TAB Conference Call - TABTEXT Update and Retail Objectives

26 November 2020

This week a number of Club Managers along with Clubs New Zealand staff were invited to participate in a conference call with TAB GM Broadcasting and Operations, Edward Rennell.  The purpose of the call was to allow the TAB to provide further details on the TABTEXT project and to provide an update on TAB retail objectives and priorities over the next 12 months.  As well as provide an opportunity for club managers to discuss any other TAB related topics.

Edward acknowledged that the last few years has seen the TAB focus heavily on tech at the expense of the retail arm.  The focus now, is taking things back to basics, retail, people and products and giving retail the attention it deserves.

TABTEXT Project

TABTEXT and RDS are failing at many sites.  The TAB has launched a project to replace TABTEXT at all retail sites.  The TAB will be releasing comms in the next few days which will provide further details on the project and what clubs can expect.  The updates are anticipated to roll out from December with the replacement and/fix completed by February 2021.

Once the TABTEXT project is completed phase two will involve working through the fixes needed for the Retail Display Screens (RDS).

Wayne Williams, Club Waimea asked what the criteria was for clubs to have TABTEXT and RDS as this is something Club Waimea has never been offered, despite the growth the club has seen over recent years.  Edward confirmed it is a venue volume/bet volume consideration, however work needs to be done to create consistency across TAB sites.

GEO FENCING

Edward then brought us up to speed on the GEO Fencing trials that are currently taking place.  Effectively geo fencing will allow the TAB to identify account activity taking place within a TAB site (someone using their phone to place a bet while sitting at the leaner in the club).  Edward acknowledged that the drive to digital has impacted site turnover and that if someone is using their phone to place a bet within the club that should be considered turnover for the venue.

This project is still a work in progress and the finer details need to be considered.  We will keep you all up to speed on the progress of this project and what clubs can expect and we hope to be able to share some further information shortly as too how it has been working during tests.

ONGOING SST PROGRAMME

We all know there are a raft of issues with the SSTs, there is a program in place to try fix some of these issues.  Trials of new SSTs are planned for early in the new year – with roll out anticipated of mid to late 2021.  Ideally new SSTs will be lighter and much cheaper for the TAB to purchase.

NEW FORM PROTOTYPE

They are currently trialing a new form prototype which aims to replace the paper sheets that sites spend a lot of time printing and sticking up on the walls.  This is TV display which contains all the information that would normally be on the white sheets.

More details will be released following the trial.

GENERAL DISCUSSION

There was brief discussion regarding SKY television and the associated costs.  Edward confirmed that there are contractual obligations between SKY and TAB which need to play out and that there is not likely to be a solution to this problem in the immediate future.

Dean Candy from Upper Hutt asked about retail promotions and whether clubs can expect to see more retail promotions or even the digital promotions also being offered in the retail setting.  Edward explained that this is something they are working towards and we should expect to see more retail promotions going forward.

The turnover threshold was discussed and whether clubs that had lost SSTs in recent years could expect to have them back.  Keith raised the issue of declining turnover in sites being linked to increased account betting.  While careful not to confirm or deny anything there may be a chance for sites to be considered for an SST again but at this stage, they would need to meet certain criteria following investigation from the retail team.

This was a positive first meeting with the TAB retail team and is intended to be the beginning of quarterly updates/discussions between TAB and ClubTABs.  In between these quarterly meetings, Larry and Edward and the retail team have scheduled a number of meetings, where appropriate Clubs New Zealand will keep member clubs updated.  Please ensure that you are getting in touch with your TAB reps and if you are have any questions or concerns regarding the TAB please contact National Office on 0800 425 827 or email larry@clubsnz.com and we will ensure that it is raised as part of our ongoing discussions.

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