Minnesota’s e-pulltab gambling industry set for major shake-up

Minnesota's e-pulltab gambling industry set for major shake-up

Minnesota's e-pulltab gambling industry set for major shake-upMinnesota’s electronic pull-tab gaming never got the traction it needed to live up to its hype.  The electric pull-tab gambling industry in the North Star State—billed as a funding source for the new Vikings stadium two years ago—is set to undergo a major shake-up.

Express Games MN, considered the largest distributor of these games to bars and other venues throughout Minnesota, has announced that it would stop operations by July 31. The news was as surprising as it was dramatic with the company offering little notice of its plan to its customers.

The company’s departure comes as Acres 4.0, the Las Vegas-based firm responsible for the state’s first wave of e-gambling devices, is selling the system used on the devices.

The departure of Express Games now paves the way for other e-pulltab manufacturers to come in and take its place, including Pilot Games, which is headed by former Express Games founder Jon Weaver. Charities currently using Express Games’ e-pulltabs have now been encouraged to switch to Pilot Games, giving the latter a large swath of an industry that has fallen flat on its face in recent years.

Should Pilot Games get the necessary numbers to take over Express Games’ operations, the former will have a difficult task trying to re-ignite interest in these e-pulltab machines.

Weaver expressed optimism that his new company can embrace the challenge, presumably with the understanding that the bar has been set incredibly low for that to happen.

Express Games’ decision to cease operations marks the biggest transition the state has seen involving these e-pulltab machines. Launched on September 18, 2012, these machines were tipped to generate enough income to shoulder part of the government’s share in the development of the new Vikings stadium.

But as time passed, these e-pulltab machines failed to deliver, prompting many within the industry to label the business a massive failure.