Two Execs Acquitted of Gambling Charges in France

Two Execs Acquitted of Gambling Charges in France exec Norbert Teufelberger and co-CEO that is former Bodner (r) have actually finally been acquitted of costs in France. (Image: SN / APA / HERBERT PFARRHO)

The battle over whether bwin now called violated the guidelines of France’s online gambling industry happens to be fought for more than a decade now, with legal proceedings having begun nearly eight years ago. But finally, after it seemed as although the case might never be resolved, A french court has come to the final outcome that two professionals who were with bwin during the disputed time duration are perhaps not guilty of the crimes they have been accused of. leader Norbert Teufelberger and former co-CEO that is bwin Bodner have both been acquitted of fees that they violated the legal gambling monopolies set up in France between 2003 and 2005. During the time, only two companies La Francaise des Jeux (FDJ) and Pari-Mutuel Urbain (PMU) were given a monopoly within the nation’s gambling industry, with the two accusing bwin of violating their rights by offering online gaming products to citizens that are french.

Long Wait for Verdict

Teufelberger and Bodner were originally arrested right back in September 2006 while at a press seminar announcing a partnership between bwin and AS Monaco, A french soccer club. The pair ended up being charged with illegally Internet that is offering gambling, illegally receiving wagers on displaying activities, and advertising illegally to French residents during the 2003-2005 period.

But over time, curiosity about the full case seemed to wane. After their arrest, there clearly was virtually no movement into the case until last July, whenever a prosecutor that is public set a hearing for September one which was eventually pressed back again to April 2014. By this right time, even FDJ and PMU had withdrawn their complaints, though French authorities were still looking to get fines of €40,000 ($55,000) from each one of the accused.

The european Court of Justice had generally allowed nations to restrict online gambling if it was done based on concerns over problem gambling or to battle other issues, such as money laundering during the time period in question. However, the European Commission later found that this did not use in the case of France, as both FDJ and PMU advertised their solutions to French players suggesting the nation’s policy was geared towards maintaining a monopoly, rather than protecting its residents.

Interestingly, the actual situation didn’t seem to have any negative effect on the relationship between bwin and the government that is french. When France started issuing licenses to online gambling companies in 2010, bwin ended up being the operator that is first receive one.

Shakeup on Tap for

The tiny victory that is legal at a time when the current leadership of is undergoing a shakeup. Three board people including Bodner, deputy president Rod Perry, and audit committee chairman Helmut Kern have actually been removed after shareholder Jason Ader’s Spring Owl Asset Management published a 37-page report that called for changes one of the company’s leadership.

According to the report, the company has floundered under its present leadership.

‘[the board that is current has overseen significant shareholder value destruction, approximately 60 percent decrease in share price since the 2010 announcement for the merger of Bwin and PartyGaming because of failed execution, failed merger, and failed oversight,’ the report said.

While leadership rejected most of these claims, incoming chairman Philip Yea has still offered to make some modifications, with three unnamed separate directors to take the positions of those leaving the boardroom.

Deutsche Bank Sells Vegas Cosmopolitan to Blackstone

The Blackstone Group bought The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas for $1.73 billion. (Image: Wikimedia Commons).

Ever them a good price since they foreclosed on The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas back in 2008, Deutsche Bank has been looking to unload the casino and hotel onto anyone willing to give. A very awkward fit after all, they’re a bank, not a casino operator, and that made the venue.

Significant casino organizations round the global globe expressed curiosity about possibly purchasing The Cosmopolitan, which seemed to have great potential, even though it had yet to make a profit. That meant it had been somewhat surprising when Deutsche Bank announced that they had sold the casino to another group with really casino experience that is limited.

The bank announced a contract to sell The Cosmopolitan to the Blackstone Group for a price of $1.73 billion in cash, marking 1st major gambling investment for Blackstone.

Blackstone Invests in Las Vegas Recovery

Having said that, it is not quite as far of a reach for the combined team as it might appear. Blackstone is a major investor in the world of real estate, plus they already owned a small stake in Caesars Entertainment.

‘As a significant investor in the hospitality sector Blackstone acknowledges the worthiness and potential in The Cosmopolitan and vegas and looks forward to working to build in the success to date,’ said senior managing director Tyler Henritze in a declaration.

Some analysts discovered the purchase to express a statement that is major the vegas Strip.

