Blueprint’s head of corporate accounts Nicola Wallbank talks us through the Alphamax cabinet which is setting the agenda for pub gaming machines.
Blueprint’s Alphamax cabinet with its high definition, edge-to-edge screens, an updated button panel, market leading note acceptor, ultra fast processing power and a pipeline of compelling content designed to suit modern consumer tastes, is succeeding in attracting new pub players and in the process building machine revenues.
Following its launch in Q4 2019 and high profile showings at ACOS, EAG and most recently at ICE London, the Alphamax has become the industry’s most talked about Category C game. “The Alphamax is a result of listening to and responding to what our customers want and need for their operation – which explains why the order book is so healthy,” confirmed Blueprint’s head of corporate accounts, Nicola Wallbank. “The market is searching for exciting new innovations and that’s exactly what we are providing with the Alphamax. Players want their gaming entertainment delivered courtesy of the large screens they have become accustomed to at home and in terms of the variety of gaming content it’s no longer a case of one size fits all with our teams of games creators designing for a range of different demographic groups and tastes.”
With the digital genre helping to make low stake gaming more mainstream and easier to understand, thereby attracting new players to the gaming entertainment experience, Blueprint has also addressed the specific operational issues which can have a huge impact on performance and income. The use of the Merkur MD100 note acceptor is a case in point. “Maximising machine uptime is a key objective for everyone in the supply chain – manufacturer, operator and PubCo – and the feedback we’ve received shows that the MD100 has helped to reduce refills by some 40 percent” stated Nicola. “The MD100 reads the entire note which not only reduces the risk of fraud but it also improves player confidence and enhances the player experience by accepting a very high percentage of notes.”
She added: “Gaming machines that look outstanding and complement a pub interior are part of the quality offer that consumers demand and cabinet design is crucial in what is a fiercely competitive market. The Alphamax is the result of talking with and listening to our customers. Every point of contact the player has with the Alphamax is smooth, fast, intuitive, trouble free and has the influence of the world famous Gauselmann brand running through it. Based on the response we continue to receive from the market I am confident that Blueprint is setting the pace in digital gaming entertainment.”
IGT Earns Top Score in Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s 2023-24 Corporate Equality Index
International Game Technology PLC (IGT) announced that it received a top score of 100 on the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation’s 2023-24 Corporate Equality Index (CEI), the nation’s foremost benchmarking survey and report measuring corporate policies and practices related to LGBTQ+ workplace equality.
The 2023-24 CEI includes 1384 participants and showcases how US-based companies promote LGBTQ+ friendly workplace policies in the US and abroad. The educational arm of the nation’s largest LGBTQ+ civil rights advocacy group, the HRC Foundation rated businesses on detailed criteria across four central pillars:
- Non-discrimination policies across business entities.
- Equitable benefits for LGBTQ+ workers and their families.
- Supporting an inclusive culture.
- Corporate social responsibility.
“IGT being recognized once again with a top score in HRC’s 2023-2024 Corporate Equality Index demonstrates our commitment to delivering an inclusive workplace culture where LGBTQ+ employees are welcomed and valued. Over the last few years, IGT has implemented a variety of important policies, practices, and benefits to make IGT a more inclusive employer for LGTBQ+ professionals, elevate company-wide allyship, and support IGT’s objective of continuous DEI learning and improvement,” said Brian Blake, IGT Vice President, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion.
“For well over two decades, businesses have played an important role in furthering LGBTQ+ equality by centering employee needs and voices when it comes to workplace inclusion. While there is much more work to be done, year-over-year growth in CEI participation is evidence of a business community that recognizes the responsibility and value in upholding equity and inclusion. Our goal at the Human Rights Campaign Foundation is to work in a spirit of partnership with companies, providing educational resources, leading benchmarking, and collaborating on ways for businesses to support the LGBTQ+ community,” said RaShawn “Shawnie” Hawkins, Human Rights Campaign Senior Director of Workplace Equality.
Since 2018, when IGT created the Office of Diversity & Inclusion (now the Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion), the Company has implemented a range of programmes, policy and systems changes, and leading practices that have promoted all dimensions of diversity to make it a more attractive and inclusive employer. These actions include:
- Implementing more inclusive and equitable hiring processes, including utilising LGBTQ+ job boards to post positions.
- Creation and support of employee-led and executive-sponsored Employee Impact Groups (EIGs) to work cohesively with IGT’s DEI team and support the development of new programming and policies.
