As 2000 gave way to 2001, IGT became a member of the prestigious Standard & Poor's 500 list and acquired Silicon Gaming, a cutting-edge technology company whose intellectual property has served IGT well. Then, in December 2001, IGT made its grandest acquisition to date when it acquired Anchor Gaming and immediately doubled gaming operations revenue.
Two major honors were bestowed on the Company in 2003—when IGT was added to BusinessWeek magazine's list of the "50 Top‑Performing Companies" and when it made Fortune magazine's "100 Fastest-Growing Companies" list.
The company momentum continued as IGT acquired Acres Gaming, whose bonusing and systems technology added firepower to IGT's games and systems products. In 2004, the Company introduced its central determination system (CDS) and Class II bingo games and systems to the Native American market. IGT made the Forbes magazine list of the "Best-Managed Companies in America" during that year, and IGT Canada was created to serve the burgeoning Canadian gaming and lottery markets.
To close out its first 25 years as a public company, in 2005 IGT acquired WagerWorks for its advanced online gaming technology. IGT also unveiled its first multi-level progressive MegaJackpots® product, Fort Knox®. IGT offices were established in Russia, Mexico, and Macau to take advantage of emerging market opportunities. At the 2005 Global Gaming Expo in Las Vegas, IGT featured its prototype server-based (sb™) gaming products, which were honored with first place in Global Gaming Business magazine's Gaming & Technology Awards.
IGT's Advanced Video Platform (AVP®), with its full-screen, live streaming videos, vivid color animation, and stereo sound, was first sold in the TrimLine cabinet in 2006. That year also marked the launch of Table iD®, which combines table management software, RFID (radio frequency identification device) chip tracking, bonusing, and image-based card recognition into one comprehensive system.
In 2006 IGT formed a partnership with Walker Digital and jointly developed the Guaranteed Play™ concept, a creative new method of purchasing game play. The Company also introduced its first group play and community bonus game, Wheel of Fortune® Special Edition™. The end of 2006 marked the 10th anniversary of the most popular gaming machines ever made—Wheel of Fortune® slots—and the 20th anniversary of Megabucks®.
At the 2006 Global Gaming Expo in Las Vegas, IGT unveiled its M-P Series™ multi-player concepts for roulette and baccarat, the first games in a complete line of electronic multi-player table game products.
The following year showed increased growth in the international markets. In 2007 IGT established a new office in China and saw significant successes in Mexico's gaming operations and Japan's and Asia's product sales. The Company also announced two important intellectual property arrangements—the first with Austrian-based Novomatic for use in IGT's M-P Series™ multi-player product and the second with PureDepth, Inc. for its 3-D-like, multi-layer display (MLD™) technology. In November 2007, IGT announced the 400th installation of its EZ Pay® ticket-in, ticket-out system.
In its April 24, 2007, issue, USA Today ranked IGT Number 6 on its list of the 25 Top-Performing Stocks of the Past 25 Years. Electronic Design magazine listed IGT Number 25 on its 2007 list of the Top 100 Employers of Electronic Designers. The Company was also honored with 15 of 20 possible awards—including all first-place awards—at "Best of Gaming 2007" in Las Vegas.
The year 2007 was big for one lucky player, as well. The world's largest penny slot jackpot ever—nearly $18.8 million—was won in January on Penny Megabucks® at the Pahrump Nugget Casino in rural Nevada.
June 2007 brought an IGT investment in DigiDeal® Corporation, a gaming technology company with a patented electronic table game platform that would contribute to the Company's further development of its M-P Series™ games.
2007 also marked the acquisition of Mariposa® business intelligence software from VCAT. In addition, the Company introduced its award-winning IGT sb™ Service Window technology, allowing casinos to interact with players and display points, comps, offers, branded promotions, and services through a touch-screen menu located in the game space.
IGT was first with several game play features in 2007, including 2-for-1 wagering, a buy-a-pay concept, and a MultiWay® spinning-reel game. The Company initiated the transition to the AVP® platform across all product lines and also launched REELdepth™, the world's first MLD™ (Multi-Layer Display)-based product made with 3-D-looking animations. MLD™ technology involves a layering of two or more LCDs that create the visual effect of true depth without the use of 3-D glasses. REELdepth™ games are Multi-Game-capable, which allows players to switch between virtual spinning-reel games, video slots, and video poker, all on the same machine. REELdepth™ games are also sb™-ready for future gaming needs.
In early 2008 IGT opened the first-of-its-kind Global Technology and Interoperability Center in Reno, Nevada. This 6,500-square-foot facility is open for use by other gaming machine manufacturers, customers, and manufacturers of third-party products. The center's collaborative approach that ensures rigorous testing is conducted in a true-to-life casino environment before products go to market. IGT also acquired Cyberview Technology, Inc., allowing the Company to expand and diversify its business opportunities, especially in the United Kingdom.
2008 also marked the launch of the larger-than-life eBay™ video slots. Based on the world's most famous electronic marketplace, eBay™ Video Slots feature a Community Play Free Spins bonus and big-screen reels.
In February 2008 Harrah's Entertainment, Inc. selected IGT's sb™ NexGen™ displays for installation on more than 60,000 Harrah's slot machines. Then in April 2008, CityCenter - the dazzling vertical city on the Las Vegas strip set to open in late 2009—signed an agreement with IGT pertaining to installing a server-based network and sb™ gaming management system products at the development's resort casino.
