and see for themselves if they have a winning ticket.
  • New play centers at all retail locations. The play centers will make it easier for players to get information about lottery games, odds of winning, and prizes.

 

Players will see more upgrades in the months to come as the lottery unveils a new website and a new mobile app for smartphones.

The changes result from new contracts for a new operating system and instant ticket services. The contracts, approved in January 2016, went into effect on Sunday. Under the contracts, IGT, based in Providence, Rhode Island, will provide the lottery’s operating system and Scientific Games of Alpharetta, Ga. will provide instant ticket and related services.

Ticket sales made it possible for the lottery to raise more than $634 million for the state last year. For details on how lottery funds have made a difference in every county in the state, click on the “For Education” section of the lottery’s website.

SOURCE: NCEL.

 

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Loteri Cymru Promises a ‘Win-Win’ for Wales

Wales is to have its own weekly, televised lottery

WALES (March 31, 2017) -- Wales is to have its own weekly, televised lottery, with tickets set to go on sale on Monday 10th April and the first draw to take place on Friday 28th April.

Details of Loteri Cymru, a new all-Wales society lottery have been unveiled today (31st March). The weekly ‘loto’ draw has a guaranteed jackpot of £25,000 - the maximum the lottery can offer under society lottery rules - with proceeds raising money for grassroots community causes throughout Wales.

The loto jackpot winners will need to match 5 of 39 drawn numbers and other prizes will also be on offer for matching fewer numbers. Tickets are priced at just £1 and players will have a better than one in nine chance of winning a prize – better than the National Lottery Lotto.

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Every ticket – unless it has scooped the jackpot – will also be entered free into loto+, a monthly raffle offering 10 guaranteed £1000 prizes. The first loto+ draw will also take place on 28th April.

Tickets can be bought online only by anyone aged 16 or over  at www.loteri.cymru from 00:01 on Monday 10th April, with the weekly loto draw to be broadcast on S4C at 8.00pm every Friday from 28th April.

Operator Loteri Cymru is a not-for-profit Community Interest Company (CIC) chaired by WRU Chairman and former Wales rugby international, Gareth Davies. Its chief executive, Sue Carter, was previously a director at Yahoo!, and is a former BBC journalist, producer and editor.

A charitable arm, Hanfod Cymru, has been established to distribute a minimum of 20% of the proceeds from Loteri Cymru ticket sales to good causes. Hanfod is chaired by Mrs Deris Williams and its interim CEO is Marc Phillips, who was formerly Head of Policy at BBC Children in Need.

Local charities all over Wales will be invited to apply for support for community projects with educational, social and cultural benefits. Further details on the charitable arm are to to be announced in the coming days.

S4C is Loteri Cymru’s exclusive broadcast partner, with the rights to broadcast each draw on its TV and online channels, and to all programming around the good causes.

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Loteri Cymru Chair, Gareth Davies, explained that Loteri Cymru will add to the amount of money raised in Wales for good causes while offering an attractive jackpot and affordable ticket price.

We are launching Loteri Cymru to create a win-win for the people and communities of Wales, where individuals can afford to try their luck at winning a life-enhancing jackpot and their local communities benefit, too,” he said.

Our research has shown that people really like the idea of a dedicated Welsh lottery that benefits local causes. We want Loteri.Cymru to become a real part of life here, so that, as soon as possible, everyone in Wales will know someone who has won a prize or be aware of a good cause that has benefited.”

Mrs Carter explained how the team had set out to devise a lottery that would give people a “genuinely good chance of winning”.

Firstly, we wanted to make sure the ticket price was set at £1, so that people feel they can afford to join in,” she said.

Then we wanted to offer an appealing  guaranteed jackpot plus a variety of prizes for matching from two to five balls – so that the overall odds of winning are a really attractive 1 in 9 and then to give players a second chance to scoop a prize with loto +.

