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Infantino: Football will play a central role in bringing communities together

George Miller

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Infantino: Football will play a central role in bringing communities together
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FIFA has recently built alliances with a number of United Nations agencies for the realisation of social development objectives

On 6 April, the United Nations celebrates the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace, (https://bit.ly/323SQ4t) recognising the role that sport and physical activity plays in communities and in people’s lives across the world.

The occasion holds special resonance this year as the world seeks to recover from the devastation wreaked by the COVID-19 pandemic, with sport sure to play a crucial role in that effort.

To mark this important date in the calendar, FIFA President Gianni Infantino has written the following article in the UN Chronicle in which he details how FIFA and its many programmes remain “at the service of society” in this time of global need.

The COVID-19 pandemic has been an unprecedented time of distress and loss for the whole world. Foremost is the tragic loss of loved ones that so many have suffered. We have also largely lost our social lives and human interaction, including everyday activities such as participating in, or attending, a football match.

But there is light at the end of the tunnel, and with the roll-out of vaccines, we hope life will return as it is meant to be lived: together, without the barriers and constraints imposed by the pandemic.

As it has done before, football, the most popular sport in the world, will play a central role in bringing communities together. Through football, we will be able to get back in shape physically, socialise with our teammates and rivals, and fill stadiums again. We will regain some of what was lost in the past year and hopefully bring back joy and smiles.

We also have a unique opportunity for a fresh start. Football can be a powerful tool for action on many pressing global issues, including several of the most important United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), such as those related to health and well-being (SDG 3), quality education (SDG 4), gender equality (SDG 5), peace and conflict resolution (SDG 16).

Football and the sport’s governing institution, the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), have an unparalleled global reach. The 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia was watched by more than half the world’s population, and the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 was seen by over 1 billion people. Such wide visibility provides our sport with a unique platform to promote the universal values of fair-play, inclusion, solidarity, diversity and teamwork, all critical to achieving the SDGs.

We are equally fortunate to be able to call on football stars – the FIFA Legends – who are living examples of those values. They generously use their own platforms to spread messages about important social issues and help us reach a much wider audience, beyond football fans.

Sports organisations themselves have their role to play and should lead by example by engaging in partnerships to contribute to the international development agenda. FIFA has recently built alliances with a number of United Nations agencies—notably with the World Health Organization (WHO), the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), UN-Women, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the World Food Programme (WFP)—for the realisation of social development objectives, including promoting healthy lifestyles, crime prevention, sports integrity, youth development, gender equality and women’s empowerment, as well as education.

Education is indeed central to our global efforts to create a better world. Thanks to the Football for Schools Programme, we are investing $120 million in the education, through football, of the world’s young people to help them develop key life skills. Delayed because of the pandemic, the Programme is expected to start operations fully in 2021, when it can also help address disruptions in education caused by COVID-19, especially in some of the most affected regions of the world.

FIFA is also leading the way to create safer sporting environments, putting in place safeguarding measures to protect children through the FIFA Guardians programme, which aims to professionalize the role of safeguarding officers in football.

Since we must work together with state and local authorities in this area we have entered into a memorandum of understanding signed last year with UNODC, aimed at potentially establishing an independent, multi-sport, multi-agency, international entity with the authority and experience to assist international sports and ensure that we work together with law enforcement agencies and governments to eradicate any form of abuse and investigate cases as appropriate.

As we continue to fight back against COVID-19 and its effects, we do so with the aim of not just helping football—as we have with an unprecedented support package of $1.5 billion for the game’s organisers around the world through the FIFA COVID-19 Relief Plan (https://fifa.fans/39NYP1j) – but also society as a whole. From the moment the pandemic was declared, we, in collaboration with WHO, have contributed to vital public health messaging to promote safe hygiene practices aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19. We continue to collaborate closely with WHO and amplify messages that support good health and save lives.

Football and society have a symbiotic relationship: what is good for society is good for football and vice versa. On this International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (6 April 2021) (https://bit.ly/323SQ4t), FIFA is at the service of society, and we will continue to play any role we can in supporting the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

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mkodo offers Casino Web Product on Bejoynd’s iGaming Platform

George Miller

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mkodo offers Casino Web Product on Bejoynd's iGaming Platform
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Casino House first client to take advantage of the solution

Digital product expert mkodo has partnered with iGaming solution provider Bejoynd to deliver their first casino website integrated with Bejoynd’s GAT platform.

