Text: Carlos García
Photos: Casinos de Latinoamérica
NOVOMATIC CONQUERS UK MARKET
WMS OPENS R&D CENTRE Astra Games Limited, the wholly owned UK subsidiary of the Novomatic
Last month, slot manufacturer WMS Industries celebrated the grand opening of Group, has confirmed the purchase of trade and assets of Danoptra Group
its new technology development centre at the WMS Chicago Technology companies Gamestec Leisure, Bell-Fruit Games, RMLS Sales and Mazooma
Campus. Interactive Games.
The 120,000-square foot structure features all the latest technological advances The conclusion of the transaction creates a gaming group operating over
and was built to strict sustainability specifications. It will accommodate game 35,000 terminals and with a total workforce of over 1000.
design and development, product management and the new WMS Interactive Novomatic CEO Franz Wohlfahrt commented, “Following the takeover of
team. The structure features two product showrooms, two game laboratories and Astra Games in 2004 and Empire Games in 2011, this major acquisition in the
a 120-seater auditorium. UK brings to our group a true domestic market in the gaming industry’s home The Astra management team
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Illinois Senate President John Cullerton and country. We are convinced that the synergies generated through the cooperation of the various companies will not only secure jobs but will also
other authorities joined top WMS executives at the ribbon-cutting for the new provide important impetus for our global growth as well as a business strategy based on the duality of our activities as a producer and as an
CEO Brian Gamache commented after the ceremony, “This state-of-the-art
addition to our Chicago Technology Campus is a very visible part of WMS’ ongoing
commitment as an ‘Employer of Choice’ to provide a stimulating, desirable and COPAG TO FEATURE AT EUROPE’S LEADING POKER TOURNAMENT
sustainable workplace environment. We expect the building’s design will further Brazilian playing card manufacturer, Copag, and leading poker tournament organisers,
inspire employee creativity and productivity, and deepen our legendary Culture of PokerStars, have extended their successful partnership to Europe, with Copag being
Innovation, while preserving environmental resources. The new facility features a selected to supply all cards for the qualifying rounds of the European Poker Tour (EPT),
roof designed to absorb sunlight and improve insulation, a rainwater collecting slated for Spain, Italy, Czech Republic, France, the
facility with underground storage; a computer-controlled advanced building system UK and Germany, up to the grand final to be held
linking sunlight in Monaco.
and temperature to Copag is also official supplier of playing cards to
automatic window PCA Bahamas, Belgium Poker Series (BPS), France
shades and lighting, Poker Series (FPS), the United Kingdom and Ireland Poker Tour (UKIPT), Estrellas Poker Tour, Eureka
and other Tour, Australia and New Zealand Poker Tour (ANZPT), Asia and Pacific Poker Tour (APPT), Macau Poker
environmental Cup, Russian Poker Series (RPS), the Brazil Poker Tour (BPT) and the Latin America Poker Tour (LAPT).
Mayor Emanuel said, “For more than 65 years, WMS has been an outstanding
corporate citizen and an engine of economic growth in Chicago. This new facility will BALLY TECHNOLOGIES LICENSES NASCAR® BRAND
allow WMS to continue to grow, thrive and create jobs for the residents of Chicago, Bally Technologies has licensed NASCAR, the world-class licensed
while contributing to the ongoing beautification and revitalisation of the Chicago brand, in the form of the slot machine game and Elite Bonusing
River and adjacent community.” Suite’s Virtual Racing NASCAR.
“The millions of Nascar fans who attend and tune in to watch races
attest to the unprecedented popularity of this sport,” said Dan
Savage, VP corporate marketing for Bally Technologies.
NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE SELECTS KONAMI FOR NEW SHIPS Virtual Racing Nascar will be available for Bally Systems
Konami Gaming, Inc. has been selected by Norwegian Cruise Line to install its Konami Casino Management System (KCMS) on board customers this autumn, and Casinos can place orders for the
Norwegian Breakaway and Norwegian Getaway, two new ships currently under construction. Nascar slot titles in mid-2013.
