hich is the final evaluation you can do regarding Bally's presence at IGE trade show?
Bally is recognized as the most customer-centric supplier in the industry. Accordingly, being at the IGE trade show is very important so that we can see all of our European, South American, and other international customers. Both myself and Ramesh Srinivasan, who runs our Systems business, were there. Also there was the head of our Global Marketing, Dan Savage, and the head of our Strategic Planning, Bruce Rowe. We had a strong presence at the show with our largest ever stand at the IGE show. We were disappointed with the attendance on the first day; however business certainly picked up on the second day, which made the trade show worthwhile.
What novelties did the company introduce both in slots and systems developments?
Bally highlighted its award-winning wheel products with the star of the show again being the Cash Spin game, where interactively the player spins the wheel on a special touch-enabled LCD. We had a selection of our high-performing Digital Tower Series games, together with standalone products for the European and International markets. We also highlighted for the first time our Italian solution, which is of interest to the Italian concessionaires. From the Systems perspective, we had a full array of our products including MCC, SDS, CMP, Bally Business Intelligence and CoolSign media-management. Our award-winning iVIEW DM was also on display.
How did you see the show after a though year affected by the international economic crisis?
Clearly interest in attendance was affected by the international economic crisis. In particular, many of the markets in Eastern and Central Europe have been very adversely affected, and accordingly, the attitudes of the customers towards expansion was clearly affected. Having the show so close to G2E does not help with attendance
Which is the evaluation that Bally can do of 2009 and how does the company face 2010?
2009 was a very tough year for everyone in the industry; for that matter for everyone in the world! During 2009, we refined many of our processes and took advantage of further investment in our R&D so that when the economies finally start to pick up (hopefully soon), our products will be the best possible products for our customers. We are very much looking forward to launching our new ALPHA II operating system together with our new Pro Series cabinets this year, which we believe will time well with the recovery of the economy. Despite all of the distraction, we have continued to invest in our R&D.
As an international leading player of the industry, which are the new technologies or trends in which Bally is more focused for the near term?
Better games is the key always. Continuing to improve on the product offerings which we supply to our customers is why we are in business. We believe iVIEW DM is a great solution for interfacing better communication between the casino and the their customer. As the world leader in Systems, we will continue to invest in our systems development, bringing the best technology to all of our customers. No one else has the same commitment to systems as we do. Similarly, while we continue to do extremely well with some of our game products, we continue to invest in Games R&D and have some great titles available across all our platforms.