Scientific Games Rebranding to Light & Wonder Garners Mixed Reviews

Posted on: March 2, 2022, 08:11h. 

Last updated on: March 2, 2022, 10:26h.

Scientific Games will soon be no more. The Las Vegas gaming manufacturer announced during its full-year 2021 earnings report that the company is undergoing a major rebranding to Light & Wonder.

Scientific Games Light & Wonder slot machines iGaming
Scientific Games President and Chief Executive Officer Barry Cottle celebrates the launch of Light & Wonder with employees at the company’s Las Vegas headquarters. Scientific Games’ rebranding generated a mixed response. (Image: Scientific Games)

After selling off its lottery and sports betting businesses last year for a combined $7.2 billion in order to pay off debt, Scientific Games says Light & Wonder is a better brand name for its future. The company responsible for such popular cabinets as 88 Fortunes and Mega Link says its focus ahead is in retail terminals and iGaming innovation.

That’s where the world is trending because in iGaming, particularly in the United States, the land-based operators are getting digital licenses, and they want to provide their players 360-degree access to the games that they have,” Scientific Games Chief Executive Barry Cottle told The Wall Street Journal.

The iGaming industry in the United States is still relatively new. Only six states permit online slots and table games. But the continued emergence of legal sports betting over the internet is expected to lead additional states to mull full iGaming.

COVID-19 also heightened the necessity of legal internet casino sites. States like Pennsylvania and New Jersey that had such gambling operational during 2020 and last year were able to offset some of their land-based gaming tax losses due to casinos being shuttered amid the pandemic.

New Focus, New Name

Scientific Games reported a debt of $8.8 billion as of September 30, 2021.

In order to deleverage its balance sheet, the company opted to sell its OpenBet turnkey sports betting platform to Endeavor Group Holdings for $1.2 billion. Scientific’s lottery division — SG Lottery — was sold to Brookfield Business Partners LP for approximately $6 billion.

With its sports betting and lottery units dispersed, Scientific, ahem, Light & Wonder, is readying for its next chapter.

“As we begin this new chapter we have chosen a new name, Light & Wonder. A name that evokes the kind of feelings we want to capture in the work we do every day — excitement, inspiration, imagination, and maybe even a little bit of magic and certainly a lot of fun,” said Cottle.

Scientific said it will begin using the Light & Wonder identity immediately. It’s expected to legally change this spring.

Jaw-Dropping Response

Scientific Games rebranding to Light & Wonder is certainly unique. The decision was met with mixed reviews.

“The worst name I’ve ever heard,” said one Twitter user in response to a Scientific Games tweet regarding the change.

Casino.org’s Scott Roeben of VitalVegas fame gained some stern feedback after sharing the Light & Wonder news on his ever-popular Twitter account.

“And the world… yawned. Honestly, it’s a terrible name,” said one person. “Is it a real company?” asked another, who said he had come across a LinkedIn job post for the company and assumed it was fake.

Another concluded that the Light & Wonder name is most fitting for a company primarily engaged in manufacturing slot machines: