Novomatic & Zitro follow Merkur’s decision to withdraw from Ice London 2022 amid concerns regarding Omicron, dates, and travel logistics. (Image from Geralt at pixabay.com )
We had a feeling that Merkur pulling out of its involvement at the 2022 ICE London exhibition might start a domino effect and so that has proven. The continued COVID situation in the UK coupled with the logistical challenges of travelling to the city under Brexit laws and the rescheduled date of the event will certainly cause iGaming firms to reconsider their decision to attend.
The event was originally scheduled to run between the 1st and 3rd of February, but because of similar concerns, many first put forward by Merkur, that event was rescheduled to run between the 12th and 14th of April by the event’s host Clarion Gaming.
However, thinking long and hard about attending the event on those dates, Merkur Gaming could not see how it could make a return on its investment considering travel costs, a much lower attendance than normal, and the health risks of its employees, customers, and acquaintances. Just a few days ago, the company regrettably withdrew from attending but insisted that they valued the ICE exhibition and would consider attending future events if held at the right time and in the right place.
2 More Firms Withdraw from Ice London 2022
Just several days after that announcement, two other iGaming firms have come out within hours of each other to confirm that they too will now not attend. Zitro, a world leader in the gaming industry, was the first to announce it had withdrawn. The company cited almost identical reasoning for their decision to that of Merkur Gaming. Although a tough decision to make, the firm cited concern over the Omicron variant ripping through the UK, dates clashing with the Easter break, and the expected low turnout for the event compared to previous years as the main reasons for its decision.
Then a matter of hours ago, Novomatic became the third major exhibitor to regrettably announce it would not attend on the current dates and under the current circumstances. Traditionally, the exhibitor that take up the largest space at the exhibition, lack of attendance from Novomatic, is surely an enormous blow to the event. Again, the reasoning behind the firm’s decision mirrors those cited by Merkur and Zitro.
Clarion Gaming is still yet to comment on any of the withdrawals or if there are any plans to postpone the event until better circumstances arise.
We wonder how many other firms have to pull out before Clarion Gaming makes the sensible decision and reschedules the event once again. This is one of the biggest annual exhibitions in the iGaming industry, and if attendance was not harmed enough because of COVID, dates, and logistics, three major firms withdrawing will certainly have that effect.