“This new system will provide us with a platform to provide a more individualised experience for our guests, leading to better service and guest
satisfaction,” said Jim Abbas, Norwegian Cruise Line’s vice president of casino operations.
“A good player tracking system such as KCMS helps to personalise an experience so that we can deliver what the player wants and expects when
sailing aboard one of our two new ships.” Clark Warren, director of systems sales and NEW TCSJH PRODUCTS INSTALLED IN CANADA
marketing at Konami Gaming, Inc., added, “Norwegian is one of the best and most British gaming group TCS John Huxley recently installed the first DigiDeal DTS-V Blackjack tables for
sophisticated cruise line operators in the industry, so we are excited about rolling out our Loto Quebec’s Salon de Jeux Quebec and Salon de Jeux Trois-Rivieres. The DigiDeal Digital Table system
system on board their new state-of-the-art vessels. With KCMS, we are offering a fully is a range of multi-player card game products, which feature digital game play but utilise a live croupier
integrated solution for Norwegian, complete with unparalleled support through installation, to retain the live game feel.
training of staff and during normal day-to-day operations.” “The DTS platform is played with virtual chips and also employs TITO,” explains marketing manager,
Norwegian Breakaway will homeport in New York City year-round beginning in May Tracy Cohen. “The Tables also benefit from a multitude of choices for configuration and the unmatched
2013. Norwegian Getaway will homeport in Miami year-round beginning in February ability to meet GLI requirements as either a slot or an electronic table game, making the DTS a very
2014. Both ships will feature expansive Casinos with the latest slot machines, and gaming attractive proposition for operators as it meets the requirements of many gaming jurisdictions.”
Tracy Cohen, TCSJH marketing manager
tables featuring poker, blackjack, roulette and craps.
GREAT STRIDES FOR ORTIZ GAMING IN SPAIN WMS LAUNCHES WILLIAMS INTERACTIVE
The Ortiz Gaming Group, under Alejandro Ortiz, continues its WMS Industries has announced the formation of Williams Interactive LLC, a new
successful march through Spain, supplying its self-developed video division focussing on the growth, development and operational execution of the
bingo machines to more and more establishments. The most company’s worldwide online wagering, social, casual and mobile gaming initiatives. The
recent example of this progress was the recent deal under which creation of Williams Interactive is intended to optimise the benefits of i-gaming for Casino operators and players.
the firm will install its El Pez, Gol Manía, Ace Manía and Triple In this line, Williams Interactive has announced the launch of Jackpot Party, the company’s social Casino for
Manía titles to Jupama’s 10 gaming venues in the Canary Islands. Alejandro Ortiz, chairman of Ortiz Gaming Facebook.
Alejandro Ortiz commented, “We continue to expand our base, backed by “Online social casinos are among the most popular games on Facebook and we are extremely pleased to follow the
the confidence deposited in us by the major business groups, on the basis of our experience and the success of our products in success of our initial Facebook social Casino, Lucky Cruise,” explained Orrin J. Edidin, president and CEO of Williams
the Latin-American and European markets. They understand that we supply only successful and safe machines, based on Interactive. “We believe the Facebook platform is an excellent showcase to extend that appeal and reach new audiences.
cutting-edge technology.” Williams Interactive can also offer Casino operators new customised play-for-fun solutions that will enable their players
Rafael Soto, managing director of Ortiz Gaming, added, “We are delighted with this new contract, which extends our to enjoy exciting gaming experiences through our alliance with 888 Holdings”.
presence throughout Spain hand-in-hand with one of the country’s foremost operators. It means that we are now present in Edidin will combine his new position with his current role as President of WMS Industries; Kenneth Lochiatto has
Andalusia, Aragón, Castilla y León, Valencia and Madrid, among others.” Orrin J. Edidin, president,
Rafael Soto, managing director been promoted to President and COO of WMS Gaming.
