Kevin Birch: “It’s not all about the jackpot”

Coinslot Kevin Birch Players Amusements
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Kevin Birch, owner of Players Amusements, has been impressed by B3 development over the last few years, highlighting an added entertainment value that’s keeping ‘bums on seats’.


Players Amusements has seen a return in player base to its B3 machines over the last few years, with owner Kevin Birch attributing the uplift to an increased entertainment factor in game content.

Whilst players will always dream of the jackpot, Birch believes the increased choice of games with more regular wins has given B3 machines an additional edge.

“There has been a gradual uplift over the last few years, and definitely a return in player base, he commented. “I think manufacturers have looked at the content and there’s got to be a softer game, it can’t all be about that £500, although of course that’s what the player wants. It’s all about bums on seats so to speak, and you need to give the player that entertainment value.”

In the same vein but from an operator’s perspective, Birch explained that some B3 machines can be ‘very lumpy’ in terms of paying out.

“You’re taking good money one week,” he explained, “and then a massive minus the next, because it has given back a lot of what it took.”

That said, Birch was quick to add that later releases have trended towards more regular wins, taking away some cash box swings on ‘harder’ games.

“With some of the newer content, while takings still vary week to week, you’re not getting these big swings,” he continued. “That tells me that manufacturers and developers have looked at the content and developed a softer game. It’s not all about the jackpot anymore.”

Birch still has room in both his West Midlands AGCs for a few more B3s, monitoring the popularity of his current machines in case the demand for expansion arises.

“We could probably have five, but we have three in the smaller site, and that’s working well,” he said. “And we have four in another, where we could have eight.” Indeed, with recent developments in the B3 segment, Birch is considering adding a couple more machines to his arsenal.

“We are on the cusp now where we could add one to each site, which is the first time in a while we have been in such a position,” he explained, continuing to ponder the investment.

“Sometimes you think is it too many? But when a player walks through a door, and the machines you’ve got are busy, you lose that customer somewhere else. There’s more potential to look at new products in B3 now than there has been for a while.”

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