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Exclusive Interview with Stefan Kovach, CCO at FunFair Technologies

Zoltan Tundik

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This week we are diving into blockchain technology and we are taking a look at how the “phenomenon” is change the online gambling landscape, even if some refuse to admit it. Stefan Kovach is currentlythe CCO of FunFair Technologies and he is a senior commercially minded marketer with over 20 years of experience in the travel, entertainment and gaming sectors, having worked for organisations ranging from Virgin Atlantic, Opodo, bwin and PokerStars. He has extensive experience in creating and nurturing brands, acquiring and retaining customers at scale as well as helping drive commercial and product strategies. Stefan’s previous roles enabled him to build and manage significant teams, manage marketing P&Ls running into the 10s of millions and responsibility for delivering high profile cross company projects. Here is our interview and we hope that you enjoy it!

There have been quite a few changes in the online gambling landscape in the last 12 months, partly thanks to the blockchain. What do you think are the key challenges operators are facing when opting to move from “traditional” operations to a blockchain platform?

Stefan: Although it is true that blockchain technology has been one of the most exciting advances within the online gambling landscape in the past year, there are, as yet, very few viable products actually available to the market. Whilst many other blockchain gambling businesses are very much still in the development phase, FunFair is at the forefront of this curve, already having a working and operational platform following a successful beta phase.

Traditional operators need to decide whether they see blockchain platforms as a threat, or alternatively, as a diverse revenue stream that taps into an existing and vast crypto-rich audience who are conducive to gambling by their very nature.

Luckily, traditional operators won’t need to choose one operating style above the other, blockchain gambling can act as a complimentary section of their existing business, allowing platforms to diversity their offering and audience without risk to their pre-existing business model. This is especially true when operators take advantage of the consultancy we offer when onboarding and educating customers.

We feel that, in the next 5 years or so, there will be a shift in online gambling, and with rumours that HTC is launching a blockchain phone later this year, this will surely change the mobile gambling industry as well. Do you feel that this is an area you will look at in the future?

Stefan: Mobile gaming is absolutely part of our plans and we will have a first class UX on mobile when we go fully live. Blockchain technology works in the same way across platforms, albeit sometimes different browsers are required.

Any established company, such as HTC, entering the blockchain space clearly demonstrates its relevance for all businesses in the future. We’ll always be looking to partner with those who are heading in the same direction as us as the learnings and combined investment can only speed up blockchain’s mainstream adoption.

We have reported on many blockchain gaming platform launches this year. Where does FunFair position itself in this innovative wave?

Stefan: We would firmly place ourselves as market leaders for a number of reasons. To start with, we are the only platform to offer a full ecosystem for operators, developers, affiliates and players who transact in our FUN token. We are also the only platform to offer production-level gaming quality which can challenge any tier one operator in traditional gamings. Current alternative blockchain titles are not only poor graphically and auditory, but run at unplayably slow speeds, not to mention the prohibitive transaction costs. We have bypassed these issues with our Fate Channels technology, which allows the gaming session to be taken off the blockchain, allowing it to run at the speeds and quality today’s gamers expect.

You have recently signed a deal with a market-leading poker rakeback affiliate, RaketheRake. Are affiliates making a good choice when opting to become operators?

Stefan: Affiliates have had to make do with diluted revenue share and often incorrect payments which are shared by operators at their will. Using the FunFair platform,they can become operators within days and take the entire revenue stream direct, while utilising their existing marketing expertise and captive player audience.

Affiliates can also continue to benefit from the FunFair platform as an affiliate, with real-time payments that are provably fair and paid in real-time on the blockchain, rather than having to trust casino operators as they do currently.

Do you think that regulators will eventually catch up and regulate the industry?

Stefan: Of course, any positive disruption will take time for regulators to size up and decide on a course of action, but the FunFair platform and blockchain technology itself ticks so many of the boxes they are looking for; from efficient KYC and provably fair RNG to the immediate release of funds, it really is a regulatory bullseye.

We are trying to lead the charge here and are in discussions with a number of relevant bodies. As you’d expect, some are more progressive than others, but we’re confident that as blockchain becomes adopted into the mainstream, they will regulate sensibly for all.

About FunFair

FunFair was born out of a powerful idea to harness the potential of the blockchain to initiate a revolution in online gaming.

FunFair founders Jez San, Oliver Hopton and Jeremy Longley saw the potential of the blockchain in early 2013. They wanted answers to difficult questions. Could anyone use the blockchain to run a casino? Why do players worry about trusting online casinos when the blockchain could create fair, transparent gaming? Why not use the blockchain to open up online gaming globally? These ambitious questions led to the development of a new technology that has the potential to profoundly change the gaming world.

We showed our first game in Paris in 2017. The response was so positive, we knew we were on to a winner. Jez San officially launched FunFair publicly in April 2017. The impact of this new technology immediately attracted the attention of major contributors and developers, eager to get involved. On 22 June 2017, our Phase 1 Token Presale raised $26 million, selling out in 4 hours.

