The US gambling sector’s biggest annual get-together has been scrapped for 2020 due to fears over surging COVID-19 infections.
On Wednesday, the American Gaming Association (AGA) and Reed Exhibitions officially called time on the Global Gaming Expo (G2E) Las Vegas 2020 conference. The conference, which was scheduled for October 5-8, has been rescheduled for October 4-7, 2021 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas.
AGA CEO Bill Miller said Wednesday that “in light of continued uncertainty around a viable marketplace at a physical G2E show, global travel restrictions, and currently unknown guidance on large public gatherings this fall, we have come to the unfortunate conclusion that we simply cannot hold an in-person G2E this year.”
Reed Exhibitions America president Hervé Sedky added that discussions with health authorities, exhibitors and buyers made it clear that “proceeding with an in-person gathering simply was not feasible.” The organizers pledged that they would soon be announcing plans for virtual events that “better reflect the current environment.”
The announcement comes as a disappointment, given that less than a month ago the organizers insisted that a surge in Nevada’s COVID-19 infection rate wouldn’t deter them from plowing ahead with their Vegas plans. While a disappointment, the cancellation wasn’t much of a surprise, as Nevada set a new record for COVID-19 hospitalizations on Monday.
The G2E’s sister event in Asia has already undergone several postponements, with the latest target set for the first week of December at the Venetian Macao casino. But it’s anybody’s guess whether conditions will cooperate to ensure the G2E Asia 2020 doesn’t suffer the same fate as its US-based counterpart.
The greater question now is what the hell will CalvinAyre.com’s roving reporter Becky Liggero Fontana do with all the free time she has now that these massive gaps are developing on her events calendar? Idle hands being the devil’s playthings, don’t be alarmed if you’re cruising your local WalMart and she suddenly jumps in front of your cart, thrusts a microphone in your face and demands to know what impact you think the UK’s new credit card gambling ban will have on Q3’s online market…