Aristocrat Finally Launches VGTs In Illinois After Aborted Initial Launch
Aristocrat Technologies has finally launched its video gaming terminals in Illinois, after its initial attempt was cut short one day before its planned launch due.
The launch was aborted due to Illinois shutting down its gambling industry due to the surging COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020.
Kurt Gissane, VP Sales North America said that the firm used the extra time which surpassed a 100 days to ensure that their launch will be stronger. Over the last week, Aristocrat has installed more than 300 of their machines in various video gaming terminals across Illinois. Each machine holds eight games, including Buffalo, its most popular title and spin off such Buffalo Diamond (shown above).
Aristocrat which is based out of Australia has provided their video gaming machines to the Illinois riverboat casino sector and has witnessed a good response. In 2019, Illinois expanded its gambling industry, allowing video gaming venues to add one more slot machine from five machines to six at their premises. Illinois also allowed more video gaming terminals to be added to riverboat casinos as well as slot parlors in Chicago’s two airports, O’Hare and Midway.
Gissane said that Aristocrat’s has understood the needs of Illinois players and have customized their games to meet the specific needs of locals, as evidenced by their loyal fan base on riverboat casinos.
Illinois’ Video Gaming Market Booming
Illinois’ video gaming terminal market is one of the largest in the US. There are 7,137 locations available in the state, containing a total of 35,680 games. The terminals can be found in bars, convenience stores, gas stations, and truck stops, as well as other venues with liquor licenses.
In 2019, the terminals generated $1.677 billion in revenue for Illinois, a massive surge from the $12.3 million Illinois collected from the machines when the terminals were first legalized in 2012. As a result of the surge video gaming terminals, Illinois’ 19 casinos found their revenue shrinking more than 17% from their take in 2012 ($1.638 billion) in 2019 ($1.354 billion).
In July of 2020, when the video gaming terminals re-opened in Illinois, local punters bet more than $2 billion through the machines, with the state collecting $634.6 million in revenues.
Eight more states have legal video gaming terminals: Louisiana, Oregon, West Virginia, Georgia, Nevada, Montana and Pennsylvania. Currently, Indiana, Missouri and Mississippi are considering legalizing the machines which will give Aristocrat more opportunity to expand its presence.