It was their first showing at ACOS, and for NRM, it was well worth the wait. “It was a really strong event and one that exceeded our expectations,” NRM Group managing director Andrew Ludlow noted. “NRM did some good business and we’ve got a range of interesting opportunities in the pipeline.” He explains all to Coinslot.
Coinslot: How did the show go for you – was there good footfall and business done?
Andrew Ludlow: I would go as far as saying that this was the best edition of ACOS that I have attended. I’m a fan of the smaller more intimate shows because they provide the opportunity to have proper conversations and people have the time and the inclination to talk about their businesses and the solutions that they are looking for.
Having sat down as a group and gone through what happened on the two days it was a really strong event and one that exceeded our expectations. If you want to break it down to the metrics there was good footfall – particularly on the opening day and it was really heartening to see so many operators and retailers supporting the show from all over the UK. NRM did some good business and we’ve got a range of interesting opportunities in the pipeline.
Coinslot: What were the stand highlights – which products caught the attention and what was reaction to the portfolio of products?
Andrew Ludlow: We have worked hard to bring a suite of complimentary products together for our core UK markets and these certainly resonated with stand visitors. To be fair all the products from mobile, membership, advertising, Jigsaw and Bingo Express received some very positive attention and orders. Operators and retailers are looking for something which will make a difference and succeed in driving Customer Engagement and that’s what we were able to demonstrate on the stand.
Coinslot: It was the industry’s first UK gathering for over 20 months – how did you gauge the mood and what were the main talking points?
Andrew Ludlow: There’s no doubt that the mood was really upbeat and positive. I felt that people were genuinely pleased to be engaging face to face after such a long time away.
I have to say that the venue added to that sense of community – which is what the UK industry is all about. We weren’t in a huge vacuous space and that helped create a sense of belonging and it was a perfect backdrop. It goes to show that a good exhibition doesn’t always have to be a big one.
In terms of talking points obviously the challenges the industry has faced and continues to face were discussed, but I didn’t really sense a huge amount of pessimism in the hall. Instead, there was a palpable focus on forward investment and a desire to explore solutions that mean operators and retailers are able to deliver products and services that allow them to improve the customer experience.
The team was saying in our post show wash-up that this was the most positive they’ve seen the industry in over a decade and I would agree. From a purely NRM perspective we had a lot of really encouraging commentary regarding the purchase of Probability Jones and our equity investment from Air Dice which we announced in the lead-up to ACOS. There’s a lot of positivity out there which is really encouraging – and the future certainly looks brighter.
Coinslot: Clearly happy to be back at live events, what’s on the agenda for you between now and the next UK expo at EAG in terms of new products and new projects?
Andrew Ludlow: Prior to coming to ACOS we had a committed product and development plan, and what was interesting is it seems to be very much in-line with our customers’ needs and requirements.
NRM is known for being an innovative and agile company and we have been working on some really cool projects that we will certainly be announcing in the lead-up to EAG.