Caesars Entertainment and UNLV Partner with Aruba to Advance the Future of Hospitality in Black Fire Innovation Incubator Space

January 21, 2020 GMT

SANTA CLARA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan 21, 2020--

Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company (NYSE: HPE), today announced that Black Fire Innovation TM, a collaboration between Caesars Entertainment and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV), will deploy an Aruba infrastructure in its unique technology incubation hub designed to enable the next generation of retail, entertainment and hospitality experiences.

Black Fire Innovation brings together one of the world’s most diversified casino-entertainment providers in Caesars Entertainment and one of the nation’s top research institutions in UNLV, to drive the future of hospitality with an innovation environment that will encourage and support student entrepreneurship and career development, expand diversification in gaming, showcase a variety of technologies, and explore the possibilities for connected, integrated resorts.


Opening this month and located in Las Vegas at the UNLV Harry Reid Research and Technology Park, the 43,000 square foot facility houses replica elements of a resort with dedicated software development spaces, business acceleration activities, training opportunities and hospitality and gaming labs. The mock hub also includes a commercial kitchen, casino floor, hotel rooms, eSports studio with arena-style seating, Virtual Reality (VR) lab and sportsbook, along with private offices and conference rooms, as well as collaboration and co-working spaces, classrooms and presentation facilities.

As a key technology partner for Black Fire Innovation, Aruba, assisted by implementation partner, Minervaworks, will provide its 535 Series Wi-Fi 6 and 303H Access Points (APs), CX 8300 Series Switches, 2930 Access Switches, Aruba Central cloud management and ClearPass Policy Manager in the first deployment phase. A second phase will include the implementation of Aruba Meridian Location Services and IoT integration technologies. The Aruba solutions will help power key use cases for UNLV students to study and explore including digital signage, wayfinding, eSports gaming, VR, use of IoT in dining and food safety applications, hotel locks and hotel room maintenance.


“At the heart of Black Fire Innovation is exploring true collaboration and connection to propel the future of hospitality and gaming,” said Salil Kulkarni, interim chief information officer at Caesars Entertainment. “Caesars Entertainment has proudly been at the forefront of gaming and innovation for many years and Aruba continues to be an industry leader in providing wireless connectivity and intelligent networks. This partnership will enable Black Fire Innovation to powerfully pursue creativity and entrepreneurship to foster and develop the next generation of gaming and hospitality modernization.”

Wireless connectivity is an essential part of the equation when it comes to delivering new and impactful hospitality experiences. Wi-Fi 6-enabled Black Fire Innovation was created, in part, as a development hub for experimenting and testing out the possibilities of Wi-Fi 6. As a market leader in Wi-Fi 6 and one of the first companies to achieve Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6 certification for its 530 and 550 Series APs, Aruba is working with Caesars Entertainment and UNLV to utilize best-in-class networking technology to facilitate learning and professional development, while discovering solutions that transform the guest and hospitality employee experience for the better.

“Black Fire Innovation will help drive the future of hospitality and gaming technology, and its development is made possible through collaborations with advanced technology partners like Aruba,” said Zach Miles, associate vice president for Economic Development at UNLV. “Working with Aruba gives us the tools we need to take great ideas to the next level, and supports our efforts to offer real world opportunities to the next generation of industry leaders – our students – in a proving ground like no other.”

About Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company

Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company, is a leading provider of secure, intelligent networks that enable customers to thrive and deliver amazing digital experiences in the mobile, IoT and cloud era. We are changing the rules of networking to make it simple for IT and organizations to bridge the physical and digital worlds at the Edge.

To learn more, visit Aruba at For real-time news updates follow Aruba on Twitter and Facebook, and for the latest technical discussions on mobility and Aruba products visit Airheads Social at

About Black Fire Innovation

As the flagship tenant in UNLV’s Harry Reid Research & Technology Park in Las Vegas, Black Fire Innovation will encompass a 43,000 square-foot innovation space when it opens in January 2020. It will operate as an academic incubator, offering opportunities for students, entrepreneurs, and private industry partners who want to advance their research and test concepts. The collaborative space will give researchers unparalleled access to conduct on-demand testing of new ideas and products in a space that houses a mock casino floor, replica hotel rooms, an esports studio with virtual reality facilities and a state-of-the-art kitchen with commercial capabilities. Caesars Entertainment and UNLV’s Division of Research and Economic Development will also occupy the space, advancing work that is at the forefront of new customer experiences across the integrated resort ecosystem, including hospitality, retail, entertainment, and associated verticals. The master-planned UNLV Harry Reid Research & Technology Park is a partnership among UNLV, the UNLV Research Foundation, and Gardner Company – and will serve as a catalyst to unite business, research and technology and advance economic development efforts throughout Southern Nevada. Learn more at

About Caesars Entertainment Corporation

Caesars Entertainment is one of the world’s most diversified casino-entertainment providers and the most geographically diverse U.S. casino-entertainment company. Since its beginning in Reno, Nevada, in 1937, Caesars Entertainment has grown through development of new resorts, expansions and acquisitions. Caesars Entertainment’s resorts operate primarily under the Caesars®, Harrah’s® and Horseshoe® brand names. Caesars Entertainment’s portfolio also includes the Caesars Entertainment UK family of casinos. Caesars Entertainment is focused on building loyalty and value with its guests through a unique combination of great service, excellent products, unsurpassed distribution, operational excellence and technology leadership. Caesars Entertainment is committed to its employees, suppliers, communities and the environment through its PEOPLE PLANET PLAY framework. For more information, please visit

About UNLV

UNLV is a doctoral-degree-granting institution of more than 31,000 students and 3,500 faculty and staff that is recognized among the top three percent of the nation’s research institutions - those with “very high research activity” - by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. UNLV offers a broad range of respected academic programs and is committed to recruiting and retaining top students and faculty, educating the region’s diversifying population and workforce, and driving economic activity for Southern Nevada. Learn more at

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CONTACT: Kathleen Keith

Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company


kathleen.keith@hpe.comJennifer Miu

Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company

+1 650-236-9532




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