As international travel is still largely unavailable to Chinese tourists, the country’s citizens have been opting for trips “back to nature”, according to COTRI, which has observed a rise in luxury camping in 2020, among other notable trends. During the G2E Asia online conference on Tuesday, Augmentum CTO Wayne Hom discussed the concept of frictionless gaming – noting this will be important for operators in the digitalised future. In Yokohama, the opposition party is preparing to put forth a mayoral candidate who will be expressly opposed to IR development. Finally, Sudhir Kale, gaming industry consultant and academic puts the Crown-Star merger through the famous “Drucker test” to determine whether the merger of The Star and Crown will be a success. Find out how they fared.
First, the news
- Glamping & RVs among new China travel preferences
- Augmentum CTO details vision for frictionless gaming
- Yokohama opposition prepares candidate, lawsuit to stop IR development
- Putting the Star/Crown merger proposal to the Drucker test
- Royal Commission hears of Crown inaction on money laundering
- CNMI judge awards IPI workers $5.9m in damages
- NZ halts travel bubble with Victoria amidst new cases
- Grand Korea Leisure’s Seven Luck property hotel to be torn down
- Macau visitor arrivals up 5% month-on-month
- Macau authorities call for more vaccinations after 51st case
- China sees 914 “surrender” for cross border gambling
- Texas gaming bill dies in committee halls
What you need to know
Although much of the world is closed down to international travel, destinations interested in attracting the Mainland Chinese visitor should be aware of new trends and preferences and tailor their offer accordingly. That’s the message from the China Outbound Tourism Research Institute (COTRI), which points to a significant increase in luxury camping, or glamping as it’s known, and travel in recreational vehicles last year. This raises questions for Asia’s integrated resorts as to how to cater for the new preferences.
Friction-less gaming was a notable point of discussion during this week’s G2E Asia Online conference, held on May 25. During a session on innovation enhancing smart tables, Augentum chief technology officer and chief innovation officer Wayne Hom shared his vision for a friction-less gaming and customer service environment. Hom noted that given the restrictions in gaming products, operators should be looking to improve the “velocity” of gaming. A similar innovation could be brought to the table games space, according to Hom, through the introduction of cashless buy-ins, mobile payments, and digital front money access, even making credit cashless, he said.
Ahead of the August 22 mayoral election, various anti-casino forces are laying the groundwork both to support a mayoral candidate who will pull the plug on IR development and to launch a new lawsuit to harass and delay the project. In one move, the so-called “Don of Yokohama,” the 90-year-old Yokohama Harbor Resort Association Chairman Yukio Fujiki, launched a new organization this weekend called the “Yokohama Future Concept Conference.” Fujiki also used the occasion to lay into the prime minister over the Tokyo Olympics, declaring that Suga was acting “not Japanese” by trying to hold the Games in the midst of a pandemic and had “abandoned his duty to protect the lives of the Japanese people.”
INDUSTRY OPINION: Sudhir Kale
Founder and CEO of GamePlan Consultants Sudhir Kale, judges the proposed merger between Crown Resorts and Star Entertainment according to Drucker’s criteria (who identified six rules that may mean success or failure when it comes to mergers and acquisitions) and finds it comes up lacking. He also questions the impact on the customer experience in Australia’s casinos.
With so much room for development in the Asian markets, Pragmatic Play isn’t resting on its laurels. The increasing acceptance of igaming has seen a slow change in attitude towards regulation, with more and more markets on the cusp of delivering legislative roadmaps, which will truly propel the market to a period of hypergrowth – something Pragmatic Play intends to be at the forefront of.
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Supplier Special Report
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