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Point Roberts, WA, United States, 2006/10/18 - GamingIndustryStocks.com presents a quarterly update with Dan Ahrens, Portfolio Manager for the Gaming and Casino Fund to discuss the positive outlook on gaming stocks.
GamingIndustryStocks.com (GIS), an investor and industry news portal for the gaming sector, presents an online audio update with Dan Ahrens, Portfolio Manager for the Gaming and Casino Fund (NASDAQ: GACFX), the only current mutual fund to specialize in the Gaming and Casino Industry.
Mr. Ahrens provides a quarterly update on the gaming industry and a look at the buyout bid for Harrah’s Entertainment, the buzz surrounding the new video game consoles and the rebound in video game stocks, as well as the effect of the current legislative environment for online gambling. Mr. Ahrens also reviews the Gaming and Casino Fund’s performance and his outlook on gaming stocks moving forward.
November brings with it the much awaited launch of the Nintendo Wii and the Sony PS3 gaming consoles as these companies and the industry attempts to overcome the damage to stock values that the steady delays had caused last year. Mr. Ahrens is already seeing a rebound of the gaming stock market. “Gaming stocks in my opinion had become undervalued and it was only a matter of time before we saw a great rebound. This industry is already re-ignited with Activision up more than 40%, Electronic Arts up more than 25% and a game retailer like GameStop being up over 32%, all in the last 3 months.”
In looking at the online gambling market, the shadow hanging over this segment is undoubtedly the legislative environment with the passing of U.S. legislation aimed at prohibiting most forms of Internet gambling altogether. As Dan Ahrens describes, “The companies with the most significant non-U.S. business will certainly survive, but many will not. There will certainly be a great deal of consolidation. Worldwide (non-U.S.), this is still expected to be a great growth industry.”
The casino industry may be witnessing a shift in strategy by one of its gaming giants, Harrah’s Entertainment, as it evaluates the $15.5 billion buyout bid on the table by two giant private equity firms, Apollo Management and Texas Pacific Group. Dan Ahrens feels that Harrah’s has recently been undervalued and is in fact very much worth the bid that was put forth. “The offer did provide an additional boost to an industry that was already getting rather ‘hot’ again going into the Fall, as August and September gaming revenues were very good.”
This deal presents the industry with a structure and opportunity that has not been readily available as private equity has historically stayed away from the casino arena, largely due to the cumbersome legislative process involved. However according to Ahrens, “The rich real estate values associated with the Las Vegas strip and other areas, combined with the steady revenue streams that casino gaming can provide, makes entrance into this market very attractive.” It is believed that this deal will open the door for more private equity activity in the casino space.
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Source: GamingIndustryStocks.com, Gaming and Casino Fund