Sheldon Adelson, the Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Las Vegas Sands Corp, the casino industry’s biggest stock market listed company has reiterated his opposition to online casinos. Adelson, one of the richest people in the world discounts the idea that one reason for his opposition to online gambling could be the fact that legislation to allow internet casinos would have a detrimental effect on his own company’s land based casinos.
Sheldon Adelson bases his opposition on a social rather than a business basis claiming that online gambling is “fool’s gold” and that without stronger enforcement of existing laws against online casinos and a possible future federal out right ban on online gambling that young people are at risk from such casinos.The Las Vegas Sands Corporation runs land based casino resorts in Nevada, Pennsylvania, Singapore and Macau. The company is also to develop a massive casino resort in Madrid in Spain to be called Euro Vegas which will incorporate 6 casinos, hotels, restaurants and entertainment complexes when it is completed.
In a recent article in Forbes, Sheldon Adelson claimed that competition from online casinos would not concern his company as most of its profits in the casino sector come from the company’s operations in Asia. Las Vegas Sands’ operations in the United States make more money from non-gaming entertainment than they do from their casinos. He mentions that other casino companies without the world wide presence of Las Vegas Sands Corp, casinos in racetracks and Native American casinos would all be affected by the growth of casinos on the internet.Even though Adelson’s company is in the process of constructing what is to be Europe’s largest casino resort in Spain with work to begin at the end of this year, he says that the effects of internet casinos on land based casino gambling in Europe can be seen with a 20 per cent decrease in visits to European land based casinos as a result of legislation allowing online gaming. While he deplores the possible loss of employment in American land based casinos based on these European figures he insists that his wish to have online casinos declared illegal in new federal legislation, is based on the fact that in his opinion online gambling is a social “plague” that will entrap young people and students.