Jose Cabrera, Business Development Director of Peru Juegos, gives his point of view on the current situation of gaming in Peru. In addition, as an organizer, he anticipates the great innovations that two exceptional events will bring: the Second Latam Gaming Congress and the third edition of the Peru Juegos Showroom.
Could you briefly talk about your experience in the gaming industry and your initiatives as an organizer of events for the sector?
I have over 18 years of experience in the entertainment industry. I started working as an electrical technician at the Magic City casino in Peru. Back then, it belonged to the Admiral company. Once there, I perfected myself as a slot machine technician. I advanced and went to the subsidiary company that sold machines throughout Peru. This helped me to meet many people and listen to their needs. In that company, I ended up being the Technical Manager. Subsequently, I worked as a technician at Casino Technology, a European brand that was just entering Peru. It was an enriching experience, in which I was also able to make a career, since I became a commercial executive, and I toured the entire country promoting the brand. Anyway, responding to my visionary and entrepreneurial spirit, I dared to leave what is safe and bet on the new, the uncertain. Thus, in April 2016, based on all the know-how I had accumulated, I started independently to provide technical service to companies and market some machines. Over time, I realized that there were other needs that companies had to meet. I took advantage of this opportunity and decided to coordinate the holding of seminars and meetings for executives in the sector, with training for casino operating personnel, conferences for middle-level managers and used machine showrooms, all without leaving the commercialization of machines. Under the Peru Juegos brand, we launched into this beautiful organizational adventure that has been consolidated by the success and local and international repercussion that we have had since then.
Why do you think Peru has one of the strongest and most respected gaming markets in Latin America? What is your analysis, in this sense, of the current situation of this important segment of the economy in your country?
Before 2006, there was unfair competition between illegality and the formal sector. At the end of that year, the law was published, and many companies had to pay the corresponding taxes in order to operate. That ordered the market and gave it stability. With formalization, there were equal opportunities for all operating companies. The sector grew, and the offer of gaming floors diversified and improved. Likewise, it must be remembered that the law required that all floors with their machines should be interconnected to a Mincetur server in order to be able to monitor the operation of each machine in real time. This boosted the market and stimulated the commitment of Peruvian entrepreneurs to the sector. Currently, land-based gaming has become a very important economic activity for Peru, generating direct and indirect employment opportunities for many people. In fact, every year, the revenue produced by gaming increases. In this sense, the authorities should consider gaming companies as leading economic players, supporting them in their operations, something that, in many cases, does not happen.
Do you think that the events you organize represent a good possibility to strengthen relationships between the members of the industry: regulator, suppliers, operators, certifiers and distributors?
At Peru Juegos, we are clear that we need to promote events such as conferences, seminars and workshops to help professionalize the sector, which, for the most part, is made up of small and medium-sized family businesses. In view of this, we have established ourselves as the best connection between the actors in the industry. The union and the help between all the members of the sector are a key. Our common goal is to strengthen the gaming industry in Peru and that it lasts and progresses over time.
What benefits can regulation of online gambling and sports betting bring to Peru? What is your perspective on the projects proposed in this regard? When do you think this official iGaming regulation will be implemented?
Like any novelty and alternative that is being presented to users, sports betting and online gaming are gaining popularity, mainly among young people. Without a doubt, it is a great business opportunity for entrepreneurs in the sector. We are all eager to know how the authority is going to regulate and control this activity. There are several operators who are working online, which represents a new option to multiply employment and income. We know that the Mincetur has been following the correct path to regulate this sector and I believe that, in the coming months, once the new Parliament is installed in Peru, we will have good news in this regard.
What are your expectations on what will be the Second Latin American Gaming Congress, to be held in Lima?
We have high expectations for the Second Latam Gaming Congress, which we will co-organize with the innovative Gaming & Media content multiplatform. We have summoned prestigious experts in the gaming and sports betting sectors from all over Latin America, who will contribute with their erudition and experience to deepen academic and professional information on the industry, promoting business synergy in Peru. It will be a very productive event for stakeholders. Peru Juegos not only considers commercial aspects, but also focuses on people in the sector expanding their knowledge.
What other events and activities does your company have on the agenda for this year?
We have scheduled the third edition of the Peru Juegos Showroom, intended, in principle, for August 2020 in our auditorium in San Isidro, Lima, located just 50 meters from the Mincetur office. It will be an ideal space for gathering of all the gaming providers and operators in the country in order to stimulate business and promote networking. We will present there a product specifically developed by our company, and we will provide many novelties for our clients. Also, this event is a showcase for new exhibitors who have shown their interest in participating. In the last year, we have visited various global gaming events and contacted new brands that intend to enter the Peruvian market. For this reason, both the Second Latin American Gaming Congress and, in this case, the Peru Juegos Showroom will be key events in our industry for Latin America and the world, to which all companies are invited to attend.