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Entain extends responsible gaming partnerships Into video-gaming and esports

George Miller

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Entain and Arena Racing Company Sign Ground-Breaking Media Rights and Distribution Deal for Horse Racing and Greyhound Racing
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Entain Teaming with Counter-Strike Professional Players Association, EPIC Risk Management, Kindbridge and Rise Above the Disorder to Provide Support and Resources

Entain, the global sports betting and gaming entertainment provider, today announces that in line with its commitment to raise both the quality of entertainment and protections to customers worldwide it has extended its initiatives in responsible gambling to new areas including video-gaming and esports.

The new partners include the Counter-Strike Professional Players Association, Kindbridge, Rise Above the Disorder, and an expanded partnership with EPIC Risk Management. These four organizations will provide mental health support services and education for players potentially at risk and will work internationally with Entain and the Entain Foundation, the company’s non-profit charity dedicated to promoting responsible gambling, sports integrity, and corporate compliance.

Each organization seeks to bridge the gap between demand and availability of affordable professional, individual therapy and care. The Entain partners include:

  • Counter-Strike Professional Players Association – The CSPPA is the worldwide association for professional players of the largely popular Counter-Strike videogame, which regularly features in esports events.
  • EPIC Risk Management – An international consultancy specializing in prevention of gambling-related harm, EPIC already works with Entain both internationally and the U.S. and will now be extending its activity further, also to address videogaming and esports.
  • Rise Above the Disorder – A non-profit universal mental health care system, RAD covers the cost of mental health care for tens of thousands of people around the world. Once a video game group selling in-game items to crowd fund therapy, RAD is now celebrated by the United Nations for having helped over 36,000 people receive free support.
  • Kindbridge – The world’s first teletherapy company focused specifically on the successful treatment of gamblers and gamers struggling with their mental health, Kindbridge is a U.S.-based mental health services organization that provides access to online professional mental health counselors and specialized support services.

Entain’s strategy for sustainability and growth underscores its commitment to delivering the highest possible levels of player safety and protection across all its markets. As part of its safer gambling strategy, the Entain Foundation supports customer protection through a mix of education and support projects, as well as research and data analysis, using Entain technology to pioneer new and higher standards of online player protection.

Martin Lycka, Entain Senior Vice President for American Regulatory Affairs and Responsible Gambling and Trustee of the Entain Foundation US, explains, “We are committed to supporting initiatives that encourage responsible gambling and gaming in every way we can. The vast majority of people enjoy playing for fun have no problems whatsoever, and we want to leverage our capabilities to offer them additional experiences whilst keeping all our customers safe. These new partnerships are initial steps in this and other new directions as we both expand our offer to customers and the protections we put in place to protect the very small number who may be at risk.”

Today’s announcement supports Entain’s planned expansion into video-gaming and esports alongside furthering its commitment to responsible gaming. Entain recently unveiled its Advanced Responsibility and Care (ARC) initiative, pioneering use of data science, behavioral analysis, and technology to develop protective and preventative measures that work in real time.

Late last year Entain appointed Dr. Mark Griffiths as Distinguished Professor of Behavioral Addiction and Psychology, a title he also holds at Nottingham Trent University. Professor Griffiths is advising Entain on triggers for problems with online play and addiction, which is supporting the ongoing development of ARC. Professor Griffiths was previously involved in work with the World Health Organization around online addictions, resulting in the first official recognition of gaming disorder as a psychological problem among video-gamers.

 

 

PARTNERS HOLD UNIQUE EXPERTISE

The Entain Foundation US is a first-of-its-kind non-profit organization, dedicated to promoting responsible gambling, sports integrity and corporate compliance in the U.S. The Foundation was launched last year by the Entain Global Foundation and the Entain Group.

