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Issue Date: Vol. 50, No. 5, May 2010, Posted On: 4/26/2010

Robbins Buys Shelti Inc., A Maker Of Pool And Dart Games

Nick Montano
Shelti Inc., Mark Robbins, pool table, billiards, air hockey, foosball, table soccer, electronic dart board, dartboard, hockey games, coin-operated games, coin-op sports, coin-op, recreation, arcade games, tavern games, bar games, Gaelco Darts, Radikal Darts, Dick Shelton, Valley Recreation Products

BAY CITY, MI -- Mark Robbins has closed a deal to purchase the assets of Shelti Inc., a maker of pool, dart, foosball and air hockey games based here. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Robbins is best known for bringing air hockey to Dynamo Corp., where he served between 1985 and 1994. Since then his involvement in the coin-op industry was through a small parts business he ran. Under his leadership, Shelti will continue to manufacture and ship its table games out of Bay City's Morton St. facility, which was the original site of Valley Recreation Products' pool table factory, before Valley merged with Dynamo and moved its production to Texas.

Shelti was founded in 2001 by a group of investors from the Bay City, MI, area. Dick Shelton, a founder and chief executive during Shelti's first years, left the company several years ago. He was a former Valley executive.

Today, Shelti's coin-op products include Bayside pool tables, Eye2 electronic dart boards and Pro III foosball tables. For the consumer market, Shelti makes foosball and air hockey tables, and imports a line of domed hockey tables. The Michigan gamemaker is known for its in-house design, engineering and woodworking capabilities.

According to an official announcement, Robbins will retain Shelti's existing personnel, including Randy Eigner, president and chief financial officer; Mick White, director of sales; Bruce Allen, director of engineering; Bob Gatza, manufacturing manager; and Cathy Scarbrough, sales. Allen and Gatza are also former Valley executives. The development of a new coin-op air hockey table will be a main priority for the new owner.

Shelti will also enhance its dartboard line. The company's new communicating board, equipped with real-time video equipment and software, can host players between two locations anywhere in the world. The concept was developed by Spain's Gaelco Darts, which calls its technology Radikal Darts.

During March's AAMA/AMOA Amusement Expo, players in Las Vegas and Barcelona competed against one another in a demonstration of the technology. Shelti's communicating boards are also being tested at NDA's Team Dart event. Shelti plans to market a virtual dartboard employing the Radikal system in North America.

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