Who We Are

 

Bacta is the trade body which represents the interests of Britain’s amusements and high street gaming manufacturers and operators.

The industry, whose roots date back to pre-war Britain, is employed in the delivery of what recent research conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC) referred to as socially responsible, value for money and FUN!

Businesses represented by bacta can be found on every high street in Britain and whose income helps to sustain tourist attractions, particularly at the coast.

Bacta is all about the very serious business of FUN!

 

 

 

Our Values

Ethical

We will endeavour to conduct ourselves in ways which are ethical, treating our members, colleagues, and external stakeholders with respect

Sustainable

We recognise the commitment we must make to future generations through the sustainable use of resources and will seek to utilise our resources efficiently

Modern

We will conduct ourselves in a way which reflects current best practice

Professional

We will always be professional in our dealings with all our stakeholders

Partnering

We believe working together to achieve common objectives will result in optimal outcomes for all

Open and Transparent

We will seek where possible to conduct ourselves in a way which allows stakeholders to understand why we do what do and that they always receive the information to which they are entitled.

 

What does bacta do?

 

Bacta is a campaigning organisation which represents the interests of its members at the highest political level and works to create a positive environment for business.

Outside of specific legislative issues, notably the campaign to reduce the stake levels of FOBTs and lobbying for the successful implementation of bacta’s requests to the Review of stakes and prizes, the association has five key strategic objectives.

Rebranding

Fashioning the image of the industry in line with the results of the attitudinal survey undertaken by PwC as one of fun.

Youth

Attracting more under 30’s into the industry and into bacta.

Social Responsibility

Driving the cultural change necessary to embed the philosophy at the heart of the industry.

Tourism

To ensure the industry led by bacta is part of the tourism debate and its interests are at the top of the tourism and coastal community agenda.

Reshaping The Future

Challenge the industry to rethink its future business model in light of the digital age and modern consumer needs and tastes.

 

 

Who we represent

 

With PwC research showing that  72% of adult consumers have played amusements equipment at some stage in their lives and with 14 million current players, in many ways bacta represents the vast majority of the UK population!

In terms of membership, bacta is a broad church, encompassing high-tech and creative manufacturers, machine suppliers for pubs, clubs and bingo halls, as well as operators of Family Entertainment Centres and over 18s Gaming Centres.  Bacta members include the whole of the amusement machine supply chain in the UK, which has a collective turnover of £1.6bn across more than 500 companies, operating in excess of 310,000 machines.

Companies range from SME’s right up to global corporations such as Novomatic and the Gauselmann Group, which employ thousands of people in the UK alone.

 

All aspects of Fun!

 

Bacta members’ commitment to FUN! is evident throughout the country in pubs, family entertainment centres, adult gaming centres as well as through the machine supply and operating chains.

Family Entertainment Centres (FEC)

There are 1,000 family entertainment centres (FECs) in the UK.  They range from destination venues such as Brighton Palace Pier (which attracts more visitors than the V&A, The Science Museum and Stonehenge) and the Namco Funscape on London’s South Bank, through to smaller shop sized units.  The amusements sector makes both a direct and indirect contribution to tourism.  Arcades are an important source of employment and research undertaken by bacta demonstrated that the revenue derived from amusements helped sustain many of Britain’s 58 piers.  The economic impact of having a well run and vibrant pier attraction was put into sharp focus by a study conducted by Tir Prince Leisure Group, owners of Llandudno Pier, which calculated the income it generates for the regional economy to be worth £100m a year.

Adult Gaming Centres (AGC)

The contemporary AGC, with its strict adult only admission policy and commitment to social responsibility, is far removed from the clichéd and stereotyped image of high street arcades. Leading brands employ interior architects and the latest trends in retailing to ensure the customer experience compares favourably with the very best on the high street.  AGCs are high quality, modern, well-appointed premises offering an adult only gaming entertainment environment.

Pubs

Whilst the Category C AWP remains the most profitable four square feet of a pub floor space, the trend is a downward one, accentuated by the proliferation of Licensed Betting Offices and the lure of the FOBT.  According to one industry expert the average weekly income from pub AWPs has decreased by 25 percent since 2007, a figure which is estimated to have cost the pub sector at least £600m over the last decade.  Advances in technology have seen something of a revolution with pubs featuring the very latest in digital gaming equipment and internet empowered jukeboxes.

Bingo Clubs

Whilst machine playing isn’t the primary activity for customers, the income derived from gaming machines is fundamental to the business model and to the profitability of any bingo club. Most of the cost of bingo books goes directly back to the players in prizes , while food and beverage revenues are close to being a loss leader.  For many establishments the absence of gaming machine revenue would signal the end of the club.  Bingo has been cited by Age UK as being amongst a range of activities that are a leading driver of well-being and for playing an important role in dealing with social exclusion of the elderly.

Members Clubs

There are a total of 18,793 machines and jukeboxes sited in Members Clubs.  The income generated helps to sustain their financial viability and to continue to serve their community.

Motorway Service Areas

Motorway Service Areas have 5,540 pieces of equipment comprising both adult only gaming equipment as well as cranes and amusement only sports themed games.

The Supply Chain

Manufacturers, distributors and operators make up the supply chain.  The UK manufacturing base for gaming equipment has been decimated by a downturn in demand for pub equipment.  30-years ago the gaming machine sector was manufacturing 50,000 pub machines a year, now that figure for new machine sales is less than 10,000 with a concomitant loss of jobs through the supply chain, impacting many areas which have above national average rates of unemployment.  Machine operators supply machines on a rental or share basis to retailers including pubs and clubs.  The pressure on rental margins has been described by one operator as being ‘a race to the bottom’ with many businesses facing an increasingly uncertain future.  Suppliers of other types of equipment, from juke boxes to kiddie rides to ticket redemption machines, have also had to work hard in a tough market, adapting to the changing leisure sector and the increasing digitisation of society.

