The Scientific Games factory in Montreal: Your scratch cards are made in Quebec again

The pride of the 258 employees at a little-known Hochelaga-Maisonneuve factory in Montreal has just gained sound, while their employer just regained the title of Loto-Québec’s ‘principal partner’.

“We couldn’t be happier. We really did everything we could to achieve this, and we succeeded,” said Marc-André Doyon, Vice President of Scientific Games in the country, with relief during our visit.

Located a few hundred meters east of the Olympic Stadium, the American company is not used to attracting attention. However, it came into the limelight in 2014 after Loto-Québec decided against all odds to use its Manitoba competitor (Pollard banknote) to produce more than 80% of its instant games.

That first $38 million deal at Pollard was then renewed twice (2019 and 2021) until the American team managed to win back the state company’s favor. The confidential contract has a term of five years.

Marc-André Doyon, Vice President of Scientific Games for Canada.

Photo Pierre Paul Poulin

Marc-André Doyon, Vice President of Scientific Games for Canada.

Highest security

The Montreal plant, one of five owned by the American worldwide, is undoubtedly one of the safest in the province. No one is allowed to enter, and the few rare visitors who are admitted there have to submit to security measures reminiscent of border controls at airports.

“If you think about it, our work is like those who print money,” explains Mr. Doyon. Governmental bodies everywhere entrust us with the printing of their lottery tickets; It is our job to fulfill this mandate while adhering to the highest possible standards. We have to be infallible, we simply have no room for error. »

The 11,000 square meter factory never sleeps. Its presses “run” constantly, 24 hours a day, 51 weeks a year, more than 20 million scratch cards per day on behalf of about forty gambling companies around the world (Australia, United States of America, France, Hungary, etc.). Until recently, 90% of production was exported.

Back to Montreal

Things could change as Loto-Québec is repatriating most of its scratch card production from Winnipeg to its Boulevard de l’Assomption facility in Montreal. After all, at least 20% of your activities should be dedicated to her.

The boss remains more than discreet about the terms of the proposal, which will have enabled her to regain that contract she had escaped. There would have been no employment or investment commitment, he swears.

Still, the last major investment ($20 million) to buy a new 70-meter long press – the true central nervous system of the house – was a dozen years ago.

innovation and ecology

The company says it invests hundreds of thousands a year in research and development, which has enabled it, among other things, to design tickets from recycled paper.

“Like us, Loto-Québec is recognized as a flagship that likes to innovate by offering new products. That suits us perfectly, explains the Vice President.

“Because we can come up with new ideas,” he continues, “if no customer dares to try it, it’s useless. As the saying goes: It takes two to dance. And Loto-Québec is definitely a dance partner of choice for us. »

Scientific games around the world

Employee : 3000

The headquarters : Atlanta, GA)

Production Units: Five (Canada, Chile, China, USA, UK)

Customers : 130 lottery companies from 50 countries.

Scope : 70% of the world retail sales of lottery games are produced by this company

Scientific Games in Montreal

Employee : 258

Hourly : 24 hours a day

Annual production: 8 billion banknotes (standard units of 2 x 4 inches)

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