Story dated January 11, 2002
Yet another fascinating article on the subject of pinball reaches us. This time it's from an American magazine called Vending Times. In a refreshingly detailed look at pinball from the operators' view point, Vending Times suggests there is a resurgence ahead although it is realistic in it's likely scale.
Some interesting details come out of the article such as the fact that 60% of Stern's sales now go to the US and 40% outside the country, the opposite state of affairs to a few years ago.
The number of pinball games in the US has fallen steadily from 1 million in 1990 to 300,000 today.
A quote from SPI's Gary Stern takes his previous comments about the company's relationship with Pat Lawlor Design one stage further. Lawlor had revealed at Expo how his company would be making another game for SPI. Gary Stern says: "Pat Lawlor is working on another game for us and we plan to do at least one game with him per year."
As we revealed back in July last year, it is Gary Stern's intention to continue the use of licensed themes. He confirms this is the article saying: "As for licensed themes, I think some are stronger than others but our three products a year will be licensed products."
But game sales are not growing. Stern estimates global sales remain stable at 8,000-10,000 units annually, much as they have been for a couple of years now.
Apart from Gary Stern, the author spoke to Jack Guarnieri of Pinballsales.com, Sterns technical support manager Joe Blackwell, Dave Cadieux of Arcade Amusements and Stern business affairs director Shelly Sax.
The full article can be viewed here and it really is worth the time to read through it in its entirety as there is some inside knowledge there.
© Pinball News 2002