Category Archive : gambling

Interwetten to offer Golden Race’s virtual games

Interwetten will offer Golden Race’s range of virtual sports and games after the two firms secured an agreement.

The partnership will allow the supplier to continue its growth in Europe, with its content now available in more than 50,000 betting shops and 400 websites.

Golden Race also recently signed a deal with 888 Holdings, while DraftKings has also expanded into virtuals in the US with Inspired Entertainment.

Golden Race CEO & founder Martin Wachter said: “Thanks to this partnership Golden Race will reach Interwetten’s big audience with the latest virtual sports and games.

“It is a very important alliance for us and we are very proud, as it is known Interwetten only partners with the best software companies.”

Operator Interwetten has enjoyed a fruitful time as of late, posting its most successful financial results in 2019, which saw gross gaming revenue grow 25% year-on-year to €99.5m ($107.5m).

Speaking at the Betting In Face Of COVID-19 virtual conference last week, Golden Race CEO Wachter said he sees “big growth” in the in-play virtual sports betting market and believes the vertical will grow even when live sports returns.

Remote Darts League invites fans to compete

This weekend, the Remote Darts League (RDL), a new events arm set up by FSB, is offering darts fans a unique chance to play against an RDL professional of their choice. They’re also streaming it live on YouTube.

“We all need to adapt during these difficult times and providing new live and remote content for sports fans works,” says Dave McDowell, CEO of FSB. “In two short weeks, we’ve been able to produce a professional event, live streaming plus data and odds feeds for bookmakers end to end.”

We’re now on day seven of the first 10-day league, which includes some top professional players such as Jim Williams.  After deciding the final four this weekend, they’ll run two semis and a final match on Monday April 27. Live action will be streamed from professional players’ homes to the homes of their fans. But just beforehand, one lucky promotion winner will be playing their very own pro-am match.

“Remote sports allows us to bring fans closer to players,” adds Kevin Dale, producer and CEO of Farawaysports, the host organisation set up by FSB for the event.

Kambi Q1 revenue up 33%, alongside profit rise

Kambi Group has posted a 33% year-on-year revenue increase for Q1, despite business being impacted by the coronavirus outbreak, which has led to a suspension in all major sport.

Revenue until 31 March was up to €27.9m ($30m), while profit saw a significant rise. Indeed, profit after tax rose 140% to €4.8m, while operating profit was up 162%, to €6.8m.

Alongside the rise in revenue and profit, operator turnover increased 27% for the quarter.

Before the suspension of live sport and a reduced schedule from 12 March, average daily operator turnover was up 47% and 7% higher quarter-on-quarter.

However, the final weeks of Q1 and early Q2 saw the sports betting supplier run at between 25-30% below previous Q1 levels.

Kambi CEO Kristian Nylén said: “While I have no doubt sports will return, the current situation has understandably led to a reduction in our revenues, although our teams have done a wonderful job to stem the flow and ensure our partners have a good product the sell.

“I’m confident the cost-saving measures we’ve introduced in recent weeks, our strong balance sheet, and the flexibility we have retained to be back running at 100% capacity almost immediately, will ensure we are able to do so, alongside our fantastic partners.”

Kindred Q1 revenue rises 11% but profit takes considerable hit

Kindred Group has reported a year-on-year revenue rise of 11% for Q1 2020; however, the impact of the coronavirus outbreak along with exceptional costs has led to a fall in profit.

Revenue increased to £249.7m ($307.9m), although operating profit dropped 60% from 2019 to £7.3m, with profit after tax falling from £15.1m in 2019, down to just £1m.

Out of total revenue, £122.5m came from sports betting, up 15% on 2019, while casino revenue came in at £112.9m.

While underlying EBITDA was £42.5m, this was adjusted to £32.5m after the operator was hit with a £8.4m fine by the Swedish Gambling Authority (SGA) in March, for offering incentives deemed to be non-compliant

Kindred has since appealed the decision to the Swedish Administrative Court.

