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eSports and MMA could be contenders to football’s crown, states Parimatch

Zoltan Tundik

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In this photo Sergey Portnov, Parimatch CEO
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The sports industry continues to grow year on year with the popularity of televised events benefitting not just the sports themselves but the betting industry too. As the diversity of sports on offer in the CIS region combines with increased international betting opportunities the market is at an exciting crossroads, something which Sergey Portnov, Parimatch CEO believes heralds “untapped potential” within CIS and beyond. Ahead of this year’s ICE London, at which the company will be attending to discuss opportunities in the CIS region and its North American objectives, Portnov discusses the growth of eSports and MMA, the importance of good broadcasting and why collaboration between betting and sports is the key to a bright future for both industries.

Looking ahead to 2019 in which territories do you see the big growth potential for your business and why?

We are focusing on consolidating and building on our market position in the CIS region. With the untapped potential within CIS, there remains a strong opportunity to further grow our revenues and brand within the region. Our aim is to reach 20percent market share in the region.
From an international perspective, we are investing in further developing our software to be able to scale internationally. At the same time, we will be growing our global reputation through a brand relaunch and targeted innovative marketing initiatives, and with partnerships such as our sponsorship of the UFC, to help attract potential partners in new markets. The U.S, of course, now provides also significant growth opportunity for the whole of the industry.  We have ambitions of establishing operations there, which would be a significant achievement and milestone for our brand.

What sports are challenging football as the most popular with bettors?

There are several challengers to football, which can vary depending on the market and the season. At different times of the year, tennis, basketball, volleyball and hockey are the closest sports in the CIS region to football, in terms of number of bets placed. These sports are already established and get a lot exposure across the media in the region, they also importantly provide opportunities to bet 24-7 because of the large amount of competitions held internationally.

However, we believe the likely future challengers to football will be MMA and eSports.  The popularity of these two sports is growing exponentially across the world and we believe they represent opportunities for our industry. If we can reach and appeal to these new customers, we will be able to translate the sports’ popularity and into betting volume.  In July 2018 Parimatch became the official betting and wagering partner for the UFC in EMEA, while we are also investing targeted alternative marketing campaigns for the eSports community. We are ahead of the trend and well positioned to capitalise on these sports exciting betting potential.

What constitutes a good sport for the betting industry – is it the profile of a competition eg. the English Premier League is broadcast to 643m homes in 212 territories – or is it the structure of the game and the ability to offer a variety of different bets eg. cricket?
There are a lot of aspects that make a sport a good for the betting industry, but ultimately it comes down to the popularity and exposure of the sport. The support of teams and players creates the betting interest, but this must be completed by the chance for the fans to follow and watch the sport.

In tennis for example, 75percent of bets placed with Parimatch are live bets (next point, game, set etc.).  Without the right broadcasting of the sport, we could lose this revenue. Whereas with basketball, which also has a large following, because NBA games are broadcasted at night in the CIS region we can’t fully capitalise on its live betting potential.

Can the betting industry help build the profile of a sport – if so can you give some examples?

The betting industry has a great impact on sports. It is statistically proven that sports bettors watch more sports than non-bettors do. Therefore, it stands to reason that if more fans bet on a sport, it will increase its popularity and following. From an entertainment perspective, it simply complements the sport by creating an emotional connection. It develops a vested interest, which leads to fans following a sport or spectacle more closely.

Furthermore, a great deal of revenue from the betting industry is invested back into sports through broadcasters, as well as leagues and teams. In Britain, betting companies place between 20 and 30 percent of annual revenue (estimated to be £14+ billion for the industry) on advertising – hugely promoting and financially supporting the sports.  At Parimatch we sponsor eight teams, and seven sporting federations.  These are mutually beneficial for our brand and the sports and we look forward to growing the profile of both industries as we continue to expand as a company.

Parimatch will be heading to ICE London in February to develop its market position in the CIS region and promote its growing portfolio of daily sporting events, leagues and championships, as well as games and entertainments. For more information on the features and services offered by Parimatch, visit: parimatch.com/en/live.html

Source: GB Media (Daria Isakova)

After starting out as an affiliate in 2009 and developing some recognized review portals, I have moved deeper into journalism and media. My experience has lead me to move into the B2B sector and write about compliance updates and report around the happenings of the online and land based gaming sector.

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TÜV Thüringen Certifies Sportradar AG’s Customer Care Unit for ISO 9001:2015

Niji Narayan

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TÜV Thüringen Certifies Sportradar AG’s Customer Care Unit for ISO 9001:2015
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Sportradar AG, the world’s leading sports data analyser, has obtained the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) norm 9001:2015 from TÜV Thüringen for its global customer care unit. Sportradar AG’s customer care unit won the award for ‘Best Customer Service’ at last year’s EGR B2B Awards. It has been ISO-certified since 2014. The latest audit confirms the flawless Quality Management System (QMS) of Sportradar AG’s global customer care unit that delivers Customer Support, Certification Services and Technical Integration Support to Customers of Sportradar AG matches the ISO norm 9001:2015.

“Embarking in this direction and successfully passing the certification demonstrate our continued commitment to the highest global standards in customer service, operational excellence and quality management across all Sportradar entities,” said Daniel Rossmann, Director of Customer Care at Sportradar AG. “To be recognised with this internationally respected certification and have it renewed multiple times already demonstrates a great team effort which I am truly proud of.”

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Portugal Reviews Gambling Tax Regime

Niji Narayan

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Portugal Reviews Gambling Tax Regime
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The government of Portugal has started the review of its existing gambling tax regime. The government has appointed a working group for analysing the state of the country’s online gambling industry and finding any possible changes required in the system. The working group comprises six members, including representatives from SRIJ and Portugal’s Ministries of Finance, Economy, Tourism, and Labour. They have to submit their findings and proposals within 30 days.

The existing gambling law in the country came into force in 2015. The country’s gambling regulator Serviço de Regulação Inspeção de Jogos (SRIJ) first licensed a foreign company in May 2016, which started a new era in the provision of regulated gaming and betting services to Portuguese customers. The regulatory body has issued a total of 16 licenses since then.

While the reorganisation of Portugal’s market was generally welcomed by EU authorities and industry stakeholders, the country’s taxation regime was heavily criticised and rates were deemed too high to offer viable prospects for the nascent market.

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Irish Gaming Startup WarDucks Obtains €3.3 Million Funding

Niji Narayan

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Irish Gaming Startup WarDucks Obtains €3.3 Million Funding
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WarDucks, a Dublin-based augmented reality (AR) gaming startup, has raised a funding worth €3.3 million from EQT Ventures, which offered the funding with participation from Suir Valley Ventures and other investors. The startup will develop a location-based mobile AR game using the funds.

Nikki Lannen, who had worked in Facebook’s gaming department, founded WarDucks. He has added an excellent team comprising Doug Kaufman, the game designer behind Civilisation II and Frontierville, John Romero, pioneer of the first person shooter (FPS). The company has already developed some niche games for the segment.

EQT Ventures mentioned in a press release that WarDucks was first discovered by Motherbrain, the company’s AI-powered deal sourcing platform.

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