FUTURELOGIC PROMONET SELECTED BY CIRSA UNIDESA AND RANK GROUP SIGN NEW DEAL
FutureLogic and Cirsa Gaming have extended their Global Technology Partnership The Rank Group is to join the Wingo! Electronic bingo network in Madrid,
Agreement. Under the new terms, Cirsa will include FutureLogic’s PromoNet through Unidesa Gaming & System’s electronic bingo system, under a new
promotional couponing solution and GEN2 Universal printers for at least another 4 agreement signed between the companies. Under the terms of the agreement, the
years. Wingo! network will be launched with over 700 online terminals.
In addition, the GEN2 Universal printers will continue to be specified as the preferred Wingo! is a networked bingo-based gaming concept that offers players a new
printer for all Cirsa’s operations around the world, and for all of Unidesa’s current and gaming and entertainment experience. With a wide range of terminal types, it has
new TITO gaming platforms and manufacturing divisions. something to suit all players. The Flat Wingo 4P table has a giant touch screen that
Cirsa owns and operates over 55,000 gaming machines worldwide. accommodates 4 players who are connected to the Internet, while the Hex Wingo
“Securing this agreement with Cirsa is testament to our passion for quality and 6P table features a flashing light signalling upcoming prizes and payouts.
innovation and our continued focus on putting the customer first”, comments John Wingo! also offers a great new prize structuring, combining traditional payouts
Edmunds, FutureLogic’s VP for international markets. with single-number spot prizes, enhancing player expectation and creating a more
thrilling experience. Jorge Ibáñez of the Rank Group flanked by Lluís Cabré
and Manel Estany of Unidesa
NEW MERKUR OPENING IN SLOVAKIA
German gaming giant Merkur has opened a new venue in the Slovakian capital of
Bratislava. The company is now operating in a total of four Merkur Hernas in NOVOMATIC GROUP REVENUES REACH NEW RECORD
Bratislava as well as another one each in Nitra, Skalica, Trencin and Zilina. The Novomatic Group Annual Report conference, held in Vienna, has reported that total revenues for the group,
The new venue is equipped with 18 video lottery terminals (VLT), six AWPs and a comprising Novomatic AG as well as the two Swiss affiliates ACE Casino Holding AG and Gryphon Invest AG, hit the
Merkur Roulette. landmark figure of €3,000 million for the first time. The group employs over 18,000 people worldwide.
“The new Merkur Novomatic AG had revenues amounting to €1387 million (17.2% up on 2010) and employed an annual average of 11,818
Casino naturally staff, a rise of 12%. 2850 of the staff work in Austria.
remains true to the “We owe these excellent results to our successful strategy of anticyclical investment in economically difficult times, to accurate
proven stylish optimising measures and to the exceptional commitment of our employees”, commented Novomatic CEO Franz Wolfahrt.
atmosphere, the latest
Novomatic CEO Franz
products and Wolfahrt
premium service with
optimally trained AMATIC TO PRESENT NEW GAMES
staff ”, said Rolf Austrian company Amatic Industries is gearing up for the October launch of its new products for
Merkur Herna, Bratislava
Falke, spokesman international gaming operators. Top items will include the Turbo Card Roulette, an ingenious alternative
for the management team at Merkur International. roulette solution, while Amatic has also teamed up with Cole Kepro International, the industry leader in
The new arcade brings the total number of Merkur-operated venues in Europe the manufacture of gaming cabinets, to present Multi Game in kit form within their diverse cabinet choice.
to a total of almost 400. “Next year, we will be celebrating the 20th anniversary of Amatic Industries,” said Thomas Engstberger, sales
In other news, Merkur has received the Golden Jack award for quality for one manager at Amatic industries. “Over these years, we have expanded throughout the world. Our electronic
of its arcades in Berlin, which has been certified as exemplary. roulette solutions are exquisitely designed and offer the best and latest technology.”
