Jens Einhaus, VP of international sales for Europe and The Americas, discusses some of Novomatic’s stand-out products at ICE 2020 and explains that with a “well balanced portfolio of new developments and ‘retro’ games” the company expects to see significant growth across all areas of its land-based business this year.
Casino Review: Which products will you be spotlighting for the land-based casino industry at ICE 2020?
Jens Einhaus: Our show presentation for the land-based segment is very much full service: it includes single game titles and mixes, standalone and linked progressive jackpots, ETGs as well as systems and even cash handling products. We have a great number of new game titles on the show floor, many of which have a linked jackpot and many are Asian themes – simply because they are so hugely popular. One of them is the Samurai Beauty, which we already had on show in Las Vegas, but which will be presented for the first time for European operators, together with a magnificent signage package that visually highlights the theme and the jackpot and really gives it some impact on the floor.
Two brand new Asian Links will premiere at the show and there’s also The Money Party Link with two titles plus a number of Standalone Progressive titles like Dancing Lantern and Dancing Tiger.
Our ETG show installation at the show will be equipped with a couple of new G2S-based functionalities for in-game messaging and highly customized game presentation. I am pretty sure that our customers will come up with a great number of ideas how these new features can enhance their game presentation.
Many European operators will also be interested to see a live demonstration of our systems and how they can streamline their casino processes in full compliance with modern gaming regulations.The casino management system myACP fully complies with the regulatory requirements for customer data processing and Anti-Money Laundering and the Novomatic Biometric Systems use biometrics to implement a highly customer-oriented and discreet entrance control that fulfils the highest standards for Responsible Gaming and the protection of minors. These are very useful tools that take care of fundamental processes and smooth routines in the background of a casino operation.
CR: What will be some of the key focuses for Novomatic at this year’s show?
JE: Since our European core markets are primarily multi-game markets – due to the limited floor space in the casinos – we have created a range of products that meet these requirements and the demand for Linked jackpot games at the same time.
Further – more traditional – new multigame offerings will include the Novo Line Interactive Concurve Edition 5 for the Curve machines and the Novo Line Interactive Edition X2 for the multi-screen range – among others.
CR: In your view, what are players and operators in the EMEA region looking for, and what are some of the standout consumer trends you’re seeing at the moment?
JE: In the land-based casino markets, Linked Progressives are a prevailing trend that many European jurisdictions, too, have come to adopt. Based on their growing popularity, we have, of course set a focus on these products in the Novomatic casino games development. The result are dedicated single games, suites of games and multi-game compendiums that bring a great variety of linked progressive jackpot highlights for the industry.
But of course we will always also provide our customers with what has brought us to where we are now: outstanding multi-game mixes featuring our most popular games next to exciting new developments. One of our latest highlights, the Multi-Gaminator deluxe is actually a ‘step back’ in history – that quite befits our 40th anniversary year. It transfers ten of our most popular five- and nine-line games from more than 15 years ago onto a more enhanced platform and into refreshed cabinets. This mix has a very strong retro focus and allows our customers to offer their guests the most popular original content wrapped in contemporary technology. You wouldn’t believe how popular these “old” games still are – but they simply become a problem in terms of security and maintenance.
So yes, part of my answer to your question is that the European players still love the old games and they would be very disappointed if just due to technological modernisation requirements, they were no longer be able to play their favourite nine-line game. There are new trends in player preferences, of course – and Links are certainly one of them – but there are also what you can call prevailing necessities.
CR: In terms of jurisdictions, where is Novomatic seeing success at the moment in EMEA and where do you see your growth markets in the region this year?
JE: Novomatic traditionally has a strong presence in the European markets, where we are very active in the operations side of the gaming business, as well. This is where we come from, and this is where we are most familiar with the player preferences, operator requirements and the ever-changing regulatory frameworks.
Our products have also become very popular in the African markets where Novomatic has an excellent footprint with a growing customer base and we are currently increasing our already well-established customer-service infrastructure maintained by our local subsidiaries.
I believe that with the very well balanced portfolio of new developments and “retro” games, we will see substantial growth in all areas of our land-based business and I can’t wait to present all the new products to our customers at ICE.
CR: What were some of Novomatic’s highlights during the past 12 months?
JE: If it was for me to decide, I’d say that the whole last year was a continuous highlight with outstanding performances at all traditional gaming shows and even more important, excellent performance results of our products.
However, the outlook for 2020 seems to be even better which goes very well in-line with the company’s 40th anniversary which will be celebrated during numerous occasions throughout the year.