This was Gary Stern's Press Release after the announcement. He sounded a little nervous to me.
"Dear Ladies & Gentlemen:
It has been reported by a pinball enthusiasts' publication that WMS has sold and/or licensed some of its assets formerly used in its pinball business to an Australian game distributor, Wayne Gillard.
We have not verified this report. Mr. Gillard has been attempting to design a pinball machine for about a year.
We believe that the assets transferred include:
. Certain copyrights and trademarks, including old WMS game designs and names to the extent that the titles and art are not licensed from others;
. Pinball patents that have not yet expired (U.S. patent laws require the owner to pay substantial maintenance fees); and
. Some information regarding WMS parts.
It was also reported that Mr. Gillard acquired a right to use the Bally name. We question the extent, if any, and the duration, of the right Mr. Gillard has received.
We believe that inventory, tooling and Williams' name are not included in the assets transferred or licensed. Existence, ownership and location of the tooling is questionable.
It is unclear whether Mr. Gillard now intends to remake old WMS games and/or manufacture original designs. We believe that the design and manufacture of hybrid video pinball games would be no more financially viable for Mr. Gillard than it was for WMS.
We believe the assets included in the transaction would not have added to our business if we had acquired them, nor do they detract from our business in the hands of others. Stern Pinball has all tooling, intellectual property rights and other elements necessary for our business. We continue to have games designed by the best designers of the pinball industry. Our service and parts departments are second to none, supporting the games we have manufactured. We will continue to develop new and exciting products as we have for nearly 20 years.
Should you have questions, please contact me.