 

Bacta Head Office

 

 

Finance

 

Head of Finance, Robert Gibb

Financial Accountant, Sarah Ramiah

 

Membership & Operations

 

Membership & Operations Manager, Linda Malcolm

Membership & ADIPS Co-Ordinator, Theresa Risby

Communications & Events Co-Ordinator, Parveen Sharma

 

SR & Compliance

 

Head of Social Responsibility & Compliance, Simon Bradbury

Regional Compliance Officer, Tony Waldron

Regional Compliance Officer, Murray MacDougal

Regional Compliance Officer, David Miller

 

Our Officers

 

bacta’s management committee report to the National Council, steer the organisation and represent the views of the membership to stakeholders.

They are elected from the membership via the Divisions and Annual Convention.

The Management Committee in 2017 comprises of:

President, Gabino Stergides

Vice President & Division 1 Chairman, James Miller

Treasurer, Chris Haley

Division 2 Chairman, Greg Wood

Division 3 Chairman, Elizabeth Speed

Division 4 Chairman, Dean Harding

Chief Executive, John White

 

Profiles

President, Gabino Stergides

Gabino Stergides was born in 1981, the same year as the iconic Bar X machine was released, and curiously enough since then has grown up in arcades and the amusement sector.

Gabino graduated in economics, with a specialism in statistics and game theory. He then obtained an MSc in IT and computer science and this led to his first commercial project – Internet Blackjack in 2003.

Gabino was then headhunted to join the commercial department of a fast growing technology company called MessageLabs, later purchased by Symantec/Norton antivirus.

Gabino eventually led the team developing the European business (excluding the UK and Germany) and within 18 months he also acquired responsibility for the Middle East and Africa. In this role he dealt with a range of companies, from small family businesses to blue chip corporations as well as Central banks and government departments.

Before joining the amusement business Gabino took some time off to travel the world and practice his languages (English, Greek, Russian, Italian, French and Spanish) and in 2007 Gabino joined Electrocoin to help drive the business in new growth areas such as redemption and electronic solutions in the UK and abroad.

Gabino was elected as President of the bacta in March 2017 and combines this with his role as Chairman of the Social Responsibility working group of the association.

 

Treasurer, Chris Haley

Chris Haley was born in Keighley, West Yorkshire and is a Fellow of the Chartered Association of Certified Accountants, qualifying in 1993.

After training with Ernst & Young Chartered Accountants, Chris moved to a small private practice before choosing to join the gaming machine industry as the Finance Director of Dransfield Novelty Company Limited in 1996; Chris became the Managing Director of Dransfields in 2012. Dransfields is a large privately owned supplier of gaming and amusement equipment to private members clubs and public houses throughout Great Britain.

Chris has sat on the Division 2 Committee for over 10 years and has been on National Council for over 3 years. He maintains a close interest in gaming machine taxation matters and was at the forefront of the ultimately successful, bacta supported, Category B3A machine dispute with HMRC.

 

bacta James Miller ProfileVice President & Division 1 Chairman, James Miller 

James Miller is the managing Director of Funstation Ltd, a growing independent business that operates Family Entertainment Centres in shopping centres and leisure schemes across the UK.

He is the current Vice President of Bacta and also serves as a director on the board of EAG Ltd which is the European trade show for amusements and leisure attractions held annually at London’s Excel.

James comes from a traveling Showman’s background and grew up in the family business. In 1993 James left the family business and, together with Vanessa, they established their own business operating family amusements and rides in a caravan Park in Northamptonshire.

In 2004 James set up Funstation a newer version of family amusements based more on ‘entertainment’ rather than low stake gaming machines.

James is a long standing and active member of Bacta, he has served on several committees and has been the chair of the Midlands region for the last 4 years. He is also an active fundraiser who has helped raise almost £50K for various charities during his period as Midlands Chair. More recently he has helped Bacta set up the ‘Tickets 2 Wishes’ campaign, a national initiative that works closely with the Rays of Sunshine children’s charity to grant once in a lifetime wishes to seriously ill children across the UK. In its inaugural year (2017) #Tickets2wishes raised £19K making a massive difference to the lives of children it helps.

 

Division 2 Chairman, Greg Wood 

Profile to be added

 

 

 

 

Division 3 Chairman, Elizabeth Speed

Elizabeth is an English qualified solicitor and the Group Legal Counsel for Novomatic UK. She was a partner in international law firm Eversheds, before leaving to join the industry in the form of the Noble Group in 2006, with particular focus on the AGC and FEC business.

In 2014 and following the acquisition of the Noble arcade business, she moved to Novomatic UK which also includes the Talarius AGC business in its stable as well as other stalwarts of the industry on the manufacturing and distribution fronts.

Elizabeth has sat on the committees for Divisions 1 and 3 for 7 years and has been on National Council for 7 years. She is a particularly active member of bacta’s Social Responsibility Committee and proud of how members have led the way on SR matters. She has a special, and perhaps unsurprising, interest in gambling regulation.


Division 4 Chairman, Dean Harding 

Profile to be added

 

Chief Executive, John White

John White is a trade association professional having worked in industries as diverse as meat rendering to baby products and garden furniture to timber.

Prior to joining the Federation of Bakers as Director in May 2000, John spent ten years in the amusement machine industry at bacta, to which he returned as Chief Executive in July 2014.

He believes trade associations are vital part of the political culture and at their best are essential to good government.