Boxing Champs, $billion Casino Deals and COVID-19 Financial Concerns

The £multi-million effects of Covid on the UKs casino industry, some monopoly discussions in the US casino sector and a new poker deal for modern-day heavyweight legend David Haye have all hit the headlines this past week…

By: Andrew Burnett

Boxing champ Haye joins Team Grosvenor

First up, former world cruiserweight and heavyweight champion David Haye has joined forces with Grosvenor Poker, the Londoner taking on the role of official ambassador for Team Grosvenor Poker.

Haye’s post-ring retirement poker journey has been well-detailed, this year’s release of the documentary David vs Goliath charting his move from the boxing ring to the poker table.

Haye studied poker for a year before taking on more than 9000 fellow runners in the GUKPT £125 buy-in Goliath event in Coventry. The pugilistic legend performed admirably, finishing 40th and winning £2085.

“To have achieved as much as I did makes me think the way I learned was definitely right for me,” he said afterwards.

As for Grosvenor, the Rank Organisation-owned brand are hoping that Haye will spearhead their fightback from the effects of Covid19 on the poker environment.

Online ‘Hayemaker Bounty’ tournaments have been launched this week and Haye is expected to play a big role when the live poker scene emerges from lockdown.

Speaking of which…

UK casino lockdown costing $millions

The UK casino industry is still no closer to knowing when they can re-open, despite calls for clarity from the government – amid claims that everyone is losing out as the lockdown remains in place.

Michael Dugher, CEO of the Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) has applauded the decision of Chancellor Rishi Sunak to cut VAT from 20% to 5% for 6 months.

He stated, however, that “to take advantage of this new policy, casinos must be given the green light to reopen as quickly as possible in July. They can reopen safely and it’s time now to let them do so.”

Dugher claims that the money spent on furlough, and the loss in tax revenue, means that the government is losing more than £10million per week.

“At the moment, casinos are costing the Exchequer around £5 million a week while they are closed. Last year, they paid £5.7 million a week in tax."

Indiana casinos raise ‘monopoly’ concerns

Over in the USA, where casinos have been re-opened in various states over the past month, Indiana regulators have told two gaming giants that they must sell three of their casinos.

The Eldorado Resorts Inc. merger with Caesars Entertainment Corp. has seen multi-state approval and casino sales in the $17.3billion deal, with Indiana one of two remaining hurdles to clear.

New Jersey are also considering the merger plans this week that will include Caesars, Harrah’s and the Tropicana Atlantic City. Nevada regulators agreed to the deal last week, which will see Caesars Palace, Planet Hollywood and the Flamingo among the Vegas properties included in the massive deal.

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