- Facilitating mandatory and elective employee training courses that help support IGT’s diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives, including training on unconscious bias, cultural awareness and harassment.
- Establishing gender transition guidelines to best support an employee and their manager, human resources business partner, or an employee’s dependent who is transitioning.
- IGT’s commitment to LGBTQ+ employees extends to the Company’s global offices and facilities through its transgender-inclusive restroom/facilities policy and gender-neutral dress code policies.
- The voluntary option for employees to personally select and share their preferred pronouns. Respecting and creating space to recognise gender identity is a core element of DEI at IGT.
Genius Sports Launches FanHub ID, the First Unified Fan Identification Solution for Advertising
Genius Sports, the global leader in sports data and technology, launched an innovative new identification solution, FanHub ID. The privacy-compliant solution uses proprietary online and offline data signals to build fan-based profiles, giving marketers and content owners new opportunities to reach and measure engaged sports audiences at scale.
With an innovative approach to activating sports-based identity signals powered by AI-based technology, Genius Sports will offer its customers the ability to reach audiences on and offline. Leveraging the Genius fan-based identity graph, Genius Sports puts the power back into the hands of the marketer and content owner to reach, engage, measure and capture audiences across channels in an always-on ecosystem. The new FanHub ID revolutionises sports advertising and marketing by offering a single, unified profile for millions of sports fans, enabling customers to find their audience in contextually relevant content across programmatic and digital channels.
“Sports fans make up the world’s most passionate audiences, but marketers and content owners still struggle to identify, measure, and engage their fan personas. FanHub ID gives them the ability to activate fan data to enable long-term loyalty,” Manny Puentes, GM of Advertising at Genius Sports, said.
The new technology will be rolled out and made available to all existing Genius Sports customers. The key benefits of FanHub ID include:
- Sports content owners can better understand and engage their fans to generate incremental sponsorship dollars.
- Fanbases can finally be found across multiple marketing channels and reached with privacy-compliant personalised messaging.
- A single, unified profile for millions of sports fans enables brands to run relevant ad campaigns to specific sports audiences based on their individual interactions and preferences.
“FanHub ID drives immediate impact to current Genius Sports customers by helping them better understand their audience and extend their sponsorship dollars beyond their owned and operated content. Sports content owners will finally have the insights they need to drive deeper engagement and find the most valuable fans of the future,” Josh Linforth, Chief Revenue Officer at Genius Sports, said.
Experts from Las Vegas and Macau to Appear at Arabian Business Casino Countdown Conference
Some of the world’s biggest casino bosses from Las Vegas and Macau have been confirmed to speak at “Casino Countdown,” the first-ever Arabian Business Conference to focus entirely on gaming. The event will take place at The Atlantis, Royal on January 25 next year, from 9 am.
The stellar line up is being led by Debra Nutton, an industry legend with experience working at MGM, Bellagio and Wynn Resorts. She will deliver a keynote on the opportunities and challenges the industry faces, along with revealing the best practices and innovations the ecosystem will need to keep in mind.
Also confirmed to speak is Alex Dixon, the President and CEO of Q Casino and DRA. Another industry legend who worked in Las Vegas, Dixon has previously held senior leadership roles at MGM Resorts International, Caesars Entertainment Corp, and Goldman Sachs & Co. Dixon will delve into the financial intricacies of the gaming landscape, while outlining the investment model and prospects for potential operators, including the positive economic impact on local communities.
The UAE announced this year the appointment of its first-ever gaming regulator – the General Commercial Gaming Regulatory Authority (GCGRA) – and regulations are set to play a key part in any growth of the industry.
One of the world’s most renowned lawyers in gaming, Antonio Lobo Vilela, is flying in from Macau to speak on the topic. He previously played a key role as the senior legal adviser to the Macau Gaming Commission, where he oversaw the first gaming concessions in the special administrative region. Vilela will deliver insights into successful regulatory models and best practices, while touching on the trends of gaming regulations worldwide.
The event will also have a special focus on technology including the opportunities in the thriving world of Web 3.0. The UAE is a global pioneer in this field, with Dubai already unveiling a plan to become a hub for metaverse development. One leading firm in this arena, metaverse-focused specialist Megavrse, will showcase how consumers will be able to experience gaming virtually, and the impact this could have for the ecosystem both in the region and further abroad.
Other key speakers will be announced in the coming days.
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