Yep, last month Rizk Casino held a special promotion in our forum where the winner would be flown to Malta, housed in a five star hotel, and given a tour of the offices of Rizk, Guts, and Betspin casino (all three casinos score +9 points at Casinomeister). This contest was unprecedented – and it was a brilliant idea. The main purpose of this contest was to not only provide one of our members with a truly memorable experience – one he can remember for his entire life, but it afforded the casino the opportunity to give everyone – all of our members and visitors – a glimpse behind the scenes of their operations.
Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain? Surely this would prove to be a highly informative and enjoyable visit.
Nikantw was the lucky winner. The folks at Rizk flew him in from Greece (along with his brother) to the sunny, but windy, island of Malta. The two admittedly didn’t get out much – not too much traveling under their belts, so Malta was an awesome experience for them. Something I’m sure they will never forget.
For you newcomers, Malta is the central point in the EU for the online gaming industry. Just about all of your software providers have their main offices located there, and most of your casino operations are based in Malta. There may be a few casino ops situated in Gibraltar, the UK, or South Africa, but these are the exceptions. If you are a European facing casino, most likely you’ll be licensed by the Malta Gaming Authority and wearing shorts and flip flops for most of the year.
Yeah, Malta is a great place to chill out. You can tell by the way people drive – it’s like they encourage you to drink a few pints before getting behind the wheel.
Before visiting the office or Rizk, I had initiated a thread in our forum where the members could pose whatever questions they had about Rizk, and anything else related to the online gaming industry. So we actually had some work to do.
Rizk Casino is a member of the GiG affiliates – over watched by Gaming Innovation Group. Rizk has its own separate office from GiG – which hosts the offices of Guts, and Betspin.
For the first half of the day, we were at the Rizk office. Rizk Casino is a relatively new casino – and the office was just recently furnished and moved into – they weren’t quite done yet. Sparse and airy, and a nice quiet working atmosphere. Our guide, Tim, explained that it becomes more populated in the late afternoon/evening when they boost up the customer service team. Since their operation is mainly european focused, most of their players start pacing bets after work and into the evening.
We met and greeted a number of the employees, and then we situated ourselves in a nice conference room adjacent to an awesomely massive balcony that was equipped with a gas grill and outdoor comfy lounge furniture. The weather in Malta is grill worthy. But no grilling today. We had work to do.
Tim began by giving us a presentation on how slots work – and he did a bang-up job. For those of you who don’t know, slots have a fascinating history. Your typical three reel slots were first introduced to the casinos years ago as something for the women to do while the men played at the table games. Keeping the men at the tables for as long as possible was the primary mission. Keeping the women happy was instrumental on making this happen. No one took slots seriously until slots were actually beginning to out do the table games. Over the years, slots evolved into the slots that we have today.
And what we have today “online” pretty much mimics what we have offline. This was only a pipe dream a decade ago, but with the introduction of proper streaming and other technological feats of ingenuity, online slots can pretty much do whatever their offline brethren can do – if not a bit more.
Tim segued from there and explained how the gaming software functioned in relation to the online casinos. Most online casinos are hosted separately from the software providers. The gaming servers are separate from the casino operations. The casino operations consist of the administration, the general management, the marketing, the customer service, the website hosting, graphics, and other innovative departments. The games are hosted elsewhere – usually by the games provider. So for those who don’t feel lucky at one casino and move elsewhere to another casino that hosts the same games – that won’t make any difference. These are the same games with the same odds, the same RTP (Return to Player), i.e. the exact same chances of winning or losing.
From there we strolled to the GiG offices that hosts Guts and Betspin. It was finally lunch time, and I was starved.
I thought at first we’d be heading to some seaside restaurant, but I was pleasantly surprised with a different venue.
We took the elevator up to the head office, and as we entered I could smell something delicious and heard the bustling of a small kitchen. And there we were in the cafeteria of GiG. It turns out that the entire staff is offered a free lunch daily in-house. Actually, it’s the CEO’s wife who at one time was a chef on a cruise line – she’s from Latin America – so you know there’s gonna be some good eats. Lunch consisted of a black bean dish, brown rice, and meaty stew of some kind (sorry, I’m a vegetarian) and plantains. What a treat! And way more healthier than grabbing a sandwich, or fast food, and sitting at your desk to eat.
And even though it doesn’t seem like much, it underscores the family atmosphere of this company. You have a feeling that they genuinely care about one another. You could feel the positive vibe throughout the entire building – well at least on these three floors.
After that awesome lunch, Yits the customer service manager, gave us a tour of their offices. You could sense both his pride and enthusiasm working for such a fantastic company.
And I can honestly say hands down, it was one of the best company tours I’ve had, and I’ve been to a lot of companies. Even though the offices are great, it’s the positive attitude that shines throughout. From my experience working with both Guts and Betspin, I know that their business ethics are above par. My tour – and the discussions that I had with their staff pretty much firmed up my conviction that this is one of the best companies – if not the best – in the online gaming industry. Lest we forget, Guts Casino was the recipient of the Best Casino 2014 at Casinomeister – that is no minor accolade.
Overall, I want to thank everyone who made this experience possible. I think that this was a brilliant idea – bringing a player to the office and showing him the man behind the curtain. But instead of a man standing at a few controls, there is a brilliant group of people who are doing an awesome job.