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Belgium – European Casino Association confirms new board structure

By - 12 February 2020

Last week at ICE London, the European Casino Association approved a new structure for the board and a new member, Czech Casino Association. Furthermore, three more certificates for Responsible Gambling have been released.

At the first General Assembly of the year, held at ICE London on February 4, members of the European Casino Association (ECA) have approved a new structure for the Board of Directors that will stay in place until the next general elections in February 2021. The decision was taken following Tracy Damestani’s and Dietmar Hoscher’s resignations, and unanimously approved by the Assembly. Bettina Glatz-Kremsner from Casinos Austria and Jari Heino from Veikkaus are the new board members, respectively representing Austria and Finland. Furthermore, Pascal Camia from Société des Bains de Mer – Monte Carlo was approved as new Vice Chairman of the ECA.

A further highlight at the ECA’s General Assembly was the approval of the membership application of the Czech Casino Association after passing the strict membership requirements and signing up to the association’s code of conduct. The Czech Casino Association operates exclusively on the basis of contributions from its members and has 8 permanent and affiliated members operator.

Moreover, the ECA released three new certifications according to the ECA Responsible Gambling Framework to Casino Société de Bains de Mer – Monte Carlo, Westdeutsche Spielbanken and Merkur Spielbanken Sachsen-Anhalt, while Grand Casino Beograd renewed the certificate. The Framework is of utmost importance to set an industry standard for the effective management of Responsible Gambling in areas ranging from awareness-raising and employee training to marketing and stakeholder engagement. The ECA Responsible Gaming Framework has been developed with input and leadership of eminent researchers in the field of gambling addiction over several years.
Per Jaldung, ECA Chairman, commented, “Our partner Clarion Gaming has once again organised a very interesting and innovative trade show for the gaming industry, ICE 2020 in London. By tradition, the ECA’s General Assembly takes place during this important event. A busy and successful week for has just ended. The new board, approved by the Assembly, is now ready to work hard to promote the interests of our members and strengthen the voice of the European licensed land-based casino industry. We welcome our new member, the Czech Casino Association, which confirms the relevance of the ECA internationally. We are also delighted that our members commit to the responsible gambling framework, indicating a general willingness to multiply efforts in this direction. We now look forward to working together this year and strengthening the land-based casino industry even further.”

Tracy Damestani announced her resignation from her position as Vice-Chair of the ECA, following the dissolution National Casino Forum in the UK.

During her mandate, Ms. Damestani oversaw the Working Group on Events and Education launching several important initiatives. She promoted inclusion within the licensed land-based casino and made increased diversity a priority for the ECA and its members. She delivered several solutions to address some of the challenges and opportunities for the sector. As a strong ambassador for gender equality, she led the implementation of the Diversity and Inclusion Career Enhancement (DICE), the first Gender Diversity Initiative to promote not only gender inclusion, but also diversity in all forms. In shaping and maintaining this initiative she worked closely with fellow ECA Board Member Janny Wierda from Holland Casino. The initiative is and will continue to be an important part in ECA’s ongoing support for the UN Global Compact and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Ms Damestani stated “It is with extreme sadness that I tender my resignation. I thank the ECA board, its Chair and all our wonderful colleagues across the membership for collaborating and progressing our excellent projects within land-based casinos; my sincere good wishes for the future.”

Per Jaldung, ECA Chairman, noted “Within the ECA, Ms Damestani has emphasised the importance of supporting women in the gambling industry before the term gender diversity became mainstream. Working closely for several years with Ms. Damestani – on issues related to responsible gambling, GDPR and other important topics for our industry as well as trade organisation management – has been a great experience. Her contributions to the ECA are very valuable. She will be missed, but we know she will continue to be an ambassador for the land-based casino industry at different levels. Her involvement will have a lasting impact on the ECA, and we wish her all the best for her future endeavours. The ECA is now considering several different options to maintain a close relationship with the land-based casino industry in the UK.”

Caption: Pascal Camia of Société des Bains de Mer

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