ATE, organisers of the International Casino Exhibition (ICE) which takes place at Earls Court 2, London, are preparing for another record-breaking event. Following a 12-year period of constant growth, which has seen net floor space increase from 828sqm (8,910sq.ft.) to around 10,000sqm (107,600sq.ft.), exhibitor numbers rise from 13 to over 160 and attendances multiply from 303 to over 7,000 (17,000-plus if cross-over visitors from the co-located ATEI soft gaming expo are included), the 2005 edition is set to welcome it’s 50,000th dedicated casino buyer through the doors on 25-27th January, as well as expanding on the 150 different nations already represented throughout the show’s history.
Proposed deregulation of the gaming industry, which is currently passing through the House of Parliament and is on schedule to be law by Spring of next year, will make ICE 2005 the most significant in the history of the exhibition.
Strong international field
By the end of October, 162 companies from a record 32 nations had confirmed their stand space at ICE 2005 and the show’s organisers are predicting this figure will rise well beyond the all-time high of 166 set in 2004. Of the 162 registered so far, around two-thirds (107) are based outside the UK. Leading the international field is the USA with 14 exhibiting companies, closely followed by the Netherlands with 10. There will be at least nine from Spain, eight from Slovenia, seven from Russia, six each from Australia and Sweden, five each from Austria and Germany, four each from Belgium and France, three each from Canada and Italy and two from each of Ireland, Japan and Latvia. Other territories represented at ICE 2005 include Argentina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Finland, Hungary, Israel, Malta, Panama, Portugal, Serbia & Montenegro, Slovakia, South Africa and Taiwan.
World’s leading suppliers bring expansive portfolio
ICE 2005 will feature more products from more suppliers than ever before. The most prevalent being shown by at least 41 exhibitors, will be slot machines – incorporating the most popular forms of reel-based and video gaming including touchscreen card, roulette and dice games and the latest incarnations of single-player automatic betting terminals. 28 companies will exhibit a broad range of live gaming products such as roulette, cards, dice, chips, tables and layouts together with all the associated accessories. i-gaming suppliers exhibiting within the dedicated „ICEi“ section of the show currently number 28, with several more expected on board by the opening of the show. Multi-player games will be shown by 26 exhibitors, with a further 26 offering a wide spectrum of interior design products and services including furniture, ceiling, floor and wall coverings, fittings, signage, lighting, displays, air conditioners, background music and uniforms. 20 suppliers will offer a range of jackpot systems, totalisers, player tracking and systems for accounting, credit control and casino management. The latest money handling products and techniques will be demonstrated by at least 19 specialist suppliers of validators, change machines, sorters and dispensers whilst security systems including CCTV, surveillance, locks and devices will be available from 13 exhibitors. At least 13 bingo, keno and lottery suppliers will exhibit at ICE 2005 and a further eight companies will be on hand to expound their broad range of spares and accessories. The remaining 35 exhibitors will comprise a diverse mix offering professional services, expertise and consultancy in areas such as testing and certification, legal, financial, recruitment, design, government and education, publishing, marketing and communications.
Exhibitors grow their own show
50 exhibitors have opted to increase their ICE presence for 2005. Despite the high pressure on floor space within Earls Court 2, show organisers have enabled many companies to enlarge the size of their stand. Some of the more substantial growers include XN Entertainment (up 139% to 153sqm [1,646sq.ft.]), Bally Gaming & Systems (up 24% to 357sqm [3,841sq.ft.]), Metronia (up 150% to 100sqm [1,076sq.ft]), WMS Gaming (up 50% to 180sqm [1,937sq.ft]), Ainsworth Game Technology (up 56% to 162.5sqm [1,749sq.ft.]) and Atronic International (up 17% to 396sqm [4,261sq.ft.]).
26 join „the big league“
Of the 162 confirmed exhibitors, 26 will have stands of 100sqm (1,076sq.ft.) or bigger at ICE 2005. Of those, Novomatic-Austrian Gaming Industries is certain to stand out with a colossal 1,116sqm (12,008sq.ft) display. IGT-Europe will also be making a strong show on their 720sqm (7,747sq.ft.) stand. Other „big hitters“ at the January 2005 show include TCS John Huxley, Atronic International, Bally Gaming and Systems, Recreativos Franco, Interblock, GPI, Aristocrat Technologies Europe, Unidesa Gaming & Systems, WMS Gaming, Mikohn Europe/endX, Amatic Industries, Ainsworth Game Technology, XN Entertainment, Alfastreet-Pockaj Pohistvo, CARD-A Shuffle Master International, Casino Tecnnology, Orion Gaming, Gold Club, Universal Distributing of Nevada, Belgian Gaming Technology, CTL and Metronia.
One in six makes debut appearance
One in every six exhibitors will be making their very first appearance at ICE this January. Drawn from 17 different countries the list of 27 debutants includes 10 i-gaming specialists: 192.com, Betfair.com, Hitwise and Open Bet from Orbis (all UK); 24h Bet and Poker Network (both Sweden); CasinoBlasters.com and Citadel Commerce (both Canada); EGET (Finland) and Universal Betting Systems (Cyprus). Other ICE newcomers include from the UK – FutureLogic Europe (coin & note counting), ID Technology Group (CCTV, security & surveillance systems) and Synectic Systems (CCTV); from the USA – Casino Enterprise Management (publishing), the Gaming Standards Association and VSR Lock (locks/security devices); from Austria – Apex Gaming Technology (table games); from Latvia – CTC Holdings (electronic roulette); from Russia – Gaming Business (publishing); from Australia – Global Gaming Industries (slot machines and systems); from France – Journal des Casinos (publishing); from Serbia & Montenegro – Lucky Line (electronic roulette); from Norway – Nordic Lottery Systems (online gaming); from Spain – Nova Desitec (multi-games, video poker, slots and bingo); from Germany – Power Tiger (machine components); from Belgium – Seeben (slots and changers); and from Argentina – Yogonet.com (publishing). ICE 2005 will also welcome back six returning exhibitors following an absence of one or more years; these comprise Gage Corporation, Isle of Man Government, Microgaming Software Systems, Tain, Taiwan Fulgent Enterprises (USA) and the University of Nevada Reno.