Trustees of the Entain Foundation US include Entain’s Martin Lycka, former New York Giants wide receiver and Super Bowl Champion Amani Toomer and international gambling regulatory expert Bill Pascrell III, a partner at Princeton Public Affairs Group.  The Entain Foundation US already sponsors a variety of information and education programs on problem gambling for college and university athletes and coaches, professional athletes, teams and leagues.  Globally, the Entain Foundation has committed more than $100 million to responsible gambling programs over the next five years.

Rise Above the Disorder (RAD) A non-profit universal mental health care system, RAD covers the cost of mental health care for tens of thousands of people around the world. Once a video game group selling in-game items to crowd fund therapy, now celebrated by the United Nations for having helped over 36,000 people receive free support.

Kindbridge   Kindbridge is the world’s first teletherapy company with a focus on the successful treatment of gambling and gaming addictions. Launched in 2020 Kindbridge is dedicated to a centralized, value-based approach to delivering timely, efficient, and effective care on-demand across the US. Diagnosing and treating qualified mental health, gambling & gaming disorders, and any related co-morbidities in a teletherapy setting allows their clients access to a treatment plan from the comfort of their own homes.

CSPPA  Counter-Strike Professional Players’ Association (CSPPA), is the worldwide representative association for professional Counter-Strike (CS:GO) players. The CSPPA aims to safeguard, protect, and promote professional Counter-Strike players’ interests both during and after their active career. The CSPPA will work to secure the best possible working conditions for the players, while taking into account the special nature of the industry. Any player who is contracted or actively seeking a contract as a professional Counter-Strike player and who competes at an elite level is eligible to be an active member of the CSPPA.

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) is the multiplayer first-person shooter video game developed by Valve and Hidden Path Entertainment. It was released in 2012.

EPIC Risk Management is a globally leading independent gambling harm minimization consultancy. Working across the highest risk sectors for gambling-related harm, EPIC has worked in 21 countries on ground-breaking harm-minimization programs, sector leading gambling operator training, and class-leading advisory. EPIC draws on lived experience to help individuals and organizations across financial services, elite sport, the military, criminal justice, education, and the gambling industry to minimize the risks posed by gambling harm.

Asia

Trinity Gaming joins hands with sports communication firm Artsmith to create career awareness in gaming and esports ecosystem

George Miller

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Trinity Gaming joins hands with sports communication firm Artsmith to create career awareness in gaming and esports ecosystem
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

Trinity Gaming—India’s top gaming talent management company, has signed sports communication agency Artsmith to create awareness among the gamers & influencers wanting to pursue a career in gaming content creations and how they can monetise and create a brand for themselves. With this partnership, the country’s one of the top new age communication firms Artsmith, which specialised in sports and esports PR, has added Trinity Gaming to their esports bouquet of the client list.

Currently managing more than 250 top content creators in India, Trinity Gaming has successfully established a strong platform for these specialised gamers and has transformed them into entertainers and influencers who bring much more value than just merely playing in the gaming ecosystem. The company, which was founded in 2019, has channelised the passion for gaming among millennial gamers and transformed it into a viable career option for many. Committed to bringing professionalism to the ecosystem, they have been one of the first movers in the sector and currently curate content for some of India’s top brands.

Commenting on the tie-up, Abhishek Aggarwal, Co-Founder & CEO of Trinity Gaming, said: “Gaming is all about passion and there are some brilliant minds with amazing ability to create content and these creators did not have the right backing and a strong voice to understand how to create values or a career out of it. We saw an opportunity to create a unique support system where not only the talents are groomed but also amalgamate with brands. According to the recently released EY FICCI 2021 report, online gamers grew 20% from 300 million in 2019 to 360 million in 2020. The numbers themselves validate how big is the community is. The potential is unlimited but creating a strong awareness programme is equally necessary to optimise the opportunities and I personally believe Artsmith has all the necessary experience to roll out this narrative among the gaming community.”

Artsmith, as an agency, brings in years of experience and expertise in creating an innovative mix of PR and digital communication that is innovative and value for money. “Artsmith has the experience and understanding of handholding talents and building a strong brand positioning with maximum visibility. We have worked with top Indian athletes and worked closely to transform them into sustainable content creators as well as influencers and we are confident of positioning Trinity Gaming as a new-age talent management firm with the efficiency of elevating gamers on similar lines and create India’s largest brands story experiences,” said Udita, the Founding Principal of Artsmith.

