Bank Note Co. wins OLG contract to modernize bingo halls

Courtney Symons
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The Canadian Bank Note Co. secured an eight-year contract for an undisclosed sum to assist the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp. with their charitable gaming systems in bingo halls across the province.

(Stock photo)

All proceeds from bingo halls go towards charities in the region, and CBN will assist the OLG in modernizing the halls.

"We're providing all the IT infrastructure so they can do more than just the old fashioned paper bingo," said Craig Bascombe, CFO and president of the lottery division for CBN.

The Ottawa-headquartered company will be responsible for designing, implementing and managing the modernized technology infrastructure for OLG's charitable bingo and gaming division, and upgrading the halls to accommodate electronic gaming, Mr. Bascombe said.

CBN will hire up to 25 new staff in its Sault Ste. Marie office where a small software shop has been working on bingo software. The new staff will be added in order to scale the team to accommodate the contract. OLG also owns an office in the northern Ontario town, with about 600 employees.

Around 800 people work in the company's Ottawa office, some of whom are technical specialists who will help support the OLG contract, but no major changes will occur locally as a result of the project, Mr. Bascombe said.

CBN began as a security printing company and has evolved to provide other security solutions including passport and driver's license issuing systems, as well as printing currency.

The company worked with the Bank of Canada to design the new Canadian polymer banknotes, and is now producing them.

Passport Canada recently commissioned CBN to manufacture the new Canadian ePassport, and to develop and support the technology involved with it.

In recent years, the company has ventured into running secure lottery systems and currently runs lotteries in 10 countries in the Caribbean and Central America.

With the OLG contract in place, Mr. Bascombe said the company hopes to look at other lottery systems outside of Ontario who are looking to modernize their technology.

The contract comes after the OLG announced its plan for sweeping changes to modernize the provincial gambling and gaming industry, and to potentially build new casinos in 29 geographic zones across Ontario including Ottawa.

"This agreement with CBN is a critical component of OLG's charitable bingo and gaming revitalization initiative," stated Tom Marinelli, OLG's chief information officer. "This initiative represents a new model of collaboration with commercial operators, charity associations and municipalities intended to sustain, modernize and grow revenue for charitable organizations across the province of Ontario."

CBN has approximately 1,350 employees with offices in Ottawa, Sault Ste. Marie, Calgary and internationally.

Organizations: Note Co., Bank of Canada, Passport Canada

Geographic location: Ottawa, Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario Northern Ontario Caribbean Central America Calgary

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