euro adhoc: bwin Interactive Entertainment AG / Justice/Processes / US SAFE Port Act signed into law by President George W. Bush

Geschrieben am 13-10-2006

Disclosure announcement transmitted by euro adhoc. The issuer is responsible
for the content of this announcement.


On 30 September 2006 the US Senate passed the "SAFE Port Act" which
also contains a section referred to as the "Unlawful Internet
Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006". The new act primarily affects
online payment transactions for games of chance, which have been
deemed unlawful under US American law, and aims to prevent these by
threatening severe punishment, court sanctions and regulatory action.
This statute adds a new subchapter to Chapter 53 of the United States
Code stating that online games of chance are primarily financed
through credit card payments and money transfers and that new
enforcement tools have become necessary for the Internet. Not only
sports bets, but also games of chance and lotteries, are affected by
the "bet or wager" definition. The law makes payment transactions
related to unlawful online games of chance virtually impossible,
listing all payment options affected in detail as is customary for US
legislation. In addition, § 5367 also contains a provision about the
liability of any company or person involved in such transactions.
This also applies to operations owned or controlled by someone who
accepts unlawful bets and wagers.

Ongame, one of the companies in the bwin Group is also affected by
the bill which was signed into law today by President George W. Bush.

bwin regrets that the US has taken this step which will make it
virtually impossible for listed, strictly regulated and transparent
operators to offer real money entertainment to US customers. bwin is
doubtful whether US authorities will be able to achieve their stated
goals - protection of minors and the prevention of gaming addiction -
by introducing such legislation. Past experience with restrictive
measures to prevent the abuse of alcohol has shown that such
prohibition did not have the desired effect, merely driving consumers
underground and contributing to the rapid growth of an entirely
unregulated black market. The online gaming industry is unanimous in
its view that the creation of forward-looking regulation can more
effectively address issues such as consumer protection, the
protection of minors, the prevention of gaming addiction, or the
prevention of money laundering. Such a policy, if properly monitored
by the authorities, would be much more effective than this general

Following an in-depth analysis of the situation and extensive legal
consultation, bwin has decided to comply with the new legislation and
will no longer accept any new US-resident customers for its real
money gaming products, effective immediately. The company is working
on technical arrangements that will prevent existing customers from
accessing its real money games. Until further notice, bwin will only
be offering a "play money" line-up to the US market. The greatly
increased risk of prosecution by the US authorities, the considerable
pressure on banks and payment providers coupled with the requirements
for publicly listed companies leave the company no other option.

For the year 2006 the Ongame customer base also includes some 177,000
active real money customers not resident in the US. In addition, the
majority of customers in Ongame’s poker network are from Europe. In
Q2 2006, the former Ongame customer portfolio generated gross gaming
revenue of EUR 29.0 million. EUR 9.3 million or 32 percent of the
gross gaming revenue were generated from customers not resident in
the US. Cumulative gross gaming revenue of the bwin group amounted to
EUR 94.3 million in Q2 2006; as leading provider of online gaming
entertainment in continental Europe, bwin generated 79 percent of its
gross gaming revenue through customers not living in the US in Q2

bwin customers not resident in the USA are not affected at all by
these legislative changes in the United States, and can continue to
enjoy the full range of bwin products.

end of announcement euro adhoc 13.10.2006 18:47:42

ots Originaltext: bwin Interactive Entertainment AG
Im Internet recherchierbar: http://www.presseportal.de

Further inquiry note:
Konrad Sveceny, Investor Relations
bwin Interactive Entertainment AG
Boersegasse 11, 1010 Vienna, Austria
Tel.: +43 (0) 50 858-2208

Karin Klein, Corporate Communications
bwin Interactive Entertainment AG
Boersegasse 11, 1010 Vienna, Austria
Tel.: +43 (0) 50 858-2200

Branche: Casinos & Gambling
ISIN: AT0000767553
WKN: 936172
Index: ATX, Prime.market
Börsen: Wiener Börse AG / official dealing


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