Carol Bell, Chair of SDML, S4C’s commercial arm, said: “We are delighted to be able to support a uniquely Welsh lottery that will generate great programming opportunities as well as much-needed funds just for Wales.

More information is available at www.loteri.cymru and www.hanfod.cymru.

About Loteri.Cymru

Loteri Cymru is licensed by the Gambling Commission Licence number 044171-R-323217-002. The loto tickets are priced at just £1 and can be bought online by anyone aged 16 or over  at www.loteri.cymru from 00:01 on Monday 10th April, with each weekly draw to be broadcast on S4C at 8.00pm every Friday from 28th April.

Loteri Cymru players will have a better than one in nine chance of scooping a prize – better than the National Lottery Lotto - and every line on each ticket – unless it has scooped the jackpot – will be entered into loto+, a monthly raffle offering ten guaranteed £1000 prizes.

More information is available at www.loteri.cymru and www.hanfod.cymru.

https://youtu.be/UvTbMCuKfTA

SOURCE: Loteri Cymru.

 

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Changes Needed to End Synthetic Lotteries in Australia

The Australian Lottery and Newsagents Association Urges Government to Consider the National Economic Impact of Lottoland

AUSTRALIA (April 3, 2017) -- The Australian Lottery and Newsagents Association is calling for a suitable amendment to the Federal Interactive Gambling Act, that will impose legislative restrictions on betting on lottery outcomes.

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The Interactive Gambling Amendment Bill 2016 is currently before the House of Representatives, and has reignited discussions about privately-owned Lottoland.

Lottoland is different to official regulated lottery draws. It operates like an online-only bookmaker, taking bets on certain lotto numbers being drawn, and relies on complex insurance policies to pay any winners.

Many Australians are still very confused about this model and think they are entering a lottery. But despite what its name might suggest, Lottoland is a wagering operator who offer bets on lottery outcomes not tickets in a draw, this is also known as synthetic lotteries.

Adam Joy, CEO of Australian Lottery and Newsagents Association said, “Our members have customers requesting Lottoland tickets, wrongly thinking that Lottoland offers the same opportunities to enter a lottery draw but at a lower price. When in fact it doesn’t. It is a wagering website that is not subject to the same rigorous regulations that Australian official lotteries adhere to.”

One of the biggest concerns about Lottoland is that while official lotteries generate significant tax revenue for each State and Territory Government they are licensed in, to pay for schools, roads and hospitals, Lottoland does not pay similar taxes and most of its revenue goes overseas.

The Australian Lottery and Newsagents Association is part of a growing group of policy makers, influencers and industry bodies, that are concerned Lottoland’s operations and aggressive marketing lack the necessary social license consumers would expect, and that this will place even greater pressure on state governments ongoing revenue expectations, and have a detrimental impact on lottery retailers’ businesses and livelihoods.

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Mr Joy continued, “Our members regularly adapt to change, but this should not be at the expense of responsible corporate citizenship. Consumers need to know the difference between buying official lottery tickets directly from a licensed operator, and using a wagering website that sends most of its revenue overseas. It affects our economy and many local small businesses.

The lottery and newsagency industry plays a vital role in the Australian economy. There are over 4,000 independent, family-owned businesses who offer official lottery tickets in Australia; together these make up Australia’s largest retail and home delivery group. The industry employs nearly 20,000 people with a turnover of $2 billion. They contribute approximately $1.4 billion in Australian taxes and a further $150 million in GST[1].

The national industry body for Australian newsagents’ and lottery agents, ALNA, requests urgent action to support a policy position in the Interactive Gambling Act, that will impose similar legislative restrictions to those already in place in South Australia, which make it an offence for Lottoland to sell products to South Australian residents. Legislation there does not permit betting on lottery outcomes and therefore, Lottoland is not permitted to sell its products in South Australia.

