Esports levels up at ICE London as European expansion beckons, states Sparks CEO, Dina Niron

The ongoing expansion of esports across the globe was evident at this year’s ICE London, the world’s biggest gaming technology event, with a dedicated focus on the sector across the ICE VOX conference agenda, world class teams competing live on the showfloor and leading companies from established and emerging markets driving esports into its next phase from the London show.  Leading industry advisor and former CEO of Playtech subsidiary Juego Online, Dina Niron, who took part in the ‘Esports: The esports ecosystem in 2019 – What you need to know’ panel at this year’s ICE VOX at ExCeL London, believes the sector is only just getting started and the industry’s relatively new focus on esports wagering will be ripe for expansion as regulation across Europe continues to grow.
Discussing why esports had such an enhanced presence at ICE London and why the event is the ideal place to determine the future of emerging industry trends, she explained: “ICE London was a great opportunity to interact and share my experience and views of the expected growth of esports with leading esports business owners, management and professionals.  This year especially, the growing interest in this sector was very obvious.”
Focusing on the perceived myths about esports demographics, Niron believes that the major concerns hovering over the esports sector are already being tackled through a proactive and dedicated community of players and fans – something she is keen for the industry to engage with in a similar way to which gambling and betting has engaged with traditional sports fans.  Reflecting on where the sector is positioned going into 2019, Niron explained: “Esports is still seen as a relatively new phenomenon to mainstream audiences, so for operators to successfully interact with esport fans, who are mostly millennials, it’s imperative they offer unique, tailored content which is, in turn, advertised via millennial influencers and channels according to their expectations and in line with cutting edge technology.  With so much content being generated and promoted to fans daily, there is a growing demand in esports for local teams and tournaments.  Going forward, I see this becoming quite a key factor in the sector and expected to mirror the conventional sport template by creating loyalty with local fans and, therefore, expansion.
“Esports wagering is a key focus for the sector and the possibilities here are already regulated territories like Malta, Isle of Man, UK and Italy, Spain and Denmark, as well as the legalisations of additional markets,” Niron continued.  “I envisage its growth as similar to the roll out of DFS in the United States, in that more US and European states will continue to regulate esports wagering, providing more potential in 2019 and beyond.  At this stage, the major issues facing esports are cheating, match-fixing/betting fraud, doping, online attacks and boosting, but the esports community is trying to tackle these issues by self-regulating and setting up new voluntary organisations, such as Esports Integrity Coalition: ESIC, to regulate, supervise and, when needed, take actions and even impose sanctions.”
Esports forms a key part of Clarion Gaming’s newest event, ICE North America, which takes the ICE experience to Boston, MA, USA on May 13-15. For more information and to register, visit icenorthamerica.com.

 

Wire Act’s enforcement has been pushed back

The DoJ has further delayed the enforcement of its revised opinion of the Wire Act, which involves all forms of online gambling.
The US Department of Justice (DoJ) recently revised its opinion on the Wire Act and expanded its reach to all forms of gambling. However, the body has delayed its enforcement, in order to give operators time to readapt their operations.
According to a DoJ spokesperson, as reported by GamblingCompliance, the deadline has been pushed back from April 15 to mid-June. The reinterpretation of the Wire Act, which would impact on sports betting and other forms of online gambling, was issued in January and generated major criticism from the industry.
The iDEA Growth trade association, which advocates the expansion of iGaming, has announced it has filed a lawsuit against it, becoming the latest to do so. “We trust that the New Hampshire Court will give appropriate weight to judicial precedent over political factors in making its decision, a decision sure to have a major impact on a fast-growing industry poised to offer significant economic benefits to states across the country,” Jeff Ifra, the lead attorney in the suit, said.
Previously, the American Gaming Association (AGA), released a statement signed by senior vice president of public affairs Sara Slane in response to the new opinion and said that “it is unfortunate that the Department of Justice departed from well-established practice in reversing its previous opinion without a compelling reason to do so.”