Profits were also hit by a £1.9m charge in connection with restructuring costs, along with a £10.8m non-cash charge related to rationalising the group’s portfolio, by closing several smaller brands, coupled with a review of acquired intangibles.

Kindred Group CEO, Henrik Tjärnström, said: “The growth was aided by a higher-than-average betting margin but underlying performance across all regions was positive.

“Our focus now is to optimise the business to meet the challenges of COVID-19. In the short term, we continue to deliver a high-quality service to our customers, while protecting our employees and ensuring business continuity and regulatory compliance.”

Intralot predicts €25-30m reduction in annual EBITDA

Intralot has provided a business update in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and its financial impact on the company.

Since March, the lottery and gaming solutions provider has utilised technology to enable about 80% of its workforce to work remotely.

As a result of this, Intralot expects some delays in the development of products and the production of new hardware equipment in Asia.

The company predicts that the impact of the crisis on group gross gaming revenue will peak in April and May and will gradually return to regular figures by November or December.

Intralot’s figures in the US are reportedly showing “a high degree of resilience” but the lack of sports betting has had an impact on revenue streams.

In evaluating available data from March and April, the supplier predicts that 2020 EBITDA will be reduced by around €25-30m ($26.9-32.3m) as a result of the crisis.

Intralot has retained Evercore Partners and Allen and Overy as financial and legal advisors, to “review and implement strategic alternatives for the business.”

This will include “assessing all available financial and strategic options” to optimise the company’s capital structure.

Is the Tennis Betting Simulator here to stay?

With the absence of major sport due to the coronavirus pandemic, not only are gaming firms looking to other verticals, they’re looking to new products.

No sports markets to bet on? Don’t worry, you can try Simulated Reality with Sportradar, while the latest product on offer is LSports’ Tennis Betting Simulator.

That’s the thinking behind the strategy, anyway, and Gambling Insider caught up with LSports co-founder and COO Dotan Lazar to find out more.

Could you tell us more about your Tennis Betting Simulator? What was the thinking behind the product?

As you know, the sports betting industry is pretty much non-existent at the moment, with not many events to offer. Everyone is pushing casino and virtuals today. We’ve been working on a product for the past two or three months and released it last week, where we basically rewind past tennis events – and soon it will be basketball events, too. We changed the names of the teams, so you don’t know the real events that took place or real players. But, once the event is over, we reveal the real names in our official page, and also in the widget and feed itself, so the players can tell what they placed a bet on.

For example, a real event that took place in 2019 between Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal, we call the event Serena Williams vs Maria Sharapova. And once the event is over, we tell the bettors which real event took place; so if you want to dispute anything, we have all the data, facts and figures publicly out there. This means we can’t manipulate the data in any way.

Does this product run with virtual graphics?

There are no animations, it is not a replay like virtual sports but we do use real data in the streaming and play-by-play. There are visualisations, developed by us, LVision. It generates visualisations for sports based on AI and machine learning. These visualisations tell you where the ball is at any given moment, with heat maps. If you look at the betting industry, you’ll see that in tennis you don’t have high-level visualisations. You only see who is serving and that’s it.

Is the product focused on pre-match or in-play betting?

It’s only in-play betting. Pre-match, we open the event five or 10 minutes before it starts and, from the point it starts, you have the odds and you have the score. We offer four different kinds of tournaments – best-of-five, best-of-seven, best-of-nine and best-of-13, which is a full set. So we keep it short and keep it 10-15 minutes between events; with the full set 20-25 minutes.

So if the original match was a best-of-five setter, your event would only be a small section of it?

Exactly, a small section of it up to one set. If it was a best-of-three match, we would offer five games within the match – whichever five games they may be. We offer the odds from the moment we start, with the same values and correlation as the real event.

Is there even a remote chance a bettor, with a hypothetically photographic memory, recognises which match is being played out!?

