Gaming Licensing Consultancy Formed
A new gaming licensing consultancy firm as been formed it was announced today by Steven M. Saferin, Managing Director of the new firm: The Entertainment and Sports Gaming Network (“ESGN”). In addition, Saferin announced that ITV Ventures a unit of the largest British broadcaster has signed on as the firm’s first client.
Saferin, who retired at the end of 2016 from his role as President Properties Group and Chief Creative Officer of Scientific Games one of the largest fully integrated gaming companies in the world, will initially have offices in Florida and London.
Saferin and his wife Linda formed MDI Entertainment LLC in 1986 and went on to virtually create the lottery licensing category. Over the last 15 years third party licensed scratch tickets have accounted for nearly 10% of total scratch sales. Scientific Games acquired MDI in 2003.
Over the course of more than two decades MDI acquired lottery licensing rights to hundreds of licenses for such diverse properties as Monopoly, Wheel of Fortune, The World Cup, Major League Baseball, The NBA, Harley Davidson, Deal Or No Deal, Betty Boop, The Walking Dead, Elvis Presley and Pac Man.
In 2012 Saferin left his leadership role at MDI to head up all third-party licensing for Scientific Games for lottery, electronic gaming machines and social and on-line casinos. In that role he led the negotiations for cross-channel licensing agreements with Hasbro (Monopoly and other games), Warner Bros. (Willy Wonka, Lord of the Rings and other shows), Elvis Presley, Margaritaville, Michael Jackson, The Simpsons (slots only) and led the preliminary talks for the now completed James Bond license.
In addition, Saferin announced that a unit of British Broadcaster ITV, ITV Ventures has become ESGN’s first client. He will assist them in structuring gaming licensing agreements outside the UK for shows such as Love Island and Hell’s Kitchen.
“Gaming licensing is a critical component of gaming operators’ and vendors’ content strategy,” Saferin said. “My objective is to not only assist licensors in creating gaming opportunities for their shows and brands but also to assist them in maximizing the value of those brands to licensors and gaming operators after agreements have been struck.”
“I am very pleased to announce ITV Ventures as ESGN’s first client. Love Island is a true television phenomenon in the UK. Original versions of the show have now been commissioned in a total of 13 countries, including the U.S. where the show launches on CBS in July in prime time,” Saferin stated. “Love Island has also been successfully introduced multiple times as an instant win digital scratch game by Camelot in the UK as well as a paper scratch card,” Saferin added.
“I have always thought that Hell’s Kitchen would make a terrific gaming brand. The phenomenal success of the Hell’s Kitchen restaurant at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas seems to confirm that notion,” Saferin said.
“We are delighted to have entered into this relationship with Steve and ESGN,” commented Dave Christopher Director International Commercial and Digital at ITV. “I have known Steve for many years and his creativity and leadership in gaming licensing is unmatched. We look forward to working with him to bring many of our shows to the gaming category.”
THE THIRD-PARTY PROPERTIES MENTIONED ARE THE TRADEMARKS OF THEIR RESPECTIVE OWNERS
Source: Entertainment and Sports Gaming Network
How Gamers are Putting the Future of Fun Front and Center
By Roobet Co-Founder Matt Duea
Growing up playing video games, I remember it well: the days when those in the mainstream thought being a ‘gamer’ was pretty much synonymous with being an awkward, basement-dwelling loner.
But times have changed and let’s face it – gamers aren’t exactly pariahs anymore. Esports tournaments like the League of Legends (LoL) World Championships rake in viewers in by the millions – a few years ago, more people watched the LoL final than the MLB and NFL championships combined.
This is nothing new. Gaming has been a huge part of mainstream culture for years now. But over the pandemic, something switched – people who’d never even owned a PlayStation began to realize the value of online entertainment as they sought out new ways to relax and socialize. In 2022 alone, the industry generated over $180 billion in revenue – worth more than the Hollywood and music industries combined.
