Big Deal For Slot Machine Manufacturer That You’ll Probably Never See

Walking Dead Slot Machines
Walking Dead

Aristocrat Technologies announced a major acquisition a few days ago when they purchased Video Gaming Technologies (VGT) for about $1.3 billion. According to Bloomberg this would triple Aristocrat’s slot machine space on casino floors in North America.

The acquisition would boost Aristocrat’s exposure to 28,400 machines from 8,200 in North America.

This should give Aristocrat more slot machines on casino floors in North America but you probably won’t notice. The majority of VGT’s slot machines are located in Native American casinos and smaller emerging markets across the United States.

Aristocrat is one of the slot machine manufacturers taking floor space away from IGT in larger casino markets like Vegas. While they may have paid a premium for VGT this all but makes them king of slot machine manufacturers on casino floors across America.

You probably won’t see major changes with Aristocrat in the near future but that should change over time. The revenue from this deal can make Aristocrat a serious player for major world-wide slot machine (include bingo and lottery games) licenses.

This is only just the beginning and it could really become a big deal for slot machine players and casinos alike.

Playing for the Biggest Lotto Jackpot Ever

The Mega Millions lottery jackpot (at the time of writing this) is $500 million, already up from the originally announced $473 million. That’s an all-time world record for a lottery. I typically don’t play lotteries because the odds of winning are so immensely terrible. But since this is a record drawing and you can’t win if you don’t play, I’m going to go buy some tickets.

While researching lottery taxes I found something interesting. In an odd quirk, Nevada doesn’t have any state lotteries. I read that for the last drawing people were flocking to Primm on the California Nevada state line to buy tickets. The article said that they are one of the top grossing cities for the lottery in California. Which begs an interesting question, why would Nevada give up lottery revenue to other states?

The best answer I can think up is that since gambling is everywhere in Nevada, they don’t think there would be much to gain by offering a lottery. The amount people are willing to wager is a firm amount and offering a lottery wouldn’t change that. Since casinos offer better odds, I doubt anyone would really even play lottery games in Nevada except when jackpots get as big as Friday’s drawing.

I would not be surprised at all to see that jackpot grow over the week. Large jackpots draw more players, and more players mean even bigger jackpots. Either way, it’s pretty exciting that the Mega Millions lottery has grown to such a large jackpot. I’ll be very curious to see who wins. Can you imagine if the lottery doesn’t hit on Friday? We could very easily see a lottery jackpot that breaks $1 billion. Now wouldn’t that be a story.

ED: The closest this Nevada has to a lottery is the Megabucks slot machine. Megabucks has the poorest payouts of any slot machine in Vegas (Check NGC), but people play hoping for the big million dollar payouts – kinda like the lottery.

NFL and Government Really Are OK With Gambling

NFL Logo

So, the NFL and government are really OK with using their facilities to promote gambling.  Sure lottery games are legal in most states, but how is the government-run lottery any different than casino gambling?  Even in states that have gambling lottery games are still the easiest way for most people to gamble.

This year the NFL sued Delaware for “trying” to keep sports betting illegal.  At the same time the NFL has approved the use of its logos and teams for more and more state lottery games.  New Jersey has become the latest state to allow NFL marketing as part of their lottery games.

In New Jersey, the lottery is running a promotion that will give scratch off losers the opportunity to win a New York Giants fan pack. It is directly using the Giants popularity to sell gambling to the masses in the state.

“This is one of the worst ideas that NFL owners have ever had,” said CGW Business analyst Steve Schwartz, “More children watch football than ever before, and now, the lottery is throwing these scratch off tickets in their face, hypothetically saying, ‘hey, if you really like your team, buy these tickets and try to win merchandise with your team’s logo.'”

The fact that the NFL is being hypocritical is not surprising to most fans who have come to accept that the league plays by its own rules. What is best for NFL owners is law, and right now, that means promoting gambling in these tough economic times.

I find the hypocrisy both annoying and bothersome.  If the NFL felt strongly about gambling they wouldn’t have their name and likeness anywhere near lotteries.  Lotteries are the cheapest and easiest way for people to become addicted to gambling.  Some would call it a gateway drug like marijuana.  I’m never surprised by corporate or government double talk, but I don’t have to like it.

Photo: Aio Wallpaper