Live poker set to kick off in some form or another, online poker falling from its recent peak and the Macau gaming market still suffering were among this weeks top industry stories…

By: Andrew Burnett

Vegas protests confuse casino re-opening plans

Top of the news everywhere, of course, have been the protests surrounding the police murder of George Floyd, and the epicentre of the gambling world, Las Vegas, has not been immune复古传奇sf to the shockwaves…

With plans afoot to re-open many of the city’s casinos in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, last weekend saw another possible problem – generally peaceful protests on the Strip and elsewhere, with rioting and looting mixed in at times in other areas.

By Thursday, only a small group of protestors remained on the Strip, marching from either end between the Bellagio and Tropicana.

Casino bookings still unexpectedly high

State Governor Steve Sisolak had earlier named June 4th as an opening date for casinos complying with new COVID-19 requirements, with bookings much higher than expected复古传奇sf for Vegas.

“Initial customer demand to visit the Las Vegas Strip has been much stronger than anticipated, triggering our decision to reopen Harrah’s Las Vegas, in addition to Caesars Palace, Flamingo and LINQ Promenade, next week,” Tony Rodio, CEO of Caesars Entertainment复古传奇sf told cnbc.com.

MGM Resorts have three casinos lined up to re-open this week, the Grand as well as the Bellagio and New York New York.

Online poker showing downward trend

The online poker world has, as we all know, taken over in the past three months, but there are already signs of a serious slowing down in interest.

Not entirely unexpected复古传奇sf given that certain countries have relaxed or removed most of their coronavirus limitations, people now able to return to other aspects of life.

That’s the line shown by PokerFuse, who reported Southern European cash game traffic ‘has dipped below 5000 average concurrent seats for the first time since March 17,’  from a high of 9000.

That concurs with a CardsChat look at Google traffic, where a 50% drop in searches for “online poker” has been witnessed, although the level of interest is still higher than for last year’s comparable numbers.

Player retention among the new signups over the last three months may well be key to assessing just how well online poker will come out of the global crisis.

GiG partners with iPoker Network

In more tech-related news, Gaming Innovation Group (GiG) has announced that the integration of Playtech’s poker platform, the iPoker Network复古传奇sf, into its own network.

复古传奇sf The move is a significant one as it is GiG’s first move into the online poker arena and will expand the options for their partners.

Ben Clemes, CCO at GiG, stated of the move: “As part of the process, we added to our microservices, which gives us the ability to scale and integrate with other third-party poker providers in the future —providing our partners with more flexibility and choice.’

Macau suffers more Covid-19 financial losses

Moving back to the coronavirus-affected live gaming market, and Macau has just posted its 8th straight month of declining revenue, visa restrictions on mainland Chinese gamblers as well as those from Hong Kong the main cause over the last few months.

Bloomberg quotes May figures of a 93.2% drop in revenue from the same time last year, explaining that ‘casinos are still left with empty gaming tables because of border and visa restrictions, resulting in losses of more than $1 million a day each. Analysts are hoping controls will be eased starting this month, followed by a summer recovery.’

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