The Hippodrome Casino in London's Leicester Square is an entertainment landmark with a long history.
Show venue, circus, floodable arena, Talk of The Town nightclub where the biggest stars of the '50s and '60s dazzled live audiences in a vegas-style setting, burlesque club and now casino; The Hippodrome has brought glamour and glitz to the West End since 1900.
Today, The Hippodrome is a six-storey collection of businesses: three casinos including the gaming floor and championship poker rooms, eight bars, a theatre, multiple restaurants including The Heliot Steak House and a three-story roof terrace. This is a very complex, highly regulated site where downtime is not an option.
As proud resilience partner to this entertainment giant, ITHQ has delivered and managed over 20 solutions that help essential systems run smoothly and reliably, whilst meeting the most stringent compliance standards.
Starting with a successful CCTV system upgrade, ITHQ solutions and services now include new multiple wired and wireless networks for staff and customers, gaming networks, and the production server environment.
From strategic planning, to product selection, project management and technical installation, solutions are continuously reviewed and improved, underpinned by 24 / 7 support, at all levels from engineer to VCISO.
Since the initial CCTV refresh project in 2021, ITHQ has become the resilience partner of The Hippodrome, delivering and managing both standalone and ongoing technology projects. Solutions cover infrastructure, cyber security, disaster recovery and more.
We have a personal relationship with some key people at ITHQ. Always available, they always answer your calls and texts as they come through. It's a collaborative effort. We have a small team here and what I appreciate is that after installations, they take the time to train the team and walk them through in detail ... so my team is improving as well, which is great.
We've worked with a lot of suppliers in the past and one of ITHQ's strengths is that they have a really broad skill set, with expertise in many different areas. While we do have extremely advanced infrastructure and cyber solutions in place, one of our contracts is £100 a month for phishing simulation software; a really effective tool that helps train our staff and improves our security posture. It's a good example of the broad range of services that we receive from ITHQ.
First day of our support contract, three hours in; all hell broke loose in the casino. There was a flood downstairs - New Year's Day 3am - and I had senior ITHQ guys on the phone dealing with our issue here ... it really showed their commitment. If they're available at three o'clock on New Year's Day then they're always going to be available in my opinion. Since then the relationship has grown again and again. They are always available and reliable for us as a business, which is key.
Philip Mitchell, IT Director, The Hippodrome Casino
For twenty-first century casinos such as The Hippodrome, technology underpins, drives and informs every aspect of the business.
The focus is firmly on compliance, operational excellence and fraud reduction. Every solution requires careful strategic planning to actively address vulnerabilities, enhance customer and employee experience and mitigate risk.
Open 24 hours a day, 364 days per year (closed only on Christmas Day), The Hippodrome is a buzzing hive that never sleeps. And with cyber threats evolving daily, every corner of the system must be resilient.
Managing the interlinked solutions required by such a complex business requires a partnership between internal and external teams built firmly on trust.
As the infrastructure projects are settling down, we can clearly see the amount of traffic going through each particular system and the impact our improved solutions are making to the business. On one customer Wi-Fi system for example, we have 1600 concurrent connections every weekend so performance is obviously vital. Our systems show that not only has the amount of monitored endpoints doubled, but the number of alerts has actually reduced to one-sixth of what they were.
The fine-tuning of these systems after the installation, the aftercare if you like, is critical to keeping everything doing what it is supposed to be doing for The Hippodrome. And while the robustness of the wifi solutions is key for operations, on the back end they are producing an amazing amount of customer data for our analytics teams to look at. They get some really useful marketing campaigns out of who uses what devices, the top websites people go to here etc. This data is telling us where the hotspots are, where people go to when they come out of the theatre after a show, for example. It's helped for wayfinding and signage and in a multitude of areas that we did no expect - and that is an added benefit of the work ITHQ does for us.