There is no such option. Literally, none! We offer over one million events, ITF, ATP, WTA, so there’s no such chance. Throughout the visualisation, nothing is recognisable except for the fact the score is 2-0 or 3-0 to an opponent. But in that situation, you have hundreds of thousands of such events in tennis, so the chances are literally zero.

How does this product compare to virtuals and esports, and how do you feel it stands out? What does it do to attract a sports bettor when there are several alternative options?

Virtual is pretty much grey. There is a lot of argument around virtuals; you have the license from the regulator and everything else. But, with us, it’s straightforward. You have all the facts already and we can’t manipulate you in any way. We tell you what you wagered on and we reveal it completely. No one has really got a focus on tennis like this. You have e-FIFA and e-cricket even. You have e-tennis coming up soon but, still, no one has taken the glove and really lifted tennis to the next level. With our visualisations and in-depth data, it’s like a real event.

We’re going to do this with NBA and NCAA soon, too. According to what we see, the numbers look great. The money has shifted, since you don’t have real football events you have an increase in 300% or 400% in virtuals and casinos. That means the money’s out there; you just need to attract people back to real sports. Seeing as you don’t have that, I want to fill it up with content we already have: reliable content.

Are any operators already using this product?

Yes, absolutely. We already have customers online with it, one of them is BtoBet – their numbers look great.

So if this product is well-received, is this a simulator for the long term or just to fill the sporting void during the coronavirus pandemic?

The main goal is to make this product ‘happy hour’ on Monday and Friday, where you have less events. On Mondays, you have half a day with no events at all. This way, you’ll offer football, NBA etc. It’s the same for other products. I don’t know how e-FIFA will develop after the pandemic. Just like our product, it could be 100 a day still after the pandemic. We are looking to fill gaps.

Is there the potential to expand to football or other sports?

That’s the plan, we’ll offer visualisations on everything including American football, US sports, football, volleyball as well. We’ll offer everything with visualisations, historical data and make the best of it. We really aim to be at the front of innovation in the sports industry, as a company.

New Swedish regulations could do ‘more harm than good’, according to EGBA

The European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) is concerned the new temporary restrictions on online gaming in Sweden will fail to protect players.

Instead, the European industry body warns the restrictions could do more harm to consumer protection than provide help to those who need it the most.

This response comes after Sweden’s social security minister Ardalan Shekarabi proposed a number of measures to limit problems that might occur from online gambling during lockdown.

Restrictions include a mandatory weekly deposit of SEK 5,000 ($497), along with a SEK 100 cap on bonus offers and set time limits on players’ online casino activities.

While EGBA said it strongly supports measures aimed to protect players, these proposed restrictions could encourage customers to gamble on the unregulated market, having the opposite effect.

EGBA also questioned the effectiveness of the measures to protect consumers during the coronavirus, considering they would take place from June 1 until the end of the year.

Secretary General, Maarten Haijer, said: “In Sweden, gambling advertising spending is down and we haven’t seen evidence that average customer spend is up.

“Even so, there is no compelling evidence that arbitrary restrictions on customer spend have a positive effect on safe gambling.”

Sportradar delivers sports content and coverage above 2019 levels

Sportradar, the global provider of sports content and intelligence, today released figures showing that they had sustained their delivery of sports content and coverage despite the lack of live sports globally due to COVID-19, even managing to increase the overall coverage levels compared to the same period last year .

So far in the month of April, there has been an 11% increase in its available sports content compared to April 2019, with coverage of approximately 24,000 matches in total worldwide. In a typical month, Sportradar provides live coverage for approximately 20,000 matches. Sportradar’s Live Odds coverage is up 30%, while Live Data is up 20% compared to this time last year.

This significant achievement reflects Sportradar’s rapid response to the current absence of live sports and increased appetite for alternative content from customers. The company has pivoted its business to focus on developing a range of innovative and non-traditional sports products, in addition to continuing to partner with leagues around the world.

