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VIGE2017 Post Event Press Release

George Miller

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VIGE2017 cover
Reading Time: 7 minutes

With two weeks past the closing of the doors at the inaugural Vienna International Gaming Expo, the organizers would like to thank all exhibitors, sponsors, speakers and delegates for their attendance.

The three-day expo was organized by EEGEvents and designed to bring together gambling professionals working for the online and land based sides of the industry with a special focus on Central Europe.

The time of the event has flown by really fast and there was plenty to see and hear during the 3 days of VIGE Seminars, which ran in parallel with the exhibition.

The exhibition floor has seen a large space where delegates enjoyed an open networking area with catering on site and free beers sponsored by Lotto Hero.

The first edition of the yearly event was organized in a rather large hall with a total of 15 exhibitors coming from various sides of the industry. The organizers mentioned that they have experimented with the large open space with the possibility of organizing a more crowded area next year. All these facts were found in the results of the survey conducted prior to the event.

VIGE2017 Expo floor

Day one of ViGE featured a networking expo floor and VIGE Seminars have highlighted some of the recent regulatory topics in Central Europe with special focus on the challenges operators, suppliers and affiliates face when working in such regulated markets.

Some of the most known gaming lawyers of the industry have spoken about the current situation of the online gambling market in Austria, Croatia, Slovenia, Hungary, Germany and the recently regulated Czech Republic. The keynote speakers of the regulatory briefings which have been held in the first part of day 1 were: Dr. Arthur Stadler(Austrian Association for Betting and Gaming), Mag. Claus Retschitzegger(Austrian Association for Betting and Gaming/CEO at Bet-at-home), Hrvoje Vincetic(Casino Adriatic), Jaka Repansek(RePublis d.o.o), Arendts Martin(Arendts Anwaelte), Jan Rehola(PS Legal) and Gabor Helembai(Bird & Bird).

The first day seminars have turned even more exciting in the second part of the day when an IMGL Masterclass was held in a special panel which covered the subject of the risks and challenges for affiliates, operators and platforms working in regulated markets.

Keynote speakers have addressed their direct questions to the only regulator which was present in the panel, Ms. Odeta Nestor(Romanian National Office of Gambling). The keynote speakers of the Masterclass were: Robert Skalina(WH Partners), Assaf Dor(CELLXPERT), Yoav Dotan(Genesis Global/Affiliatecruise.com), Tal Itzhak Ron(Tal Ron, Drihem and Co., Law Firm), Morten Ronde(IMGL / Danish Online Gaming Association) and the panel was moderate by expert Dr. Joerg Hofmann(IMGL / MELCHERS LAW FIRM).

Day one at the Austria Center Vienna concluded with a special panel which was moderated and put together by Tal Itzhak Ron(Tal Ron, Drihem and Co., Law Firm) and focused on the recent marketing trends of the gaming industry(Recent Trends in Online Marketing) with interesting topics discussed by Maayan M. Dana(Tal Ron, Drihem and Co., Law Firm), Assaf Stieglitz(Odds1x2.com) and Boaz Gam(PaynetEasy).

Tal Itzhak Ron-Alexandre Tomic

The day has ended or for some started with the Networking Party organized by EEGEvents and sponsored by Prague Gaming Summit.

The party was held in a “chill out” atmosphere in a Viennese local lounge with great music, lots of networking and drinks+snacks covered by the sponsors.

VIGE2017 Networking Party

The second day of the event got up to a slower start due to the extended partying and networking of the official party and the seminars turned their focus on more serious topics such as Responsible Gambling and Innovations of the industry.

The first part of the day was mainly focusing on the recent developments of the Responsible Gambling projects and their implementation process. The discussion extended in two panels where the experts of the Responsible Gambling project have addressed their concerns about the future of the industry.

Keynote speakers of the first Responsible Gambling panel were: Roman Nesshold(Institute Gambling and Addiction, Austria), Dan Iliovici(Rombet), Malcolm Bruce(Gambling Integrity) and the panel was moderated by Pieter Remmers(Assissa Consultancy).

The second panel was moderated by Zoltan Tundik(EEGMedia/EEGEvents) and featured keynote speakers such as Pieter Remmers(Assissa), Nikos Roumnakis(EOGL) and Zoran Puhac(EOGL).

After the two very packed panels the delegates got the chance to attend two panels which have highlighted some of the most talked about innovation of the online gaming industry.

The first “Innovation Talks” panel was moderated by Konrad Gill, founder at ViARSys. ViARSys was one of the most frequented exhibitor during the exhibition. The company created a special VR cage where you got the opportunity to test the real Virtual Reality games and most of the delegates were delighted about the experience.

The keynote speakers of the panel discussed the importance of using Big Data in DFS, using Artificial Intelligence(AI) in the online gambling industry and a recent innovation of the online sports betting industry called Snap Screen(an innovative app that he described as the “Shazam for Sports Betting”).

The opening remarks in the panel which has intrigued the audience were spoken by Valery Bollier, who described DFS as a threat to the gambling industry as we know it, but also as an opportunity.

