Designed specifically for gaming industry executives, AGA SmartBrief is a FREE daily e-mail newsletter produced in partnership with the American Gaming Association and the Global Gaming Expo. It delivers must-read casino-entertainment industry news directly to you each weekday. Click here
Updated: 50 min ago
Immigrants to Pennsylvania have found high-paying careers in the state's casinos. "The industry always has rewarded hard workers who make a positive contribution, and it doesn't matter where you come from," said André Barnabei, the vice president of the Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh. Almost 200 of the 1,800 employees at the Rivers Casino found work through a refugee resettlement program for documented immigrants, many of whom were trained in other fields in their home countries. Pittsburgh Tribune-Review (8/24)
Fedor Banuchi, the vice president of entertainment and nightlife at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, enjoys his role booking live music at the casino hotel. "I truly have a dream job ... I get to collaborate on a daily basis with top talent," he writes. Las Vegas Sun (8/25)
Uniform maker Cintas has provided uniforms to most of the resorts on the Las Vegas Strip, and its design studio frequently plays host to casino executives seeking out visual extensions of their brands. "The cocktail designs are some of the most important because you want something that will catch your eye," said Karla Perez Larragoite, national director of gaming for Cintas. The company in 2013 separated gaming from hospitality operations, and in the past fiscal year its gaming unit has seen revenue grow 16%. Las Vegas Review-Journal (8/25)
The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement confirmed last week that it is in discussions with online payment processor PayPal to get licensed in the state to accept online gaming payments. This could raise awareness of legal online gaming and encourage other payment processors to enter online gaming, Chris Grove writes. PayPal also recently signed a deal that allows PokerStars players to purchase chips online using PayPal. Online Poker Report (8/20)
The Aquinnah Wampanoags are pursuing a plan to build a tribal casino on Martha's Vineyard off the coast of Cape Cod, Mass. "When you think about it, it's something new, something different," said Cheryl Andrews-Maltais, chairwoman of the tribe's gaming division, noting the lack of nightlife options on the island. The Washington Times (8/25)
The Washington Times (8/26)
American City Business Journals (8/25)
The Early Bird Discounts for the new flexible pricing options at G2E 2014 expire on Friday, Sept. 5. View all seminar sessions and register for your FREE Exhibit Hall Pass (a $299 value) today.
A summary in Monday's AGA SmartBrief should have said that the Ohio Casino Control Commission and Rock Ohio Caesars agreed that Rock Ohio Caesars Finance will pay the fine agreed upon by the two entities. SmartBrief regrets the error.
William Arthur Ward, American writer
The SLS Las Vegas opened on Saturday with fireworks and a full house. The $415 million resort on the former site of the Sahara held a VIP reception for 3,600 guests Friday evening and opened just after midnight Saturday. "We wanted to create a place with energy and excitement," said Rob Oseland, president of SLS Las Vegas. Las Vegas Review-Journal (8/23)
The Ohio Casino Control Commission and the Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati have agreed the casino will pay a fine of $200,000 after failing to disclose financing details for a furniture and equipment purchase. It marks the biggest fine ever levied by the commission. "There was no issue with their financial stability," said Matt Schuler, executive director of the commission. "The issue was not reporting to the commission that they failed to close on a transaction." WCPO-TV (Cincinnati) (8/22)
Net revenue from casinos in Atlantic City, N.J., dropped 4.9% in the first half of the year, the state Division of Gaming Enforcement reported Friday. However, gross operating profit for the same period rose by 17.3%. The Press of Atlantic City (N.J.) (tiered subscription model) (8/22)
The Ohio Casino Control Commission is investigating at least 36 illegal gaming locations in the state, including skill-game parlors that award cash. Under state law, winners of skill games are only allowed to receive gift cards or gas cards as rewards. Earlier this month, the state seized 54 machines at House of Skills in Mahoning County. The Columbus Dispatch (Ohio) (8/21)
Sioux City Journal (Iowa) (8/23)
Ted Whiting, director of surveillance at Aria casino in Las Vegas, said the casino relies on old-fashioned observation instead of high-tech facial recognition software. "You can't walk through Aria without us catching your face," Whiting said. "It's virtually impossible." Las Vegas Review-Journal (8/23)
Daily fantasy games for football and other sports have exploded with the advent of online wagering. Due to an exemption in a 2006 law governing online poker, the practice of betting on fantasy games is legal in 45 U.S. states. Sports Illustrated and USA Today have also launched their own daily fantasy gaming sites. ABC News (8/24)
As president of the North America Division of Ainsworth Game Technology, an Australian company that manufactures slot machines, Mike Dreitzer is tasked with building the company's market share in the U.S. "This is very much a marathon and not a sprint," Dreitzer said. "The culture of this company is that we're building it over time and doing right by our customers." The company currently has a 1% market share on U.S. slot machine floors. Las Vegas Review-Journal (8/23)
Boulder Station celebrated its 20th anniversary in Las Vegas on Saturday -- along with 115 employees who have been with the casino since day one. "We've all grown up together, our kids have grown up together," said Renee Sheehy, a cocktail waitress and veteran of the U.S. Air Force. Las Vegas Sun (8/23)
This week, the GGB Podcast sits down with Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian, who took office early this year and must now deal with the bad news hitting the city.