(Exclusive interview).- Eduardo Aching, Vice President, International Gaming Operations at Konami Gaming Inc, talked to Focus Gaming News before ICE London 2020.
The 2020 edition of ICE London is just around the corner, as the event kicks off on February 4. Some companies are finalising details for their booths at the expo, and others have enough experience to know how to manage the prior weeks.
As a leading company, Konami Gaming Inc is ready to face the new edition of ICE London. Eduardo Aching, Vice President, International Gaming Operations at Konami Gaming, Inc, talked to Focus Gaming News before the show and shared the expectations for this year’s event.
Konami is a frequent exhibitor at ICE, how are you preparing this new edition?
Giving international operators a broad offering of strong entertainment has been the priority for ICE 2020. Konami’s latest video slot cabinets are bringing a large lineup of 4K Ultra High-Definition (UHD) game content, including integrated jackpot games, linked progressives, and SeleXion multi-game compatible progressives. Proven series including Treasure Ball, Ba Fang Jin Bao, and Triple Sparkle are among the trusted Konami original releases that guests should plan to see during the show.
Giving international operators a broad offering of strong entertainment has been the priority for ICE 2020.
Can we expect to see any new product announcements or new partnerships launching in London?
Konami’s new 49J cabinet is making its ICE premiere, with premium merchandising options and high-end game entertainment. It is equipped with a 49-inch 4K UHD display that includes a “J” curve for an improved player viewing. Additional player conveniences include a wireless smartphone charging pad, USB port, and built-in handbag hook. All Aboard is among the cabinet’s debut game series. It is a multi-level progressive with comprehensive multi-denom options, and is showcased at ICE with custom-branded chairs and bank filler displays.
How do you adapt and try to cover the new demand as it comes up?
Shared communication and collaboration are essential. Konami works closely with its international customers and exclusive international distributors to gain early insight into local market shifts and evolving player preference. We always arrive at ICE with open eyes and ears to new opportunities for innovation. We make it a mission to listen first, and leverage new insights to drive future product.
How do the industry’s changes impact on your operations?
Certainly, every year holds new and exciting ventures to consider, which we explore and investigate accordingly. Change is necessary for continued advancement, so our business is designed to leverage it in ways that benefit the long-term interests of our casino customers.
At ICE, we make it a mission to listen first, and leverage new insights to drive future product.
Do you see any particular shift in the industry? What’s the main challenge for Konami in an ever-changing market like gambling?
In Europe there is currently an increased interest in speciality and premium slots compared to previous years, but core slots remain the greatest share of the slot floor. As an organization, we are firmly committed to advancing and supporting our core segment; and at the same time, we are excited for opportunities to bring that proven math and mechanics to new product areas through the latest hardware and technology.
What are your plans for 2020?
Over the past year we’ve been encouraged by momentum across Europe. Looking ahead through 2020, Konami is well-positioned to broaden its portfolio to further product categories and potential demographics through shared collaboration with our outstanding customers and exclusive distributors.