The View 212

Charitable Gaming - THE VIEW

1548 – Charitable Gaming Sector (Retail)

1549 – Canadian Gaming Association (CGA)

1550 – Traditional Bingo Events

1551 – cGaming (OLG)

1552 – Consumer Behaviours (Re-send)

1548 – Charitable Gaming Sector (Retail)

On Friday, the 17th July 2020, the cGaming Centres (in authorized regions) began the process of re-opening to our customers. This is happening in a new business environment with limitations in the volume of customers we can welcome and serve at any given time, which is capped at 50.

In co-ordination with our partners we, the Commercial Operators, were able to prepare our Centres and be ready for re-opening the doors. This has been undertaken in a measured, disciplined, and managed fashion. Through the preparation of our Health & Safety Plans we were able to activate them within the timeline given by the government through their announcement.

We are more aware than ever of our collective responsibility to provide the safest possible environment for our Team Members and Customers. We have focused on a phased-in product offering to ensure we manage the customer journey and experience to the best of our ability. By entering slowly into this new operating environment, we will gain the confidence of all concerned and be able to have the sustainability of business going forward.

It is clear to all that this is not business as usual. We all need to think differently and be more flexible and adaptable in how we operate and deliver the cGaming experience in this province. This has highlighted the importance and critical nature of the Commercial Operator role in the business and the real value we bring to the sector.

The initial trading results/performance have been in-line with management expectations. Our admissions, although reduced, to date had remained manageable and have been well serviced during their visit to our Centres, which is encouraging as it shows our measured incremental approach is the right one.

What has been equally encouraging is we have started the process of delivering for our Charity Partners who have not been receiving any funding since April ’20 and are badly in need of those funds for the unique and critical services they provide in the communities they operate. We remain in contact with the OCGA on this important component of the business model.

Clearly, the re-opening could not have occurred without the combined efforts of all our partners. We wish to acknowledge the collective effort of the AGCO, OCGA, OLG and Municipalities in working together to ensure we are in a position to welcome back our customers.

The government has announced that other regions will come back on-line in the weeks ahead and we, CGAO Members, will be ready in those regions to welcome back our customers.

1549 – Canadian Gaming Association (CGA)

We continue to work closely with the CGA on the broader opening of the gaming sector, especially for our colleagues who operate Resort Casinos and Casino Centres in this province. As a major employer and revenue contributor to the province, we are collectively working together to see how we could facilitate openings within the scope of the provincial guidelines.

Mr. Paul Burns and Ms. Amanda Brewer [CGA Staff] are doing an amazing job co-ordinating the various ideas/proposals/solutions and bringing those ideas forward as a unified proposal from the sector at large. They certainly need full credit for the hard work they are both putting into this initiative.

We will continue to work closely with the CGA Team as we move forward and collectively rebuild this important sector.

1550 – Traditional Bingo Events

In the last month, CGAO Members have been seeking to offer traditional bingo events in very untraditional settings and producing some successful results. The efforts have been placed into two (2) core buckets, 1) Curb Side Bingo and 2) Car Park Bingo. In both cases they are proving to be a bridge from having nothing on offer to having a re-configured bingo experience available for the customers.  Both forms of this traditional offering have been very well received by our customers.

To comply with the Terms & Conditions, these events required additional processes and work. It has been more than worth that extra effort based on the response and feedback from our customers. The Car Park Bingo in Windsor has been really well received and full credit to the Community Gaming and Entertainment team who has made those events so successful, combined with being well managed in-line with the [AGCO] Terms and Conditions. The Curb Side Bingo, with the key operator leading this, Delta Bingo & Gaming Group, has really showcased the need for a digital platform as we go forward for the cGaming Channel in this province and we are reaching out to government on that request.

The successes here are as follows:

  1. Customer Connectivity  - The ability to have a direct connection to our customer during this lockdown phase.
  2. Revenue Generation for Charities  - The ability to provide a source of revenue generation for our Charities aligned to the said Centres.
  3. Team Members Recalled  - We recalled some of our Team Members back to work.
  4. Flexibility by the Regulatory (AGCO)  - The co-operation of the Regulator to work constructively with the CGAO to find workable solutions without undermining the integrity and accountability of the operations.

We want to thank all those engaged in these initiatives in making them possible and responding to the moment.

1551 – cGaming (OLG)

We have continued to work closely with the OLG cGaming Team during this pandemic period on some potential initiatives. This has been more complex than anyone first imagined when we began the process, which we believe appears frustrating on both sides, but regardless of that we have collectively pushed on.

These initiatives fall into two (2) buckets - 1) 50/50 e-Raffles and, 2) Home-play Bingo – both are in different stages of development and we are hoping to receive direction/progress in the near term. We wish to acknowledge everyone’s time and effort on these initiatives to date.

1552 – Consumer Behaviours (Re-send)

We all acknowledge that when we return to operational business, it will be different. The expectations of the consumers around our housekeeping standards will be an issue that will be top of mind and we must, with every action our Team Members make, instill confidence in the service we are providing.

This is a unique opportunity for us all to review and change (where deemed to enhance value) the delivery process or transactionswe have with our Team Members, Customers and Support Services. This may be looking at the following areas:

  • Sessional Opening Times / Length
  • Packaging of (Bingo) Sales / Single Point of Contact
  • Pricing Strategies 
  • Prizing Strategies – Realigned and Balanced
  • Consumer Experience
  • Consumers Flow/Centre Journey
  • Team Members Interaction

There is the view, which we are seeing in the broader society, that everyone is willing to accept change to ensure that they are safe and the people around them. We should take this opportunity to ensure we leverage this situation to enhance our Team Members and Consumers experience for the mutual benefit to all.

If we look back to our Members Communication on the 6th March 2020, it was flagged then the need to provide ‘confidence’ to those who use our Centres. That has not changed.  

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Commercial Gaming Association Ontario

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