[1] Source: parlinfo.aph.gov.au

Australian Lottery and Newsagents’ Association (ALNA)

The Australian Lottery and Newsagents’ Association (ALNA) is the only national and non-profit, industry body specifically for Australian newsagencies and lottery agents. Representing a significant part of the Australian economy, ALNA works tirelessly to better its members businesses, and to ensure a secure future for newsagencies and lottery agents.

CONTACT: Phoebe Netto, M: 0401036610, W: www.alna.net.au/

SOURCE: The Australian Lottery and Newsagents’ Association (ALNA) via NewsMaker, Press Release Distribution Service.

 

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Gambling Commission Urges Industry to Take Consumer Complaints More Seriously

BIRMINGHAM, UK (March 29, 2017) -- The findings of a new Gambling Commission review identify a clear need for both gambling businesses and alternative dispute resolution (ADR) providers to improve the way they handle consumer disputes.

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The review of complaints processes in the gambling industry sets out what the Commission will be focusing on as it develops proposals across 2017, whilst also calling for views from the industry and public.

Chief executive, Sarah Harrison said: “Our findings present a strong case for the gambling industry to take swift action to ensure the way in which customer disputes are dealt with is fit for purpose, and importantly, places consumers first.

What we want to see is an industry that values and seeks out feedback from customers. That swiftly and effectively resolves customer complaints. And that uses the learning from those customers to raise its standards and deliver ever higher levels of customer service.

Over the coming months we will be working closely with gambling operators, ADR providers, trade associations, consumers and their representatives. We will also be looking at complaints processes in other sectors where redress arrangements may be working better. But most importantly, we are also welcoming views on the proposals from consumers directly.

Consumers and other stakeholders can share their thoughts by emailing: consumers@gamblingcommission.gov.uk.

SOURCE: Gambling Commission.

 

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AMV BBDO Creates New National Lottery Campaign Focusing on Real Winner Stories and ‘Surprise and Delight’ Statistics

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WATFORD, UK (March 31, 2017) -- A new National Lottery campaign launches next week. Created by AMV BBDO – and initially launching on radio, social media and OOH – the campaign aims to demonstrate and celebrate the volume and variety of prizes won on The National Lottery, while at the same time making an emotional connection around that moment of becoming a millionaire that everyone has dreamed of.

The new work will use real winners’ responses to winning life-changing prizes, as well as providing surprising, fun and meaningful facts about winning – using Camelot’s huge bank of winner data.

So, at any one time, audiences might hear or see an advert containing an emotional real-life call into the National Lottery hotline from a player confirming a £1 million win, while the same day seeing a bus stop poster revealing that The National Lottery creates the same number of winners every minute as there are people on a packed rush-hour double-decker bus.

Arabella Gilchrist, Head of Parent Brand for The National Lottery, said:

The National Lottery plays a vital role in contributing to Good Causes throughout the UK – raising more than £30 million every week – and at the same time awards around eight million prizes weekly. These surprising facts and real-life winner stories will help remind players that real people, like them, are winning on The National Lottery all the time.

The campaign launches on Monday 3rd April and will incorporate radio, OOH and social media.

As the campaign develops, there will be further executions through-the-line and across The National Lottery’s own channels. 

For further information, please CONTACT: Camelot Press Office, T: 020 7632 5711.

SOURCE: Camelot Press Office.

 

 

Codere S.A. Convenes Extraordinary General Meeting of Shareholders

Codere S.A. convoca Junta General Extraordinaria de Accionistas

MADRID, SPAIN (March 31, 2017) -- In compliance with the provisions of article 228 of Royal Legislative Decree 4/2015, of 23 October, which approves the consolidated text of the Law of the Market ofValores, Codere, S.A. (Indifferently "Codere" or "Company") announces the following

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RELEVANT FACT

The Board of Directors of "CODERE Sociedad Anónima", has decided to call the Extraordinary General Meeting of Shareholders of the Company, to be held in address of the company, located at 28108, Alcobendas (Madrid), Avda. De Bruselas nº 26 a At 1:00 p.m. on May 11, 2017, on the first call, and at the same time And place, on May 12, 2017 in second call.

