Flutter’s Merger with The Stars Group Gets Informal OK in Australia

Flutter’s Merger with The Stars Group Gets Informal OK in Australia

Flutter Entertainment’s multi-billion merger with Canadian rival The Stars Group has received informal regulatory approval by Australia’s competition authority.

The approval comes as welcome news, but the mega-merger still requires formal approvals by a number of regulators in the countries where the two companies have significant presence.

Flutter announced today that its £10-billion all-share combination with The Stars Group has been granted informal approval by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

However, the mega-merger that will create one of the world’s biggest online betting and gaming company is still subject to approval by the Australian Foreign Investment Review Board and other regulatory bodies.

News about the informal approval of the tie-up in Australia emerge just a couple of weeks after UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced that it has opened a probe into the deal. A CMA review is among the mandatory regulatory hurdles Flutter and The Stars Group need to clear before being able to close the deal.

The CMA is set to probe whether the high-profile marriage of the two gambling powerhouses will hurt competition in the UK gambling market.

The combined entity will own some of the largest sports betting and gaming brands, including Paddy Power, Betfair, Sky Betting & Gaming, and PokerStars, and will have more than 13 million active customers in over 100 international gambling markets.

Deal Expected to Close in Q2

Flutter and The Stars Group announced their tie-up in October 2019. The deal, if allowed to go ahead by all competent authorities, will create one of the world’s largest gambling operators. The merger is expected to close at some point in the second quarter of the year, subject to approvals and other customary conditions.

The two major operators are targeting cost synergies of £140 million per year by the end of their third full year as a combined group.

Flutter and The Stars Group also hope to use their combined strength to secure a bigger slice in the US sports betting market where a recently annulled federal ban on athletic gambling has caused a stampede, with more and more companies looking to tap into the lucrative space.

In the US, The Stars Group provides online gaming and sports betting services in several states through its PokerStars and FOX Bet brands. The latter operation was launched as a result from the Canadian gambling company’s partnership with sports media giant FOX Sports.

As for Flutter, it conducts activities through its Betfair and FanDuel brands. FanDuel, the daily fantasy sports turned sports betting operator has claimed and been holding the lead in the important New Jersey sports betting market.

In Australia, the combined group will easily dominate the market. Flutter’s Sportsbet is the second largest sports betting operator, and The Stars Group’s BetEasy is the third largest sports betting operator.

Source: Flutter’s planned merger with Stars gets informal approval in Australia

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TRISTAN HAMM – Tackling Mental Health Through Adventure


Revived Outdoors is an adventure company that provides individuals with the chance to enjoy individualized and unique traveling opportunities. The company employs a combination of the most skilled guides, a rich culture, and a unique curriculum to give guests the best possible experiences.

Found by Tristan Hamm, an avid traveler and nature lover, Revived Outdoors aims to improve the mental health of its clients while making them a part of a rich and diverse community. The company has been able to achieve this aim quite remarkably as there are instances of people who have had their mental health drastically improved by one or more of the experiences they have partaken with the company. One particularly striking example is the case of a young lady who had been battling drug abuse-related depression for years but was “revived” on the very first experience she had with the company. It was this case that gave the company its name “Revived.”


The importance of outdoor adventures, particularly those that are undertaken in natural environments, cannot be overemphasized. Revived Outdoors harnesses the calming and healing virtues of outdoor adventures to help improve the mental health of its clients and not just improve their mental health alone, but also eliminate their stress levels while making them part of a new community.

A lot of people cannot find the time to go on adventures or the right people with whom to go on adventures. Revived Outdoors makes it easier for such people to have their dream adventure by providing them with a community of like-minded adventurers with whom they can have the best travels and see the world at its most beautiful. The communities where these adventures take place also benefits greatly. The influx of people now and then into these communities helps to create employment opportunities for the locals, and most of all, helps protect the natural landscape of the communities.


The aftereffects of these experiences are long-lasting, and each trip takes the participants on sensual and lively experiences with nature all around them. The guides employed in the company are skilled and know the A-Zs of guiding people on such adventures. Clients that make use of Revived Outdoor’s services range from stay at home moms to seasoned adventure enthusiasts. The company has a goal, which is to convince people to believe in themselves as they can achieve whatever they wish to achieve. 

follow Tristan on Instagram – Instagram.com/tristan.hamm and Instagram.com/revived.outdoors then head over to our website www.RevivedOutdoors.com and join our exclusive newsletter! 

How to Make Money with Bitcoin Pro?


