SkyCity Entertainment Group

SkyCity Entertainment Group

2007 ranking: Unlisted

Senior IS executive: Sarah Ellisdon, IS governance and change manager Reports to: GM information services

Size of IS shop: 72

PCs: 1236

Mobile PCs: 101

Terminals: 464

Hand-held devices: 88

Total screens: 1889

Industry: Arts, entertainment and recreation

PC environment: Windows 2000, XP; HP

Server environment: Windows NT, 2000, 2003; HP

DBMS: Oracle, SQL

Address: Federal House, 86 Federal Street, Auckland


Key IS projects this year: Data centre, gaming systems customer


IN 2008 SKYCITY Entertainment Group has a new CEO, Nigel Morrison,

following the departure of former CEO Evan Davies last June. In a March

New Zealand Herald article, Morrison said his efforts as the Group’s

CEO will be to improve core casino businesses in Auckland, Adelaide

and Darwin and grow internal revenues over the next 12 to 18 months,

before looking outside of the business for growth through acquisitions

in Australia and Asia.

He said economic downturns were diffi cult for tourism businesses,

particularly with the high New Zealand and Australian dollars, but

SkyCity’s entertainment focus would stand it in good stead with the

local market.

Sarah Ellisdon is IS governance and change manager at SkyCity, and is

a member of the management team heading an IT department of 72. She

says the key focus of the IS group in 2008 is to support core growth in the

business and enhance information availability for the business to act on.

Challenges include data centre capacity and ICT staff retention.

Current ICT projects underway for the Group include a foray into unified communications

across a VoIP platform, server virtualisation and consolidation

for the efficiencies those technologies deliver, along with ongoing work

on the Group’s CRM, e-business and Knowledge Management systems

— all business critical for a casino and entertainment focused business.

SkyCity is also implementing business continuity and disaster recovery

systems. It is extending wireless and mobile technologies, with the three

largest projects in the coming 12 months identified as upgrades to data

centres, gaming systems, along with customer management strategy

and solutions.

Datacom, Datacraft and HP are outsourcing partners for the Group,

and Ellisdon says SkyCity is neutral regarding the trend towards mergers

between large software companies.

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