This communication is accompanied by the text of the said call, including the Agenda of the general meeting, to be published in the next few days in terms Legal and statutory provisions, as well as the full text of the proposed agreements which is formulated by the Board of Directors in relation to the various points of the aforementioned order of the day.

All documentation of the Board shall be at the disposal of the shareholders in the Registered office and on the company's website, www.codere.com

Sincerely

Luis Argüello Álvarez

Secretary of the Board of Directors

CLICK HERE to download Codere S.A. convoca Junta General Extraordinaria de Accionistas (pdf).

 

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INNOVA's Special Committee Launches Strategic Review Process

LOS ANGELES, California (March 31, 2017) -- INNOVA Gaming Group Inc. ("INNOVA" or the "Company") (TSX: IGG) announced today that the special committee (the "Special Committee") of the board of directors of the Company has given its financial advisors, Raymond James Ltd., a broad mandate to manage a process of exploring and considering strategic alternative transactions that might be available to the Company (the "Strategic Review Process"), including, but not limited to, soliciting expressions of interest regarding an acquisition of all of the common shares of the Company (the "Shares").

The Special Committee is comprised of Paul van Eyk and Edward Stanek, each an independent director of the Company, and was formed to review and evaluate the unsolicited non-binding proposal to acquire all of the Shares for cash consideration of $2.10 per Share received from Pollard Banknote Limited ("Pollard Banknote") on March 9, 2017 (the "Proposal") and to consider any strategic alternatives that might be available to INNOVA.

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The Special Committee has since engaged in discussions with Pollard Banknote, both directly and indirectly through their respective financial advisors, regarding the terms of the Proposal.  Based on these discussions, the Special Committee has determined that Pollard Banknote was not prepared to improve the Proposal sufficiently for the Special Committee to recommend a transaction with Pollard Banknote.  As a result, the Special Committee has determined that it is in the best interests of INNOVA to proceed with the Strategic Review Process.

The Special Committee has invited Pollard Banknote to participate in the Strategic Review Process.  There can, however, be no assurance that Pollard Banknote will be willing to participate in the Strategic Review Process.

INNOVA's largest shareholder, Amaya Inc. ("Amaya"), has entered into a support agreement (the "Support Agreement") with Pollard Banknote that sets out the terms and conditions pursuant to which Amaya is prepared to support the Proposal.  Amaya has the right to terminate the Support Agreement if: (i) Pollard Banknote has not entered into an acquisition agreement with the Company or commenced a formal take-over bid for the Shares prior to May 8, 2017; or (ii) a cash offer greater than $2.10 per Share is made for the Shares that Pollard Banknote does not match within five business days either by amending an existing offer made by Pollard Banknote for all of the Shares or by making a formal take-over bid for all of the Shares.  For additional details on the terms of the Support Agreement, please refer to INNOVA's news release of March 10, 2017.

There can be no assurance that the Proposal or the Strategic Review Process will result in a formal take-over bid or offer for the Shares or that any such take-over bid or offer will ultimately result in a completed transaction.  INNOVA's shareholders do not need to take any action with respect to the Proposal or the Strategic Review Process at this time.  The Special Committee has not set any timetable for the Strategic Review Process and does not intend to disclose any developments in respect thereof, unless and until a specific transaction is approved, the Strategic Review Process has run its course or it is determined that disclosure is otherwise necessary or appropriate.

About the Company

INNOVA develops unique games and products for the global gaming industry, with particular focus on state and provincial lotteries. Through INNOVA's wholly-owned subsidiary, Diamond Game Enterprises, the Company focuses on enhancing the revenues of government-sponsored lotteries and other regulated operators by offering its unique "extended play" products in traditional and non-traditional gaming venues.  The Company's primary product is its third generation Lucky Tab machine, an instant ticket vending machine that dispenses tickets while simultaneously displaying the results of each ticket on a video monitor in an entertaining fashion. For more information, please visit: www.innovagaminggroup.com.

