Germany’s industry giant Gauselmann and Austria’s Novomatic Group criticise authority’s decisions of authoritiesto implement new restrictions on gaming halls
Gauselmann Group and Austria’s Novomatic Group criticise the decision of authorities in Berlin to implement new restrictions on gaming halls, that will force the majority of the city’s 500 arcades to shut.
The Berlin Senate Administration for the Economy, Energy and Operations is basically shutting down four out of five arcades and only 120 arcades are to receive a new license which means that approximately 380 legal operations must close.
Manfred Stoffers, Management Board member at Gauselmann said: “They will die a senseless death, as this will not bring the improved player protection promised by Berlin legislators, but instead the exact opposite.”
Almost all of the arcade operators that are supposed to shut down are customers of the Gauselmann Group. Manfred Stoffers added: “They are professional coin-op machine merchants who have created jobs that are subject to compulsory social security contributions and thought that their investment in Berlin was an investment in their future. Blustering politician-bashing is, however, just as senseless as the
death of the arcades.”
Gauselmann further believes that this move will drive players to the illegal gambling market. Novomatic subsidiary Löwen Entertainment, which operates a network of Admiral-branded outlets, echoed this warning of a boom in illegal activity.
Mr Stoffers added: “I cannot imagine that it is the intention of Berlin politicians to take what to date has been a transparent market for commercial gaming and to leave it in future primarily to rotten profiteers or even to organised crime. “
He goes on to say that the ratio of legal to illegal games offerings in the capital city long ago shifted in favour of illegal gaming and this is verifiable even today. He states that this is not only a cause for extreme concern but also a massive breach of the paramount objectives of the law on gambling.