Merkur executives with staff and the Golden Jack
award at the Berlin arcade
METRONIA’S ELECTRONIC BINGO TO COME TO MADRID
Bingo Electrónico de España, an affiliate of the Metronia Group, has signed an
agreement with Aseju to provide electronic bingo technology and services in
Madrid. The agreement involves the setting up of the Madrid Region
electronic bingo system, scheduled to be up and running soon and which,
once the necessary permits have been obtained, would see the system in
operation in 35 bingo halls in the regions.
“I have great hopes for electronic bingo in Madrid,” commented Félix Sánchez,
chairman of the Metronia Group. “Using this new system, bingo halls will
expand their leisure offer and enjoy increased revenues. At Metronia, we are
ready to take on this new challenge. We are assured of success and of continuing
to offer bingo halls all our support, even in these difficult times.”
Félix Sánchez, Metronia chairman, with María José Gallardo presents selected items from the new range José Quereda, R. Franco commercial director,
ASEJU chairman José Luis de Pedro at the Murcia launch
DRGT TAKES SYSTEMS MARKET BY STORM RECREATIVOS FRANCO TITLES POPULAR IN SPAIN
Austrian firm DRGT’s new, innovative, customer-friendly solutions Over the past quarter, R. Franco slots have enjoyed great success, being installed in several major gaming establishments. The company has also
are being welcomed by operators all around the world. presented a range of new titles to operators in Murcia, the Basque Country and other regions.
Such has been the rise in demand that the Austrian team has moved In Murcia, the group presented its hospitality sector slot interconnection system at Casino Rincón de Pepe.
to larger, more modern premises, also in Graz. Vice President María José Gallardo commented, “We offer a range of alternatives. A simple format, a Mystery prize and an interactive system which
Jurgen De Munck, CEO of DRGT, is very pleased with the progress allows players to become more involved. Our systems require no big investment and can be customised to suit all types of venues.”
of the company, “It was and remains our firm belief to revolutionise In the Basque Country, Recreativos Franco presented its jackpot system, with an array of attractive features to enhance the gaming experience,
the systems market. Systems need to be created for the customer,” he and prizes of up to €3000. The system is configured into groups of slots, which allows the operating parameters of the fleet to be customised to
explains. “Complexity needs to be translated into simplicity for the requirements of operators using the system.
everyday use. Suddenly, operators see systems as a beneficial took, an
ally. A whole world of possibilities opens up. We will continue to invest
in our structure with new global subsidiaries and more staff to ensure
that operators around the world can make full use of the benefits of BALLY LAUNCHES MOBILE APP FOR CALIFORNIA CASINO
The new DGRT facility in Graz, Austria
DRGT”. Bally Technologies, Inc. has announced the launch of an Apple and Android
mobile application created for Red Hawk Casino in Placerville, California,
CIRSA ACTIVE IN NEW SOCIAL PROGRAMME enabling users of iPhone, iPad and other mobile devices to get in on gaming
Spanish multinational Cirsa is taking part on la Caixa’s Social Programme to promote job action by viewing Casino promotions, browse available table games, and find
creation among persons at risk of exclusion. The aim of the project is to build a solid high-stake poker and slot tournaments.
alliance with the business community, in order to promote the integration into the “Red Hawk Casino is an outstanding partner for Bally Technologies,” said Aron
workplace of persons with disabilities, long-term unemployed, immigrants, victims of Ezra, VP of Mobile at Bally Technologies. The new mobile app is an incredible
gender-based violence and other marginalised groups. example of what a mobile app should be – elegant, yet simple in design, user
friendly, and full of powerful and helpful technology for both business and
Ricard Vidal-Ribas of Alba with Joaquim Agut, managing director of Cirsa, Red Hawk Casino
and Marc Simón, director for social integration with the la Caixa
APPOINTMENTS AT FUTURELOGIC
FUTURELOGIC INSTALLED IN CANADA Following significant growth throughout their Asian territory,
FutureLogic has been selected as exclusive printer supplier by 3 VLT jurisdictions currently FutureLogic’s Alfred Hwee has been promoted to Business Development
performing equipment upgrades in Canada. This means that FutureLogic printers will be installed in Director for the Asia Pacific Region.
