The executive leadership of Scientific Games has voluntarily reduced its salaries by 50%, with chief executive Barry Cottle going without pay, as part of the solutions giant’s efforts to mitigate the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
This comes as part of a broad range of cost-saving measures to preserve jobs and protect the company’s operations.
Scientific Games’ workforce will also have hours and pay reduced to preserve as many jobs as possible, while workers in support roles that have seen a significant decrease in work will be furloughed. The supplier did not provide figures on how many staff would be affected, or by how much pay and hours would be cut.
For furloughed staff, Scientific Games will create a hardship relief fund, to provide short-term assistance to employees and their families. The company, chief executive Cottle, and other senior executives will contribute to this fund.
Its leadership will continuously evaluate the situation to assess how long it will keep these measures in place.
“Like many others, our industry is facing unprecedented challenges from the widespread impact of the Covid-19 outbreak,” Cottle said. “We are working around the clock to take care of our employees, customers, shareholders and other key stakeholders in these difficult times, while providing uninterrupted products and services to those customers who continue to operate.
“Thankfully, we came into this year with a very strong liquidity position, including substantial capacity under our revolver, and also refinanced our debt, extended our major maturities and lowered our interest expense. We have a diverse portfolio of assets, product and services that uniquely position us to weather this crisis.”
The suppler said it remained committed to supporting customers by continuing to provide its solutions to lottery, igaming, sportsbook and land-based casino customers, while its social gaming subsidiary SciPlay was still publishing free-to-play apps.
The US gambling industry has largely ground to a halt as a result of the pandemic, with all commercial casinos closed and only a few smaller tribal venues still operating, and the nascent sports betting sector implemented by the suspension of all major leagues.
This has prompted operators to implement measures to mitigate the impact, with Penn National Gaming and Churchill Downs furloughing staff. MGM Resorts, meanwhile, has set up an emergency relief fund for staff, to which the operator has donated $1m.