Danish operator Casino House’s website, developed by mkodo, is now live on Bejoynd’s fully compliant solution.

Bejoynd offers a complete back-office solution to online casino operators including player account and wallet management, payments, compliance, AI-based player protection and fraud detection tools, reporting capabilities and bonus management.

To integrate with the GAT platform and deliver the Casino House web app, mkodo utilised their full package solution known as Casino Web Framework (CWF) which is designed specifically to integrate with iGaming platforms.

The CWF product is customisable for client and brand requirements. Operators that select the Bejoynd GAT platform can now get their product to market swiftly with an excellent front-end product in their chosen markets.

mkodo is set to launch further casino websites operating on the Bejoynd GAT platform later this year.

Sue Yoxall, Co-Founder and Executive Director of mkodo, said: “By integrating our CWF product with the GAT platform, we are able to offer Bejoynd’s clients a service that propels their digital strategies through increased speed to market and an enhanced experience for their players.


“Bejoynd’s platform is an exciting new addition to our range of PAM integrations, and we’re thrilled at the potential to work with more of their clients in the future.”

Jonas Oscarsson, Founder and Chief Executive Officer at Bejoynd, said: “mkodo provides a seamless solution that gives our clients the stability and support they need to succeed.”

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Evoplay secures certification with GLI to enter Lithuania

George Miller

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Evoplay secures certification with GLI to enter Lithuania
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Game development studio Evoplay has just been awarded certification with Gaming Laboratories International (GLI) for its library of proprietary slot titles to be used in the Lithuanian market as the studio continues to grow out its European foothold.

The news will see Evoplay bring 40 of its high-quality games to the Lithuanian market following its full certification to the standards set by the country’s regulator, the Gaming Control Authority (GCA), including popular releases Rise of HorusFruit Super NovaForest Dreams, Candy Dreams, Elven Princesses and many more.

The sought-after certification comes as an important recognition of the quality and security offered by Evoplay’s titles, allowing operator partners to feel more secure than ever.

Evoplay has made a name for itself as one of the industry’s most exciting game suppliers, providing partners with an unrivalled portfolio of slot, table and instant games.

The developer has also secured a loyal following of fans from the online streaming community off the back of a successful year in 2020, contributing to the creation of a safe and regulated gaming environment for players and operators alike.

Commenting on the new certification, Ivan Kravchuk, CEO at Evoplay, said: 

“We have unveiled a packed roster of fresh content since the start of the New Year, so it’s great to see all of our hard work being rewarded with this essential certification.

“At Evoplay, we offer some of the most immersive gaming experiences on the market, and we can’t wait to provide Lithuania-based operators with our innovative slot games.”

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Relax channels Native America in Spirit of the Beast

George Miller

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Relax channels Native America in Spirit of the Beast
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Relax Gaming, the igaming aggregator and supplier of unique content, has answered the call of the wild with its latest game, Spirit of the Beast.

Set in the heart of the North American wild, Spirit of the Beast is ideal for players that enjoy action-packed games. The 5 x 3 title boasts a 96.52 RTP, continuing the company’s generous player returns, twinned with exceptional, differentiation-driving content.

With symbols reflecting some of the strongest figures from the wilderness, including bears, bulls, wolves, horses and eagles, players are sure to feel at one with nature in a land abundant with rewards.

Spirit of the Beast’s random feature may be awarded at the start of any spin. One high pay symbol is randomly selected to become stacked on all reels while all other high pay symbols are removed from the reels. This presents the chance of filling the entire reel area with the selected high pay symbol.

Free spin symbols are present on reels two, three and four, awarding 12 free spins when they are triggered. There are 6 multipliers to be won in Free Spins, which award up to 10,000x bet!

Commenting on the launch, Simon Hammon, CPO at Relax Gaming said: Spirit of the Beast immerses players in a calm environment that is contrasted by the thrills and action taking place across the reels.

“The soundtrack and art were carefully curated to complement the host of engaging features and wow players. We’re excited to see how players receive it and how many snatch the fantastic 10,000x win!”

Relax has enjoyed an outstanding first six months of 2021, with a record-breaking 16 nominations across the EGR B2B Awards and the CasinoBeats Developer awards, as well as taking home “Casino Content Supplier” at the EGR Nordics Awards in February.

In total, Relax offers its partners more than 2,000 online casino games, featuring headline slots from its in-house studios along with a vast collection of content aggregated through its Silver Bullet and Powered By Relax partnership programmes.

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