A series of new models made their way off the IGT production line and into casinos in 2008. The new machines' designs are based on customer feedback, and the series boasts the performance and flexibility of the AVP®. All new models are also sb™—ready and were developed using IGT's Human Machine Interface (HMI) process for ultimate player comfort, convenience, and playability.
In early 2009 IGT announced it had acquired certain operating assets of Progressive Gaming International Corporation (PGIC). The global operations of PGIC were integrated with IGT's respective offices in Europe, Asia, Australia, Latin America, Canada, and the U.S. The assets acquired help IGT to provide systems products for somewhat different market segments as compared with our current IGT Advantage® line and are an ideal complement to IGT's current offering.
Also in early 2009 IGT and Las Vegas Gaming, Inc. entered into substantive business and investment agreements. The parties entered into agreements to create a business relationship going forward. LVGI has agreed to create applications for IGT's server-based gaming systems, and IGT has agreed to assist LVGI in those efforts.
IGT's newest office in Beijing, China, had its grand opening in March 2009. The Beijing campus is a result of the Company's commitment to deliver the most innovative gaming solutions and products to its customers. IGT Technology Development (Beijing) Co., Ltd. researches and develops gaming software, systems software, and application software. In addition, the center provides technical services, support, and training.
IGT took top honors at the 2009 International Gaming Awards in London, England, on January 26. A panel of 23 international judges selected IGT as the best Slot Manufacturer of the year. Later in the spring, Public Gaming Research Institute named IGT's REELdepth™ games featuring Multi-Layer Display (MLD®) technology the 2009 Lottery Product of the Year, and Casino Journal listed four IGT products on its Top 20 Most Innovative Gaming Technology Products for 2008. And Casino Enterprise Management magazine announced its 2009 Slot Floor Technology Awards, which included IGT's AVP® Dynamic Game Menu, MultiPLAY Video Slots, REELdepth, and sbX Media Manager.
Also in April 2009, IGT named Patti S. Hart as its new president and CEO.
Key offers that hit the marketplace in 2009 included the extremely popular Indiana Jones™ and the Last Crusade™ REELdepth™ Slots. This new MegaJackpots® game features IGT's patented REELdepth™ technology, which uses the one and only Multi-Layer Display® (MLD®) technology, creating an unparalleled 3-D gaming experience.
Also joining the MegaJackpots® family in 2009 were Star Wars™ Multi-Level Progressives and Wheel of Fortune® Super Spin™ Video Slots Five-Station. Star Wars™ Multi-Level Progressives boast IGT's one-of-a-kind group play bonus - the first competitive group play bonus in the market. This feature allows more than one player to enter the bonus at the same time, and all eligible players are awarded with participation in a thrilling race in the Speeder Chase bonus. The world's most popular slot game now includes the Wheel of Fortune® Super Spin™ Video Slots Five-Station. This eye-catching game features five individual player stations around a giant vertical wheel—the ultimate in group-play gaming.
In the spring of 2009 IGT added a novel gaming concept to its offerings—MultiPLAY Video Slots. MultiPLAY takes one machine and makes it four times more exciting. This is the first slot product in the industry to give players the option of playing their favorite game up to four times, simultaneously, with different outcomes on the same video slot machine. First-to-market innovation like this is available only from IGT.
IGT Network Systems released its sbX™ Tier One package to the market in 2009, as well. This is the first G2S server-based solution and the initial step toward an open, server-based casino industry. The sbX™ Tier One package is a bank-by-bank solution that gives casino operators the power to implement server-based technology without having to commit to a floor-wide implementation. In combination with the power of IGT's AVP® platform, the Tier One package provides the performance needed to keep up with changing player demands and gain that much-needed competitive edge.
IGT kicked off 2010 with a repeat win at the International Gaming Awards as Best Slot Manufacturer of the Year. This award was just the start of a long list of honors that IGT received throughout the year. The awards and accolades IGT received ranged from industry experts and trade publications to reader polls in player focused publications. Added to the Company’s long list of accolades were 16 awards in Casino Player magazine's Best of Gaming for 2010, top honors in Global Gaming Business' 8th Annual Gaming and Technology Awards, wins in the inaugural Casino Enterprise Management Hospitality Operations Technology Awards, and 35 awards in Strictly Slots’ Best of Slots Awards.
In the spring of 2010, IGT’s sbX Experience Management System was installed in the first European locations. The first Europe-based casino to go live with sbX was Casino d'Evian in France. This was followed by a number of additional European installations including Casino di Venezia in Italy and Grand Casino Helsinki in Finland.
IGT marked a significant milestone in the Company’s history in the fall of 2010. In November, the Company celebrated the production of its 2 millionth slot machine.
Late 2010 also saw the creation of an Interactive division within IGT dedicated to further building its online and mobile gaming presence. IGT's WagerWorks and Million-2-1 groups merged into a single global division headquartered in San Francisco, California. This new division serves customers in regulated, legal markets globally and is dedicated to providing the very best gaming products to the online and mobile market.
The year ended with a substantial win for both its network systems products and games. The brand new casino resort The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas opened floor-wide in sbX; the majority floor share of games; plus, an entire suite of IGT Advantage system products.