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Weike arrives in Spain,
G2E: more
Harrah’s to swallow
eyes rest of Europe
Planet Hollywood?
ingapore’s Weike Gaming Technology is to enter
the European market with the launch in Spain of
its multiplayer Baccarat, Blackjack and Poker
arrah’s Entertainment was poised to take over
the Planet Hollywood resort and casino in Las
Vegas as we went to press.
booth staff
A Harrah’s subsidiary had filed an application for
The gaming machine and systems maker will offer its approval of the move with the Nevada Gaming Control
five-player Revo Baccarat and Blackjack and ten-player Board.
Poker Pal X to Spanish casinos before turning to other V
isitor numbers in the
exhibition hall at November’s
Global Gaming Expo (G2E) in
European territories. Las Vegas were up about seven The takeover would be made possible by Harrah’s’
percent on 2008. purchase of $140m worth of Planet Hollywood’s $870m
“The limitation to us entering European markets was debt, concluded in September.
to find the right partner,” said Weike CEO David Overall attendance – including
Kinsman. “We were lucky enough to find a very exhibitor staff – was about 26,000. The debt papers bought by Harrah’s give the lender
experienced and perfectly placed partner in GI & TEC, That figure was down about 3.5 the right to foreclose on the casino property.
who are based in Valencia.” percent on the previous year, but
organisers said the drop was largely Planet Hollywood is owned by restaurateur Robert
But Kinsman added that his firm’s selection of Spain because of a decline in the Earl, Bay Harbour Management, and Starwood Hotels &
as a launchpad was also strategic: “Spain had been our numbers of exhibitor staff, who Resorts Worldwide.
choice as the initial European market entry, due to its represent about one in six of
potential over the coming years.” attendees.
Patent victories
Weike’s products include the Infinity line of gaming A total of 571 exhibiting
machines as well as management and jackpot systems. companies and organisations
included 480 from the U.S. and 91
for JCM, Bally
Genting goes
from other countries. Exhibitors
came from 25 countries outside the
U.S. J
CM Global and Bally Technologies have both been
victorious in patent infringement cases at US federal
courts, as we reported last issue.
One part of the show singled out In the JCM case, a federal district court judge upheld
as a success by organisers was the the verdict delivered by a Las Vegas jury in January that
ritish operator Genting Group appears to be Entertainment Arena in the Las found MEI’s CashFlow SC series of bill acceptors had
embracing electronic gaming, closing one Vegas Convention Center’s North infringed patent protection on JCM’s removable stacker
conventional casino in favour of an electronic-only Hall, where the number of exhibitors mechanism.
site and opening an electronic-only betting office next to increased by more than 40 percent.
another casino. The judge awarded JCM a further $845,000 in
Final audited attendance numbers interest on the $11.4m already awarded by the jury, and
Genting is shutting the doors at its Mint Casino in will be available early in 2010. issued a permanent injunction that prevents MEI making
Portsmouth on England’s southern coast, reportedly or selling products using JCM’s patent-protected design.
saying the venue is “no longer commercially viable”. The site – previously the Stanley Casino – is
replaced by an electronic gaming and slots venue on Commercial Road, under Genting’s Electric MEI, however, can continue to sell Cashflow SC units,
Circus brand. as it has since changed the design.
The new facility, opened in December, joins existing Genting Electric Circus locations in “This decision ensures that Cashflow SC will continue
Birmingham, Leicester, Luton and Manchester. Two Rank Group casinos remain open in to perform at the same high level in which it was
Portsmouth. originally designed,” said Tom Shuren, MEI’s chief
technical officer.
Meanwhile, Inspired Gaming Group is supplying its Virtual Sports System (VSS) for a new
licensed betting office next door to Genting’s Electric Circus casino in Birmingham, England. “The minor modification that was made…was a
seamless transition in our manufacturing processes and
The venue is believed to be the first licensed betting office in the UK to only offer virtual sports has subsequently proven effective in the field,” said
games, without taking any bets on live events. Shuren. He added: “Throughout this process MEI has
maintained confidence that we do not infringe. We
Virtual games supplied to the Genting operation by Inspired include horse and greyhound continue to evaluate all options, including an appeal.”
racing, soccer and speedway. The company has also installed four of its Rainmaker gaming
terminals at the site. Separately, the US Court of Appeals affirmed a
decision reached by a Nevada federal district court
Bobby McGhee, COO of Genting UK, said: “The increasing popularity of Inspired’s Virtual Sports which held that certain Bally Wheel and iView products
System enhances our strategy for the licensed betting office, which is to broaden our appeal to did not breach IGT patents. Bally’s anti-trust claims
casino and non-casino customers alike.” It is aimed at customers who may want a more against IGT remain to be heard in court.
immediate, and briefer, gaming experience than a casino visit.”
6 JANUARY 2010
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