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The Next Generation of Gaming

Matt Davey, CEO, NYX Gaming

The Next Generation of Gaming

NYX Gaming is the next thing in game development, led by a true Gen-X executive, Matt Davey.

An electrical engineering degree led him to the Northwest Territories Racing & Gaming Authority in remote Australia, which was ironically one of the first governments to regulate online gaming. Later moving into software development with venture capitalists, Davey eventually landed with Swedish-born NYX Gaming.

NYX is involved in every sector of the new gaming world—casinos, social games, systems and even real-money online gaming. Davey says the company has succeeded because it brings a singular focus to all business deals.

“We view the world through the lens of the player,” he says. “And the player doesn’t care about the platform; they care about content. So our focus is providing the best content we can to our customers through our OGS (Open Gaming System), where we have over 350 games. When our customers don’t have a platform, we look to provide that technology to them as well.”

The company honed its expertise in the social gaming world, but Davey says he has been surprised at the rise of that sector over the past two years.

“I was shocked when I tried to wrap my head around the fact people would play casino-style games on Facebook for fun and pay real money for it. Clearly they are telling us there is value to that,” he says.

NYX has been retained by casinos to develop social gaming programs that drive customers to the property, and allows the casino to stay in touch with customers outside the property. He says there’s a standard ramp-up to do that today.

“The path is pretty well understood,” he says. “We’ve spent the past couple of  years putting together the map. You start with a play-for-fun site. It can be totally free play or it can have virtual currency as well. That will help attract players and get them to return to your property. You can offer them bonuses to entice them. The next step is on-property mobile. That is available today and legal in most of the states. The third step is full online gaming, which is obviously subject to laws and regulations in the individual jurisdictions.”

Will we see NYX content on slot machines soon? Bet on it.

“We’re not keen to get into the market of building our own cabinets and hardware,” he says. “But we are very interested in looking at those machines as a distribution device for our games and software.”

NYX is now in the iGaming market in New Jersey. “We formed a joint venture with Sportech that has a tremendous platform, and they are licensed in 26 states,” Davey explains. “Our first customer is the iconic Resorts group, and we’re working with a second brand, Mohegan Sun, under the same deal.”

The disappointment in the launch of iGaming in New Jersey might be easing in the upcoming year. Davey says NYX compares New Jersey with Sweden, where the market is twice the size with similar populations and similar gambling proclivities.

“We think there’s a lot of latent demand,” he says. “The Division of Gaming Enforcement has been fantastic with the regulations, but it’s a new industry.”

The most recent development for NYX was the purchase of the OnGame Network poker platform from Amaya Gaming, a partnership that makes a lot of sense, says Davey.

“What David Baazov has done with Amaya has been breathtaking,” he says. “In my mind, it has legitimatized what we’re doing in our part of the industry. Their business has evolved and now they are clearly B2C.”

With a possible public offering early next year, the future for NYX Gaming is very bright, indeed.

Roger Gros is publisher of Global Gaming Business, the industry's leading gaming trade publication, and all its related publications. Prior to joining Global Gaming Business, Gros was president of Inlet Communications, an independent consulting firm. He was vice president of Casino Journal Publishing Group from 1984-2000, and held virtually every editorial title during his tenure. Gros was editor of Casino Journal, the National Gaming Summary and the Atlantic City Insider, and was the founding editor of Casino Player magazine. He was a co-founder of the American Gaming Summit and the Southern Gaming Summit conferences and trade shows. He is the author of the best-selling book, How to Win at Casino Gambling (Carlton Books, 1995), now in its fourth edition. Gros was named "Businessman of the Year" for 1998 by the Greater Atlantic City Chamber of Commerce, and received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Gaming Association in 2012.

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