Jan/Feb 2022

Editors Letter

So, after a restful break, it's back to the coalface for 2022. We at Gaming America would like to wish everyone a Happy New Year – and if the predictions our analysts made in the Nov/Dec 2021 issue bear fruit, it could be some year indeed for US gaming.

In our first edition of this much-anticipated 12-month period, we cover a breadth of themes and topics we feel are most prevalent within the US right now. Gaming is becoming more interconnected as players interact more with the operator; cashless is continuing to grow; and big casino moguls are actively transforming casino properties into an overall entertainment venue, rather than just a gambling outlet.

There is, naturally, a further emphasis on sustainability, especially from operator giant Entain. Meanwhile, among the many losses and negatives brought about by the (still ongoing) Covid-19 pandemic, we explore one positive: the resultant technological innovation being spurred on by necessity.

We also bring landmark names for you in this issue, Global Gaming Award winners in fact, as Bally's Chairman Soo Kim and Circa Owner Derek Stevens give an insight into their careers and plans for key casinos across the US. The duo joins fellow Gaming America interviewees in Jan/Feb such as Yaniv Sherman, Entain CGO Robert Hoskin, Canadian Gaming Association CEO Paul Burns and more.

Regular columnist Oliver Lovat adds to the cashless discussion, among many other technology-related topics, while our roundtable includes Aristocrat, IGT, Bluberi, OPTX and the American Gaming Association, as they too give their verdicts on the burgeoning technology shaping our industry.

Executives looking for in-depth features should find plenty to sink their teeth into, as our stellar writers explore: cashless (note that's the third time I've used the word in this letter, to emphasize how heavily discussed the topic is becoming), casino architecture, sports betting and payments, private casino air charters and, generally previewing the year ahead.

So, while we've dedicated our cover interviews to the leading pieces, we're still very much keeping our eye on the whole chessboard here at Gaming America.

In The Magazine
Roundtable: A Look To The Future Of Gaming Technology

We speak with Cath Burns, Executive Vice President of Customer Experience Solutions at Aristocrat; Rachel Barber, SVP and CTO, Gaming and Lottery at IGT; Andrew Burke, CEO of Bluberi; Rukku Rupanagudi, CTO at OPTX; and Casey Clark, SVP of the American Gaming Association (AGA).

Product Review: Flexia's Cashless Solution

Flexia is transforming the customer experience by empowering a true cashless solution for the gaming industry.

Product Review: Gods Of Kemet

Gods of Kemet by Wizard Games takes you on the journey of a lifetime.

Product Review: Crystal Caverns Megaways

Step into an icy wonderland full to the brim with glistening icicles and precious gems in Crystal Caverns Megaways™ slot played on a Megaways grid!

Product Review: Lightning Blackjack

Lightning Blackjack from Evolution, which was available from day one in both Live and First Person versions, is a unique, exciting, scalable version of Blackjack that features enhanced, multiplied payouts.

Product Review: Colossal Dragons

Throughout 2021, Bluberi experienced quite a few changes. The slot developer totally rebranded its look and website while restructuring its leadership team, all in the hope of promoting a culture of entertainment and energy. For this product review, we take a look at Bluberi’s new and exciting 576-ways game, entirely built around the pure joy of playing.

2022: Growth Mode

The gaming industry is optimistic going into 2022. Sure there will be supply chain issues, but convergence is exciting, as Gaming America explores.

Macau: The End Of The Junket Model As We Know It

The future of the Macau junket market has dominated gambling industry headlines following the recent arrest of Suncity Group Chief Executive Alvin Chau, over alleged links to cross-border gambling.

New York, New York

Mobile sports betting has gone live in the Empire State.

The Case So Far: Laila Mintas And Playup Go To Court

We look at the details regarding the lawsuit between PlayUp and former US CEO Dr Laila Mintas, following the denial of the operator's emergency restraining order request in January.

Revenue In Review

Gaming America takes a look at the sometimes controversial, often beneficial relationship that state governments have with legalized gambling.

Shuffling Out The Lottery

Legal expert, Gus Petropoulos, who advised Scientific Games from 2011-14, discusses industry M&A plans.

The Game Of Design

Gaming America sat down with JCJ Architecture's Project Director Mike Larson and Business Development Manager Jeanne Muscolino, to discuss the trends defining casino design in the US right now.

Growing Together

Gaming America speaks with Mandi Hart, Chief Client Solutions Officer at Sightline Payments, and Christopher Justice, President of Global Payments Gaming Solutions, to discuss the budding relationship between operators and payments brands, asking the question: Just how profitable will US sports betting be for the payments world?

High Flyers

Gaming America examines the rising trend of charter airline services set up by operators in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. We speak with Joe Lupo, President of Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City, on their overall role in a company’s offering, how they can benefit the land-based industry and the environmental impact of aviation.

Change Is In The Air

Cash will be here for a while, but is no longer king of the casino, with an even greater move to cashless gaming predicted for 2022.

The King In The North

Gaming America recently sat down with Paul Burns, President & CEO of the Canadian Gaming Association, to discuss the history of sports betting in the country, and the bright future ahead for the nascent industry.

European Capital, American Growth

Yaniv Sherman, long-term executive at 888 Holdings, speaks to Gaming America about the tendency for American companies to look overseas for technology and capital, as well as the fast-maturing nature of the gaming sector.

Seeking Sustainability

Gaming America sat down with Entain’s Chief Governance Officer, Robert Hoskin, to discuss a sustainable future, ARC and reconciling profit with safer gambling.

The Old New Casino

Regular Gaming America contributor Oliver Lovat discusses innovating the “old new casino” for the future.

Harnessing The Glitz And Glory Of Downtown Las Vegas

Derek Stevens, CEO of Circa Resort & Casino, is fresh off building the first casino in Downtown Las Vegas in the last four decades. The casino has been a resounding success, winning North American Property of the Year at the Global Gaming Awards Las Vegas 2021. Now it is time for him to get down to what he loves: operating. Stevens took time out of his day to speak with Gaming America about the creation and execution of his marquee project.

Bally's Corporation Takes On The Future

When he's not buying casinos, Bally's Corporation Chairman Soo Kim spends his days growing and refining his marquee company. He sat down with Gaming America to discuss the future of the industry, the future of his company, and what business a finance maven has being in the gaming industry.

From The Top: As Ice Postponed, Organizers Stay Ready

Officials had Covid-19 protocols in place, still championing importance of in-person events. The new London ICE dates are 12-14 April.