The company produced its first machine in 1953, and was listed on the Australian Stock Exchange in 1996. The company was founded by Len Ainsworth, whose family maintains a substantial stake in the company, but is now chairman of a different Gaming company, Ainsworth Game Technology. Aristocrat is licensed to distribute slot machines and other Gaming products in over 200 jurisdictions (note that many countries, such as Australia, have a number of different gaming-licence jurisdictions).
The company employs 2,080 people. Company revenue during 2004 was in excess of A$1.1 billion. This is in contrast to earlier financial crises that the company has suffered, mainly associated with licence rejections in Nevada and dishonoured contracts in South America.
Aristocrat's CEO blamed the US subprime mortgage crisis for bad financial results in 2008, despite the fact that competing companies have experienced record growth in the same time period. As a result of the expected drop in revenue, the CEO enacted sweeping budget cuts, including large-scale retrenchments of staff from all areas of the Business. The company again faced difficult market conditions in 2009 with its full year resulting in a net loss of $157.8 million. In July 2014 Aristocrat agreed to buy Video Gaming Technologies for about $1.3 billion to triple its North American Business amid falling profit in Australia. On August 10, 2017, it acquired mobile game developer Plarium for $500 million to enter into moble Gaming On November 30, 2017, it acquired mobile game developer Big Fish Games for US$990 million.