SHFL entertainment

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SHFL entertainment, Inc.
Type Public
Traded as NASDAQSHFL
Industry Gaming
Founded Minneapolis (1983)
Founders John Breeding
Headquarters Paradise, Nevada
Revenue $227.8 million (2011)
Operating income $46.3 million (2011)
Net income $31.6 million (2011)
Employees 740
Website shfl.com

SHFL entertainment, Inc. (previously named Shuffle Master) is a manufacturer of shuffling machines, table games, slot machines, and other casino products, based in Paradise, Nevada.

The company's table game products include Let It Ride, Three Card Poker, Blackjack Switch, and Casino War.

History[edit]

Shuffle Master was formed by John Breeding, a former truck driver, in 1983.[1] Inspired by a newspaper article about card counting in blackjack, he borrowed $30,000 to develop a mechanical shuffler that would allow every hand to be dealt from a fresh deck, nullifying the advantage of card counting, without losing valuable playing time.[1] The device finally came to market in early 1992, and the company made its initial public offering later that year.[1]

Casinos were increasingly using multiple decks for blackjack, limiting the sales potential of Breeding's single-deck shuffler.[1] To fuel demand for the shufflers, he developed a new single-deck game, Let It Ride.[1] By 1995, Let It Ride was generating more revenue for Shuffle Master than its namesake device.[1]

In 1998, the company's headquarters moved from Minneapolis to the Las Vegas area.[2] The firm expanded into the slot machine business in the late 1990s, developing games based on licensed properties like The Honeymooners, Press Your Luck and Let's Make a Deal and partnering with larger companies like IGT and Bally to manufacture and distribute them.[3] The slots business failed to turn a profit, and Shuffle Master sold it to IGT in 2004 for $1.6 million.[4]

In February 2004, Shuffle Master bought most of the assets of BET Technology, a developer of table games including Casino War and Fortune Pai Gow.[5] In 2006, the company returned to the slot machine field, buying Australian manufacturer Stargames Limited for $108 million.[6][7] Among Stargames's products was Rapid Roulette, a roulette variant in which a dealer spins a physical roulette wheel, but wagers are placed and paid out on touchscreen terminals, increasing the pace of play.[6]

Gavin Isaacs, a former Bally Technologies executive, was named CEO in March 2011.[8] In March 2012, Shuffle Master agreed to buy Ongame Network, a provider of services to online poker sites, from bwin.party Services for $26 to 39 million,[9] but it pulled out of the deal months later due to declining market conditions in Europe and uncertainty about the legalization of online poker in the US.[10]

In October 2012, the company changed its name to SHFL entertainment, to reflect the diversity of its product offerings.[11]

In 2012 SHFL Entertainment obtained the license to distribute Geoff Hall's Blackjack variant 'Free Bet Blackjack' worldwide excluding the UK and Nevada.[12]

At the Global Gaming Expo conference in October 2012 SHFL debuted Mulligan Poker, a game developed by Michael Shackleford and currently only offered online by casinos using International Game Technology software. The game is set to be released in offline casinos in Kansas early in 2013.[13]

Market position[edit]

SHFL has a "virtual monopoly" in the card shuffler business.[14]

Forbes named the firm as one of the 200 Best Small Companies in America for at least five years in a row.[15]

On 16 July, 2013, Bally Technologies Inc. agreed to acquire SHFL Entertainment Inc. for about $1.3 billion in cash as the slot-machine maker looks to increase its gaming product portfolio. The deal, which remains subject to SHFL shareholders approval, is expected to close by the second quarter of calendar year 2014.[16]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f "Shuffle Master Inc. Places Winning Bet". Chicago Tribune. Bloomberg Business News. 8 October 1995. Retrieved 23 March 2012. 
  2. ^ "Brief: Shuffle Master net rises". Las Vegas Sun. 14 December 1998. Retrieved 24 March 2012. 
  3. ^ Kafka, Peter (November 1, 1999). "12 to Watch: Stacked Deck: In order to grow, Shuffle Master has been hitching a ride with much larger players in the casino game racket. Maybe it's time to get off". Forbes (via Factiva). Retrieved 2012-07-01.  (subscription required)
  4. ^ Shaw, Craig (11 October 2004). "Shuffle Master Parlays Slot Sale Into A Pair Of Core Acquisitions". Investors.com (Investor's Business Daily). Retrieved 23 March 2012. 
  5. ^ "Shuffle Master continues to grow". Las Vegas Sun. 26 February 2004. Retrieved 23 March 2012. 
  6. ^ a b Stutz, Howard (26 December 2005). "Mergers and Acquisitions: New spin for Shuffle Master". Las Vegas Review-Journal. Retrieved 23 March 2012. 
  7. ^ "Shuffle Master, Inc. Announces Completion of Stargames Limited Acquisition; Completion Signals Broad Expansion of Company's Entertainment Products Line" (Press release). Shuffle Master. 1 February 2006. Retrieved 23 March 2012. 
  8. ^ Green, Steve (17 March 2011). "Bally Technologies executive named Shuffle Master CEO". Las Vegas Sun. Retrieved 22 March 2012. 
  9. ^ "Shuffle Master 1Q profit rises 59 percent". MSNBC. Associated Press. 5 March 2012. Retrieved 22 March 2012. 
  10. ^ Stutz, Howard (27 June 2012). "Shuffle Master drops planned purchase of European online gaming company". Las Vegas Review-Journal. Retrieved 27 June 2012. 
  11. ^ Stutz, Howard (October 1, 2012). "Shuffle Master changing name to incorporate multiple products". Las Vegas Review-Journal. Retrieved 1 October 2012. 
  12. ^ ThePOGG (25 November 2012). "ThePOGG Interviews – Geoff Hall - creator of Blackjack Switch". 
  13. ^ ThePOGG (1 November 2012). "ThePOGG Interviews – Michael Shackleford – The Wizard of Odds". 
  14. ^ Stutz, Howard (5 February 2008). "Judge deals setback to Shuffle Master in patent case". Casino City Times. Retrieved 22 March 2012. 
  15. ^ Simpson, Jeff (15 October 2003). "Shuffle Master dealing success". Las Vegas Review-Journal. Retrieved 22 March 2012. 
  16. ^ Billy Crosby (16 July 2013). "Bally to Buy SHFL Entertainment for $1.3 Billion". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 24 November 2013. 

External links[edit]