|Public company (ASX: ALL)|
Aristocrat Leisure Limited is an Australian company, which has its administrative centre in the Sydney suburb of North Ryde, although the majority of its research and development is also done at its North Ryde site. It also has marketing and development offices in South Africa, Russia, the United States and Japan.
Aristocrat is the largest gaming machine manufacturer in Australia, and is one of the largest manufacturers of slot machines in the world (currently second only to US based International Game Technology, now owned by Italian lottery business G-Tech).
The company produced its first machine in 1953, and was listed on the Australian Stock Exchange in 1996. The company was founded by Len Ainsworth, whose family maintains a lucrative stake in the company, but is now Chairman of a different gaming company, Ainsworth Game Technology. Aristocrat is now licensed to distribute slot machines and other gaming products in over 200 jurisdictions (note that many countries, such as Australia, have a number of different gaming-licence jurisdictions).
Products and partnerships
Aside from spinning reel slot machines, the company also has interests in gaming systems (a computerised network systems that manage slot machines), computerised card game simulations, electronic table games and linked jackpot systems (such as the patented Hyperlink systems). The company has developed the exclusive Reel Power system, where players buy reels instead of lines, win combinations in the standard configuration.
To this day, probably the most iconic Aristocrat game is Queen of the Nile, with its classic Egyptian theme. However, a key revenue driver for the company is its linked jackpot themes, such as the Cash Express or Jackpot Carnival hyperlink themes, which place large progressive jackpots over a number of machines, usually between 4 and 12, but theoretically up to 256 machines can be linked under one jackpot system.
The company has a number of distribution partnerships, such as its partnership with Sammy Corporation in Japan.
Aristocrat Leisure's current CEO is Jamie Odell. The company employs 2,080 persons. Company revenue during 2004 was in excess of $1.1 billion Australian dollars. This is in contrast to earlier financial crises that the company has suffered, mainly associated with licence rejections in Nevada and dishonoured contracts in South America.
Aristocrat's CEO has blamed the US subprime mortgage crisis for bad financial results in 2008, despite the fact that competing companies have experienced record growth in the same time period. As a result of the expected drop in revenue, the CEO has enacted sweeping budget cuts, including large-scale retrenchments of staff from all areas of the business. The company again faced difficult market conditions in 2009 with its full year resulting in a net loss of $157.8 million. On July 1, 2014，Aristocrat Leisure agreed to buy Video Gaming Technologies Inc. for about $1.3 billion to triple its North American business amid falling profit in Australia.
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- "Aristocrat to Buy Video Gaming for $1.3 Billion". 2014-07-07. Retrieved 2014-07-07.