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COVER STORY


the capability of handling three different casinos, I can do it all with one set of dealers. I have dual Baccarat tables so


there is always going to be two different Baccarat tables running, because Baccarat players love to switch between tables.


CI: Do you specifically market the Arena product being in the casinos? WT: Oh yes, 100%. We market the PLAY Arena differently to the Rainmaker; the Rainmaker customers just want to know we have it, and that it’s quiet over there. You come in, get your game on and enjoy yourself. In the Fox Tower we market it as two things – come and watch your ball games during the day, and you’re right there for the party at night when the bar starts jumping. So we market three different ways, we do a lot of social media with it as well where it gets a lot of attention.


CI: Do you profile the players to make your marketing easier? With three very different installations, I would think this is vital. WT: At the moment we are working on a new style of reporting for us; I will have an instant overview of


who is playing, what their value is, then I can send them something right to the terminal. I want the same interaction I might have with a pit boss on a live table, at an ETG, direct to you, the player.


CI: Interblock has always said they are all about the customer, has that been your experience? WT: You have many different players getting into the field for electronic table games (ETGs); Interblock has taken it to the next level. They’re listening to the operators, and finding out exactly what the operator needs. When a customer tells me they


want this, this and this, I talk to Interblock and I get what I want – which in turn makes it better for our customers. Interblock is one of the very few


companies out there that I can honestly say wants direct input from the operator, knowing that the operator is listening to their player, and to make their product better. They also give me access to the


project managers out in Las Vegas; I have them on speed dial just in case. John Connelly takes my call every time I call – a company that size, and the CEO still takes a customer phone call. That’s what


you’re looking at with a company like Interblock. They have a solid, accessible management team and that counts for a lot. John and his team have asked


me often in the past what it is we need; I wanted certain things to enhance the customer experience, because everything has to be about that experience. They’ve been working on something for us at G2E, I’m going to see it at the show, and I can’t tell you what it is yet but we are likely to take that right after the show ends. It’s the comfort that we have with a company like Interblock that I can come up with something that I know will work here, and they’ll develop it for me.


CI: You sound like a real fan – what do you like the most about working with the company? WT: One of the key things I love about Interblock is, they are not afraid to take chances. I have thrown crazy ideas at them, but they have considered them and they’ve put the best ones into action. It’s not so long ago that electronic gaming had not even been thought up as an idea; then it became a small, small percentage of casino gaming; within the next


five years, Interblock will have a major portion of every casino floor. People want the freedom to be able to play and not worry about anybody else around them. They want to be able to play their way, with minimal interaction; people that want to interact, the live tables will always be there, but for someone breaking into the gaming world, ETGs make learning the games easy and welcoming. And with these you can sit next to your friends and not have to play the same game, you’re on roulette and they’re on mini-bacc. It’s perfect. The capability the company has to take a player’s picture and put it up on the video wall to wish them a happy birthday, that’s incredible; and the chat function, for players to talk to each other and get to know other players while they’re gaming… It’s a fully interactive experience, and nobody else has gone down that road. It’s pure entertainment. We don’t stop pushing, we will


keep demanding from companies like Interblock until we find exactly what our customers want. We can have the greatest ideas in the world but if we can’t find somebody to work with us and give us what we need, we are spinning our wheels at that point – and that’s why I like Interblock.


Interblock’s Rosemarie Cook talks Stadium


The company’s Director of Gaming Operations discusses the star performer…


Casino International: I think we first saw the Stadium concept three or four years ago, and since that time it has grown steadily worldwide. What has the growth been like in North America? Rosemarie Cook: It is an organic development. When you look at Stadiums across North America, you see the most growth is in the east, due to a higher population density. They’ve also really taken off in areas where there were no table games, like Ontario and Quebec, when they first started gaming. There are three Stadium concepts; you


80 OCTOBER 2019


can have a fully automated system, a dealer-assisted setup – and that’s the most popular, because you can also still have an automated aspect – and finally, Pulse Arena. Pulse Arena has aspects from both fully automated and live dealer stadium, but amped right up – it has a huge video wall, it’s designed to make your venue party central. We have both live Stadiums and a Pulse


Arena (branded as PLAY Arena) at Foxwoods. Any Stadium installation with dealers over a fully automated stadium, there is a tremendous difference; it’s fun, interactive, it’s a whole different concept


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