SOURCE: INNOVA Gaming Group.

 

 

Kentucky HBPA Endorses EquiLottery as “Important Innovation” for Horse Racing

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LOUISVILLE, Kentucky (Monday, April 3, 2017) – The Kentucky HBPA, one of the country’s largest horsemen’s organizations, has endorsed EquiLottery, the innovative lottery product based on the results of live horse racing.

Brad Cummings, EquiLottery’s founder and chief executive officer, called the stamp of approval from the Kentucky division of the Horsemen’s Benevolent & Protective Association “an important piece in moving the game towards adoption in its home state of Kentucky and beyond.

We are delighted to count the Kentucky HBPA as core supporters of our mission to bring the excitement of live horse racing to the masses through our unprecedented lottery experience," Cummings said. “This organization has been a friend of EquiLottery since our public unveiling, and their support has been foundational to our continued momentum. We thank their entire leadership team for standing with us while we have dedicated ourselves to creating this new distribution and revenue opportunity for horse racing and increasing returns to the good causes supported by state lotteries around the country."

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The Kentucky HBPA represents about 6,000 owners and trainers racing at the commonwealth’s five Thoroughbred tracks, working on issues such as funding and increasing race purses, ensuring safety measures at the track and assisting in services that take care of the professional and personal needs of their members. The Kentucky HBPA is the second such organization to show public support for EquiLottery, following the endorsement of West Virginia Racing United, an advocacy group comprised of horsemen’s associations in the Mountain State.

"We have been thrilled to support Brad and his vision for EquiLottery over the years," said Kentucky HBPA president Rick Hiles. "It is so vital that we bring new people into the sport for this industry to have the bright future we all know it can enjoy. While we welcome any new revenue opportunities, the HBPA is most enthusiastic about the chance to introduce millions of people across the country to the excitement of live horse racing through this important innovation. EquiLottery is by far the best model we have seen to accomplish this goal. We wholeheartedly back this product and ask state leadership in Kentucky to do the same."

Since its public announcement over the summer of 2014, EquiLottery has worked diligently to develop its lottery product based on the results of live horse racing. The company has structured agreements with lottery-industry leader IGT Global Solutions and tote-system leader AmTote International to deliver a cohesive lottery experience for state lotteries and their players.

EquiLottery recently announced its first racetrack agreements with Penn National Gaming’s Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races and Eldorado Resorts’ Mountaineer Park, both in West Virginia. The Kentucky-based company is also in development on its IOS and Android mobile app that will allow players to watch races live and on replay, scan tickets and set push notifications for upcoming races — all from the convenience of their mobile devices.

CONTACT:  Brad Cummings, T: (502) 644-1454, E: brad@equilottery.com.

SOURCE: EquiLottery.

 

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Nolimit City Joins Forces with EveryMatrix

Platform and game developer to integrate its slots with fellow supplier

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STOCKHOLM, Sweden (April 3, 2017) -- Online platform and game developer Nolimit city has signed a deal with EveryMatrix to integrate its games into the supplier’s content portfolio.

The agreement will see EveryMatrix’s operator partners gain access to high definition HTML5 titles such as Oktoberfest, Creepy Carnival and Space Arcade for the very first time.

All of Nolimit city’s games boast stunning graphics, catchy soundtracks, and intelligent math models that offer players an exciting and engaging experience.

The supplier’s games are delivered via their own platform, allowing for a smooth and seamless integration into the EveryMatrix content portfolio.

Jonas Tegman, Chief Product Officer at Nolimit city, said: “EveryMatrix has a roster of partners in several key markets for us, so we are thrilled to be able to add our games to their portfolio and put them in front of even more players.