 

BetVictor broadens greyhound product offering with SIS partnership

Leading multi-channel supplier SIS (Sports Information Services) has reached an agreement with BetVictor, one of Europe’s leading online gambling companies, to provide the company with British and Irish greyhound content.
The deal significantly strengthens BetVictor’s greyhound offering, with the operator now having access to over 33,000 races per year, streamed from 8 am to 10 pm UK time.
The greyhound content consists of more than 53 meetings per week from British tracks including Central Park, Crayford, Doncaster, Harlow, Henlow, Hove, Monmore and Romford, as well as Irish action from Curraheen Park, Kilcohan Park, Kilkenny, Limerick, Mullingar, Tralee and Youghal.
Delivered in a “Bet and Watch” format, the new service allows BetVictor to offer regular short-form betting events to its fast-growing customer base, providing them with engaging betting content designed to increase engagement and dwell time.
Eoin Ryan, Director of Product at BetVictor, said: “Over the past year we have invested heavily into developing our Greyhound product and this partnership with SIS ensures that our customers will receive a best-in-class experience, with access to more races across the UK and Ireland and high-quality streaming so they can watch the action unfold.”
Sandra McWilliams, Sales Director at SIS, said: “Delivering our content to a leading operator such as BetVictor underpins our status as the leading supplier of racing content, and we’re thrilled to be partnering with them.
“BetVictor customers will now have access to live pictures of the best greyhound racing from the UK and Ireland, which is sure to drive increased engagement and revenues for the operator.”

 

Blueprint Gaming partners with EveryMatrix

Software provider significantly enhances casino offering
Slots developer Blueprint Gaming has reached a content distribution agreement with leading iGaming integration platform CasinoEngine powered by EveryMatrix.
As part of the deal, Blueprint Gaming has delivered its portfolio of award-winning games to EveryMatrix’s casino integration platform CasinoEngine, enabling its ever-growing operator network quick access to Blueprint’s diverse range of games, including popular releases such as Fishin’ Frenzy, King Kong Cash and Wish Upon A Jackpot, as well as its series of Megaways titles, under licence from Big Time Gaming.
The slot developer’s integration onto the CasinoEngine is part of its international growth strategy and will allow the company to expand into new regulated territories.
Siôr Walbyoff, Head of Business Development at Blueprint Gaming, said: “We’re delighted to have secured this partnership with EveryMatrix, one of the industry’s leading casino providers. In recent months we’ve made a concerted effort to expand our presence in regulated markets and the deal with EveryMatrix gives us access to supply our top-performing content into new territories.”
Stian Hornsletten, EveryMatrix co-founder and CasinoEngine CEO, said: “CasinoEngine’s mission is to simplify operators’ access to additional markets while supplying the finest casino content available. Blueprint Gaming is an established name and we’re pleased to integrate their exciting gaming offering. They produce a variety of games and we’re looking forward to receiving even more content throughout the year.”
EveryMatrix’s CasinoEngine is a top performance integration platform that enables access to 8,000+ games across more than 140 vendors and sub-vendors.

 