Bitcoin

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Become millionaires by investing in this popular Cryptocurrency because online platforms have lots of user-friendly interfaces that appreciate the tools and the recommended features to earn money efficiently. Now investment in Bitcoin and other Cryptocurrencies has become a passion for traders, investors and business people who know the value of the digital currency and have acknowledgment to get the income plans on behalf of the best responding resources. Having detailed acknowledgment about Bitcoin Pro Official Site is the best-featuring ideas means having useful acknowledgment about the digital source of income. By sign up and activate your account, any interested person can access to become proficient and expert to make money on behalf of the best legendary resources. Find a trading opportunity online and spend your best time to know about the actual facts which can greatly influence the demands of the digital currencies. Making real money is possible with the help of online Bitcoin money trading to increase the maximum amount.

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Can You Trade Cryptocurrencies Using a Forex or CFD Platform?

To give you a clear and short answer – cryptocurrencies can be traded on Forex and CFD platforms. But things are not as easy as trading regular currencies, as there are a couple of things that you have to take into account before trading crypto on CFD/ Forex platforms.

Therefore, in today’s article, we’ll take a look into the things that you need to know if you want to trade cryptocurrencies using a CFD or Forex platform!

 

Crypto Trading on CFD/ Forex Platforms

First of all, it is worth mentioning that you won’t have a hard time finding a Forex/ CBD platform that you can trade cryptocurrencies on, as many MT4 Forex brokers offer BTC/ USD for trading, for example.

Even if crypto may be a newcomer in the trading world, Forex brokers were quick to implement it as a trading option, given its quick increase in value and popularity. 

Now, let’s see how cryptocurrencies are traded on such platforms:

 

  • Most Forex and CBD platforms trade cryptocurrency contracts for difference. Basically, the trader gets into a contract with the one providing the CFD on an underlying asset. While the derivatives are based on price movements, they do not actually involve cryptocurrency ownership exchange
  • Given that no cryptocurrencies are actually being exchanged, wallets and addresses are not used either. As such, there are no hacking risks.
  • One can make a profit from cryptocurrency trading on CFD/ Forex platforms in two ways. One, if they have a Buy Position and the cryptocurrency’s sell rate increases above the opening buy rate, or if they have a Sell Position and the cryptocurrency’s buy rate falls below the opening sell rate. 

 

Comparison with Exchange Trading

For someone used to exchange trading that wants to get into crypto trading on CFD/ Forex platforms, it is essential to know the main differences between the two types of trading.

  • As mentioned, no digital cryptocurrencies are being exchanged in the transactions.
  • You don’t have to own a cryptocurrency wallet to engage in trading.
  • Cryptos are traded under the terms and conditions set by the CFD/ Forex provider.
  • Cryptocurrency CFD trading is leveraged.
  • Forex and CFD platforms allow you to trade crypto-fiat pairings (LTC/USD, BTC/USD), unlike most crypto exchanges that allow only crypto-to-crypto trading.
  • Deposits and withdrawals are made using only fiat currencies. 

Furthermore, a trader that has traded CFDs or Forex on any MT4 platform will understand how cryptocurrency CFDs are traded easily, as such trades are listed like any other CFD instrument within the platform.

 

The Bottom Line

Overall, you can trade cryptocurrencies using a Forex or CFD platform – but there are a couple of new things that you have to learn, as well as several things that you have to pay attention to.

For example, regulation changes and cyberattacks can significantly impact the movements of cryptocurrency – besides news related to hard forks. This is why you must always be up-to-date when trading cryptocurrencies via a CFD or Forex platforms, as you may never know if the market will move in your favor.

GiG suffers sharp revenue decline for 2019

Gaming Innovation Group (GiG) has announced a year-on-year revenue decrease of 26% for Q4 2019, down to €29.4m.

For the full year 2019, GiG also saw revenue fall 23% to €123m.

While B2C revenue was GiG’s main source of income, this was 26% down to €19m for Q4, while B2B revenue also decreased by 26% for the quarter, to €12.1m.

Q4 EBITDA was down, dropping 4% to €4.8m and 12% to €14.1m for the full year.

Gross profit subsequently fell 22% to €25m for Q4 and 20% to €98.9m for 2019.

GiG recently outlined its plan to sell its B2C business, which started with the operator agreeing to sell B2C assets to operator Betsson, announced last week.

That has left GiG expecting full-year 2020 revenue in the range of €70–€75m, which would represent another significant decrease.