Operators and suppliers need to offer players top-quality content, which is why we have focused on fine-tuning our current portfolio before launching more titles. But we have an exciting product roadmap, with our next batch of games due for release soon.”

We always look to strengthen our portfolio with exciting new games and Nolimit city’s slots fit the bill. Our partners seek to integrate high-quality content to stand out from the competition and we are committed to offer it every time. In addition, we trust their gaming experience and their in-depth knowledge of the online sector.” said Ebbe Groes, EveryMatrix CEO.

Nolimit city is one of the newest suppliers in the sector, but the exciting company recently moved into larger offices in Stockholm and has doubled its employee roll-call to meet the growing demand for its games.

SOURCE: EveryMatrix.

 

 

Strengthening of the Management Team of Cherry AB

SWEDEN (April 3, 2017) -- Cherry AB (publ) has today appointed Christine Rankin as CFO for Cherry AB (publ) and she will assume her position with immediate effect. Carolina Haglund Strömlid has been appointed Head of Investor Relations and Communication for Cherry AB (publ).

Christine Rankin has a solid background within finance, most recently working at Nasdaq. Before that she was VP Finance at Serneke Group AB and Head of Corporate Control at Spotify AB. Rankin was previously a certified accountant and partner at PwC until 2014. She holds a bachelor in economics from Stockholm University. Rankin will assume the position as CFO for Cherry AB (publ) with immediate effect.

Carolina Haglund Strömlid has previously worked as Head of Investor Relations at Com Hem Holding AB, senior advisor for IR & PR at Intellecta Corporate AB and Head of Corporate Communications & Investor Relations at PA Resources AB. Haglund Strömlid holds a master in economics from Örebros University.

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Anders Holmgren, CEO at Cherry AB, said: "I am looking forward to working together with Christine and Carolina. Together we will continue to develop Cherry as a fast-growing company, as well as managing the strong positions Cherry holds across all of its business areas. This change is part of our preparation to be able to be traded at Nasdaq Stockholm, and to further provide the Company with solid competence within both finance and investor relations and communications.”

In connection to this change, the Board of Directors for Cherry AB, together with CEO Anders Holmgren, decided to make a structural change to the Management Team of Cherry AB (publ), which will now consist of CEO Anders Holmgren, CFO Christine Rankin, Business Development and Partnership Officer Morten Klein and Head of Investors Relation & Communications Carolina Haglund Strömlid. 

Alexander Pettersson will remain in the finance team within the Group. Responsibilities and roles will be clarified in the future.

The information in this press release is information which Cherry AB (publ) is required to disclose under EU Market Abuse Regulation (EU). The information was provided by the below contact persons for publication on Mars 31, 2017 at 16.30 CET.

For further information, please CONTACT: Anders Holmgren, CEO Cherry AB (publ), Mobile: +46 708-607 534, email; anders.holmgren@cherry.se.

Cherry in brief 

 Cherry is a Swedish innovating and fast growing gaming company established in 1963. The business strategy is to create shareholder value by owning and developing fast-growing and profitable businesses within the gaming and casino industry. Cherry operates within five diversified business areas, Online Gaming through Cherry iGaming, Performance-based Marketing through Game Lounge, Gaming Technology through XCaliber. Game Development through Yggdrasil Gaming and Restaurant Casino through Cherry Spelglädje. The objective is to grow organic in combination with strategic acquisitions of fast-growing companies. Cherry employs around 900 people and has more than 5,600 shareholders. The Company’s B-shares are listed on AktieTorget.

SOURCE: Cherry media release (This is a translation of the Swedish original).

 

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Maryland Casinos Generate Record $141.2 Million in Revenue During March

MGM National Harbor revenue totals more than $51.2 million

BALTIMORE, Maryland (April 5, 2017) – Maryland Lottery and Gaming today announced March 2017 revenue numbers for the state’s six casinos: Hollywood Casino Perryville in Cecil County, Horseshoe Casino Baltimore in Baltimore City, Casino at Ocean Downs in Worcester County, Maryland Live Casino in Anne Arundel County, Rocky Gap Casino Resort in Allegany County, and MGM National Harbor in Prince George’s County. Maryland’s casinos had a record month, totaling $141,166,114 in revenue during March 2017 – an increase of $43,313,981, or 44.3%, compared to the March 2016 figure of $97,852,133.