British gambling industry united once again for Responsible Gambling Week 2019

The Industry Group for Responsible Gambling (IGRG) has announced that Responsible Gambling Week 2019 will take place from 7th -13th November and that following the success of RG Week 2018 organisations and businesses from across Britain will once again join forces to support the campaign.
The IGRG brings together every sector of the gambling industry through its member trade associations, the Association of British Bookmakers (ABB); British Amusement Machine Association (BACTA); The Bingo Association (BA); National Casino Forum (NCF); and Remote Gambling Association (RGA); all with the common objective of raising awareness of safer gambling behaviours and encouraging staff, customers and the wider public to discuss what it means to gamble responsibly.
The headline theme of the Week will be Let’s Talk About Safer Gambling. By coming together with one voice, the industry is able extend its reach and ensure that the message of safer gambling connects with the widest possible audience.
Encouraged by the success of Responsible Gambling Week 2017 and building on the huge engagement achieved in 2018, which encompassed more than 12,000 gambling venues and online sites, 120,000 employees across Great Britain and created some 20 million impressions on social media, the IGRG is seeking to build on these excellent results and take the campaign further in 2019.
Operators promote responsible gambling 365 days of the year, but Responsible Gambling Week creates the opportunity for businesses to start a conversation about safer gambling not only with their customers, but also with their friends and families.
John Hagan, Chairman of the Industry Group for Responsible Gambling, said:
“Social responsibility is fundamental to the gambling industry’s approach, and we are all dedicated, year-round, to promoting safer gambling. But what makes Responsible Gambling Week special is that the whole industry is united and engaged to highlight safer gambling to a broader audience.
“Responsible Gambling Week 2018 was widely supported across the industry, helping to set a new benchmark for the campaign.  We are confident that with the continued support of operators, charities and information networks we can build on last year’s success and reach a far greater audience.
“RG Week 2019 will take place from 7th to 13th November; in announcing these dates early in the year we are hoping that the increased planning time will encourage and allow for further support.  For 2019 we will be seeking to broaden RG Week’s supporter base and make use of complimentary communication networks, refining message themes for RG Week in line with consumer research and following input from specialist support groups.”
Responsible Gambling Week will be attending ICE Totally Gaming, held at London ExCel from 5th – 7th February 2019, where team members will be available to discuss this year’s campaign.
Further information about RG Week 2019 will be made available on the Responsible Gambling Week web site (www.responsiblegamblingweek.org) in the coming weeks and supporters can register for updates on the site. The website will be a key resource and information point for the 2019 campaign for customers, the general public, staff and supporting organisations, in addition to providing information and material for the media. Social media channels for Responsible Gambling Week 2019 are also live on Facebook and Twitter @RGWeek19
Responsible Gambling Week 2019 will take place from 7th – 13th November 2019.  Organisations wishing to support the Week and get involved should, if a member of a supporting trade association, contact their trade association first. Organisations that are not members of a supporting trade association should contact the Responsible Gambling Week team by email: info@responsiblegamblingweek.org
To stay up to date, please visit and follow Responsible Gambling Week 2019 on Facebook www.facebook.com/RGWeek2019 and on Twitter at @RGWeek2019 .

 

ICE London attendance tops 36,000 to record 8th straight year of growth

ICE London 2019 has confirmed its status as the world’s most popular business-to-business gaming expo with attendance figures recorded at 36,092, an 8 percent increase on the 2018 figure and the eighth consecutive year of growth. The interim figures, which have been calculated on the raw registration and attendance data for ICE London 2019, will now be forwarded for independent audit.
Kate Chambers, Managing Director of Clarion Gaming, believes the attendance figures tell only part of the ICE London success story. She said: “These are very encouraging and of course I’m delighted to be able to report on what would be our eighth consecutive year of growth.  I would like to pay tribute to our exhibitors who once again brought fantastic theatre and creativity to their ICE London show presence, contributing magnificently to the energy and atmosphere visitors experienced at ExCeL London.  The event industry has a tendency to be consumed by attendance when actually it’s the chemistry of an event and, as a result, the quality of the interactions and connections that take place between visitor and exhibitor, visitor and visitor and between exhibitors that really count and which distinguish a good show from a great show.
“The internationalism of ICE London remains a stand out characteristic and the global gaming industry turned out in force with representatives from Botswana and Honduras raising the number of nations present at ExCeL London to 155 – a remarkable statistic by any standards.  The figures are showing fantastic growth from key geographical regions, notably LatAm which recorded an increase of no less than 43 percent.”
“Once our attendance data has been interrogated and verified by the independent audit, we will be in a position to share more insights with the huge community of international gaming professionals which participate in and have an interest in ICE London.”
After London, the ICE brand moves across the Atlantic to Boston (MA) for the first edition of ICE North America (May 13 –15).  This new event has attracted the support of 45 global organisations, comprising commercial, sports federation, trade association and media sponsors for what promises to be the biggest sports betting and interactive gaming event in North America.  ICE North America’s pioneering agenda will focus on the five key verticals comprising Sports Betting, iGaming, Affiliate Marketing, iLottery and Esports.  To find out more, go to: icenorthamerica.com

 

