As is the case for so many successful business ideas, from the off, the SHUFL story was about overcoming a business challenge. The journey of discovery that followed was a game changer for shuffleboard.
Eleven years ago, Geir Oterhals, Jarle Jensen and Frode Jacobsen, our Norwegian founders were running high-end venues and regarded as Scandinavian hospitality industry leaders with an impressive reputation. Consistently pushing the boundaries to take their venues to the next level, in 2010, they were brainstorming how to generate more revenue and persuade their customers to stay in their venues for longer.
Then, on a serendipitous trip to the US, they discovered shuffleboard and realised it could be just the solution they were looking for. So, in true entrepreneurial spirit, they promptly brought some shuffleboards back to Norway and have never looked back.
The shuffleboards were an overnight success. They quickly established a new company, Rego, so that they could start selling full size 22ft Championship grade shuffleboards as standard to other venues in Norway.
Game Changer: The Curve
But the real game changer for shuffleboard was the introduction of the Curve, which changed the game forever. When we install a SHUFL table, our technicians can adjust the tension to create the optimal playing surface. Try doing this on a standard table and the wood will crack. The single most important innovation in the history of shuffleboard, our revolutionary curved playfield enhances the playing experience and takes the game of shuffleboard to the next level.
The concave playing surface or SHUFL curve, as it has become known, has become our number one point of difference versus our competitors, adding a new dimension to the game by enhancing the fun for beginners and offering a new challenge for advanced players. Importantly, the curve keeps people playing and staying for longer, which ultimately means additional revenue for venues with a SHUFL table.
In 2012, the company was renamed European Shuffleboard to reflect the fact that the introduction of the curve and subsequent advancement of the game was completely unique to us and Europe.
Today, the curve remains our USP and one of our key success factors.
Do the SHUFL
Hot on the heels of huge success in Norway, we expanded into other markets: Sweden, Denmark, the UK, Australia and most recently Germany.
The UK team set the latest evolution of the company in motion in 2018, launching as SHUFL.: the first and only consumer facing shuffleboard brand serving the hospitality industry and corporates. This meant that we were no longer simply a product supplier but a venue partner delivering a complete experiential gaming concept.
Since then, our focus has been on building a worldwide community of shuffleboard players by providing added value support to our venues. This includes using our SHUFL Brand Ambassadors to run tournaments and putting in place new business models such as revenue share, which translates into joint accountability with our venues, encouraging collaboration and commitment.
In 2018 new shareholders joined the business, leading us to transition all markets to the SHUFL brand and launch our multi-language, global website, playshufl.com.
Entrepreneurship is at the heart of our company culture and providing a genuine business solution is the name of the SHUFL game. THAT visit to the US has had a lasting impact on the hospitality industry and how people choose to socialise. We’re proud to be the driving force behind introducing a brand-new concept to Europeans.
The SHUFL story continues…