Among the highlights during Q4 were the launch of a mobile sportsbook in Iowa with Hard Rock International and signing a deal with William Hill to launch Mr Green in Latvia.

GiG CEO Richard Brown said: “The dynamics in the online gambling industry, both competitive and regulatory, have changed dramatically in the last two years and we as a company are forcefully adapting to that.”

A decade to remember

As we celebrate our 10th birthday, David Cook looks back on a momentous decade for both the industry and this publication.

What an incredible 10 years it’s been in gaming. At the start of the last decade, mobile gaming was in its infancy, there was no regulated online gambling in the US (or single-game sports betting outside Nevada), the fixed-odds betting terminal (FOBT) debate in the UK had barely gained traction, and some of gaming’s biggest holding companies either didn’t exist or were amoeba-sized compared to what they are now.

Another thing the gaming industry was yet to know about in 2010 was Gambling Insider. There was a gap in the market for a magazine to come along that could provide first-class insight into both the land-based and digital markets within one publication, while also covering all territories across the globe. Our founders used their industry contacts wisely and with a great amount of effort, built a publication that every significant company in gaming has wanted to be involved with at one time or another.

Whether you’ve been an avid follower of our work across the last decade, or whether you’re reading us for the first time, we hope you see how much effort goes into making sure we cover all relevant topics that the senior management who read this magazine want to know about. It’s not always easy to keep on top of everything, but in an industry that changes as quickly as this one does, there is never going to be a dull moment and we’re never exactly going to be short of topics to discuss.

You will see in this magazine, which will be distributed at ICE London, that our annual CEO Special feature is still one of our best and it continues to go from strength to strength. We first launched the CEO Special in our January/February 2015 issue, which featured the CEOs of Betfred, IGT International, Microgaming and MGM Resorts International. The list of big names hasn’t ended there, as we’ve gone on to feature the leaders of the likes of GVC Holdings, 888 Holdings, Novomatic, NetEnt, Scientific Games and, well, I could go on, but I’m sure you get my point.

I’ve personally enjoyed seeing our other products grow, including several focus issues, GamblingInsider.com and of course, the GI Huddle podcast, which we launched last year.

Looking ahead to this decade, I wonder just how much more consolidation we will see, as this has been a key theme of the industry in recent years. Ten years ago, Ladbrokes, Coral, Bwin, PartyGaming (all now owned by GVC), Paddy Power, Betfair, PokerStars and Sky Bet (now owned or will be owned byFlutter Entertainment) all operated as individual brands. Flutter also owns FanDuel. That’s without mentioning the deals we’ve seen on the supplier side, as OpenBet’s sale to NYX Gaming Group in 2016, followed by NYX’s sale to Scientific Games in 2017, were a sign of what can happen when one sports betting supplier takes such a strong hold in the market.

On a personal note, it’s been fascinating to see how the industry works above what you would normally see at ground level as a consumer. From the moment I successfully placed a £4 bet on England’s national football team to beat Mexico 3-1 in a friendly in 2010 (beginner’s luck, of course), I’ve had moments where I’ve fallen in and out of love with gambling as a player, but I must admit it’s been frustrating to see so much negative coverage of the industry, at least where we are based in the UK.

It was actually surprising to see a lack of regulation in so many markets around the world when I first started working for Gambling Insider, as here in the UK, gambling has until often been accepted as an enjoyable pastime. Sadly, that narrative has been lost in recent years, in part due to aggressive marketing, and in part due to some at times unfair and imbalanced coverage. It almost feels like we’ve had a headstart on a nation like the US, but the two markets seem to be moving in opposite directions; that’s certainly if the maximum stake reduction on FOBTs, from £100 to £2, and the pending ban on credit card gambling in the UK, are anything to go by.

Our job is not necessarily to get involved in the debates about whether the industry should be loved or hated, but to provide thought-provoking, detailed content that we hope helps our readership learn the fundamentals of how to keep improving operationally. If the industry is not up to scratch in any particular area, then of course we have to cover it, but it’s about focusing on how the industry moves forward.

With that in mind, if you just happen to be holding a glass of champagne while reading this, then please raise it to what I’m sure will be another memorable 10 years for us all – let’s reassess where we are in 2030!

Triplebet boosting compliance after temporary Gambling Commission suspension

Operator Triplebet, which runs the Matchbook sports betting exchange, has accepted the Gambling Commission’s temporary suspension of its license in Great Britain, following a two-year review.

Gambling Insider understands Triplebet engaged the services of Alvarez & Marsal to improve compliance last year, with the subsequent recommendations being implemented as part of a phased programme.

