Tuesday July 17 2012 : LAND CASINO SUPPLIER LAUNCHES E-GAMING SUBSIDIARY
Company's president to lead new Williams Interactive division
WMS, the primarily land casino supplier that has been making headlines with its e-gaming acquisitions recently, announced Tuesday that it has launched a new interactive gambling subsidiary branded Williams Interactive.
Company president Orrin J. Edidin will manage the new division, which expands substantially on WMS acquisitions and activity in e-gaming to date, which includes:
* The acquisition of online skill games firm Jadestone
* An online games and poker content deal with internet gambling software developer 888.com preparing for US legalization
* Partnering in an online venture in Belgium with the Partouche group
* Full ownership of the online casino Jackpot Party.com, currently expanding into Europe from the UK
* The acquisition of social casino games developer Phantom EFX
* Applying for an online poker licence in Nevada
* The cloud-based Player's Life Web Services linking casino-based entertainment with non-wagering entertainment features at home or on mobile devices, which now has over 1 million unique registered accounts.
* The company's social gaming pursuits, including the Lucky Cruise social casino on Facebook.
Williams Interactive is a wholly owned subsidiary of Chicago-based WMS that will focus on the growth, development and operational execution of the company's worldwide online wagering, social, casual and mobile gaming initiatives.
The creation of Williams Interactive LLC is intended to optimise the benefits of iGaming for WMS' casino operator customers and their players, a statement from WMS advised..
Edidin will lead the new company's efforts to leverage its product development expertise, industry leading content and iGaming capabilities to capitalise on the emerging industry's significant potential growth opportunities by supporting casinos' participation in these new distribution channels.
In addition, reflecting the continued growth of WMS in its core gaming product sales and gaming operations businesses, Kenneth Lochiatto has been promoted to President and Chief Operating Officer of WMS Gaming.
Lochiatto joined WMS in 2006 as senior vice president of sales. In addition to his sales and operating background, he also possesses a diverse range of management experience gained from a 22-year career in commercial operations at General Electric, including responsibilities in engineering, finance, marketing and manufacturing.
Brian R. Gamache, chairman and CEO of WMS Industries, said: "For several years, WMS has been moving toward the convergence of land-based casino entertainment with players' desires for gaming content across the full spectrum of online, social, casual and mobile mediums. As result of our anticipation of this convergence, we already possess a comprehensive range of leading solutions to meet our customers' current and evolving needs.
"Establishing Williams Interactive is an important step forward in concentrating our efforts and increasing our collective ability to leverage our operational and development initiatives to propel growth and returns to the next level.
“Orrin's management expertise and knowledge of the WMS organization, understanding of the dynamics of these new emerging distribution channels and deep appreciation of what land-based casino operators need to maximize their benefit from iGaming opportunities make him the ideal leader to move Williams Interactive forward for the benefit of our customers, their players and WMS."
"Across the gaming industry, casino operators are looking for assistance in preparing for the ongoing convergence between their land-based casino gaming and the various new iGaming options," Gamache added.
"With our already advanced existing capabilities, which benefit from our core competencies in developing player-appealing gaming content, we believe WMS is favourably positioned to help our customers benefit through the development of customized gaming experiences that will engage their existing patrons, attract new players and help them grow their businesses."
Williams Interactive will be headquartered at the company's technology campus in Chicago and structured to strengthen its various interactive businesses. These include online managed services whereby WMS provides a full private-label online casino solution to look like the customer's web site, and its online game server operations whereby WMS' servers and game content will interoperate with third-party online casino platforms, as well as WMS' social, casual and mobile gaming operations.
Reporting to Edidin at Williams Interactive will be Jordan Levin, Vice President and COO; Kent Hansen, Vice President and CFO; and Aaron Schurman, head of Phantom EFX. In addition to these individuals, significant management and development talent has been assembled through a combination of internal WMS individuals and members of the Phantom EFX and Jadestone teams.
Edidin who retains his position of president of the parent company, WMS Industries, commented:
"A global migration toward content convergence and multi-channel distribution is rapidly underway. Having anticipated the convergence of land-based casino gaming with online, social, casual and mobile gaming, we set out several years ago to prepare WMS to benefit from these exciting new opportunities. We have developed and acquired the appropriate experience and skills needed to help our customers prepare for the convergence in their businesses with a broad set of value-added solutions, products and managed services.
"Williams Interactive enables us to efficiently integrate our Atlanta-based online development resources, India-based systems and software capabilities, Chicago-based online development studio and engineering staff, our UK-based operational center, our Sweden-based online development and operations center and our Iowa-based Phantom EFX development team for social, casual and mobile gaming entertainment."