ow are you preparing for MGS 2014?
Everything is on track. Our internal teams are working well to put on a great 2014 show. We have strong support from both the government and the gaming industry. Feedback from exhibitors is very positive and they are happy with MGS’ services. We tried to put together some new features for the show this year. Hope it will bring new excitement to our visitors.
What are your expectations?
Repeated exhibitors are bringing on new products while new exhibitors are showcasing their new ideas. We believe this year we have a very attractive show and hopefully it could bring us more visitors. We have also created a conference program that is markedly improved compared to the last year conference. Well known speakers will share their insights on how to capitalize on lucrative gaming business opportunities. We hope that our exhibitors will be stimulated and lots of business leads will be generated.
What will be the novelties?
MGS is one of social responsibility activities. We have invited all local universities which offer gaming programs to participate in the MGS. We want to have more young people to go to the MGS so that they have the chance to better understand the gaming industry, which is far more than just about casinos. There is a huge back-end operation and there are plenty of career opportunities for them. We have also put together a TechEd Program with Macao Polytechnic Institute (IPM), asking our exhibitors to explain their latest technology to IPM students studying for their gaming management programme.
Each Macao gaming operator is developing new facilities in the COTAI area. We are also putting something together to let our visitors understand these new developments. They bring major business opportunities for gaming suppliers on all aspects.
What can you tell us about the keynotes and conferences?
We are honored to have International Masters of Gaming Law (IMGL), Gaming Standards Association (GSA), Bloomberg, and Asia Pacific Association for Gambling Studies (APAGS) supporting our conference. This year we focus on business opportunities again, hoping that our delegates can go home with better insights on where the gaming industry is going and how to maximize their own growth. We have panel sessions discussing the future of the various Asian markets. Some pressing short term issues will also be addressed, such as the changing yet ever lucrative Chinese market, the new Japanese market, the imminent Macao gaming license renewal, and iGaming development in Asia.
How have you seen the global gaming industry during this year?
The global gaming industry will continue on its growth path this year. USA has regained some strength and is going through regulatory changes. Europe is poised for some changes too. Fastest growth is still Asia while Eastern Europe is making aggressive moves. We are also seeing development in some pockets of Africa. In all, gaming is seen as a revenue generator for the governments and everyone would like to capitalize on it. It will have its social impacts nonetheless. During the conference, Dr Zeng from IPM will share his research on globalization and localization of gaming, meaning that conglomerates will emerge on a global scale yet each casino will need to localize to attract customers within its own region.
What do you think will be main trend this year?
Each locale has its own challenges. For Macao, it is manpower availability. Therefore, any supplier who can offer productivity solutions to maximize yield will be in demand. Because of competition and the rapid growth of mass market, customer acquisition and retention solutions will also be important for the Macao market. For growing markets, it is marketing solutions, how to put your best face forward to attract customers. We have developed MGS along these lines and hope that everyone will be able to find something useful at MGS.
How do you see igaming? How will it evolve and how will it be reflected on the show?
iGaming is something new to regulatory regimes in Asia. Some have outlawed it while others embrace it. Each government has its own reasons for doing so, both economic and social. USA is a good example to observe, going from banning it to regulating it. Land-based gaming has gone through the process of being banned to being regulated, we expect iGaming to go through this curve over time. We brought in iGaming regulatory experts to talk about regulations and business people to share experiences. As in land-based gaming, compliance is important and MGS introduces iGaming for similar reasons, awareness and compliance.