‘We…think this announcement speaks to a historically smart real estate buyer creating a statement on the length associated with nevada Strip data recovery,’ said JP Morgan gaming analyst Joe Greff. And analysts that are 0ther this could raise interest and the price in future sales of Strip properties.

Deutsche Bank Removes Non-Core Asset

For Deutsche Bank the bank that is largest in Germany it was a relief to unload a house that would not fit in with their general business plan.

‘The Bank is committed to reducing its non-core legacy positions in a capital manner that is efficient benefits shareholders,’ wrote Pius Sprenger, mind associated with Non-Core Operations Unit at Deutsche Bank.

Cosmopolitan Yet to show a Profit

For Blackstone to turn The Cosmopolitan into a good investment, they’ll have to reverse a lengthy reputation for bad news for the venue. The massive undertaking of creating the blissful luxury resort occurred just before the 2008 collapse that is financial hurting the casino’s chances through the begin.

After developer Bruce Eichner was forced to turn the Cosmopolitan over to Deutsche Bank in January 2008, the bank picked up the costs to complete building. But the resort hasn’t switched a profit since opening in 2010 december. While the resort has proven massively popular and its own clubs and restaurants tend to be full too, the casino has never ever brought in sufficient revenue to sustain the resort’s sky-high operating expenses.

While the situation seems to have been improving recently ( in accordance with a basic recovery for Las Vegas casinos), The Cosmopolitan still lost $12 million in the first quarter of 2014. There are also issues with the Las Vegas Culinary Union, which includes protested the fact that employees have been working without a contract for two years.

Industry Experts Say Offshore Hurts Regulated Online Gambling

Offshore gambling sites were a topic that is major the East Coast Gaming Congress recently. (Image: Casino Enterprise Management)

When Nevada, brand New Jersey and Delaware launched online gambling in their states, numerous heralded it as the dawn of the American Web gambling industry. Needless to say, this was not completely true: online casinos had been in the United States considering that the 1990s, and while the US government might have caused it to be illegal in order for them to operate within the nation, some offshore sites have continued to operate in the us to the day. Now, some experts say their presence is one for the key facets holding back regulated sites over the country.

Competition from offshore web sites that are nevertheless illegally running in the country ended up being one of several challenges cited for regulated gambling sites at the East Coast Gaming Congress in Atlantic City this week, where experts said that such web sites are still the main way that Americans wager money online.

‘Internet gambling exists in all 50 states today,’ said David Rebuck, director of this new Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement. ‘It’s just not regulated.’

New Jersey Targets Promotion of Offshore Sites

That declaration occurs the heels of a letter sent by the brand new Jersey Office of this Attorney General month that is last five sites that were promoting both regulated brand New Jersey web sites and unregulated alternatives. In the letter, provided for sites such as, the owners of such web sites were warned they could face effects if they don’t remove links towards the overseas-based internet sites.

‘This letter shall serve as official notice that your particular site, by providing links to sites which may be offering unauthorized online gaming, may be promoting activity that is contrary to nj and federal law,’ said the letter, written by New Jersey Assistant Attorney General George N. Rover. ‘We request that you immediately remove any online video gaming links that are not authorized under federal law or the legislation of any State. The State of the latest Jersey reserves the right to pursue appropriate civil or criminal sanctions against you in you fail to take the required actions.’

But despite such efforts, lots of gamblers in america even in the three states where regulated online video gaming exists choose to try out at overseas web sites. One explanation may be that they may be able often be easier for players to utilize, specially when it comes to payment processing.

‘People who come online have 20 minutes within the den,’ said Eamonn Toland, president of Paddy Power’s North American branch. ‘They don’t have three hours to work out re payments. Them quickly and easily, they’ll just get watch a movie or go take action else. if you cannot capture’

Industry Still in Infancy

Other issues addressed included the known undeniable fact that many perhaps a lot of people in New Jersey still don’t understand that Internet casinos are appropriate within the state. According to CEO Brian Mattingley, a survey conducted by his company found that only ten percent of state residents were mindful that online gambling was legal there.

But despite these challenges, most sounds had been upbeat about the future of nj’s online gambling marketplace, criticizing those people who have been dismissive of the early returns from regulated web sites.

‘The individuals who say it’s not doing sufficiently are like the two moms and dads who view their five-month-old and say, ‘It doesn’t speak any languages,” said Ca Gambling Control Commisssioner Richard Schuetz. ‘Let’s get our expectations in line.’



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