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Smarkets raises Series B funding round to supercharge international and domestic growth

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Smarkets raises Series B funding round to supercharge international and domestic growth
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Smarkets, one of the world’s largest betting exchange and prediction market platforms, has announced the closing of a significant minority investment from Susquehanna Growth Equity (SGE).

Having raised just £3.8m ($5.4m) since its inception in 2008, with its Series A round coming back in 2013, Smarkets has built a leading exchange platform that processes billions of pounds in traded volume each year. The company has offices in London, Los Angeles, and Malta, licensed customer-focused operations in five countries, and in 2019 released innovative sportsbook app SBK.

Smarkets is delighted to welcome SGE, which joins existing investors Passion Capital and Deutsche Telekom in supporting the company’s mission to fix betting with the fairest odds in the industry.

This new investment will allow Smarkets to accelerate its rollout in the US, where it is already live in Colorado with sportsbook app SBK and set to go live in Indiana soon. The funding will also bolster SBK’s position in the UK mainstream betting market after its successful launch in August 2019.

The new investment will contribute to:

Furthering the company’s US presence, including market-access deals in new, regulated states
Capturing an even greater share of the UK betting exchange market and accelerating SBK’s growth in the UK’s mainstream sportsbook market
Expanding Smarkets’ development of new products for customers and focus on industry-leading prices on sports, politics, and current affairs
Continuing to capture the best and brightest worldwide engineering talent with a view to doubling headcount by the end of 2022
Further expansion into new and recently entered markets such as Denmark and Sweden

Jason Trost, founder and CEO of Smarkets, said:

“This is an incredibly exciting day. I’ve always been amazed what the passion and energy of a comparatively small group of committed people can accomplish against much bigger rivals; Smarkets and SBK are the product of exactly that. At Smarkets we have always been guided by our vision of fixing betting with the best prices and products, and SGE is just as excited as us to challenge the status quo. This is a huge endorsement of our technology and will allow us to further upend the industry by offering bets as close to fair value as possible.

“We are super proud of what we have achieved so far in the UK betting space, and this new investment will help take us to the next level and beyond in the UK, US, and other international markets. I’d like to thank the women and men that work and have worked at Smarkets for getting us to where we are.

“I truly believe the best is yet to come. This investment will allow us to fight with greater resources, move faster, and be bolder in our mission. We’re so excited about the opportunities this investment unlocks.”

Scott Feldman, Managing Director with Susquehanna Growth Equity, said:

“We are delighted to be able to join Smarkets on their upward journey. We immediately identified with their vision of using technology to take on the betting industry’s big operators by providing the fairest odds in the world and maintaining a clear focus on product excellence.

“Smarkets have achieved a huge amount with little investment to date and we can’t wait to see them go from strength to strength as they expand further into both the US and UK mainstream market.”

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Bacta to host Social Responsibility Exchange in November

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Bacta to host Social Responsibility Exchange in November
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Bacta will host its annual Social Responsibility Exchange at the County Hall in London on Thursday 22nd November, the trade body announced today. The event will provide members with an opportunity to share best practice tactics and strategies around Social Responsibility.

The event will be introduced by Elizabeth Speech, chair of bacta’s Social Responsibility Committee. YGAM and GamCare will also be speaking at the event alongside Social Responsibility updates from the Gambling Commission.

Bacta Membership, SR and Compliance Manager Russell Edge said: “Our Social Responsibility Exchange will allow members to hear crucial updates on Social Responsibility from the likes of the Gambling Commission, YGAM and GamCare.

“The day-long event will also provide a structured forum for discussion around the tactics and strategies bacta members are employing across the country.

“Ultimately, we hope members leave the event knowing more about Social Responsibility and having exchanged their knowledge where they can.”

 

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Massive News for the Esports Industry with Potential Inclusion in the Commonwealth Games

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Esports is one of the fastest growing industries in the world and there’s no limit to how big it could become. It’s already breached a valuation of $1 billion, and it’s expected to grow to $13.05 billion by 2025.

One of the greatest indicators that competitive gaming is going mainstream is the fact that it has been recognised by the Commonwealth Games. Indeed, it is expected to be included when the event takes place in Victoria in 2026.

Test Run Has Already Taken Place

A few years ago, the thought of seeing Esports at the Commonwealth Games would have been laughable. Now, it is a realistic prospect. It was recently reported that a dry run of the Commonwealth Esports Championships was held in Birmingham, England, at the 2022 Commonwealth Games to see if this type of competitive action could be included as an official event in 2026. It went well and garnered positive feedback from the people involved.

The Victoria edition of the Commonwealth Games is set to take place in 2026, with 16 sports already confirmed. However, the organisers are hoping to add more to the schedule with Esports being strongly considered. Competitive gaming has proven to be a popular spectator sport, with more people tuning in to watch it every year. By 2026, there could be close to a billion people watching Esports, meaning that it would be a popular inclusion at a major event.

Esports has been referred to as the “new sporting frontier,” and it wouldn’t be surprising to see it gaining even more credibility in the next decade. Even the world’s biggest traditional sports had to start somewhere. Football and cricket are now well-established and loved the world over, and there’s nothing stopping Esports from following a similar trajectory.

How Will This Affect Related Industries?

With the Commonwealth Games set to take place in Australia next time, the country could be in a prime position to capitalise on the inclusion of Esports. Part of the success of competitive gaming up to this point has been thanks to related industries pushing it, along with big name companies striking sponsorship deals. Australian companies, therefore, will most certainly seek to capitalise in 2026.

The betting industry was built around traditional sports, and it is now a behemoth industry around the world. In Australia, online betting is so popular that there are countless sites vying for bettors’ attention. Indeed, there are so many to sift through that people turn to comparison sites that list the best ones based on their offers and ratings. Bettors simply scroll through and then click a link to be taken directly to a site.

Many of these online sportsbooks are already offering eSports betting, and the number of markets available is only set to rise in the future. When the Commonwealth Games rolls around, betting sites could benefit from special offers. They may also start to have a greater focus on Esports, thus drawing more attention to the competitive gaming industry.

Esports at the Commonwealth Games isn’t just huge news for the industry itself, but it’s a great move for related industries. Australian companies are set to benefit in 2026, with the betting industry being in a particularly strong position to take advantage.

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Nigma Galaxy female CS:GO Champions: New docu-series follows rise to becoming champions

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Nigma Galaxy female CS:GO Champions: New docu-series follows rise to becoming champions
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This Sunday 14th, Nigma Galaxy is set to release the first episode of their new docu-series, Jiggy Biggy Best: A CS:GO Story, which follows their hugely successful female CS:GO team and their journey to becoming champions at two major tournaments this year.

The first instalment of the series will be launching on Nigma Galaxy’s YouTube channel at 1pm CEST on Sunday. You can find more information below, in case the team’s story would be of interest to your editorial plan:

  • Fans will get a behind the scene glimpse into the female Nigma Galaxy CS:GO team preparing for two of the biggest tournaments of their careers – ESL Impact League Season 1 in Dallas to the stand-alone ESL Impact tournament in Valencia
  • The docu-series also offers an exclusive peek into the teams journey to the top – their training regime, team cohesion and a deeper dive into the world of female esports
  • Uncover the dedication and support Nigma Galaxy have placed on the competitive female esports scene, one of the fastest-growing sub-genres in the industry
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