It may be awards season in Hollywood these days, but they’re not the only ones that are about to hand out recognition to well-deserved industry leaders. Over in London, the International Gaming Awards 2013 is set to open its doors on the 4th of February at the Brewery on 52 Chiswell Street, London. This year marks the 6th installment of the IGAs and will feature a total of 21 awards that will be given out during the festivities, honoring all the renowned companies and individuals that have made significant impacts on the industry for the year.
The pool of nominees is about as competitive as it can get, featuring industry leaders from all sectors of the gambling world, all of whom deserve their share of the spotlight. In the end, though, only 21 winners will walk home with the distinction of being voted the best in their respective categories. But that doesn’t mean that those who missed out should be ashamed of not getting the acclaim. All the nominees are winners in their own right; some just walk home with a shiny trophy.
We’ve already covered some of the important categories of the IGA Awards. This time, we’re taking a look at last year’s winners and, more importantly, the qualifications the judges will look into when choosing this year’s winners.
Arguably the most important award of the night is the Casino/Integrated Resort of the Year. It’s an award that will be handed to the best casino or integrated resort of the year based on a number of criteria, including staff members, facilities, customer service, games offered, atmosphere, and the style and design of building. For this award, size isn’t as important as the atmosphere these casinos/integrated resorts provide for their clients. Last year’s winner: Galaxy Macau Integrated Resort
The Casino Operator of the Year award will be divided into three separate awards, one for each of the major industry zones in the world: Europe, the Americas, and Australia & Asia. For this award, judges will be looking for the operator that has set itself apart in its respective region in terms of brand identity, marketing, customer service, innovation and use of new technologies. Last year’s winners: Casinos Austria International (Europe), Foxwoods Resort Casino (Americas), Galaxy Entertainment (Australia/Asia)
Another category that figures to receive a lot of attention is the Casino VIP Room award, which will be given to the VIP room that is deemed as possessing the best combination of facilities, games availability, customer service, quality of design, popularity, and most importantly, overall effectiveness that lets customers enjoy the experience of gambling in their facilities. Last year’s winner: Crown Limited
The growth of mobile gambling has allowed operators to stretch their field of options into the mobile world. The Mobile Operator of the Year award aims to recognize the operator that has managed to integrate their platforms into a mobile UI while placing importance to access, simplicity of use, innovation, and platform integration. There will also be particular attention paid to operators who have succeeded in integrating Apps to their products and the subsequent functionality and accessibility of these apps on a wide variety of mobile platforms. Last year’s winner: Paddy Power
The iGaming Software Supplier award is handed to the operator, be it land-based or online, that has gone further than any other business to offer the customer the greatest opportunities to win over the last year. Judges will place importance on a number of factors in determining the winner of this award, including frequency of payouts offered, greater flexibility for the customer, smaller margins to the operator, and bigger payouts to the player. Last year’s winner: Playtech
Technically divided to four different categories, the Online Bingo/Casino/Poker/Sportsbook Operator of the Year awards are given to the best operator to offer the best service to its customers. Be it bingo, casino, poker, or sports books, the best from each of these categories will be awarded for a year’s worth of offering originality, brand identity, marketing, payment processing, usability, and availability of games on different platforms. Last Year’s winners: 888ladies (Bingo); 32Red (Casino); Party Poker (Poker); Betsson (Sportsbook)
The Industry Publication/Media Service of the Year award pays tribute to the publication or media company that has spent the past year “pushing the boundaries” of above-the-line reporting and pro ducting the best quality of reporting and features among all of its contemporaries. It’s not so much the quantity of content being produced, but the quality of the content being produced. Last year’s winner: iGaming Business
In addition to all the aforementioned categories, the International Gaming Awards 2013 will also award winners from a number of other categories, including Payment Solutions Provider Company of the Year, Socially Responsible Operator of the Year (Land Based), Socially Responsible Operator of the Year (Online), Slot Manufacturer Online or Land Based, Slots Operator of the Year (Online), Technology Provider/Supplier, Traditional Casino Equipment Supplier, and the Outstanding Contribution Award.