The progress report has been shared with the Commission, although Triplebet has accepted the suspension of its license until the final recommendations are put in place.

The suspension is the result of a hearing at the end of January; Triplebet’s review took place in late 2019.

Areas highlighted by the operator’s report included the fair treatment of customers, the establishment of a compliance committee, daily screening for players that may be politically exposed people and the establishment of a new responsible gaming algorithm.

A Triplebet spokeperson told Gambling Insider: “Triplebet takes its responsibility as a betting and gaming operator very seriously and accepts the Commission panel’s findings following a two-year review. 

“Triplebet believes compliance goes to the heart of offering a betting exchange product, and through the introduction of new policies and the establishment of a compliance committee Triplebet has shown it is committed to achieving any standard of compliance required of it.

“Last year, Triplebet engaged a third-party compliance specialist to elevate its standard of compliance beyond what is required by the Commission. Over the coming weeks, these recommendations will be completed in full and an independent audit will be carried out with a view to the license being reinstated.”

Marijuana banking bill gets pushback from Colorado’s Buck, Lamborn

Twelve members of the U.S. House of Representatives, including two from Colorado, are publicly pushing back against a federal bill that would give legal cannabis businesses access to banking services.

Craig F. Walker , The Denver PostU.S. Rep. Ken Buck in 2014 (Denver Post file)

In a Feb. 13 letter sent to Mike Crapo, chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, Reps. Ken Buck, R-Windsor, Doug Lamborn, R-Colorado Springs, and 10 other Republican representatives applauded the chairman’s concerns about the Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act and urged him to “stand strong” in his assessment of the risks posed by allowing dispensaries, cultivations and other businesses access to the federal banking system.

Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.

1X2 Network, White Hat Gaming Announce Content Deal

1X2 Network announced that it has teamed up with fellow provider of content and solutions for the online gambling industry White Hat Gaming to cement its footprint across a number of regulated markets.

Under the terms of their deal, 1X2 Network will provide its new partner with access to online slots and table games from its 1X2gaming and Iron Dog Studio arms. The partnership between the two industry providers will also see White Hat connect to 1X2 Network’s 3PI content aggregation platform.

The aggregator boasts titles from 16 unique game development studios that, according to 1X2 Network itself, cannot be “commonly found with other aggregators”, including recently formed Black Pudding Games studio, which already has three titles in its portfolio.

Among the games that White Hat will gain access to following its partnership with 1X2 Network are hit titles Blood Queen, Battle Maidens, Viking Wilds, and the supplier’s first slot to utilize the widely popular Megaways mechanic, Pirate Kings Megaways.

The deal will also enable White Hat to provide its partner operators with access a selection of 1X2 Network table games and virtual sports.

News about 1X2 Network’s partnership with White Hat emerge weeks after the company announced that it had strengthened its existing partnership with online gambling software provider Iforium. Under that extended partnership, Iforium has gained access to 1X2 Network’s third-party game studios via its 3PI aggregation platform.

Delighted to Partner with White Hat

Commenting on their partnership with White Hat, 1X2 Network Chief Commercial Officer Kevin Reid said that they are delighted with this partnership as they regard White Hat “as one of the most reputable platform providers in the world.”

Mr. Reid went on that this deal will propel their online casino and RNG content onto going live with more iGaming brands and to more players than ever before.

White Hat Gaming Head of Games Mike Dearling commented that they have built a reputation for offering one of the largest portfolios of quality content across the industry and this is why they wanted to add games from 1X2 Network’s 1X2gaming and Iron Dog Studios.

The Head of Games at the major content provider added that titles from the above-mentioned studios have soared in popularity in recent months “thanks to their incredible design and entertaining gameplay.”

This is the latest of several major partnerships announced by White Hat in recent months. Late last year, the company forged a multi-state platform agreement with US casino operator Penn National Gaming.

Under the terms of the deal, Penn National would deploy White Hat’s Player Account Management solution and would integrate with the provider’s platform as it looks to embark on a “multi-state real money online rollout.”

Source: 1X2 Network strikes White Hat Gaming partnership

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Police found more than 1,400 marijuana plants inside a building in Northern California

By Nicole Chavez | CNN

A man was arrested in West Point, California, after authorities discovered 440 pounds of illegal marijuana inside a building, the Calaveras County Sheriff’s Office said.

More than 1,400 marijuana plants were seized Thursday when deputies served a search warrant and found that a large shop building adjacent to a home had been turned into a grow house, the sheriff’s office said.

Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.