The recently appointed CEO of BtoBet, Kostandina Zafirovska, who has 17 years of experience in Computer Science Engineering said that it was an obvious move for their company to bring over technology such as AI that is already being used in other industries.

She also said the gaming industry is a bit slow in adapting to new technology but that the innovation in AI is here and being delivered to the players now.

Angelo Dalli gave an insight into their newly launched Lottery software, called Lotto Hero. Dalli spoke about his innovation in lottery, a sector of the gambling industry that he said has been called “a dinosaur on the brink of extinction”. As someone who is always on top of the latest technology and challenges, Dalli decided to launch a “V.2” of lottery in the form of LottoHero.

The seasoned panel has been well attended by the audience on the event and the experts who gave speech were: Valery Bollier(Oulala Games), Angelo Dalli(Bit8), Kostandina Zafirovska(BtoBet) and Thomas Willomitzer(Snap Screen).

The second panel dedicated to the innovations of the industry also saw big names and some emerging companies that will soon shape the industry. Keynote speakers of the second “Innovation Talks” panel focused on the deliverabilty of e-mails, VR/AR, casino software innovations and Virtual Sports. The names lived up to the title of the panel and here are the names of the panelists: Martin Cagalinec(1SpinMillionaire), Sebastiaan de Vos(MailMike), Potapenko Vadim(Slotegrator), Kostandina Zafirovska(BtoBet), Konrad Gill(ViARsys) and Domagoj Marić(NSoft). The panel was moderated by Mihnea Paul Popescu-Grisogono of Casino Life and Business Magazine.

Konrad Gill, one of the industry’s biggest supporters of Virtual Reality (VR) technology comes from a land based background and is familiar with the suffering arcade gaming scene due to Austrian regulations. He founded ViARSys with the intent of providing the only turnkey solution for operators who wish to enter the arcade environment with a VR offering. Gill believes his solution will help revive the arcade scene in Austria and bring customers back to empty properties that are already fitted out for arcade and gaming use.

Domagoj Marić(NSoft) spoke about Virtual Games demands which are still on the rise and fairness of the industry when it comes to Virtual Games. His explanations shed light across this highly debated niche within the online gambling industry.

Day two concluded with a large takeaway of informations and business card for all attending delegates.

Day 3 was dedicated for the Austrian gaming industry where the agenda was dedicated exclusively to the regulatory climate in Austria.

To put it in the words of Rebecca Liggero from CalvinAyre.com: “When it comes to gambling operations, essentially a big mess complicated by politicians trying to protect a monopoly.

Helmut Kafka, President of Automatenverband.at, told CalvinAyre.com of the pending gambling court cases addressing if the Austrian gambling monopoly infringes upon EU law.

Helmut Kafka

He also mentioned his association’s 60 years of service as of 2017 and said there have been consistent ups and downs within the gambling industry in Austria for all these years. While he’s a big supporter of expanding gambling operator opportunities in the country, he cannot predict with certainty where regulations will end up in the near future.

The organizers released some of the partial results of the survey which was sent to +450 delegates and show some interesting facts. Here are some of the percentages and feedback received by the organizers:

  • How likely is it that you would recommend the event to a friend or colleague?
      • Detractors (14%)
      • Passives (35%)
      • Promoters (51%)
  • Overall, how would you rate the event?
      • Excellent (11.11%)
      • Very good (22.22%)
      • Good (48.89%)
      • Poor (17.78%)
  • How organized was the event?
      • Extremely organized (16.67%)
      • Very organized (43.33%)
      • Somewhat organized (22.22%)
      • Not so organized (16.67%)
      • Not at all organized (1.11%)
  • Was the event length too long, too short, or about right?
      • Much too long (29.41%)
      • Somewhat too long (11.76%)
      • Slightly too long (17.65%)
      • About right (41.18%)
      • Slightly too short (0.00%)
      • Somewhat too short (0.00%)
  • We are planning to organize VIGE yearly and the plan is to have the next edition in March 2018. How likely will you be among the delegates at the next year’s show?
      • I will attend (50.00%)
      • I will decide later (38.89)
      • I will not attend (11.11%)

Based on this feedback, the organizers are already planning the 2nd edition of the Vienna International Gaming Expo and promise a much greater show by learning from the essential feedback and suggestions of the attending companies and individuals.

Further information will be published on a newly released website which will strengthen the online meeting setting and interactivity among the delegates.

Central Europe

STS Completes Acquisition of Betsys

Niji Narayan

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STS Completes Acquisition of Betsys
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Polish bookmaking giant STS has completed the acquisition of Czech betting software provider Betsys.

Under the agreement, the terms of which were not disclosed, STS will take full ownership of Betsys, a software business in which it was already the majority shareholder. It acquired a 50% stake in the supplier’s parent company Greep in April 2017.

Betsys is STS’s main provider of software for both online and retail channels, and also counts the likes of Czech gaming conglomerate Sazka among its clients.

STS did not state what impact the acquisition would have on its financial results, but did reveal that Betsys generates “revenues of several million Euros per year.”

