John Purcell, CEO of DigiWheel: The Irishman
Spin the DigiWheel
John Purcell is the Irish-born CEO of DigiWheel. He has over 30 years of experience in the gaming industry in a variety of roles. Some noteworthy moments in his career include developing the world’s first multimedia payphone in the 1990s, developing multiple patents and formerly owning Ireland’s largest bingo hall.
DigiWheel is an Evolution company founded by John Purcell in 2010. It is the world’s only HD Digital Gaming Wheel to play any spinning wheel game ever created. Terminals, Table versions and kiosk/companion app versions run Big Six, Roulette or any other game variant. Games can be manually changed, scheduled, or chosen by customers. DigiWheel’s rotating 2m HD circular screen can also show videos, promos and/or live sports TV while in gaming use.v
This episode discusses the following topics:
- John’s relationship with the previous guest on the show Todd Haushalter of Evolution Gaming and DigiWheel’s acquisition by Evolution (18:00)
- The role of the Max Bet podcast in John reaching out to Todd Haushalter and joining Evolution (20:00)
- Swedish cultural influences on Evolution’s drive for excellence (26:00)
- John’s entrepreneurial background and the importance of staying focused on specific roles rather than juggling too many (27:00)
- “At DigiWheel we care enough about each other to not let one another fail” (30:00)
- DigiWheel’s role at Evolution as a relatively small project within (30:00)
- How DigiWheel’s technology can improve land-based casinos (32:00)
- Mechanics of the digital wheel (34:00)
- Ideas to improve gaming and make machine gaming more social in a lounge format (37:00)
- John’s Irish background and living in Cork (41:00)
- Gifting the hosts rare Irish whiskey (43:00)
- John’s serendipitous entrance into the gaming industry and early career experiences in the US (48:00)
- Gambling in Ireland and the prevalence of sports betting (52:00)
- What potential can be found in the US gaming market (56:00)
- Digital gaming and creating more meaningful experiences for gamers (1:00:00)
- The downsides and limitations of Omnichannel (1:03:00)
- Big picture trends and potential in the gaming industry (1:05:00)
- “Long wave commerce and content are king” (1:09:00)
- Comparisons of digital wheels to roller coaster technology (1:12:00)
- Dealing with strict regulations in the US gaming market compared to Ireland and Europe in general (1:16:00)
- Discussing his previous experiences owning a casino in Ireland (1:18:00)
“At DigiWheel, we care enough about each other not to let one another fail”— John Purcell
“Longwave commerce and content are king”— John Purcell
In 2010 John Purcell recognized an opportunity within the gaming sector. With nearly thirty years of experience as an industry consultant and speaker, John saw that the traditional spinning wheel wasn’t fulfilling its potential. He envisioned a spinning wheel with a far more immersive user experience and the potential to increase revenue for casinos.
John’s ambitious vision was to reinvent the spinning wheel. The goal was to create a digital wheel that allowed the user to experience multiple games, HD video, live streaming events and promotional advertising. The challenge was to ensure this technology could function in the traditional act of spinning the wheel 360 degrees.
In 2015, the Purcell family began the arduous task of pioneering the world’s first 360° rotating HD digital spinning wheel. After five years of hard work, significant time and investment, John and his sons launched the DigiWheel to great acclaim at the G2E 2019 in Las Vegas.
More About DigiWheel
In 2021, DigiWheel was acquired by Evolution further strengthening Evolution’s online gaming portfolio through DigiWheel’s unique and innovative digital technology being blended into Evolution’s online Live Casino games and game shows. The Evolution portfolio already includes successful wheel-based games including Dream Catcher, Crazy Time and other games.
DigiWheel will continue as a brand in its own right within the Evolution Group – alongside Evolution, NetEnt, Red Tiger, Ezugi and Big Time Gaming – adding even greater diversity to the group’s product offering for both online and land-based operators.
About MaxBet Media
Two gambling enthusiasts, with a passion for all things gambling. Whether pressing our luck in the high limit room, testing the money line in the sportsbook, or just making friendly wagers on the back nine… we love to gamble! Our careers in the gaming industry have shown us that this industry is filled with some amazing people, with even more amazing stories. Our goal is to help provide a platform for those stories to be shared, while also helping everyone look good in the process.
About Landon Michael Jones
Manager and Co-Founder
Landon’s fascination with the casino industry began when he was just 12 years old and ultimately landed him in Las Vegas, where he earned a degree in hospitality management from University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV). For over a decade, Landon has been involved in various aspects of the gaming industry, including operations, management, and supply & distribution.
Landon’s tenacity and passion afforded him the opportunity to serve the gaming industry’s key players and regions throughout the United States. Landon enjoys collaborating with industry leaders to create the ultimate gaming experience for the end-user.
About Mike McKiski
Manager and Co-Founder
A seasoned gaming industry executive and expert in building, marketing, and monetizing gambling related technologies, Mike McKiski currently serves as President of MaxBet Media, Inc., the digital media upstart delivering an unfiltered, authentic, and at times irreverent look at the people who are driving the gambling industry forward.
As he was founding MaxBet Media, Inc., McKiski worked for PlayAGS, Inc. (NYSE: AGS) serving as the company’s Vice President of Sales, with revenue responsibility for the Western United States and all of Canada. Under McKiski’s leadership the revenue team doubled in size and grew revenues over 300%. He is a market transformation catalyst who has been at the forefront of launching mobile and social marketing products for hundreds of casino operators across the continent.