One offshoot from the gaming world is blossoming into a powerhouse of its own while promising to stay true to its roots in gaming culture: online gambling and digital casino. It constitutes a huge portion of this multi-billion-dollar industry, generating around $63.5 billion just last year.
At Roobet, we’re powered by Zillennials – our unique perspective has reshaped the world and we’re applying it to our product strategy every day. A shift from bricks-and-mortar to online just makes sense in the gambling world and it’s clear how necessary the move to the digital marketplace was. Betting online combines the excitement of a modernized catalog of casino games that you can play with your online Discord buddies from around the world.
We’re a generation of world-travelers who grew up online and built a network of friends spanning far-flung reaches of the globe, thanks to the close proximity of chat rooms, video game lobbies, social media and Reddit. So, when we came of age to gamble for the first time, we did it in a real casino – and to be honest, it’s not that ‘social’ of an experience.
Most adults go to the casino for a shared experience with friends. For some of us, watching a friend gamble is just as – sometimes more – fun than gambling ourselves. For a generation that’s increasingly ‘location agnostic,’ bricks-and-mortar casinos just aren’t the best option. Traditional casinos’ promise of glitz is often a dimly-lit, smoky place, full of strangers, an hour’s drive away. Add to that the pressures of learning games in public – and well, playing from home on a smart TV with your mates on the couch starts to sound a hell of a lot more appealing.
So, casino went online. And as it did, gamers welcomed a greater sense of convenience and personalization. Casino became more accessible, more exciting and players were liberated in the process. Based on their individual wants and needs, players gained a new freedom to choose whether in-person gambling or online casino met their needs best.
The industry has thus been transformed and now online casinos can offer so much more than those in the mainstream believe to be possible. Simple slot machines and blackjack games are quickly becoming a thing of the past, supplanted by modern permutations of age-old classics that go viral on a whim. And with the rise of blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies, players now have even more options for secure and convenient cash-in and cash-out methods, which are nearly instant with virtually no disruption.
Roobet is one of the world’s fastest-growing crypto casinos. And while we push ourselves daily to offer the most entertaining games, the most fluent gameplay and to support our interactive, thriving community – our core offering is fun. And we take fun seriously.
I mean, we’re the only biggest casino to be run by a digital kangaroo. Because it’s not just the games themselves that are responsible for the industry’s meteoric rise in popularity. But the gamers who make up our dynamic digital communities and an online culture that puts fun and safety first and foremost, have fundamentally altered perceptions of how we see gambling and its place in society. It’s not the shady and taboo endeavor that it once was: it’s fun, it’s exciting and it’s a new way for adults to interact with friends from anywhere across the world.
Crypto casinos like Roobet operate on serious tech and are powered by some of the most innovative and forward-thinking minds in the industry. As a brand, we consider every aspect of the player experience. At a minimum, we provide industry-leading games, best-in-class bonuses and rewards and we foster a sense of community that you just can’t find anywhere else. Players can connect with each other and engage in a more immersive and interactive way. And with our communities sprawling across social platforms, the experience isn’t confined to just our website.
But we want to push beyond that. As gamers, we’re problem-solvers by nature. And gaming is about challenging the norm and pushing beyond what others perceive us to be capable of – because we know that the mainstream is always chasing to keep up with us.
It’s no longer solely crypto enthusiasts who use crypto casinos but a new generation of bright-eyed and bushy-tailed digital natives who know the value of crypto, blockchain technology and are excited for the direction that gaming and the web itself is headed.
So, we develop new products every month that provide players with new ways to interact with the brand, which aren’t just limited to gambling. We have our fingers on the pulse and work alongside some of the biggest names in entertainment to lend us their expertise on what really makes people tick. And we work around the clock to make it happen.
We’re not just a casino. We’re pioneers of online entertainment and defenders of fun on the digital frontier. Yet again, gamers are ahead of the curve – and take it from us – we’re going to revolutionize digital entertainment for the better.
