Online involvement planned for US slot manufacturer

The action in the well regulated UK online gambling market appeals to WMS

The online gambling competitive action in the UK market will warm up considerably in 2011 as a leading American slot machine manufacturer broadens its business interests with a foray into the Internet gambling market. It is not yet clear in what role it will operate online, as it has a wide capability range.

WMS Gaming, a subsidiary of WMS Industries in Illinois, plans to start out in the UK market some time in 2011, widening its target to other legal and regulated European markets as its online business success and capability grows, the company said this week.

The company revealed that it is already assembling a UK team that will initially number 25 people on the i-gaming project, and is considering business premises in London, where marketing, customer services and technical operations personnel will be based.

Responsibility for the online gaming venture is understood to lie with WMS Gaming executive director Brian Morgan, who has previous experience in the industry through his previous establishment of the Cyberslotz business prior to involvement with WMS. He eventually sold that operation to Australian betting group Tatts.

“WMS will debut its capabilities and solutions that harness the scale of the Internet to pursue online wagering opportunities in the United Kingdom. This initiative is expected to launch in fiscal year 2011, subject to regulatory approval [and] we look forward to expanding our presence in the UK marketplace," said WMS chairman and chief executive Brian Gamache in a statement from the company.

The company is listed on the New York stock exchange.

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