International Game Technology (IGT) will invest more than $1 billion over the next five years on research and development in a move that will ensure its reign as a leader in the slot machine and casino systems industry, company executives said last week.
"There is nobody that is even close to that level of spending," TJ Matthews, IGT chairman and chief executive, said of industry competitors.
The investment, he said, will ensure IGT is in "every market, potentially as the market leader."
"We will be the innovator of the industry, able to dictate its direction in terms of how technology is deployed, how operations are improved.
"That’s what those dollars mean," Matthews said.
Company executives said 2007 was a record year for the firm, the largest maker of casino games, despite a decline in the number of units shipped around the world.
IGT reported net income of $508.2 million for 2007 on revenues of $2.6 billion. That compares with income of $473.6 million on $2.5 billion in total revenue the year before.