Fast Offshore brings you the top Gaming, Payments and Crypto news in September 2021.
Online Gambling News
Bids and buyouts make for an exciting month in the iGaming sector
Online gambling and eSports giant DraftKings has reportedly made a $22 billion bid to takeover Entain; the latter was confirmed last week. Entertain have not released any information on the proposal but have confirmed they received it. An update published on 21 September confirmed that an offer for EUR 25per share (including cash and stock) had been submitted but rejected by the board. A subsequent request of GBP 28 comprising of cash and Class A shares had been made. This would value the business at GBP 16.4 billion, or $22.4 billion. DraftKings now has three weeks to finalize the offer. Earlier this year, Entertain rejected an $11 billion bid from MGM resorts international. At the time, they said MGM had undervalued the business, and MGM refused to budge. The high value of the potential offer is a testament to growth projections for the sector and a healthy balance sheet with the world’s largest gambling companies.
Meanwhile, industry giant Flutter has purchased 100% of shares of Singular in a deal finalized this month. The acquisition comes after a subsidiary of Flutter signed an extension of its software agreement with Singular.
Philippines levis tax rise on gambling companies and staff
The President of the Philippines Rodrigo Duterte has cracked down on iGaming operators in the country. A new law has been signed to impose additional taxes on gambling workers and offshore gaming operators.
First proposed in 2019, the new law will impose a 5% tax on online gambling operators’ gross revenue in the country. These companies primarily target Chinese audiences. Foreign nationals that work in online casinos and affiliated service providers will see their tax rate rise to 25%. The move is an attempt to crack down on illegal gambling operations, according to Duterte’s spokesperson. The government is projected to bring in around $500 million in revenue annually from the new taxes. This is an unprecedented move that could seek to drive away offshore licensees and foreign workers. It could also see an increase in activity from operators looking for new jurisdictions to base their operations on to avoid what they see as unnecessarily high taxes.
Strategic alliance signals growing confidence in LatAm gambling sector
There are yet more signs that Latin America is becoming an area of interest for online gambling companies. Popular games maker BGaming has forged ahead with a “strategic alliance” with sports betting provider Jazz Gaming Solutions. Together, the two companies plan to enter the LatAm market while increasing the variety of games offered to customers. The new agreement will include popular slot games and will see JazzGS offering them via their betting platform. While BGaming might be young, established in 2018, its game appears on more than 300 online casino sites.
LatAm is considered the next prominent place for online gambling. More and more countries are moving to decriminalize or legislate in favour of iGaming, offering up markets of hundreds of millions of people.
Blockchain & Crypto News
Indian education moves onto the blockchain
The Indian Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has started using blockchain to secure exam results and prevent tampering. Student data has been linked to blocks and is stored with cryptographic security, meaning it’s immutable. So far, three years of retrospective data have been added to the system. A spokesperson of the CBSE said that more data would be added gradually.
Meanwhile, Spirit Blockchain Capital Inc announced it would expand its educational offering for investors in the US. The company plans to roll out additional educational and research resources to entice investors. This is a response to the “fast-moving crypto environment”.
LatAm becomes a region of interest for payment providers
It’s not just online gambling that’s flourishing in Latin America; payment processing is also on the increase. North American payment processors are looking to their Latin American counterparts as possible investment opportunities. For example, Canadian company Nuvei Corp has bought out Patmentez, a Mexico-based payments company providing services in 11 South American countries.
Rival Paysafe Group Holdings recently acquired another two payment processors in the region, nodding to a vote of confidence from foreign companies.
Paymentez provides prepaid card, card acquiring, and payments gateways to over 4000 merchants in gambling, delivery, transport, and sport. Countries currently serviced include burgeoning economies like Brazil, Argentina, and Uruguay.
Payment processor valued at $8 billion following a market debut
Payment processor Remitly Inc saw its shares rose to 23% more than its NPO debut last week. This gave the newcomer a market capitalization of more than $8.5 billion. Remitly provides online, cross-border remittance services. It prides itself on low-cost and transparent transfer services and has customers in 135 countries. In operation for over ten years, the company works with Barclays, JP Morgan Chase, and HSBC.
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