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Insight RUSSIA


01 Only a small number of foreign investors have confirmed their investment in Russia’s gambling zones, including Adaptas, Summit Ascent and NagaCorp.


02 This article was first published in the November 2013 issue of Asia Gambling Brief and has been reproduced with kind permission.


that just one prosecution was “a drop in the ocean.”


He said: “The majority of illegal gambling houses that went bust did so because the owners were unable to pay large sums of money for cover- ups, or they failed to build ties with law enforcers.”


Transparency International’s rating for public sector corruption put Russia at 127 out of 177 nations in 2013.


Corruption, lack of transparency and lack of access to law enforcers represent three big chal- lenges for foreign investors in the country’s offi- cial gambling zones.


2 8


The FSB officer said most foreign investors, or casino


operators, legal or otherwise, are from the former Soviet Republics. Some from the


Caucasus are very influential in Russia’s illegal gambling industry.


The FSB officer said most foreign investors, or casino operators, legal or otherwise, are from the former Soviet Republics. Some from the Caucasus are very influential in Russia’s illegal gambling industry, despite increasing tensions between Moscow and the region.


“Most foreigner investors find it difficult to com- pete in Russia’s gambling industry because they simply don't know the rules of the game,” he said.


Michael Boettcher’s Storm International Group was one of a few foreign investors who were


established in Russia, with at least five casinos and 25 gaming rooms in Moscow. However, the company pulled out of the Russian market after the gambling ban was implemented in 2009.


The Austrian company ASATI shut down its operations in “Azov City,” the gambling zone on the border of the Krasnodar Territory and Rostov Region, in 2009.


Ritzio Entertainment Group, which used to be the largest gaming company in Russia with $1.2bn sales in 2006 also left the Russian market. While Major casinos that have been closed in Moscow include Metelitsa, Arbat, The Crystal, Golden Palace, Imperia, Shangri La, Jazz Town, New York and Udarnik among others.


Only a small number of foreign investors have confirmed their investment in Russia’s gambling zones, including Adaptas, Summit Ascent and NagaCorp.


As the last remaining foreign investor in “Azov - City,” the Singaporean company Adaptas is headed by Evgeniy Gorobets, who formerly worked with the Governor of the Krasnodar Territory Alexander Tkachev and the Deputy Governor Nikolai Buturlakin.


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