The gaming industry lost one of the legendary figures of its supply sector last month when Jens Halle, CEO of Gauselmann Group’s Merkur Gaming and longtime head of Novomatic’s gaming supply division, died suddenly in Florida at the age of 57.
Halle reportedly entered the hospital with chest pains and died after undergoing emergency bypass surgery.
Halle’s death came as a shock to the international gaming industry. He has been a fixture of the supply side of the industry as one of it most well-known and popular executives for more than two decades, the major portion of which was spent guiding Novomatic’s Austrian Gaming Industries (AGI) subsidiary to the top of the European slot and e-table markets.
A native of Austria, Halle began his gaming career with Bally Technologies before moving to Novomatic as head of sales in 1999. At Novomatic, he guided the company’s slot and automated table game sales far beyond the company’s traditional European markets to new jurisdictions around the world. He ultimately became managing director of AGI, and directed the push of Novomatic into North America as CEO of the newly formed Florida-based subsidiary Novomatic America Sales.
Last November, Halle and Novomatic jointly announced that he was leaving the company to accept the top post at Merkur Gaming, the casino supply division of Germany’s Gauselmann Group.