New Greek Lottery Rules Hurts IGT and Scientific Games

At first look, it seemed like the Greece financial crisis had a negative impact on the country’s lottery network. Fortunately, the Greek owned company that owns the country’s lottery executed a shrewd negotiation tactic to secure better contract terms after The Hellenic Gaming Commission declared new lottery industry regulations.

IGT_Scientific GamesThe move will affect the bottom lines of Nevada’s two most popular slot machine manufacturers. International Game Technology and Scientific Games Corporation will lose millions of dollars in revenue. “These were viable business opportunities for both Scientific Games and IGT,” stated Eilers Chief Research principal Todd Eilers.

Eilers has high expectations when it comes to OPAP. OPAP is the well-known Greek company that runs the country’s network of lottery terminals that behave like slot machines. Eilers believes that an understanding with regulators will be met in the near future. The country’s dire need for tax revenue during its financial crisis will be taken into consideration.

Union Gaming Group analyst Christopher Jones is pointing the finger at the Greek government. He feels that the Greek government made a poor decision when it changed the rules for the VLT deployment. Their decision was made several days before the games were scheduled to be launched. Jones feels that the short-term view for the Greek video lottery terminal market is in jeopardy.

OPAP moved fast when they suspended the deployment of more than 16,000 lottery terminals around the country after Greek lottery officials lowered jackpot levels, enforced daily loss limits, and lowered the total amount of time gamblers can play on a machine.

Eilers did not expect the new regulations to be so harsh.

In a brief statement, a spokesman for OPAP stated that the new regulations made VLT operations unrealistic. The spokesman also stated that the firm needs time to execute new technical requirements for daily operation.