American Gaming Association Adds Eight New Members to Roster

Posted on: May 22, 2016, 10:12h. 

Last updated on: May 22, 2016, 10:12h.

American Gaming Association Geoff Freeman
Times are good at the American Gaming Association, as the organization’s CEO Geoff Freeman has persuaded eight new companies to join its membership. (Image: American Gaming Association/twitter.com)

The American Gaming Association (AGA) is expanding its prowess on the gaming industry in the United States after signing eight new members to its organization. The Washington, DC, trade group that lobbies both federal and state governments on behalf of gaming companies reported that membership swelled more than 50 percent over the last 12 months.

The Association revealed three new board members, AGS, Cherokee Nation Entertainment, and Delaware North. AGS is engaged in the manufacturing of gaming products while the other two entities are in the hospitality business.

In addition to the board members, AGA confirmed that Acres 4.0, American Casino & Entertainment Properties LLC, FireKeepers Casino, Genius Sports, and NYX Gaming Group Limited have paid general membership dues.

AGA President and CEO Geoff Freeman flaunted the growth by crediting his organization for “uniting the industry and driving consensus on the most important industry issues.”

Costly Benefits

Considering the price tag for AGA membership, adding eight new members to its union is quite significant.

For commercial or tribal casino operators, the cheapest tiered membership level offered to businesses that have annual global revenues of under $99 million comes in at $20,000 per year. For multibillion-dollar corporations like Wynn Resorts and Caesars Entertainment, those fees jump to $400,000 due every 365 days.

However, those rather lavish assessments are seen as investments by the companies that buy into the AGA, as most believe the group’s advocacy on behalf of gaming will lead to more favorable environments in which to operate.

“It is the mission of the AGA to be the single most effective champion of the industry, relentlessly protecting against harmful and often misinformed public policies, and paving a path for growth, innovation and reinvestment,” the AGA website states.

The AGA Rolodex reads like a who’s who of the gaming world. Notable members include Sheldon Adelson’s Las Vegas Sands Corp., Penn National Gaming, Steve Wynn, William Hill, and MGM Resorts, to name a few.

In total, the American Gaming Association now has over 40 corporate members, the product of reorganizing the AGA in 2014 to welcome tribal gaming operators to join the organization that was previously reserved for commercial-only companies.

“AGA’s growing membership across every sector of the gaming industry positions us to effectively advocate for the most pressing issues we face,” Freeman stated.

Focusing on Gaming

Perhaps the most interesting addition is Delaware North, one of the largest hospitality companies in the world with revenues of nearly $3 billion. Forbes lists Delaware North in the top 200 largest private companies in America.

Headquartered in Buffalo, New York, and invested in various hospitality industries, Delaware North has the Jumer’s Casino, Southland Park, Miami Valley, and Finger Lakes Gaming & Racetrack in its portfolio.

In addition to becoming a member, Delaware North Gaming & Entertainment President Brian Hansberry will serve on the AGA board.

The move shows the rise of gaming lobbying importance as the political climate surrounding gambling heats up in Washington, DC, and in state capitals across the nation.