Company Strengthens Board with Appointments of Industry Veterans in Gaming, Finance and Software
SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#GWBoard—GameWorks, Inc., an esports and entertainment company for millennials, teens and families with seven locations nationwide, announced today the appointment of three independent directors to its Board of Directors. Effective immediately, the Board will consist of six members in total.
Holly Gagnon, Eric Mersch and Len Wanger were each named members of the Board of Directors joining existing members Philip N. Kaplan, Chairman of the Board, also Chief Executive Officer of the Company and Randall Abrahams and Luke LaHaie, who serve as executive chairman and director, respectively at ExWorks Capital, owner of GameWorks.
As president and chief executive officer of Seneca Gaming Corporation, Gagnon brings extensive expertise to the GameWorks Board in the gaming arena, which spans the course of her 34-year career. In her position at Seneca Gaming Corporation, she oversees operations of Seneca Niagara Resort & Casino in Niagara Falls, N.Y., Seneca Buffalo Creek Casino in Buffalo, N.Y. and Seneca Allegany Resort & Casino in Salamanca, N.Y. She has spent her career focusing on the guest experience, employee engagement and driving bottom line results. This includes senior finance and operations roles at Harrah’s (now part of Caesars) as well as MGM resorts. Gagnon is also a founding board member and chair of the mentorship committee of Global Gaming Women, an organization established by the American Gaming Association to create a broad network that allows peers to connect with their colleagues and female gaming professionals to learn from one another.
Mersch, with nearly 20 years of finance experience, is an equity partner at FLG Partners, where he serves as interim CFO to venture-backed SaaS companies. Mersch specializes in strategic planning, equity and debt fundraising, financial planning and analysis, business intelligence, accounting and auditing. He previously served as chief financial officer, chief accounting officer and vice president-human resources at ZipRealty, a publicly traded real estate technology company. Earlier, he was chief financial officer for VitalStream, a Content Distribution Network (CDN) company, providing data storage and streaming services for digital media companies. His entertainment experience is derived from his roles as director of corporate planning at Caesars Entertainment as well as vice president-finance for Harrah’s and Flamingo Resorts. Early in his career, Mersch served as chief financial officer for Boudin, a national Quick Serve Retail (QSR) chain.
Wanger is chief technology manager for Impossible Objects, a leading, industrial 3D printer manufacturer. He is an expert in software systems and data analytics. He was formerly a technology sector analyst and portfolio manager of the William Harris Investors Technology Fund. Wanger is also a founder or co-founder, of several technology companies, including Interactive Simulations and Patra Corp. He has extensive experience as an investor and advisor to both private and public companies, including, among others, serving as director for VitalStream and AllDigital Holdings. He is involved in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education through his affiliation with The Museum of Science and Industry (Chicago), The Fablab Network and The Acorn Foundation. Wanger is also an advisor to the Fab Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to educating, innovating and inventing through technology and digital fabrication.
“The appointments of independent directors Holly, Eric and Len will complement and strengthen our existing board of owners and officers. Each brings diverse business acumen within their respective areas of expertise, all of which will prove beneficial to GameWorks’ expansion and continued penetration within gaming and esports, a significant growth area for our Company. The new Board compilation will bring vision and related experience to both the Company and industry, and we look forward to the contributions Holly, Eric and Len will make in their Board positions with GameWorks. It’s an exciting time for GameWorks as we capitalize on a brand that has successfully been an entertainment destination for many for more than two decades,” said Philip N. Kaplan, chief executive officer at GameWorks.
Gagnon is a resident of Buffalo, N.Y. Mersch lives in San Francisco. Wanger resides in Chicago.
About GameWorks, Inc.
GameWorks, Inc., is an esports and entertainment company for millennials, teens and families with seven locations nationwide, including those in Las Vegas – Town Square, Chicago – Schaumburg, Seattle – Downtown, Minneapolis – Mall of America, Cincinnati – Newport on the Levee (Ky.), Denver – Northfield/Stapleton and Virginia -Norfolk/Chesapeake. Each action-packed location ranges, on average, from between 20-30,000 square feet and features approximately 140 of the most popular arcade and video games.
GameWorks is recognized nationally for its esports emphasis. All venues feature modern, high-tech and high-touch esports lounges. GameWorks created an atmosphere designed to meet the comfort and optimum performance of gamers. Each full-service, premium GameWorks Esports lounge is equipped with, on average, 20-40 PCs and consoles and an extensive library of approximately 100 of the most popular, up-to-date video games. Venues host hundreds of tournaments and events, attracting tens of thousands of guests annually, who participate, play socially or are spectators. Other interactive activities, ranging from laser tag, billiards and other special attractions, are offered at various locations. Every location features The Works Kitchen at GameWorks, a new, eclectic, chef-driven restaurant concept that takes a Modern American spin on bar classics.
GameWorks also operates TableTop Tap House, a top-rated restaurant, sports bar and social game hall serving modern American tavern-style food and drinks in San Francisco.