David Orrick, Merkur Gaming: “Exhibitions such as G2E are the lifeblood of the gaming industry”
Merkur Gaming’s director of Industry Relations spoke about the show to be held in Las Vegas in an exclusive interview with Focus Gaming News.
Exclusive interview.- G2E 2022 is just around the corner (October 10-13) and Merkur Gaming will be one of the leading companies at one of the biggest events next month. David Orrick, director of Industry Relations, sat down with Focus Gaming News to talk about the upcoming event, the industry’s recovery and the company’s latest licence for online slots in Germany’s newly regulated online gambling market.
We’ve seen a big return for casinos in the US, and in particular in Las Vegas. What do you think has driven such a strong recovery?
In the darkest days of the pandemic, there were some dubious suggestions that the land-based casino industry was heading for a decline from which it might never recover. Not so! The appetite for land-based casino gaming entertainment remained even during the enforced lockdowns and, once restrictions eased, the players were back: in even greater numbers than before.
The results in Las Vegas have been tremendous but that was only to be expected as Vegas is the gaming industry’s ‘shining star’ and its global reputation is, to a large extent, its own best publicity. So what has driven the strong recovery that you mention? Player demand is the simple answer as is being royally proved not just in Vegas but far further afield.
“In the darkest days of the pandemic there were some dubious suggestions that the landbased casino industry was heading for a decline from which it might never recover. Not so!”David Orrick, director of Industry Relations at Merkur Gaming.
How is Merkur Gaming helping casinos to make the most of the strong rebound in custom?
Merkur, as always, does what it does best. In a casino context, that means devising and bringing to market THE best games that give the players the very best in their gaming entertainment experience. Take, for example, the list of superb linked progressive jackpots that we will be showing at G2E. These products today dominate gaming floors. Not just in Vegas, but everywhere, and they are ‘must have’ additions to any operation’s gaming arsenal.
They build attraction, starting with their base games and moving on to offering players the chance of winning big jackpots. All through the pandemic manufacturers such as Merkur made sure that their R&D departments were still busy devising new products. What will be seen is the result of that dedication to keep on innovating and ultimately bringing to market new gaming attractions to add thrills and excitement to casino floors.
What do you think customers are looking for in a land-based casino experience today?
Simple: in three words ‘More Gaming Entertainment’. That is the key for casino players of today. Not just in playing but in the whole casino experience. Dining, accommodation, shows and events, comfort, security: the total experience, whether it be on the Vegas Strip or in local neighbourhood venues.
The players have learned to want, and to expect, more than ever before from their gaming experience and it is up to suppliers and operators (of whatever size or scale) to provide it.
What are you looking forward to sharing at G2E this year?
Firstly, we are simply looking forward to the experience. Having not experienced a ‘live and in person’ G2E since 2019 it is certain that every exhibitor and every visitor is keen to be back, free of restrictions and ready to enjoy the show. More specifically, Merkur is ready to take pride in presenting its latest products, meeting customers, business partners and guests once again.
A few years ago Merkur made the statement that exhibitions such as G2E are ‘the lifeblood of the gaming industry’. That statement was never more true than today in the re-energised casino landscape and as we make every possible effort to present our product portfolio to one and all.
Our linked progressive jackpots will lead our display. The already successful Link Zone and Solar Link will be joined by the new Red Pocket Jackpot and some brand new attractions, China Charms and The Legend of Fu Lu Chen will also each make their show debut at G2E.
Merkur Gaming has also secured licences for online slots in Germany’s newly regulated online gambling market. How do you see the new market?
At G2E the Merkur booth (3353) will see a diverse representation of our sister companies. Cash Handling experts GeWeTe, Merkur eSolutions will present and demonstrate their payload terminal, a revolutionary e-wallet that represents the easiest way to turn cash into e-money with no bank account or credit card and, to touch on the igaming sector, we will also be joined by our colleagues from edict egaming; our group’s dedicated online gaming specialists.
They, of course, have huge expectations for the newly regulated German online market and they will be happy to discuss that, and other areas of their business, at G2E.