Sleeping Beast Las Vegas Sands Awakes and Smells The Live Casino Coffee

It's got the money, but will the Rich Kid coming to the party late have the smarts to open up the iCasino space?

Don’t let the name fool you. These days the Las Vegas Sands has very little to do with the Desert Queen herself, having pulled out of Nevada just before the Covid pandemic hit and putting all its cherries in a China basket.

Somehow it has survived the ensuing Far East hammering, retained the jazzy lustre of that storied Sands name and remains–even in the leading-edge era of the digital boom–one of the biggest whales in world gambling.

With a market capitalisation of some US$42.5 billion (£32.95bn), Las Vegas Sands is the third richest casino group by income (2020), after MGM Resorts and Caesars Entertainment.

Now, since the passing of its legendary Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Sheldon Adelson in 2021 at the hallowed age of 87, and under the new leadership of Robert Goldstein, the sleeping beast of betting has stirred and smelt the heady brew of iGaming coffee.

But in inimitable, stand-alone, style the integrated casino resorts heavy-hitter has decided to forge a B2B pathway to new digital riches — and forgo the straight-to-iGamer B2C journey launched by its principal competitors: MGM, Caesars Entertainment and Wynn Resorts, with their respective online verticals BetMGM Casino, Caesars Sportsbook & Casino and WynnBET.

Buoyed by the reopening of the gambling entrepôt Macau–now released from the Covid lockdown straightjacket imposed by its mainland China overlords–, Las Vegas Sands is betting on launching a Live Dealer Casino, a move confirmed by one of their VPs, Paul Myatt, in a far from cryptic online post, which recently announced:

“Please get in touch if you’d like to hear what Sands is planning in the live dealer space. We’re gearing up for our launch with spectacular table games and game shows!”

Las Vegas Sands Buoyed by Macau Bounce-back

According to informed sources; Las Vegas Sands, which owns five casino resorts in Macau and a sixth in Singapore, created an online arm called Sands Digital Services Opco, incorporated in Carson City, Nevada, back in March last year.

Sofia, So Good

It would appear that the retail casino group is planning to open a live studio in Vegas, and a second studio in the Bulgarian capital, Sofia.

Little else is known about the proposed launch, save that it’s likely scheduled for the start of next year.

Given Las Vegas Sands’ belated market entry, potential rivals, Evolution, Playtech and Authentic Gaming, among others, who operate Live Dealer Casinos, may be well advised to change-up their playbooks.

Sands may be slow off the mark in a digital space that rewards foresight, alacrity and smashing the zeitgeist, but the Asia-anchored NYSE-listed giant is awfully rich.

And–finally–it’s been touched by the kiss of iGaming life.

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