by Eleonora Pedron MONACO. From 6 to 8 December 2017 the Event Factory- Grimaldi Forum Monaco hosted the “World Gaming Expo”, one of the precursors in the field of the gaming industry in Europe. “World Gaming Expo” is the world fair “B to B” which brings together all the actors, from the industrialist to the casinos to all the representatives of various existing gambling: suppliers, manufacturers and service providers sector services have been involved. On the agenda: conferences, workshops and presentations of the latest news. Since the market for gambling salons has so far been untapped in the Principality and on the Mediterranean coast, this first “World Gaming Expo” can, in the long term, become the reference bringing together all the key players in the field of gambling. sector in Monaco. It is undeniable that the quality of reception, infrastructure and economy around the attractiveness of the Casino as well as the luxury hotel industry make the Principality of Monaco a dream setting for the development of “World Gaming Expo”. In this regard, it must be said that courageous initiatives due to the will of the sovereign Prince Albert II of Monaco and the SBM, to modernize the architectural features of Monte Carlo and the historic center of the Place du Casino, will soon be fruitful.
In fact, despite the gigantic works that disrupt the Place du Casino, the winter looks like always very festive in Monaco. The Principality of Monaco is an ideal setting for the WGE show as it has always been one of the first luxury destinations in the world, recognized for the prestige of its casinos and gambling. Currently, SBM manages a hotel portfolio of 30 restaurants, shops, nightclubs, bars, and green carpets … but: “Historically, the games of the casino have made the wealth of the Principality. Since the beginning of the global economic crisis, even though Monaco real estate continues to be a safe investment, the games have begun to lose money,”said Jean-Luc Biamonti, an ex-banker. banker appointed deputy chairman of Monte-Carlo SBM. It was therefore necessary to extinguish this loss of up to 36.8 million euros in 2016-2017 for the SBM. The legendary green carpets of the casino and other gambling halls, in the Bay for example, are no longer the flourishing financial fortune of the post-World War II era. The big players at € 100,000 plate and more are less present, the police controls are scary – Italians with busy pockets circulating in Ferrari had to show their tax return wisely placed in the glove box. Playing big raises curiosities, the tax inspectors of the Principality quickly made inquiries on the origin of the funds. And, Prince Albert firstly wants a clean and unarmed state. Priority of priorities, therefore, was the decision to remake the legendary Hotel de Paris. In the place of the Winter Sporting will rise the “One Monte-Carlo”, a set of seven new buildings, meeting rooms, restaurants and shops – this is the largest site of valuable creations, 168 million invested.
The Principality hosts throughout the year no less than seven hundred events, and it is thanks to the quality and diversity of these that Monaco enjoys an international reputation. But the cultural expenses, for example the Opera, the symphony orchestra, the ballet troupe of Jean-Christophe Maillot, the exhibitions at the Palais Grimaldi as in 2017 China of the Forbidden City and the Circus Festival – the sister of the prince Albert, Stéphanie, and her niece, Charlotte, are very involved in these artistic activities – all of which are on the operating budgets of the mini-state, so close to France. The significant number of exhibitors, speakers and visitors at the WGE will generate significant economic benefits – especially for SBM and casinos: “World Gaming Expo” wants to give an additional dimension to the Principality. At the initiative of this project is an ambitious and dynamic Monegasque entrepreneur, Igor Gamba, founder and director of Monaco International Events. A business leader for more than a decade in the media and communication sector, he notably created the Monte-Carlo Pass + and in 2009 took over the management of “Monaco Yachting Guide”, which is essential for Monaco’s great sailing.
Herewith Igor Gamba on the innovative concept of the World Gaming Expo:
Q. How did you come to the idea of the World Gaming Expo?
A. As I traveled abroad, I was able to observe the practices of many sectors of activity. The idea came to me in the course of 2015 and I came to the conclusion that there was no event in Europe equal to the challenges raised by the gambling industry. Naturally, I oriented my career towards events and “World Gaming Expo” is the ideal trade show for our Principality.
Q. Given the scale of the event, I imagine you have already put in a lot of energy and time so far?
A. Exactly and it’s not over. Since the end of 2015, we have put all our energy on a full-time basis in order to prepare the best ground for marketing. For the first edition of the World Gaming Expo, we have done everything to make it as perfect as possible.
Q. Was the idea of organizing this show at the Grimaldi Forum natural?
A. Completely. The choice of venue was easy as the skills and know-how of the Grimaldi Forum’s technical teams are recognized by everyone. We are convinced that the GFM offers quality services in an ideal setting for our exhibitors, speakers and visitors.
Q. What are the collaborations and synergies envisaged between the Société des Bains de Mer (SBM) and World Gaming Expo?
A. The SBM, as everyone knows, is a historical player in the Principality and has always been the institution that has made Monaco internationally known for more than 150 years through its casinos, hotels and aura. We have started very good relationships and it would be our greatest wish to develop a maximum of collaborations and synergies together in future WGE shows.