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Exclusive Interview with Niklas Timmermann (Vice President of the German eSports Association – ESBD), speaker at VIGE2018

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My latest interviewee is going to be among the speakers of the Millennial Gaming Forum 2018 (part of Vienna International Gaming Expo 2018), you can read more about the event here.

Niklas Timmermann is a 30 year old lawyer from Osnabrück, Germany who has been involved in Professional eSports since 2003. Niklas is the Former World and European Champion in Need for Speed for Teams such as SK Gaming, Mousesports and Alternate Attax. He is currently working as a eSports consultant and being first vice president of the german eSports association ESBD.

We are very grateful for your generosity to answer our questions. First I would like to ask you to shortly introduce yourself and the company you represent, and tell us when and why you started working in this industry.

Niklas: Hey everyone! My name is Niklas Timmermann and I started working in eSports back in 2003 when I started my career as a Need for Speed player. 2004 I became Need for Speed world champion and used to play until 2010 for teams such as SK Gaming, Mousesports and Alternate aTTaX. Back then I ended my professional career due to my studies and switched into the backoffice at Alternate aTTaX until 2017. Today I am working as an eSports consultant for endemic as well as non-endemic brands with my company E-Native. Meanwhile I am the vice president of the German eSports association ESBD and responsible for the professional teams inside this organisation.

Most commonly eSports take the form of organized multiplayer video game competitions. The video game culture has changes a lot recently and many game developers design their games targeting a professional eSport subculture. How do you see this issue, what is your opinion about the professional players, the competitions, championships?

Niklas: First of all I do enjoy both online and offline gaming experience which is why I do see the diversity within the different genres of games as a key to the growth of the industry. As a former professional gamer I have to say that I love the thought of having my favorite game eSports ready, unlike several titles on the market right now. If you just take a look at FIFA, which in my opinion is artificially hyped, you do see a title without a proper way of observing the games which makes it practically not eSports ready. The readiness of a game for eSports will work as a catalyst to have a bigger impact on how often a game will be bought and how early professional tournaments will take place. Furthermore professional scenes may evolve and solidify easier, too.

You have extensive experience in eSports both as a professional player and as first Vice President of the German eSports Association ESBD. What is your opinion about eSports in Europe and particularly in Germany?

Niklas: In Germany we are actually 2-5 years behind the Nordic countries when it comes down to eSports. We are lacking grassroots amateur eSports which fuels the pro scene with young talents and the resentments versus shooters make it harder to develop professional structures since CS:GO is actually one of the biggest titles over here. Furthermore the pro scene is also affected high social taxes which make it hard to compete on an international level. We would need a lot more first movers and open-minded decision makers to develop a scene that is able to compete.

What do you think about the future of eSports, what are it perspectives?

Niklas: I guess many of the football teams will start to be a bit more open-minded concerning their choice of game titles. As I have already mentioned FIFA is kind of a blowfish and does not sufficiently represent the diversity and the potentials of eSports. I also see a shift of power in favor of the emerging national associations who will have an impact on how tournaments will run in the near future.

Which were the most difficult periods in your career so far and what do you consider your biggest success?

Niklas: My personal Waterloo took place in Singapore 2005 where I came as defending world and euro champion to the world championships and dropped out in semi final due to an awful mistake while being in the lead. That mistake actually haunted me for years, I even dreamed of that one a few years later. My biggest success was not becoming world champion but actually being able to put up a CSGO team winning the ESWC. While being low on resources we were still able to compete with great teams and being a manager includes a lot more responsibilities than being a player.

Please tell us about your plans for the future in your professional life?

Niklas: My biggest plan is to develop both my company as well as the ESBD into sustainable projects that will shape the German eSports in several ways.

Finally, I would like to ask you a personal question: where would you travel the most in Central Europe? What would a perfect holiday be for you?

Niklas: Due to my career as a player as well as a manager I have had the great opportunity to visit several countries in Europe. My favorite was actually Italy for having the best kitchen of all! I would enjoy seeing new places and trying new food.

If you want to meet Niklas in person or networking with the biggest names of the eSports, DFS, Virtual Sports and Crypto industry, make sure you attend the Millennial Gaming Forum 2018 which is part of Vienna International Gaming Expo.

With this occasion, I would also like to thank you for following my interview series and for sharing these information with your colleagues and partners. If you would like to be featured in an upcoming interview, please send me an e-mail to reka.szalo@europeangaming.eu and I will happily get back to you!