Sportradar’s Chief Executive Officer, Carsten Koerl said: “Innovation is the cornerstone of our company. During this time, we have been able to quickly adapt to change and constantly evaluate and re-evaluate the products and services we are offering. We’re pleased to have been able to utilise our technological expertise, comprehensive sports data and sports partnerships across the world quickly to continue to help our customers deliver entertainment and engagement with additional live content and coverage.

New products and content include:

Simulated Reality

The first completely AI driven product simulating the event data from major professional sports matches which the company delivered from concept to live in 10 days. Simulated Reality taps into Sportradar’s AI and machine learning capabilities to create and deliver a sports betting experience which is as close to real life as possible.

On the first day of its launch, Sportradar saw approximately 250 clients sign up to the soccer service. Cricket has since been released with other sports, including tennis, to follow soon.

Virtual Sports

Sportradar recently added to its Gaming Solutions portfolio with the release of the Euro Cup 2020. Euro Cup 2020 has been built using motion capture technology, allowing fans to experience the sights and sounds of this virtual football tournament creating a fan and betting experience as close to real-life as possible.

Innovative live sports tournaments

Through its partnerships with leagues and federations across the world, Sportradar has supported the creation and curation of a number of live tournaments. This includes darts, tennis and table tennis events, such as the International Tennis Series Presented by SportsEdTv, Brazil Autumn Cup Table Tennis and PDC Darts at Home. Sportradar is also providing coverage for live sports events that are still currently going ahead and will resume its comprehensive coverage of live sports globally as they return.

Electronic Leagues

Through its network of partnerships, Sportradar has added three high profile properties to its electronic leagues offering. The events include the Brazilian Confederation of esports (CBES) Pro Player Cup, Uruguayan Federation of Virtual Football (FEFV) Pro Club League, and the Russian Premier League (RPL) Cyberleague Pro Series.

Numbers Betting

Outside of sports, Sportradar also provides the most comprehensive pre-match lottery betting solution on the market. The product offers coverage around the clock, with more than 10,400 draws per week from over 165 real State Lotteries worldwide.

CAP increases focus on esports marketing compliance

The Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) has issued an advice notice to British operators making clear that esports betting-related advertising must be compliant with rules that apply to other gambling marketing.

The move comes after coronavirus lockdown in the UK prompted an increase in esports betting marketing, with operators looking to capitalise on the vertical’s popularity in the absence of major sport leagues and events.

The CAP has carried out a review around esports betting marketing in social media to ensure there are “no regulatory gaps in consumer protection.”

As part of this review, the CAP issued an advice notice to operators and will provide guidance on how to ensure compliance with advertising rules when creating marketing for esports gambling on social media.

The regulatory body will report on this response to GambleAware in Autumn.

A statement on the CAP website reads: “The CAP will continue to monitor and take action around gambling advertising where it identifies compliance problems including through further use of ad tech to identify non-compliant ads.

“It will also remain in step with the latest evidence so that there is ongoing protection for vulnerable groups from potential harm.”

Tranmere Rovers sets up problem gambling initiative with Gamban

Tranmere Rovers, its Chairman Mark Palios and its Captain Scott Davies have formed a partnership with The Big Step, Gamban and the NHS to help those impacted by problem gambling.

Emphasising the increased urge for problem gamblers to wager during isolation, the English League Two Football Club is aiming to help those affected by addiction.

However, the club’s announcement came with a headline containing the phrase “combat gambling threat,” seeming to paint all gambling with the same brush.

Tranmere Chairman Mark Palios: “When gambling gets out of hand it is like a virus itself and has huge consequences for individuals and families, undermining the relationships and destroying the trust that underpins everything.

“With the boredom and isolation that results from the  lockdown, it has never been more important to help those affected or at risk and we felt the time to act was now.

“The project with The Big Step is not just a short-term fix, but will evolve into a longer-term initiative too.”