Steve Jobs once said, “Innovation is the only way to win,” and in our business, it’s all about winning big!
Today we speak with Stefan Keilwert, IGT Director, Advanced Research and Innovation. Stefan has been with the Company for more than 16 years and together with his team, he plays a central role in cultivating the spirit of innovation for IGT – which prompts us to ask him about his ideas and how he makes them happen.
As someone who oversees research and innovation, what innovation(s) did your team lead/support for ICE 2017?
The innovation team focuses on highlighting product and product-feature opportunities that add value to the player experience. Credit must be given to colleagues in R&D and game studios who develop market-ready products based upon our prototypes. The innovation team was involved in TRUE 3D, the crowd attract feature, and of course TRUE 4D development.
So how did we move forward with these concepts? A big part of our innovation process is gaining an understanding about relevant macro trends that can influence IGT´s land-based gaming business. Combining these findings with insights about players of today and the future puts us in a position to anticipate their needs and expectations. Subsequently prototypes with compelling cases are developed and presented to stakeholders and players to verify the potential of these prototypes.
Stefan, what’s your favorite part of ICE?
The show provides an opportunity to review competitors’ latest products, to evaluate their progress since the last show, and also assess their innovations in comparison to IGT’s gaming solutions.
Secondly, each ICE show that I’ve attended gives me the chance to meet new colleagues while reconnecting with coworkers who I usually can only correspond with via email.
Additionally, it’s an excellent opportunity for me and my team to present and discuss the latest tangible results, strategies and other findings with important stakeholders who attend the show.
When do your best ideas hit you?
To tell you the inside story, good and innovative ideas hit when the brain is in a relaxed condition and one is outside of stress-causing environments. So, my personal answer to this question is.... ideas hit when cycling on Styrian trails or when mowing the lawn.
What’s the greatest innovation in history?
There is only one valid answer for me: It´s TRUE 3D; TRUE 4D awaits!
Director, Advanced Research and Innovation
Passionate about anticipating future player needs and shaping tomorrow´s gambling experiences.