Millions of Australians at risk following sweeping changes…


The iconic Aussie Millions poker series is at risk of sweeping changes to Australian gambling laws. Following a damning royal commission into the operations of Crown Melbourne Casino, new and much stricter regulations are in place to control player losses as well as the use of cash on casino premises.

Unfit to hold a license

The government’s investigation into Crown Resorts lasted two years and ended with a ruling that the company was no longer fit to hold a license to operate casinos in the country. However, after agreeing to replace nearly all of the executives and promising to change its business practices, Crown Resorts was allowed to continue operating.

The changes to the law insist that players playing slot machines must first agree to a self-declared loss limit before they are allowed to bet. The new cash restrictions state that players can only bet a maximum of AU$1,000 in a 24-hour period without providing acceptable photo ID.

Currently, slot machine revenue accounts for around 25% of the total and it is this factor that could ultimately be the loss of the Aussie Millions. In short, if we assume that casino revenues will be hit hard by the regulatory changes, the shortfall will have to be made up somewhere. Revenue from hosting poker tournaments is nowhere near what is normal for slots and table games.

Although the number of slot machines in each establishment is controlled, the traditional gaming tables are not. The likes of roulette and blackjack require minimal staff to operate unlike a major poker event.

Time will tell, but there is another change that could spell the end of the Aussie Millions.

In 2019 Crown Resorts majority shareholder James Packer attempted to sell his 19.99% stake to Lawrence Ho, son of Dr Stanley Ho who had confirmed links to the Chinese organized crime group the Triads.

Stanley Ho was once knocked down by the New Jersey Casino Control Board when he applied for a gambling license because of his activities and although Lawrence Ho has no direct connection to his father’s businesses, he was listed as a director of a blacklisted company. in Australia.

Stanley Ho once had a monopoly on Macau’s casinos and was linked to VIP junket organizers who fed mega-rich gamblers at Crown Resorts casinos. This source of income is now also obsolete.

So, with two major revenue streams hitting Crown Resorts’ bottom line, it’s understandable that the poker community is understandably fearful of the loss of one of the big live series disappearing from the schedule.


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