over 30,000 VLTs or 87% of all VLTs in the Canadian market. John Edmunds, VP global product management & international
“While taking a leadership position in GSA, Canadian jurisdictions are taking on an unprecedented markets, said, “Since joining FutureLogic in 2008, Alfred has been
modernisation program with global implications. At FutureLogic we are very appreciative of the support instrumental in expanding FutureLogic’s businesses in Macau and
received in the Canadian market and look forward to participating in this groundbreaking venture. Being Australia, while delivering substantial revenue growth across the region”.
selected exclusively is truly a testament to the quality of our world class printers and service,” said Nick George Hoskins has joined FutureLogic as operations manager for
Micalizzi, FutureLogic’s VP of sales and marketing for North America. EMEA, and Lorna Strawbridge will take charge of sales of ticket-out and
couponing solutions across the same area.
SUCCESS FOR METRONIA’S ELECTRONIC BINGO
Eusko Bingo, Metronia’s system for the Basque Country, saw record
takings in August in its 12 venues, continuing the successful trajectory
undertaken on 30 March last. The figures are even more impressive
taking into account that August is traditionally a slow month for
Eusko Bingo will shortly be implemented at the Santutxu venue in
Bilbao, bringing the number of bingo halls offering the system to 13
(out of a total of 17).
Antonio Marquina of Eusko Bingo commented, “We are happy with the
evolution of this product. Growth has been moderate, but sustained,
leading us to register record takings in just over 5 months.”
Antonio Marquina, EuskoBingo
BALLY TECHNOLOGIES AND HIGH 5 GAMES ANNOUNCE GAME DEVELOPMENT AGREEMENT
Bally Technologies, Inc. and High 5 Games have announced an agreement to publish a significant number of
new H5G games under the Bally brand for the international mobile and online gaming markets. The agreement
also includes the creation and development of a variety of unique games for Bally.
“We’re excited to partner with a game creator that has such a world-class track record,” said Jean Venneman, VP of
product managing and licensing at Bally Technologies. “We look forward to help Casino operators across the
world drive revenues and delight players.”
Jean Venneman, VP of product managing
and licensing, Bally Technologies
OBITUARY AT TCSJOHNHUXLEY
The gaming industry is in mourning for the passing of Bertil Knutsson, former owner and chairman of
TCSJohnHuxley, in Sweden in July.
“Bertil was an inspiring leader, who became one of the gaming industry’s most influential characters spanning
more than 50 years,” says a company spokesperson.
A true visionary who introduced leisure Casinos to Sweden in 1958, Knutsson also signed one of the first
foreign-controlled joint ventures in the former Soviet Union in the late 1980s, broke new ground in
bringing online sports-betting and poker to the Nordic markets, and became a major shareholder in online
gaming providers Betsson AB and Net Entertainment AB. His zest for life and varied interests led him to
become involved in many sectors, such as bingo in Africa, renewable energy and IT security, and he left his
mark on them all.
“For those of us who were fortunate enough to know and work with Bertil, we have lost a dear friend and
mentor. Bertil leaves behind enduring legacies and his spirit will be forever with the company. The gaming
Bertil Knutsson industry will miss him dearly, and I have lost a father,” said Tristan Sjöberg, executive chairman of the firm.
RECORD-BREAKING OLYMPICS FOR BETTING INDUSTRY
The UK’s leading bookmakers have reported a record-breaking Olympics in terms of
turnover at London 2012, with nine times as many bets placed with the firms than at
Beijing in 2008. Ladbrokes had forecasted that the industry would turn over almost
stg£80m for the duration of the games, compared with the stg£40m from the Beijing
Games. Research from Coral showed that three million people planned to place their
first ever bet on the London Olympics.
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