Reka is an Experienced English second language teacher with a demonstrated history of working in the higher education industry. Skilled in Microsoft Excel, Teaching English as a Foreign Language, Translation, Foreign Languages, and Lecturing. Strong education professional with a Bachelor’s Degree majored in English Language and Literature/Letters. Reka is in charge of conducting the exclusive interviews on European Gaming and our printed magazine

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Balkans

Save the date for CEEGC 4 and CEEGC Awards 2019 Budapest, registrations are open, 24-25 September 2019 – Ritz-Carlton

Zoltan Tundik

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We are happy to announce that the registrations for the fourth edition of CEEGC and CEEG Awards in Budapest are open and the dates of the conference are 24-25 September 2019.

In 2019, we are adding a second day which will be dedicated for networking and a special boat trip is announced on the Danube in Budapest.

The 4th edition of the yearly must-attend conference of the gambling industry will focus on bringing new content and a different angle of view on already established and emerging market.

The discussions include compliance and investment opportunities in the regulated Central and Eastern European jurisdictions such as Bulgaria, Romania, Czech Republic, Croatia or Slovenia, and the Emerging CEE jurisdictionsSlovakia, Hungary, and Poland.

Beside the CEE focus, the discussions include the Balkan Gaming Industry Briefing and an exclusive IMGL MasterClass™ which highlights the opportunities for the gambling industry in Asia, Africa and North America.

Starting with 2019, the conference will also focus on shedding light the recent updates of the D-A-CH region and industry experts will also examine the impact of regulations on innovation, with emphasis on Loot Boxes, Sports betting, Casino, Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, and Fintech.

You can find more details about the speaker lineup, agenda and networking opportunities on the official website: www.ceegc.eu

Same venue as in 2018

The venue of the conference is selected with the aim of providing a luxurious and comfortable setting for the delegates. As in 2018, the 2019 edition of CEEGC & CEEG Awards will be held at The Ritz-Carlton, a luxury hotel which offers palatial retreat moments from iconic landmarks and the Danube. The Ritz-Carlton Budapest was also voted by the attending delegates as their favorite venue for CEEGC Budapest.

CEEG Awards 2019

The prestigious CEEG Awards will once again reward and applaud the top 20 companies that drive the industry forward in the region by continuing to the tradition of bringing a transparent and unbiased award for the gambling industry.

Starting 2019, the process will also involve a nominations committee, which in parallel with the industry, will nominate companies that might have been overlooked in the past years.

The public nomination phase is open and you can submit your company until 15.07.2019 on the following link.

Register here or View the Agenda!

Browse the official event website here: www.ceegc.eu

Here are a few testimonials from the attending delegates:

Central and Eastern European Gaming Conference is undoubtedly becoming one of the industry’s most iconic events. Zoltan and Betty have put a lot of thought and expertise into designing it and their efforts have certainly paid off. I personally had a great time and met a lot of amazing people and initiated new business relationships. The family-like atmosphere creates a special ambiance that makes this event stand out from other industry conferences. I look forward to attending next year.” ~ Sara Urbanovicova – Chief Commercial Officer, Tom Horn Gaming

I have been attending the yearly CEEGC Budapest for 3 years now and I can surely say that the event has proven itself as a must-attend conference for companies seeking information about compliance around Central and Eastern Europe. The conference offers content of the highest quality which is rarely seen across the events in Europe and you can also maximize the top class networking opportunities.” ~ Nadiya Attard – Director of Business Development in EMEA and Asia, NetEnt

Quality content and information, key people from the iGaming industry, a professional but friendly environment and an entire Awards procedure behind a truly Boutique Event – just congrats for the superb work!” ~ Maria E. Arnidou – Marketing & Communications Management, Fantasy Sports Interactive (FSI)

Bitpay were proud to attend and catch up with Eastern European gambling merchants who are adopting bitcoin payments.” ~ Chris Denny – European Sales Manager, Bitpay

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Baltics

UltraPlay is now the Best eSports Service Provider in the Baltics

George Miller

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UltraPlay is now the Best eSports Service Provider in the Baltic
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The company received high industry recognition in the 2019 BSG Awards

 

Twenty-one industry accolades were handed to the winning companies in the first Baltic and Scandinavian Gaming Awards, which were held during Mare Balticum Gaming Summit, on the 9th of May, in Vilnius, Lithuania.

UltraPlay received Best eSports Service Provider in the Baltics – the first award for the year and 6th in total for the company’s unrivaled eSports odds service. Lyubomira Petrova, Chief Marketing Officer at UltraPlay commented on the award:

“UltraPlay’s leadership in eSports betting was once again highly recognized. It is an honor to be acknowledged as the Best eSports Service Provider from the BSG Awards 2019 – a true inspiration for the entire team of UltraPlay and high recognition from the industry in the region.”

