Cutting Edge Table Games Conference 2020 Virtual Program

11:00 am – 12:00 pm EDT
8:00 am - 9:00 am PDT

How rules, procedures, and side bets effect table game hold percentage

Hold percentage is the primary measurement used by upper management to gauge table game performance. Do you know the factors that influence whether your hold percentage is respectable or terrible? In this 60-minute session you will learn how the number of hand decisions and wagering spots influences hold percentage (and win). How changing game rules alters the hold percentage range, and why adding side bets is so important. You will also come away with an understanding of “buy-in churn” (number of times the player’s buy-in is placed in action), and how it has a substantial effect on your hold percentage. This session is a “must” for anyone involved in table game management.

  • The basics: How hold percentage is calculated based on table win divided by table drop.
  • Effect of gaining more decisions per hour: More revenue (win) same drop.
  • Effect of offering less betting spots: Hold% goes up, but revenue goes down.
  • Effect of rule changes: Do minor rule changes effect hold%; what about major rule changes?
  • Effect of utilizing side bets: Side bets reduce decisions but increase revenue potential.
  • Effect of buy-in churn: What effect does time on table have on hold% (and revenue).
  • Q&A

Bill Zender, Bill Zender and Associates LLC

12:30 pm – 1:30 pm EDT
9:30 am - 10:30 am PDT

Executive Roundtable: Taking Stock of the New Normal

COVID-19 has changed the rules for table game operators and they have responded in kind. In this high-level discussion, industry thought leader and Hard Rock table game executive Bennie Mancino will lead a discussion of how operators are making the most of the current situation from the standpoint of product mix, new technologies, staffing and overall strategy. While the focus will be on the here-and-now, the panel will also address the longer-term impacts of the pandemic, and whether it is most realistically seen a near-term problem to be solved or a catalyst for lasting impacts on the business.

Bennie Mancino, Vice President of Table Games, Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati

Rob Bone, Vice President, Tables, Utilities and ETG, Scientific Games
Debi Nutton, Casino Career Coach and Gaming Consultant
Colin Skidmore, Director, Table Games & Sportsbook, Indiana Grand Racing & Casino
Brian Stanton, Vice President of Casino Operations, The STRAT

1:30 pm - 2:00 pm EDT
10:30 am - 11:00 am PDT

Virtual Networking - Continue the Conversation

Join us after the Executive Roundtable to continue the conversation with the presenters of Taking Stock of the New Normal.

2:00 pm – 3:00 pm EDT
11:00 am - 12:00 pm PDT

When Promotions Don’t Add Up

Table games already have a thin house advantage that can be vulnerable to advantage play. However, when an ill-conceived promotion significantly alters the game rules, players can have an enormous advantage delivered on a silver platter. In this session, gaming math expert Michael Shackleford will analyze specific promotions that made it past the internal vetting process to the casino floor, only to be beaten terribly by even amateur advantage players aware of the mistake. Hear how tweaking the rules can turn in a small house edge to a big player edge, and how a more disciplined approach to math can help your casino avoid very costly mistakes. Questions and audience participation are welcome.

Michael Shackleford, The Wizard of Odds

3:30 pm – 4:30 pm EDT
12:30 pm - 1:30 pm PDT

COVID-19: Table Game Marketing Strategies and Tactics

Table game operators in the reopening phase are faced with supply restrictions, social distancing requirements and a player base that is more dependent on gambling for entertainment in an amenity-constrained environment. In addition, operators must manage the conflicts and stresses that come along with safety measures that are not always uniformly embraced. In this session, you will hear how table game operators are adjusting their marketing mix and customer relationship management strategies to meet the realities of the New Normal. Topics to be covered will include:

  • Game mix and pricing
  • Promotional initiatives
  • Segmentation strategies
  • Customer service and staff engagement
  • On-site merchandising

Michael Meczka, President, Meczka Marketing Research and Consulting, Inc.

Christopher Abraham, SVP Marketing, Grand Sierra Resort and Sahara Las Vegas
Michael Hochman, Vice President of Casino Operations, Canterbury Park


4:30 pm - 5:30 pm EDT
1:30 pm - 2:30 pm PDT

Table Game Protection: Protecting Your Bottom Line in Challenging Times

Table game operators are always wrestling with new and enduring forms of cheating and advantage play and how to combat them and scams come from both sides of the felt. Now COVID-19 contact tracing and other protocols often have the effect of taking attention away from revenue protection and its importance to the business, a scenario that thieves and scam artists exploit. In a limited capacity environment, casinos need to be able to retain every dollar they are due. In this session, renowned game protection expert Sal Piacente will remind attendees what they should be looking for in the way of cheating and theft, and alert you to new threats. Sal is a 35-year casino industry veteran who has dealt every game in the book, been a floor supervisor, shift manager, worked surveillance, and been a player. He has provided training and consulting services to more than 100 casinos and casino regulators worldwide. In this unique, workshop-style session, you will see actual demonstrations of the many ways that players and employees have found to cheat a live table game and learn how to identify and prevent them.

Sal Piacente, President, UniverSal Game Protection Development

End of Program


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Presented By

Casino Journal