RSPH backs calls for tougher online gambling limits

The Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH), which is soon to establish a Gambling Health Alliance (GHA), welcomes the call for tougher limits on online gambling in a speech by Tom Watson MP, Deputy Leader of the Labour Party.
RSPH, who have previously called for gambling to be treated as a public health issue, support Watson’s definition of gambling activity in the UK as a public health emergency. The Health on the High Street report, published by RSPH, highlights that young people face an unprecedented level of exposure to gambling, with over 400,000 11-16 year olds spending their own money gambling each week.
The government are on course this year to implement a £2 maximum stake for FOBTs and a requirement that online operators verify a potential customer’s age before they can gamble. Labour’s policy would limit stakes in all online gambling, building on progress being made in taking action in this area to protect the public’s health.
Watson’s speech calls for a new Gambling Act, that would implement:
A system for checking affordability before a gambler can start higher deposits
Stake limits on products linked to higher rates of problem gambling
The integration of online games into the existing categorisation of gambling machines according to maximum stake and prize
In 2019 RSPH will establish a Gambling Health Alliance (GHA) with the support of GambleAware.
The Alliance which will initially be established for three years, has the primary objective of bringing together organisations and individuals, specifically policy makers, who have a shared interest in reducing the damage caused to health and wellbeing from gambling.  The Alliance will seek to:
Highlight the rising concerns about gambling related harms;
Engage and influence policy makers, Government, NGOs and the public health community in order to encourage positive action;
Promote evidence so it can be translated into practical steps;
Undertake periodic surveys and polling to inform GHA campaigns to increase awareness of the health harms from gambling.
Niamh McDade, Senior Campaigns & Communications Executive at the RSPH, said:
“It is vital that regulations in the online world catch up with restrictions being introduced offline and we welcome the call to limit stakes in all online gambling. With 18% of the population gambling online, we must ensure that we identify and understand all sources of problem gambling.
We look forward to establishing the Gambling Health Alliance this year to provide a forum for all relevant stakeholders to collaborate and increase our understanding of the range social, economic and cultural factors that contribute to gambling related harms.”

 

Criminal charges against Paul Phua Dropped

Two weeks ago Paul Phua went to trial in Macau and has now been “found innocent of all charges in a criminal case file against him years ago in Macau.” The news was distributed this week via a press release.
Paul PhuaJust as it was the case in the U.S. trial, things basically fell apart and charges were dropped due to a lack of evidence. In the U.S. it was, because evidence had been obtained illegally and was so dismissed, in Macau “experts testified that his phone and computer records conclusively showed that he had not participated in taking any bets and had not cooperated with any betting ring.”
The press release also states: “In fact, the defense witnesses showed, Paul had arrived in Macau only just before the police raid and was there for an important meeting on a potential business project. The prosecution was unable to identify any evidence that he had engaged in any illegal activity.”
The charges on both sides of the big pond
In both cases, Phua was charged with allegations to have run and masterminded multi-million dollar, if not multi-billion dollar, illegal betting rings around the World Cup in 2014. In Macau, he was accused to run his betting operations from multiple Wynn casino hotel rooms and in Las Vegas it was a suite at Caesar’s Palace.
When he got charged in Macau, he was still allowed to travel the world while awaiting trial. After the arrest in Las Vegas, he and his son were bailed out by none other than high stakes poker pros Phil Ivey, Andrew Roble and Daniel “Jungleman” Cates for around $4.5 million total.
Phua was considered the head of the operations by government officials, but in both cases, others had also been arrested and everybody pleaded not guilty, at least in the Macau case.
Now that Phua is able to breathe freedom again, he can finally focus back on his business, the high stakes poker games and his own poker school site, PaulPhuaPoker.com.
The post Criminal charges against Paul Phua Dropped appeared first on Somuchpoker.

 

Impact of Crypto Mining on the Environment

  We, humans, are too proud of all the technological and economic progress we are making. This pride makes us think a streamlined way, forgetting what impact it asserts of the environment. This article talks about the ecological impacts of cryptocurrency mining, keep following to know how?               Why the craze of Cryptocurrency? […]

 

How Bitcoin Makes It Easy To Gamble

  The year 2017 witnessed a meteoric rise in the price of Bitcoin, and we came across many astounding stories of life-changing profits and breathtaking losses that occurred due to this unbelievable change. Bitcoin reached new highs, but some people saw the worst lows of their lives too. It’s not been long when Bitcoin came […]

 

