Macau gambling is back

September 4, 2017 by  
Filed under East Asia, News

MACAU, 4 September 2017: Macau on Friday said gaming revenues rose more than 20% year-on-year in August, despite the city being hammered by Severe Typhoon Hato, which ripped through the city killing at least 10 people.

The destruction wrought by the typhoon and the government’s handling of it prompted the resignation of Macau’s weather chief, an apology from the city’s leader and the deployment of the People’s Liberation Army Macau garrison to help in relief efforts.

Hato plunged the city’s gambling resorts into darkness with slot machines and air-conditioning units turned off at some casinos despite backup generators, while some including the Grand Lisboa simply closed after power and water supply was cut. Read more

China frees Casino sales team

August 15, 2017 by  
Filed under China, News, North Asia

SYDNEY, 15 August 2017: Australia’s Crown Resorts said Monday that China had released all of the casino group’s employees who were detained as part of a gambling crackdown last year.

Mogul James Packer’s gaming company said the last of the 19 current and former Crown employees had been set free after being held for 10 months.

“Crown is pleased that all of our employees have now been released and reunited with their families and loved ones,” executive chairman John Alexander said. Read more

China jails Crown executives

June 27, 2017 by  
Filed under News, North Asia

SHANGHAI, 27 June 2017: A Chinese court on Monday convicted 19 current and former employees of Australia’s Crown Resorts company on gambling-related charges, handing jail terms to 16 of them, including three Australians.

The defendants pleaded guilty and 16 were given nine- and 10-month sentences, which include time served since they were arrested in October, meaning they could be released over the next two months.

They were fined a total of USD1.25 million. Three others who were granted bail in November were neither fined nor jailed. Read more

Crown staff charged in China

June 14, 2017 by  
Filed under China, News

SYDNEY, 14 June 2017: Up to 18 staff from Australian billionaire James Packer’s Crown Resorts have been charged with promoting gambling in China, eight months after being detained, the company said Tuesday.

The marketing employees were seized in raids across China last October, including an executive in charge of luring rich Chinese to Australia, as Beijing cracks down on high-roller gambling promotions.

Crown at the time said 18 staff were being held, but did not mention the number in an update to the Australian stock exchange. Read more

Bets are back on in Macau

March 20, 2017 by  
Filed under News, North Asia

MACAU, 20 March 2017: The mood in Macau is buoyant once again. Gaming figures that tanked for more than two years after being hit by an ongoing Beijing corruption crackdown are up again, and the move towards mass market gamblers seems to have worked.

Semi-autonomous Macau is the only part of China where casino gambling is legal and a favourite haunt of mainland big spenders.

But after President Xi Jinping announced his war on graft in 2014, many stayed away from the enclave, which had gained a reputation as a money laundering centre for illicit cashflows out of China, with the crisis compounded by a growth slowdown on the mainland. Read more

Vietnam chases gambling dollars

February 6, 2017 by  
Filed under News, Vietnam

HANOI, 6 February 2017: Punters in gambling-mad Vietnam cheered the easing of a ban on sports betting Saturday, as the communist government moves to bring a booming black market industry above board.

Vietnam has long barred locals from gambling of any form, allowing only a few foreigner-only casinos.

But the law is widely flouted — especially in the run-up to major sporting events — when millions of dollars change hands through illegal gambling dens or online betting rings. Read more

Crown’s casino team locked up in China

October 20, 2016 by  
Filed under News, North Asia

SYDNEY, 20 October 2016: Australian gaming tycoon James Packer said earlier this week he was “deeply concerned” about 18 of his Crown Resorts sales staff detained in China as his board held an emergency meeting to determine what to do next.

The marketing staff were seized in raids late last week, including an executive in charge of luring high-rollers to Australia, with Beijing saying they had been “criminally detained … for suspected gambling offences”.

Shares in Crown plunged more than 13% on Monday but stabilised Tuesday, rebounding 1.70% to close at AUD11.34. Read more

China crackdown curtails Crown

October 18, 2016 by  
Filed under News, North Asia

SYDNEY, 18 October 2016: Shares in billionaire James Packer’s Crown Resorts plunged Monday after 18 sales and marketing staff were detained in China, including an executive in charge of luring high-rollers to Australia.

The gaming company’s stock fell 13.9% to close in Sydney at AUD11.15.

It followed news that three Australians were among those hauled in for questioning by Chinese authorities on Thursday and Friday, last week, with the company unable to contact them. Read more