Artsmith has been successfully managing communications for global sports brands like PUMA as well as creating communications for international and national sporting events and sports leagues in the country. The company has the exclusive communication mandate for premium sports tournaments with Tata Open Maharashtra, India Open—the country’s only Superseries badminton tournament organised by the Badminton World Federation (BWF) being some of the key clients in the roster.

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eSports

XB Systems AG Releases Q1 Trading Update and LOI with Galaxy Group

George Miller

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XB Systems AG Releases Q1 Trading Update and LOI with Galaxy Group
Reading Time: < 1 minute

 

XB Systems AG, a leading eSports gambling operator, today releases its Q1 trading update, and announces that it has signed a Letter of Intent (“LOI”) to merge with Galaxy Group Ltd.

XB Systems AG, operating under the brand BUFF.bet, announces strong Q1 revenue growth, with Q1 Gross Gaming Revenues (GGR) of €442k, up 197% year on year. On a pro-forma basis, GGR is up over 30% year on year, following the merger between the X-Bet.co and BUFF.bet brands in Q2 2020.

The company has migrated all players across to the BUFF.bet brand, and seen strong growth in GGR per active, showing the underlying strength of BUFF.bet’s eSports offering. In terms of the full year outlook, management has guided to double digit pro-forma revenue growth for FY21.

XB Systems AG also announces today that it has signed a Letter of Intent (“LOI”) to merge with Galaxy Group Ltd, operating under the brand name UltraPlay.

UltraPlay is an award winning eSports B2B software provider, which has returned consistently strong revenue and earnings growth over the past few years. The combination of the XB Systems AG B2C eSports gambling business with UltraPlay’s award winning B2B offering will create a market leading vertically integrated eSports offering.

The combined entity would have generated revenues of over €7m in 2020 on a pro-forma basis, with strong cash generation. While the merger will be done on an equity basis, with Galaxy Group shareholders taking equity in the combined entity, the management is currently considering finance options to facilitate the transaction and accelerate organic growth.

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eSports

PandaScore names new Head of Sales

George Miller

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PandaScore names new Head of Sales
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

Oliver Niner tasked with onboarding clients and growing the sales team at esports data and odds provider

PandaScore, the esports data and odds provider, has strengthened its team with the appointment of Oliver Niner as Head of Sales who will play a significant role in driving growth through securing new client partnerships.

Niner has extensive industry experience having held roles at Betgenius, Marathonbet, Oulala Games, PIMS SCA and most recently at start-up platform provider Atlas IAC where he was Commercial Director. His knowledge and experience cover all verticals from sports to casino and beyond.

Niner will use this knowledge and experience to onboard new clients and partners and to establish a sustainable platform for growth and long-term success. He will also be responsible for building out a talented and experienced sales team as part of wider company expansion plans.

Flavien Guillocheau, CEO at PandaScore, said: “I would like to welcome Oliver to the team and look forward to working closely with him as we continue to position PandaScore as the number one esports data and odds provider for the global online gambling industry.

“Oliver has the talent and the experience required to ensure operators are aware of our market-leading products and services and to manage them from signing on the dotted line to integrating and launching our data feeds and odds. This makes him a great addition to the team.”

Oliver Niner, Head of Sales at PandaScore, said: “I am incredibly excited to have joined PandaScore at what is a pivotal moment in the company’s journey. They have already assembled a great team and I am honoured to now join their ranks and to lead sales activity and growth.

“The betting and iGaming community has come to realise the opportunity that embracing esports more fully can bring and Pandascore is a figurehead for that.  My team and I will be taking this message to the market and will enable our new and existing customers to maximise the potential that an esports product, delivered via Pandascore’s odds and data can bring, these are very exciting times!”

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