s a very experienced executive in the international gaming industry, you now lead Jade Entertainment and Gaming Technologies. Let's start by talking about the company's business units, represented companies and current position in the Asian market.
Jade Entertainment and Gaming Technologies is located in Manila’s bustling central business district, Makati City, and has been rapidly building a solid reputation as a trusted provider of electronic gaming machines and other gaming technologies. Jade has, since its inception, taken giant steps towards becoming a ‘one stop shop’ for operators seeking to invest in their properties through the latest generation products and services.”
Jade’s approach of duality as both a distributor and an operator is its core business strategy. As well as a distributor Jade is also operating machines at the highly successful Oxford Princess Casino and the Casablanca Casino within the former Clark Air Force Base (now part of the Clark Freeport special economic zone) that is located some 60 kilometres northwest of Metro Manila and which has direct air links to key cities around southeast Asia. Jade’s strategy of duality offers a depth of insight into operational methods and requirements that back up Jade’s approach of ‘advice gained from experience’ in its distribution role.
As the distributor for the world’s leading gaming brands, Jade is able to offer electronic gaming machines and gaming technologies from Novomatic, IGT, Crane, FutureLogic, Signs4You, Graphic Controls and Advanced Gaming.
The company is based in the Philippines. How do you evaluate its local gaming market? Do you consider it still has more growth potential?
Regulated Casinos have been operating in the Philippines since 1976 and during this time PAGCOR has been very successful in meeting the government’s aims stated goals and objectives: namely, producing revenue and creating jobs. The company has operated its casinos in a reasonably professional manner and cleaned up the image of gambling in the Philippines. PAGCOR now directly employs 12,000 staff, and it provides significant contributions to the National Treasury. However, the industry is still in its infancy and has only grown in line with the country’s GDP over the past 28 years with little growth in the International VIP Market that, by contrast, accounts for over 80% of Macau revenue.
From 2013 we will see significant growth in terms of Revenue and product offering with the opening of the first of the Entertainment City resorts, Bloomberry has hired some of the world’s leading Gaming executives that will introduce the Philippine Gaming Industry to the Asian VIP market.
And how do you see the Asian market in general today? Which are the more attractive markets? How vital will this market become for the international gaming manufacturers in the near term?
With the rise of the middle class in Asia and their propensity to gamble we will see a greater demand for Entertainment destinations such as the Gaming/Tourism integrated resort. Philippines can grow to be one on the world’s major Gaming/tourism markets, the country is located within 5 hours of all major Asian cities, has over 7000 islands with beautiful beaches, has the world best human service resources and was recently named the 8th friendliest country in the World.
For Gaming manufacturers this is one of the most vital markets in the region, currently there are 12000 machines in the market servicing a population of 100 million. With the development of the 4 Entertainment City projects we will see the installation of over 8000 additional units in those properties alone.
One of the companies that you represent is Novomatic. What is your relationship with this leading international firm?
Jade has been representing Novomatic in the Philippines for the past 2 years and we have taken the approach to deliver quality and service rather than just quantity. The product is now in the top 3 of all performance revenue data and we will see continued growth. Novomatic is committed to growing its business in Asia and later this year we will see the release of product for Macau to meet the new DICJ specification and we will then pursue that market.
Which Novomatic products are the most requested ones in the Asian market?
The Novomatic Novostar SL slant top is the most popular, it’s very satisfying to walk into a casino and see these beautiful slant tops fully occupied by guests.
How do you evaluate Novomatic's participation at the recent G2E Asia show? Was it positive for the company, in line with its expectations?
This year G2E Asia has exceeded our expectations, we have renewed interest from Macau, Cambodia and Vietnam and we will start placing our first machines in July as an outcome of the show.
Finally, how did you see G2E Asia this year in its sixth edition?
I have attended this show since it was first introduce by AGGMA several years ago and then later developed into G2E Asia. On the floor there appeared to be reduced numbers in terms of visitors but a definite increase in the number of quality buyers.