Above 100 delegates from the gambling industry attended the second edition of Mare Balticum Gaming Summit. This year the Summit had a strong focus on the gaming regulations and jurisdictions in the Baltics and the Nordics. As part of the discussion panel “Gambling Industry in 2020”, Lyubomira Petrova (CMO at UltraPlay) shared her knowledge on eSports and its significance in the following years, while  Zlatan Omerspahić (Data Protection and Compliance Lawyer at NSoft),  and Robert Toth (Key Account Manager at Global Bet) talked on GDPR and Virtual Sports.

“I had the pleasure to speak at Mare Balticum Gaming Summit and present why eSports is going to play a key role in the gambling industry in 2020 and beyond. Discussing what the future holds for the industry, we see the tremendous growth of eSports and its importance in terms of betting and player’s engagement.”, added Petrova.

The company is now heading to G2E Asia, Macao and is nominated in 2 categories for the G2E Asia Awards: UltraPlay’s eSports White Label Solution is shortlisted in the “Best B2B Digital Product Solution” category, and Dariy Margaritov, founder of UltraPlay is nominated in the category “Best industry rising stars”.

UltraPlay will be attending G2E Asia, Macao, from May 21st to 23rd, 2019. How to establish a profitable eSports betting brand will be the exclusive session to be held at the company’s booth #D909 by Mario Ovcharov, CEO of UltraPlay, on May 22nd, 11:30 am. You can book your meeting in advance at sales@ultraplay.net.

 

About UltraPlay:
UltraPlay is a modern technological company, founded in 2010, with the core ambition to offer an innovative approach to the online gaming industry by providing advanced betting solutions, focused on sports and eSports betting, live betting, white label, online casino and blockchain technology.
Assembled by a team of iGaming professionals with vast experience in betting product development, operations, eSports and marketing, UltraPlay is a trusted partner for delivering superior sports software and odds products to its customers. Learn more about the company here: www.ultraplay.co

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Baltics

How big data helps to shape the future of marketing strategy for operators with Alex Kornilov (BETEGY) in Vilnius

Zoltan Tundik

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Nowadays, in the digital era, most of the gambling industry operates on the Internet and the global data volume is dramatically growing. That large portion of data is called Big Data and it is not just a large amount of information, but a unique technology aimed at data processing and usage, particularly, the ways to find the necessary information in large data sets.

When it comes to business, the concept of Big Data stands for many tools, approaches and methods to analyze and process both structured and unstructured data, its further employment in specific areas and achievement of various goals.

The Big Data term emerged in 2008. Since then, it has been explained in different ways. However, the main thing you need to know for a holistic understanding of Big Data is a few simple words: data storage and processing.

It’s safe to say that the primary purpose of using Big Data technology is to achieve maximum efficiency in processing a large amount of information. (source: https://medium.com/@slotegrator/)

During the second and up to date, the most important edition of MARE BALTICUM Gaming Summit, Alex Kornilov, CEO & Founder at BETEGY, will have a keynote presentation which is titled “How big data helps to shape the future of marketing strategy for operators” and will focus on the following key points:

– sports content as the most valuable content online
– why does the US lead the way in data visualisation
– operators vs. media companies
– how operators can utilise sport data in marketing communication
– new approaches for content creation and content distribution on a scale

MARE BALTICUM Gaming Summit will take place on the 9th of May at Radisson Blu Royal Astorija Hotel and is gathering the gambling industry from the Baltic and Scandinavian.

Register here or View the Agenda!

About Alex Kornilov

Alex Kornilov is a serial entrepreneur who started his first business at 18. In 2007 he won “Dragons Den” TV show and had his first steps for a big success in the tech industry. Since then he got involved in several “big data” projects. In particular, he took part in various research projects executed by The State Institute of Complex Technical-Economic Researches.

In 2012, he founded “BETEGY” which is the sports data analytics company. The team created an automated self-learning system which predicts outcomes of football games with high accuracy (betegy.com). The company also licenses the data and visualization systems to global sports betting and media companies like ESPN (USA), Turkcell (Turkey), Ringier Axel Springer (Eastern Europe), Wozhongla.com (China), Yahoo Sports (UK), Bwin (Russia) and others.

Make sure you take advantage of this unique opportunity of learning and networking with the gambling industry in the Baltic and Scandinavian region via the MARE BALTICUM Gaming platform which has been launched in 2018 and is committed to bringing together industry shareholders and government officials from the Baltic and Scandinavian region on a yearly base.

Browse the official event website here: www.marebalticumgaming.com

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