Casinos (including online) – UK – October 2008

Abstract

As more Casino licences are granted can the industry create a leisure experience that will attract new customers? Two years ago casinos were looking forward to a bright future brought about by deregulation and massive investment. However, during the last year or so the industry has faced a challenging period. Since the implementation of the Gambling Act 2005 (as of 1 September 2007), the industry has seen the abolition of the super-casino, gaming duty rise and economic conditions take a downturn leading to lower levels of investment and expansion. In some areas, casino supply is outstripping customer demand. It's not all bad news for the industry though. There are new openings in permitted areas and operators are upgrading existing casinos, making them more customer-friendly in terms of plush smoking areas, a greater choice of games, more attractive to first timers and more attention to detail (eg valet parking). Mintel's exclusive consumer research carried out for this report reveals that it is mainly via these leisure choices rather than the promotion of table games where casinos will win over occasional visitors and entice lapsed visitors or those intending to visit. The report's focus is mainly on the high street casino market, and alludes to online casinos where possible. The report explores the issue: "As more casino licences are granted, can the industry create a leisure experience that will attract new customers?" Main report themes: How has the Gambling Act 2005 impacted casinos? What are the strengths and weaknesses of the casino market? How much has the current economic climate had an effect on casinos? Who are the major operators and have they got the product mix right? How can operators turn occasional visitors into regulars? What are the barriers preventing those keen to visit from doing so? What is the public perception of the aborted super-casino?

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