Rebates

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Advice: Embrace 'Whales,' Close Tracks

This year's International Simulcast Conference opened Sept. 29 with some advice to the horseracing industry: Embrace the "whales" and computer-assisted wagering, and close some tracks to help improve the product at those that remain.

National HBPA Sets Meeting Forums

The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association will address rebates, computer-assisted wagering, equine drug testing, immigration, and other issues during its winter convention scheduled for Jan. 24-28, 2008, in New Orleans.

New York Governor Vetoes Rebate Legislation

New York Governor Vetoes Rebate Legislation

New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer has vetoed legislation advocates said would have made it easier for tracks and off-track betting corporations to begin bettor rebate programs as a way to compete with off-shore entities and others in the pari-mutuel wagering industry.

'Friends' Releases Legislative Proposal for Racing

New York should permit public and private partnerships to bid on the New York Racing Association franchise, allow bettors to wager via computers, introduce frequent-betting rewards programs at tracks, and approve the merger of the state's off-track betting corporations, according to an ambitious legislative package proposed March 9 by Friends of New York Racing.

Youbet.com Purchases Offshore Wagering Company

Youbet.com has closed on its acquisition of International Racing Group, a Curacao-based account-wagering service, for $3 million. The purchase price includes $2 million in cash and $1 million worth of Youbet.com treasury stock.

Youbet.com Has Strong Quarter; Eyes Expansion

Youbet.com registered double-digit increases in handle and total revenue for the first quarter of 2005, which helped boost net income for the online wagering company from $15,000 in the first quarter of 2004 to $1.03 million this year.

Youbet.com Wants to Buy High-Volume Shop

Youbet.com, which recently topped the $1-billion mark in handle, announced Feb. 8 it has a letter of intent to acquire International Racing Group, the Curacao-based account wagering company named but not charged in an 88-count federal indictment that alleged illegal gambling.

Jurors: Racing Services Must Forfeit $99M

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Racing Services, the North Dakota wagering company convicted of illegal gambling, must forfeit about $99 million, the amount authorities said was wagered at an unlicensed site operated by the company.

Tote Protocol, Signal Pricing Debated at Conference

One day after the first public presentation of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association Wagering System Task Force report, two issues central to the report--wagering systems and signal pricing--were discussed in depth Sept. 21 on day two of the International Simulcast Conference in Miami Beach, Fla.

Wagering Task Force Report Gets Public Airing

A mixed reaction greeted the first public presentation of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association Wagering System Task Force report Sept. 20, first day of the International Simulcast Conference in Miami Beach, Fla.

Report: Industry Must Maximize Customer Benefits

A recently released report on wagering trends concludes the "handle up, purses down" situation isn't new, and that "incentive wagering service providers"--rebate operations--improve the competitiveness of the pari-mutuel industry.

MEC Has Plans--With or Without NYRA

Magna Entertainment Corp. is still willing to partner with the New York Racing Association, but it is also pursuing its own move into the New York marketplace in case NYRA isn't serious about a merger, MEC president Jim McAlpine said.

National HBPA OKs Hub Plan, Wagering Report

The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association has adopted a memorandum of understanding with a company that plans to operate an offshore wagering hub, and it also endorsed a draft a report on pari-mutuel economics that suggests high-volume betting shops are important to the industry.

High-Volume Shops Make Case As Wagering Study Continues

As the National Thoroughbred Racing Association Wagering Systems Task Force prepares to hear recommendations on ways to address the "handle up, purses down" situation, operators of high-volume betting shops believe they might be a target and suggest that, as generators of up to 15% of annual handle in North America, they should be directly involved in the process.

Offshore Hub Plan Officially Endorsed by National HBPA

The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association has officially put its weight behind a plan for an offshore hub that would accept wagers from foreign countries and funnel them to a common pool from which racetracks and horsemen would derive revenue.

MEC: Recent Moves Designed to Benefit Tracks, Horsemen

Magna Entertainment Corp.'s top executive admitted the company has taken plenty of heat for recent business decisions tied to account wagering and rebate shops, but he indicated the racing conglomerate wouldn't apologize for a strategy he said is designed to benefit the industry in the long term.

High Priority

By Ray Paulick -- This year-end headline could not have gone unnoticed by anyone operating a racing stable--large or small--or by the leaders of organizations whose mission is to improve the economics of the Thoroughbred industry: 2003 Handle Up Slightly, But Purses Decrease.

AmericaTab Handle Jumps Despite MEC Blackout

Handle through the AmericaTab family of account-wagering services was up almost 90% the first six days of January even though the services weren't permitted to offer betting on Magna Entertainment Corp. racetracks, including premier meets at Gulfstream Park and Santa Anita Park.

AmericaTab Handle Jumps Despite MEC Blackout

Handle through the AmericaTab family of account-wagering services was up almost 90% the first six days of January even though the services weren't permitted to offer betting on Magna Entertainment Corp. racetracks, including premier meets at Gulfstream Park and Santa Anita Park.

National HBPA Takes Stand on Simulcasts, Revenue

The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association, in an attempt to solidify revenue derived from pari-mutuel wagering, will soon release a comprehensive position paper that touches on everything from source-market fees to rebates.

Rebate Replay

By Ray Paulick -- A number of readers took exception to comments made in this space last week concerning account-wagering operators that attract customers by offering rebates of 10% or higher.

Can More Be Less?

By Ray Paulick -- Some track officials and horsemen have begun to question the wisdom of their relationships with offshore and U.S.-based wagering companies that attract some of the game's biggest players through rebates of 10% or more on wagers.

To Rebate Or Not To Rebate? That's The Question

The topic of rebates, and whether they are good for the pari-mutuel industry, headed the opening day of the International Simulcasting Conference in Bal Harbour, Fla. Nearly 400 individuals representing more than 200 different organizations registered for the annual meeting.

Rebate Debate

By Ray Paulick -- Rebate shops have been on the scene several years now, and it appears there has been limited success in slowing down their ability to recruit and retain some of horse racing's biggest gamblers.

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