Batavia Downs to expand ticket giveaway programs, gaming commission investigators 'fully satisfied'
On Monday, members of Batavia Downs management announced their commitment to expand their ticket giveaway programs, collectively known as “Suitestakes,” at their gaming facility.
Batavia Downs plans to enter into a three-year agreement with Pegula Sports Entertainment for a suite at the Buffalo Football Stadium for events as part of Batavia Downs’ Ticket Promotion Program.
Batavia Downs just finished the first year of a three-year agreement with Pegula Sports and Entertainment for a Suite at the Key Bank Center.
The “Suitestakes” promotion has been in place at Batavia Downs since 2014 and has expanded over the years. As part of Batavia Downs’ Marketing Plan, the purchase and use of all tickets is approved by the New York State Gaming Commission on an annual basis.
The program did receive Gaming Commission approval for the 2019 year.
The promotion was honored with the prestigious Diamond Romero Award by Raving Consulting for its success in generating revenue and enhancing patrons’ relationship with Batavia Downs. The award is judged by an independent group of Casino Marketing Professionals.
“Our Suitestakes program has and continues to help us achieve record results,” said Ryan Hasenauer, director of Marketing of WROTB/Batavia Downs. “We will be expanding the number of times and methods with which we distribute the tickets to ensure future success.
"Revenues from the facility are distributed to the shareholders of Western OTB including the 15 Western and Central New York counties and two cities of Buffalo and Rochester. Our success means more money is given to those municipalities.”
As a public benefit corporation Batavia Downs competes daily with privately run casinos to attract customers. The environment is competitive and Batavia Downs is committed to continuing programs so residents of member municipalities don’t miss out on critical community development revenue.
“Recently, there has been speculation about the propriety of our promotional activities that benefit our customers and whether tickets for sporting events and concerts have been used properly,” said Henry Wojtaszek, president and CEO of WROTB/Batavia Downs. “After those reports, we invited the Gaming Commission to examine our records and interview WROTB officials regarding these allegations.
"Two Gaming inspectors accepted our invitation and we complied expeditiously. Following this review, the inspectors advised WROTB that they were pleased with our cooperation and fully satisfied that the records they reviewed and the interviews they conducted did not raise any issues of concern for the Gaming Commission.“
The board will consider the resolution pertaining to the Buffalo Stadium tickets at their meeting later this month.