Casino Watch - May 2008

27 May 2008
PokerStars Launches First Poker Room in Macau

PokerStars, the online poker site, has opened Macau's first live poker room, PokerStars Macau, at the Grand Waldo Hotel and Casino in Cotai.

The poker room opened May 23 with a No-Limit Texas Hold'em charity poker tournament to raise money for the victims of the recent earthquake in Western China.

The room, which has a 250-person capacity and offers cash games as well as weekly tournaments, will host the kickoff to the Asia Pacific Poker Tour's second season on Sept. 1-6.

Cantor Gaming Internet Casino Goes Live

Cantor Gaming, the gaming arm of financial services company Cantor Fitzgerald, in late April went live with its first Internet casino,, under Maltese licensure.

Playtech Bets on Betsson

Playtech Ltd., the London-listed software supplier, has agreed to supply Betsson, the online gambling operator, with its casino software platform.

Betsson is to receive 110 casino-style games, with Playtech to offer a downloadable version of its casino to and -- both Betsson properties.

The games, Playtech said, will be localized and available in 11 languages.

Just for Macintosh

Littlewoods Gaming, the online gambling operator, has launched a Flash-based version of for Macintosh users.

The downloadable software, developed by CryptoLogic, enables Mac users to play at an online poker site formerly available to PC users, exclusively.

"We know many enthusiasts have been frustrated because their computer of choice is a Mac, but our download software is not compatible with the Apple operating system," said Stephanie Sammut, poker marketing manager with Littlewoods. "Now we have overcome that problem."

Macau Puts Brakes on Gambling Expansion

Edmund Ho Hau-wah, the chief executive officer of Macau, has announced a freeze on gambling expansion in the Chinese special administrative region, including halting the issuance of casino licenses and land allocations for casino developments.

Mr. Ho told local legislators in late April that the number of gaming licenses in Macau would be capped at six for the "foreseeable future."

According to Macau Daily Times, the move was approved by Stanley Ho Hung-sun, director of Sociedade de Jogos de Macau.

"I think it is excellent news for Macau in general," he said, speaking at the Macau Jockey Club on April 20.

"It is high time to take care of the gaming sections [sic] problems. It is no good with all the six operators always fighting together using cut throat measures of getting customers into their casino, this is not correct because there is enough room for all six of us.

"There is no need to do this monkey business, cutting throats; it's the worst thing possible," he said.

Taiwan Expands on Casinos

Taiwan's President-elect Ma Ying-jeou is pushing for the legalization of offshore land-based casinos.

According to the Taiwan branch of China Post, the president-elect said earlier this month that when he is sworn into office on May 20, he intends to push forward legislation that would allow the legal operation of casinos on the offshore Penghu Island.

"After the statute is enacted, it will be up to the Penghu County council to determine whether to develop the casino industry in the island," he said.

China Publishes 'Roulabette' Patent

Kenilworth Systems Corporation, developer of Roulabette, a simulcasting solution, said April 15 that the Chinese Patent Office has published the company's patent, a "system for wagering on terminals remote from a casino."

Roulabette, Kenilworth said, is a system permitting gamblers to play along from remote locations on live casino table games.

Herbert Lindo, the company's chief executive, called casino-table-game simulcasts "the way of the future," adding that China -- with regard to this service -- "is the world's largest market."

The IGN staff continually troll the wires, foreign papers, corporate news alert services and other dark, dusty corners of the Web to bring you the very latest industry news.