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In a year-to-year comparison not including MGM National Harbor, which opened on December 8, 2016, state-wide casino revenue in March 2017 decreased by $7,935,811, or 8.1%.

MGM National Harbor generated $51,249,793 from both slot machines and table games in March. Gross gaming revenue per unit per day in March at MGM National Harbor was: $278.37 for slot machines, $5,788.26 for banked table games and $1,463.18 for non-banked table games. MGM National Harbor operates 3,114 slot machines and 165 (126 banked and 39 non-banked) table games.

Maryland Live Casino totaled $46,626,350 from both slot machines and table games in March. Maryland Live’s gross gaming revenue per unit per day was: $250.36 for slot machines, $2,892.59 for banked table games and $945.77 for non-banked table games. March 2017 revenue at Maryland Live decreased by $7,980,629, or 14.6%, from March 2016. Maryland Live Casino operates 3,993 slot machines and 209 (157 banked and 52 non-banked) table games.

Horseshoe Casino Baltimore generated $26,967,461 from both slot machines and table games in March. Gross gaming revenue per unit per day was: $215.19 for slot machines, $2,470.75 for banked table games and $606.19 for non-banked table games. Horseshoe Casino’s March 2017 revenue decreased by $664,234, or 2.4%, from March 2016. Horseshoe Casino Baltimore operates 2,202 slot machines and 179 (154 banked and 25 non-banked) table games.

Hollywood Casino Perryville generated $6,948,923 from both slot machines and table games in March. Gross gaming revenue per unit per day was: $226.44 for slot machines, $2,334.12 for banked table games and $457.53 for non-banked table games. Hollywood Casino’s March 2017 revenue decreased by $95,087, or 1.3%, from March 2016. Hollywood Casino Perryville operates 850 slot machines and 20 (12 banked and 8 non-banked) table games.

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Rocky Gap Casino Resort generated $4,701,267 from both slot machines and table games in March. Gross gaming revenue per unit per day was: $193.45 for slot machines and $1,376.64 for banked table games. This facility does not have non-banked table games. Rocky Gap Casino Resort’s March 2017 revenue increased by $603,189, or 14.7%, from March 2016. Rocky Gap Casino Resort operates 662 slot machines and 17 table games.

Casino at Ocean Downs generated $4,672,321 from slot machines in March, and its gross gaming revenue per unit per day was $188.13. Casino at Ocean Downs’ March 2017 revenue increased by $200,951, or 4.5%, from March 2016. Casino at Ocean Downs operates 800 slot machines and does not have table games.

Under Maryland law, casino revenue supports the Maryland Education Trust Fund as well as small-, minority- and women-owned businesses, local impact grants, local jurisdictions and the state’s horse racing industry. March 2017 contributions to the state from all six Maryland casinos and fiscal year-to-date totals are documented in the attached spreadsheets and available online (click HERE).

Maryland Lottery and Gaming is responsible for oversight of the state’s casinos. In this role, the agency provides direction and guidance to its casino partners on financial, security, regulatory and licensing procedures for the facilities. To keep Marylanders informed and to maintain transparency of casino operations, monthly financial reports are posted on gaming.mdlottery.com. Maryland Lottery and Gaming reminds players to play responsibly and within their budget; resources are available at mdgamblinghelp.org or by calling 1-800-GAMBLER.

CONTACT: Carole Bober Gentry, 410-230-8725 (office), 410-365-6384 (cell), E: carole.gentry@maryland.gov.

SOURCE: Maryland Lottery and Gaming.

 




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