Since then FunFair has delivered exciting games on our prototype demo platform, and we’re in the final stages of completing the new Ethereum technology platform which will showcase at DEVCON3 in November 2017. The next radical change in online gaming is being powered by FunFair; the first global gaming brand to unlock the true potential of the blockchain.

For more details, visit funfair.io

Blockchain

Bethereum awarded the highest rating ever in prestigious review!

George Miller

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Bethereum awarded the highest rating ever in prestigious review!
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In an extensive report, prominent research house Blockfyre just awarded Bethereum with the highest rating they’ve ever assigned to any of the 60+ projects they reviewed (relative to maximum points).

Blockfyre is one of the leading analytic researchers providing valuable investment insights into Blockchain and cryptocurrency assets.

Their report on Bethereum highlighted how the innovative peer-to-peer betting platform provides a real solution to key industry challenges. In particular, their analysts appreciated how Bethereum aims at bringing fun and social into betting by implementing industry-first gamification and social elements. They were also impressed by Bethereum’s large and active community as well as the solid team and advisors. Check out the report here.

Blockfyre gave very warm support to the project, stating: “As the market matures, the only projects that will survive are the ones with market-fit products and a good revenue model. Bethereum has a very interesting idea that can potentially disrupt the online betting market, combined with a small market cap and a working product, which makes it a project to keep an eye on. The Bethereum team has a very strong presence at conferences and pitch contests, which brings a lot of awareness and networking and with the amount of awards and pitches they managed to win show the potential of the project and the recognition of the idea.”

Giacomo Tognoni, CEO at Bethereum, said after the report release: “I was very impressed with the professionalism of the Blockfyre team. Their analysts asked us very meaningful questions and were capable to derive powerful insights. The report is succinct, well written, and captures the essence of our vision and current standing. We are truly honoured for being evaluated as their highest-rated project to date, and we will keep doing our best to deserve this kind of recognition.”

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Cryptocurrency

Greentube extends partnership with Cashbet Coin after successful integration

George Miller

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Greentube extends partnership with Cashbet Coin after successful integration
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Greentube, a subsidiary and part of NOVOMATIC Interactive division, has partnered with CashBet Coin to offer CBC cryptocurrency as a payment method across its B2C social casinos.

The deal comes after a successful integration with Greentube’s flagship social platform, GameTwist, one of the world’s largest online gaming communities, and allows customers to purchase credits using CBC across its collection of over 400 casino games.

Greentube has started integrating CBC and its underlying blockchain technology throughout the company portfolio, offering an alternative way for users to play its award-winning online slots, casino, card games and bingo content. With a strong foothold in Europe, CBC will be accepted in all markets where GameTwist operates.

Ronald van den Brink, Greentube CCO, said: “This partnership with CBC marks the next stage in Greentube’s strategy to leverage blockchain solutions to improve the customer experience. The technical excellence, demonstrable utility, and versatility of CBC perfectly aligns with our vision for cryptocurrency in social gaming. The first step has been to offer our players a new cryptocurrency payment option, and we have big plans to develop CBC further across our social casino brands.”

Ed Brennan, President at CashBet Coin, said: “We are rapidly establishing CBC as the go-to cryptocurrency for iGaming markets all over the world. Our partnership with Greentube and its social casinos underlines the demand for alternative payment methods such as CBC and proves the advantages our technology can bring to social casino gaming.”

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Cryptocurrency

Stake.com​ and Betradar just launched what could fast become the biggest sportsbook in the world with potentially more than 60 billion bets with cryptocurrencies

George Miller

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Stake.com​ and Betradar just launched what could fast become the biggest sportsbook in the world with potentially more than 60 billion bets with cryptocurrencies
Reading Time: < 1 minute

 

Betradar, the world’s leading supplier and provider of sports betting data service and Stake.com​one of the biggest crypto casinos just officialise their partnership with a 2 years agreement launching Stake sportsbook.

Stake.com​(Medium Rare N.V.) is a cryptocurrency casino that had, in less than 3 years of operation, more than 11 billion bets done in their platform, the whole group has an impeccable baggage on the crypto sphere with more than 50 billion bets accumulated between Stake and Primedice brands. Some of the biggest Sportsbooks in the world are way bellowed the half a billion bets per year mark.

Stake has created an aggressive plan for, in less than one year, being able to replicate their success in their own and unique casino games into their new Sportsbook product and for that, they decided to join forces with Betradar’s MTS team.

On the other hand, Betradar from the Sportsradar group, after securing exclusive deals with competitions like NBA, FIFA, NFL and NHL are now diving into the cryptocurrency sphere with Stake’s agreement.

Owner of the Stake platform, Eddie Miroslav is looking forward to the venture ahead, and is excited to introduce sports to his casino players.

‘With a look and feel that is exclusive to our platform, we are confident that our partnership with a data supplier of this calibre is going to fit the needs and wants of our substantial player base.

‘We are aware of an already strong sport interest and knowledge within our community; we knew spending several months working on this new site feature was going to be profitable for us.’

Despite their differences in operation, a bright future may indeed be a given between two powerhouses of the gambling industry.

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