How UGG Led Through the Pandemic

Universal Gaming Group (UGG) is a full-service Illinois slot machine operator with more than 40 years of gaming & amusement experience. We currently partner with over 200 locations throughout the state. To say 2020 has been challenging would be an understatement, but we’ve worked hard to help protect the health and well-being of our staff and partners in the midst of a global pandemic. While nearly every Illinois Terminal Operator furloughed their account managers and went dark, we put all our efforts into supporting our establishment partners, providing much-needed support, guidance and information throughout the 100+ days of lockdown.

Keeping in Touch

  • Kept our full Relationship Management team on the payroll and in contact with our partners
  • Paid March establishment commissions early, helping UGG locations maximize their cash flow
  • Because information is key in times of crisis, we provided bi-weekly updates and guidance on a wide-ranging set of topics:
    • Illinois Gaming Board (IGB) updates and instructions
    • “Restore Illinois” progress
    • Directory of state & federal resources
    • Summary of small business grant and loan options (SBA loans, Payroll Protection Program, etc)
    • Information on service industry employee assistance funds
  • Shared our detailed Resumption Plan and timelines, IGB protocols, and changes to video gaming regulations
  • Created illinoisbusinessopen.com, a directory of restaurants that remained open during the shutdown. All Illinois businesses, regardless of their relationship with UGG, could add themselves to the directory—no strings attached

Preparing for Reopening

  • Brought back 100% of UGG staff 10 days prior to opening to ensure that our partners would be ready to go live on July 1
  • Installed protective dividers and compliance signage in every UGG location, at no cost to our partners
  • Disinfected every game and redemption terminal
  • Provided an initial supply of sanitizing and protective equipment to everyone—including masks for players who left theirs behind
  • Our service hotline was up and running as gaming resumed, helping our partners resolve service issues as quickly as possible

Safety is Priority One

At UGG, we look forward to getting back to business as usual—only better. We continue to take every precaution to help keep our partners’ gaming areas compliant and safe. If you didn’t get the support you expect, then you deserve better. Call us to learn more about the UGG approach.

Safety in These Numbers

  • 11 days to get all UGG sites ready to reopen
  • 29 UGG employees deployed in the field
  • Over 2,100 safety & compliance tasks completed across 200 locations
  • 100% of UGG partners who followed our guidance during the shutdown posted gaming revenue on July 1st