Marking both the fifth anniversary of Global Gaming Expo (G2E), the 10th anniversary of the American Gaming Association and the 100th birthday of Las Vegas, 2005 is an historic year for every sector of the gaming industry. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate this year than by continuing to provide excellent programming focused on significant industry sectors and trends at G2E 2005, scheduled for Sept. 11-15 at the Las Vegas Convention Center. And this year, more than ever before, G2E will incorporate new and expanded programming dedicated to the interests of the increasingly influential Native American gaming community.
For the first time at G2E, Native American gaming interests will take the spotlight for a keynote address in Indian Gaming: The Coming Federal Battle, set for Thursday, Sept. 15. From legislation to limit off-reservation casinos to regulations establishing the technology of Class II machines, the federal government appears to have set its sights on Native American gaming operations. This keynote panel, including industry experts like Phil Hogen, chairman of the National Indian Gaming Commission; Mark Van Norman, executive director of the National Indian Gaming Association; and others, will discuss the developments with those most deeply involved and how revisions of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act may affect current and future operations. With more synergies between the commercial and tribal gaming sectors than ever before, this high-powered discussion will be important for all G2E attendees.
Following the successful debut of the tribal government conference track at G2E 2004, we also will introduce this year a tribal government track for the G2E Training & Development Institute, an intensive one-day training session for industry managers taking place Monday, Sept. 12. Sessions including Native American Gaming: Responding to the Business Needs of the Indian Gaming Community; Tribal Casinos and the NLRB: How to Cope and Flourish; and What About Us? Indian Gaming in Nevada, Massachusetts, Texas and Maine will offer unique and targeted educational opportunities for Indian gaming professionals.
G2E’s 2005 conference also will feature an expanded tribal government track offering more sessions and new topics including Indian Gaming Innovation: Transforming the Gaming Industry; Land into Trust: The Future of Off-Reservation Gaming; Staying Ahead: Leadership Issues for the Next Generation; and Saving Sovereignty: Will Big Business Prevail?.
Complementing these educational opportunities are important opportunities for Native American leaders to network with gaming professionals from all fields throughout the event. “Same Suit” networking lunches, which provide an informal atmosphere where participants can interact with peers and share ideas and best practices, and new extended hours for networking breaks will allow Native American leaders to maximize their time at G2E.
In addition to broadening programming for the Native American community, G2E 2005 also will explore the most vital and exciting issues that affect all segments of the gaming industry worldwide. Developed “by the industry, for the industry,” we strive to ensure that G2E adapts to keep pace with the evolving gaming entertainment industry, and this year is no different. Combining several new features with returning favorites, G2E 2005 will provide the most relevant and progressive programming to help you stay competitive within the industry.
Among the most exciting new features at G2E is the launch of G2Exchange, an innovative computer-based tool enabling you to plan your “ideal” conference and network with fellow conference participants, among other activities, all before you arrive at the event. In addition to making the most of G2E’s diverse offerings with G2Exchange, you also can take full advantage of the new extended hours for the trade show floor, featuring more than 700 exhibitors presenting the latest developments and trends in slot machine design, bingo products, security and surveillance technology, interactive gaming and more.
Keynote addresses this year include the return of the popular State of the Industry panel, moderated by Larry King. Set for Tuesday, Sept. 13, the panel will focus on entertainment, as King leads Wayne Newton, Rita Rudner, Franco Dragone and Clint Holmes in a discussion of the evolution of showbiz in Las Vegas. For Wednesday’s keynote, Industry Leaders in the Spotlight, I’ll be sitting down for a public conversation with Terry Lanni, chairman and CEO of MGM MIRAGE, and Gary Loveman, president and CEO of Harrah’s Entertainment, who will discuss their perspectives on the business of gaming and how the industry is changing.
G2E 2005 will include a host of other new features, ranging from conference tracks dedicated to table games, racetrack casinos and I-gaming to exhibit pavilions for up-and-coming fields like air quality, amenities and technology. In addition, two new sessions on food and beverage (F&B) and amenities will join the G2E Signature Series this year.
As G2E celebrates five years of producing the best and most relevant programming for gaming professionals, I am pleased the event continues to provide a unique mixture of Native American and general industry content. As Indian and commercial gaming continue to deal with more similar issues, G2E provides a valuable forum where we all can come together to further the industry as a whole.
I invite you to celebrate with us by attending the most comprehensive gaming event worldwide and experiencing the future of gaming. To register to attend G2E, log on to www.globalgamingexpo.com and click on Register Now. Or, call 1- 888-314-1378 or 1-203-840-5626. I look forward to celebrating with you at G2E 2005!