“This is a significant investment which secures our further development. The proprietary bookmaking system, and the possibility for its in-house development, constitutes a key advantage in our industry. We have already been generating more than 85% of our revenues via online channels, so further growth in IT solutions is of strategic value to us,” Mateusz Juroszek, chief executive of STS, said.

“The integration of Betsys and STS is not only a confirmation of the high quality of our services but above all, it allows us to expand our competence in the sector of IT solutions for the bookmaking industry, which is growing dynamically,” Jiri Najman, chief executive of Betsys, said.

“Betsys, as part of the STS Group, is guaranteed stable growth and the possibility of creating and developing significant competitive advantages for the bookmaker in terms of technology,” Jiri Najman added.

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Central Europe

Enormous potential for serious games: sales revenue expected to grow by 19 per cent annually in Germany

George Miller

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Enormous potential for serious games: sales revenue expected to grow by 19 per cent annually in Germany
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

German serious games market likely to grow to 370 million US dollars by 2023
‘Considering the current turmoil in many industries, more companies should move with the times and use serious games as part of their employee training’

The German market for serious games is expected to grow significantly in the coming years: sales revenue in Germany is likely to increase by an average of 19 per cent annually, and market volume is projected to grow accordingly, to 370 million US dollars by 2023. This information was announced today by game – the German Games Industry Association. These figures are based on a projection from auditing and consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers. And the global trend looks similar: worldwide sales revenue from serious games is projected to grow by 19 per cent, creating a market worth approximately 9.2 billion US dollars by 2023.

‘This data on the German market for serious games – which has never been presented in this form before – demonstrates that serious games boast enormous potential in many areas, such as education and health care, and they also offer very strong economic prospects,’ says Felix Falk, Managing Director of game. ‘Whether learners are school pupils or career professionals, serious games increase learners’ motivation over the long term and make complex concepts easier to understand. They present a major opportunity for our knowledge-based society, and considering all their positive aspects, they are not being used nearly often enough.’

Human resources managers rate serious games particularly positively

The positive aspects of serious games are also important in a professional context. 98 per cent of the human resources managers surveyed who had already used serious games rated them as good or fairly good. 89 per cent observed an improvement in learning performance, and 86 per cent believed that their employees enjoyed the games. Around three quarters (76 per cent) of the human resources managers surveyed observed an increase in motivation among their employees.

Felix Falk: ‘Many in the business world still have reservations about serious games, as they feel that games are the antithesis of work. However, the survey results show how positively human resources managers rate serious games. Considering the current turmoil in many industries, more companies should move with the times and use serious games as part of their employee training. These games give employees the opportunity to learn key skills for the digital workplace alongside their colleagues in an interactive, digital format. And they can also give companies a strong competitive advantage.’

Further data from the survey on serious games conducted by auditing and consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers can be found in the new publication ‘game Fokus Serious Games’, which is available free of charge and in German language on seriousgames.game.de

 

About the market data
The data comes from a survey conducted by auditing and consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) GmbH. 407 human resources managers were surveyed, comprising 234 men and 173 women. The average age of survey participants was 43.1. The survey was conducted in the second half of December 2018.

game – the German Games Industry Association
We are the association of the German games industry. Our members include developers, publishers and many other games industry actors such as esports event organisers, educational establishments and service providers. As a joint organiser of gamescom, we are responsible for the world’s biggest event for computer and video games. We are an expert partner for media and for political and social institutions, and answer questions relating to market development, games culture and media literacy. Our mission is to make Germany the best games location.

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Central Europe

New Products Help Mitigate Fall of Gambling Revenue in Poland

Niji Narayan

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New Products Help Mitigate Fall of Gambling Revenue in Poland
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The new figures published by Poland’s finance ministry have revealed that while the gambling revenue decline for the year to date, newly regulated products helped mitigate the falls in online betting and land-based gaming.

The gross gaming yield projections provided by H2 Gambling Capital revealed that the total for the year to June 11 is expected to fall 9.5% from 2019’s figures. This is significantly lower than the 19.6% decline projected across all EU markets.

Poland’s lower projected decline was due to the development of newly regulated verticals such as online casinos and land-based arcades. Online casino revenue grew 96.7% for the year to June 11, aided by growth from Totalizator Sportowy’s Total Casino site.

Total Casino is Poland’s only legal online casino site which was launched in December 2018. The casino saw new player sign-ups grow significantly this year, according to the Ministry. This in turn took revenue from offshore sites, which saw casino revenue fall 25.0% for the period.

Total online revenue was up 0.3%, with a 14.2% decline in sports betting – during a period in which sporting events were suspended during the Covid-19 crisis – offset by growth in online casino and online lotteries (up 26.2%).

For the land-based sector, revenue across all verticals was down 13.1%, largely down to a 27.3% drop in casino yield and a 25.4% decline for betting. Number games such as lotteries saw gross gaming yield fall 8.6%. However, gaming arcades saw their contribution rise 41.4% over the period.

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