Gauselmann Group: Berlin arcades to “die a senseless death” after decision to close hundreds

By Iqbal Johal

The decision to close hundreds of arcades in Berlin will cause the venues to “die a senseless death”, according to Gauselmann Group.

The Berlin Senate Administration for the Economy, Energy and Operations announced it will close four out of five arcades across the federal state, which means 380 of the 500 legal venues must cease operations.

German company Gauselmann Group, which also operate five arcades in Berlin, condemned the move, believing it will drive players to the illegal gambling market.

Group management board member, Manfred Stoffers, said: “They (arcades) will die a senseless death, as this will not bring the improved play protection promised by Berlin legislators, but instead the exact opposite.

“They are professional coin-op machine merchants who have created jobs that are subject to compulsory social security contributions and thought that their investment in Berlin was an investment in their future.”

Stoffers went on to say that the 120 legal arcades, with eight gaming machines in each that are left, won’t be enough to satisfy demand, as it would average out to 25 machines for every 100,000 citizens in Berlin, as opposed to the German average of 170.

He added: “This shows the actual need. I bet that there will also be this number in Berlin, as supply always meets demand. Berlin is no different to elsewhere – however the supply there will soon no longer be legal for the most part.”

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