WhichBingo Awards 2023: Voting Now Open for the 10th Annual Event
WhichBingo, the UK’s leading bingo review website, has announced that voting is officially open for the WhichBingo Awards 2023, which recognise the nation’s favourite bingo and slots brands as voted by real players and the best operators across a number of special judged categories.
Bingo fans are encouraged to show their support for their favourite bingo brands to see them take home a coveted award, with voting running from now until the 14th April, 2023.
The player-voted awards up for grabs include the Best Bingo Site, Best Slots Site, Best New Bingo Site and Best New Slots Site, as well as accolades for the Best Chat Team, and best site under specific bingo software providers –Playtech, Dragonfish and Pragmatic Play.
As well as the user-voted awards, bingo operators can also win one of five special judged awards, which are: Most Socially Responsible Operator, Best Customer Service, Best Mobile Bingo Site, Best Bingo Software and Best Slots Developer.
This year, the esteemed judges are Anita Heffernan, Editor of WhichBingo, Leigh Nissim, Founder and CEO of Future Anthem, Victoria Reed, Founder of Better Change and Christina Thakor-Rankin, Principal Consultant at 1710 Gaming Ltd.
And there’s all to play for, with previous winners of the awards including Mecca Bingo, Sun Bingo, Buzz Bingo, Ladbrokes Bingo and Heart Bingo.
To vote, players must visit the WhichBingo Awards 2023 voting page and cast a vote for their favourite bingo brand or operator across each of the 11 categories.
The WhichBingo awards are marking a highlight year by hosting the 10th annual instalment on the luxurious and very Instagrammable Sunborn Yacht Hotel, in Gibraltar. The date for your diaries is the 17th of May 2023.
Anita Heffernan, Editor of WhichBingo, said: “We are delighted to be able to continue the tradition of the WhichBingo Awards, a highlight of the bingo industry. It’s a chance for brands big and small to have their happy customers have their say and to nominate themselves in special categories and let everyone know where they shine. The event itself on the Sunborn in Gibraltar is sure to be a memorable occasion and we look forward to welcoming many of our industry colleagues as we reveal the awards winners on 17th May.”
Arena Racing Company Purchases Arabian Racing Organisation
Arena Racing Company (ARC) confirmed the purchase of the Arabian Racing Organisation Ltd (ARO). ARO is the sole Arabian Racing Authority in Britain, operating with the support and permission of the British Horseracing Authority (BHA), managing all elements of the integrity, fixture list and promotion of the sport.
The ARO team of Genny Haynes, Willie McFarland and Debbie Burt will continue to deliver the recently published 2023 fixture list, which will cover a programme of Arabian races across British racecourses.
As Britain’s largest racing group, ARC are long term supporters of ARO, hosting events at their numerous racecourses across the summer Arabian Racing season.
Genny Haynes, Chief Executive Officer of ARO, said: “We are delighted to confirm this deal with ARC, who have been fantastic supporters of ARO for a number of years, with the majority of our races run on ARC racecourses.
“ARO is now in a position to develop new commercial revenue streams, with the aim of developing the sport’s profile within the UK. The future of our Arabian Group races is now secure, and our aim will be that these races host some of the World’s best Arabians, as well as provide a springboard for our domestic horses to progress. Equally, we look forward to working on the continued development of grassroots Arabian racing, which is an integral part of our domestic programme.
“Our thanks must go to our sponsors HH Sheikh Mansoor Festival, Qatar Racing and Equestrian Club, UAE President Cup, Emirates Breeders Series, Arabian Horse Organization, The Arabian Racehorse magazine, Equine MediRecord, Racing Welfare and partner racecourses for their ongoing support, as well as our former ARO Directors Charles Gregson, Bill Smith and Richard Weston for their invaluable work and vision in establishing the sport in the UK.”
Mark Spincer, Managing Director of ARC’s Racing Division, said: “As long term partners of ARO, we are delighted to take this step to help secure the future of the sport in Britain. Arabian races have sat alongside a number of our summer fixtures, and we look forward to working with Genny, Willie and Debbie to continue this and look for opportunities to grow the sport over the coming years.”
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