A customizable application that allows a casino to launch cashless gaming within 15 weeks rolled out Tuesday.
Acres Manufacturing says its “Cashless Casino” works with any major casino-management system, provides expanded player data, and allows operators to choose from a variety of payment providers that meet regulatory standards in any state.
That removes many of the obstacles that have delayed the adoption of cashless gaming at many casinos, the company’s Noah Acres said. “We’ve solved all those issues.”
The application runs on the Acres Manufacturing’s Foundation system, but casinos can continue using their existing CMS from Aristocrat, IGT, Konami, or Light & Wonder.
Noah Acres described Cashless Casino as an application that runs on the Foundation platform, similar to Excel being an application on a personal computer. Cashless Casino wallet technology can be embedded in the casino’s own mobile app to display real-time balances of cash, points, and free play.
The application allows operators to select one or more cashless payment providers, including Everi, Fabicash, Flexia, Koin, Sightline Payments, and Trustly. Noah Acres said additional processors have expressed interest in joining that list. Cashless Casino also can provide an interface to Marker Trax, which allows a player to apply for and receive funds through a digital casino marker.
“We’re essentially universally compatible with any shape or size that the casino wants to deploy for their cashless solution,” Acres said.
Cashless Casino can feature a casino’s branding or be incorporated in an existing mobile app. It allows the player’s app to connect to a specific slot machine or table game to facilitate fund transfers to and from games; when connected, it can provide real-time display of points and other rewards.
“One of the really cool things that we can do with our system is designate different types of funding,” Acres said. For example, the wallet function distinguishes virtual money from free play. That allows a player to transfer unused free play from one machine to another.
He said cashless-gaming regulations differ from state to state, particularly for auditing and reporting transactions and resolving disputes. Cashless Casino can be adapted to meet the rules for any state. “Not every implementation is going to use every single component that we offer, but we have the components that could make it workable, no matter what the situation is for that regulatory environment.”
Despite global supply-chain issues affecting many industries, Acres said Cashless Casino can be up and running within 15 weeks, thanks to a “very significant investment” the company made to purchase as many computer chips as possible over the past year. Company founder John Acres, Noah’s father and the inventor of player- tracking technology, is also the company’s chief hardware designer and was able to make a deal immediately whenever chips became available.
Noah Acres said installation of the Foundation hardware takes about two minutes per slot machine and doesn’t change anything in the existing CMS. Over time, casinos can transfer CMS functions to Foundation without disruption, the company says, adding that Foundation is the only CMS capable of processing real-time gaming data and conducting cashless transfers.
The new application grew out of the cashless technology the company launched last year for Penn National Gaming. Noah Acres said Cashless Casino essentially makes a similar wallet deployable at any casino.
Cashless gaming is credited with reducing costs for casinos, attracting new players, and increasing time in the casino.
“Other industries have completely abandoned a lot of the things casinos still use today,” Acres said, citing physical loyalty cards and direct mail. “When (casinos) go cashless, that gives them instant ability to communicate to players in the way they want to be communicated with.”
Many amusement parks, sports stadiums, and restaurants across the country have gone totally cashless and Acres thinks some casinos could do so within five years.
“When that happens in the casino space, it’s going to happen fast,” he predicted. “It won’t necessarily be every casino, but you will start seeing casinos that do not accept cash.”