Almost half of American Gaming Association member CEOs are expecting improved business conditions into 2022, shows the group’s newly launched ‘Gaming CEO Outlook’.

The survey, conducted between August 16 and September 14, 2021, and seeing a total of 24 executives respond, also saw positivity stressed in increasing new hires (71 per cent), wage growth (63 per cent), and capital investment (39 per cent).

“AGA’s inaugural Gaming CEO Outlook reflects the strength of our recovery and consumer demand for our world-class entertainment offerings,” said Bill Miller, AGA president and CEO

“The promising outlook is built on our innovation, but like many industries, supply chain and worker shortages continue to slow our full recovery.”

Despite the widespread positivity, more than two-thirds (71 per cent) of CEOs responding cited supply chain issues as a factor limiting operations.

Further challenges cited as impeding short-term growth were labour force shortages (63 per cent), consumer health concerns (46 per cent), and lagging meetings and events demand (38 per cent). 

“We are a more resilient industry because of the COVID-19 pandemic,” noted Trevor Croker Aristocrat Technologies CEO and AGA chair

“As the gaming industry looks to 2022 and beyond, our impressive recovery will continue to create jobs, support communities, and generate needed taxes.”

Furthermore the outlook also includes a pair of separate indices, with a ‘Current Conditions Index’ of 115.1 showing exceptionally strong growth in gaming revenue, employment, and employee wages and salaries over the past quarter

It is added that all CEO panel participants assessed the current gaming business climate as “good” (54 per cent) or “satisfactory” (46 per cent).

Moreover, the ‘Future Conditions Index,’ at 102.7, saw almost half of gaming executives expect future business conditions to further improve from today’s already strong climate, with just nine per cent expecting a deterioration over the next six months.

Among gaming operators, half plan to increase hotel and food and beverage amenities, while 43 per cent are plotting to raise capital investments in gaming machines.

Gaming suppliers are also demonstrating optimism over the coming six months, with 75 per cent anticipating sales of gaming units for replacement use to increase, and 63 per cent expecting sales of new units to improve. 

The Gaming CEO Outlook, prepared for the AGA by Oxford Economics, intends to provide a snapshot of the current and future economic health of the industry based on executive sentiment, employment, casino visitation plans, gaming revenue, and other key economic indicators. The results are informed by a survey of AGA member CEOs and executives representing equipment suppliers, casinos operators, and sportsbooks.