Bitcoin Gambling: An Analysis

  The world of Bitcoin has collided with the world of Gambling, and the result is the creation of a whole new cult. It has changed the way how both these worlds are perceived. Bitcoin is a recently constructed design, whereas gambling has been an indispensable part of human history. This amalgamation has given gambling […]

 

Isle of Man GSC introduces software suppliers’ licence

Mark Rutherford, deputy chief executive of the Gambling Supervision Commission
In a move that is set to make life simpler for gaming operators and suppliers on the Island, the Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission is introducing a licensing scheme for software suppliers that will go hand-in-hand with the creation of a centralised software database.
The Isle of Man has announced that it will shortly be rolling out a brand-new software suppliers’ licence that will make it easier and quicker for operators to launch new products from trusted firms.
Under the new rules, B2B firms now have the option to apply for a licence which will allow them to list their games and software on a register of pre-approved products. Rather than having to produce specific certification for a new slot or third-party product, the Island’s gaming operators can refer to the register to see which products they are able to deploy immediately.
The move promises to streamline processes for both regulators and B2Cs on the Island, offering an innovative way to deliver efficiency to the gaming community, while maintaining high regulatory standards.
Mark Rutherford, deputy chief executive of the Gambling Supervision Commission, said: “Over the years we’ve had a number of software developers come to us and ask us if the Isle of Man was considering licensing their business model, so this year at ICE, for the first time, we’re delighted to be able to say ‘yes’.
“The benefit for the Isle of Man operators – the B2Cs – is that they get to see what products they can deploy straight away, secure in the knowledge that the GSC has already approved them, and it’s possible, with a following wind, that it’ll become a sort of directory of games.
“We’re not expecting everyone to want to jump on straight away, but so far, we’ve had an immensely positive reception from operators. We also recognise that for suppliers, the register may have the benefit of making their games and products more prominent, although that’s not its primary purpose.”
Commenting on the application process for suppliers, he added: “It’s essentially the same law that we’ve used for B2Cs, so the process in essence is the same, but without actually having control over players an awful lot of our consumer-protection law doesn’t really apply. So, while we will be still be as thorough with our diligence as we are with our B2Cs, software suppliers will need to supply a lot less information and therefore the application process should be swifter.”
Software suppliers who want to take advantage of the new register will be able to apply for a licence from the 22 February.
Isle of Man eGaming will be exhibiting at ICE Totally Gaming in London ExCel Centre from 5-7 February at Stand N6-220, N7. Contact Tony Jones on tony.jones2@gov.im or stop by the stand to arrange a meeting.

 

SUZOHAPP appoints Matt Luckhurst as Sales Director for Components in UK & Ireland

SUZOHAPP is pleased to announce the appointment of Matt Luckhurst as Sales Director for its Components business in the UK & Ireland, effective February 4th.
Mr. Luckhurst brings with him a wealth of experience in Sales Leadership and Relationship and Strategic Management, both in the UK and within Europe. With many years of experience within the Retail, Banking, Gaming and Travel & Tourism industries, he brings extensive knowledge and valuable expertise to this position. Mr. Luckhurst previously worked as Sales Director for Glory and has also held positions at NCR, TOREX and Wincor Nixdorf.
“We are pleased to have gained such a high calibre professional to join our team in this key position in the UK and Ireland,” commented Simon James, Managing Director of SUZOHAPP UK & Ireland. ”Our Components business represents our core area of focus and we look forward to creating new opportunities and building new relationships in this space.”
“I’d also like to express my sincere thanks to our previous Sales Director, John Vallis, who will be leaving the company in February,” continued Mr. James.  ”John has played an invaluable role in the growth of our company throughout his time with us and, on behalf of the whole SUZOHAPP team, we wish him every success in his future career.”

