Operators urged to encourage variety

Asian operators need to free up space on the casino floor to experiment with new products to encourage a greater variety of gaming machines, industry experts say.

Panelists at the Mekong Gaming Summit were asked to account for Aristocrat’s dominance of the casino floor across Asia and what it will take for operators to open space to try new products.

“Aristocrat has about 70 percent of the floors, a huge presence,” said Harmen Brenninkmeijer, managing partner of The Global Chain. “Players play what they are comfortable with. The maths play a huge part and they have the right games with the right themes to cater for the dominant Chinese player base.”

Loren Stout, VP operations and sales at IPG, estimates that there are around 17,000 slot machines in Cambodia, roughly 10,000 in Vietnam and 2,000 to 3,000 in Laos. Yet he argues the floors are one dimensional.

“I would implore the operators to put aside 20 percent of the floor to experiment,” he said.

The panellists said popular games in Cambodia’s casinos at present include fishing games, though major European operators have yet to make significant in-roads in the Mekong markets.