Southern Gaming Summit in full swing at Beau Rivage

Updated: May. 5, 2021 at 6:45 PM CDT
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BILOXI, Miss. (WLOX) - The Southern Gaming Summit brought in a large crowd to Beau Rivage Tuesday after missing last year due to COVID-19. Tuesday was day two of the three-day event that brought gaming leaders together, like Hard Rock international chief Jon Lucas, to discuss what’s next after COVID.

“The shutdown was certainly impactful and the opening with all the restrictions that we had it made it a little challenging, but I think there’s lots of lessons learned from it,” said Lucas. “Certainly, there’s a time to reevaluate and re-adventure.”

Cashless technology, diversity and inclusion, and even online sports betting were just some of many topics discussed.

“I think it’s more than just betting, coming in and enjoying the experience of watching the sports they’ve done a really good job so if we were doing online, I think it would just as well with the online model as they have with the retail,” said Jay McDaniel during the online betting session.

Michael Bruffey said online betting is a hot topic that’s currently in the works in the Magnolia State.

“In Mississippi, the casinos offer sports betting so the question is should we be able to offer that everywhere in the state on your mobile device,” Bruffey said.

While casinos in South Mississippi and across the country start to move past COVID, Lucas said many in other countries are still struggling.

“Unfortunately for us we have properties all over the world and Europe has been in shut down,” Lucas said. “We have seven hotels closed. We have numerous cafes closed,” said Lucas. “In India and Brazil and some of these challenging countries unfortunately it’s a wait and see.”

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