 

Evolution Gaming unveils new Deal or No Deal Live game, among its 10 new games showcased at ICE 2019

Evolution Gaming, leading provider of Live Casino solutions, will showcase 10 new games at ICE 2019 (stand N2-230, 5-7 February at ExCeL London), including Deal or No Deal Live, Lightning Dice, Free Bet Blackjack, and one secret game that will be revealed during the show.
According to Todd Haushalter, Evolution’s Chief Product Officer, “This really is the start of a new era where entertainment is at the core of the new games we are making. Netflix, YouTube and video games are the alternative to online gaming, so games need to be both great gaming experiences and entertaining.”
Based on the hit TV show, Deal or No Deal Live is the world’s first 24/7 game show allowing players to play along from the comfort of their own home.
Haushalter added, “We wanted to stay true to the game show that people know and love, retaining the engaging presenter and the thrill of awaiting the offer from the banker but all the while making it compatible for online players as a live game. With that in mind, we embarked upon what has been the most complex studio that Evolution has ever built to date. The game has a mix of RNG elements allowing players the chance to win big, as well as the universally recognisable studio set design and rich sound effects for UI actions recreating the atmosphere of the hit TV show and bringing that to online gaming.”
In addition to Deal or No Deal Live, nine other new games are showcased at ICE:
One secret game that will be revealed during the exhibition in collaboration with one of the world’s best-loved game brands;
Lightning Dice, with multipliers of up to 1000x, and the latest member of Evolution’s Lightning family following the runaway success of Lightning Roulette, which won three Game of the Year awards in 2018;
Free Bet Blackjack, the most popular Blackjack variation in land-based casinos;
Super Sic Bo, a new take on the favourite dice game, supercharged with random multipliers of up to 1000x;
Side Bet City, a fast, simple poker game with big pay-outs and wrapped in a 1980’s theme;
Two new RNG games that further extend Evolution’s First Person Gaming range with First Person Dream Catcher and First Person Lightning Roulette;
2 Hand Casino Hold’em, offering two separate hands in each round of our most popular Poker game
Infinite Blackjack, which allows an unlimited number of players to sit on one table and make independent decisions. This game recently went live and is already the most popular Blackjack table in the world by player counts.
Redefining Live Casino entertainment is a key theme for Evolution at ICE 2019. Like the secret game to be revealed during ICE, Evolution’s Deal or No Deal Live has the profile to attract new player types to Live Casino. It is the world’s first 24/7 game show and Haushalter says that Evolution is aiming really high with this title: “We want to reach an entertainment standard so high that people would want to watch the progress of the game even if they weren’t players in it, just as they would watch the TV show.”
Haushalter added, “We have never introduced so many games at one time. Following our successes with Lightning Roulette, we naturally feel pressure to deliver more truly unique games that not only engage today’s players but also provide new levels of entertainment and immersion. There is a real buzz around the company because we are confident we have met that challenge with this stellar line-up of new games. We are so very proud to be working with such a landmark famous name as Deal or No Deal, as well as showcasing incredible specialty games — all developed in-house by our immensely strong and talented team. Come by our stand at ICE to see all of the above and the unveiling of our secret additional game.”

 

Isle of Man drives innovation with new Blockchain Office

Lyle Wraxall, Chief Executive, Isle of Man Digital Agency
As part of their strategy to enhance the Island’s reputation for digital innovation, the Isle of Man will soon be opening the doors of its new Blockchain Office – a research, education and consultancy hub for crypto entrepreneurs and regulators.
In a major boost to blockchain-based businesses and entrepreneurs on the Island, the Isle of Man Government has announced that it will be launching a brand new Blockchain Office this Spring.
Part Sandbox and part consultancy scheme, the new project promises to deliver world-leading research, advice and knowledge-sharing across the crypto community and create an open space for discussions around regulation.
Companies involved in the scheme will have extensive contact with – and mentoring from – technologists, regulatory experts and successful entrepreneurs, as well as access to the Isle of Man’s extensive business infrastructure, which includes top-level accountancy and legal advisors and world-class connectivity.
The move is part of the Isle of Man’s burgeoning digital strategy, which was established last year to further the Island’s reputation as a leader in innovation.
Spearheaded by the Isle of Man Digital Agency, the strategy covers many of the most cutting-edge industries and sectors, from the Island’s thriving media and fintech communities, to esports and telecommunications.
Commenting on the plans, Lyle Wraxall, chief executive of the Isle of Man Digital Agency, said: “The establishment of the Blockchain Office sends out the clear message that we, as an Island, are going to be pro-blockchain, but that we are going to do that through good regulation – by attracting high-quality business, enhancing consumer protection, and becoming a globally recognised as a high-quality jurisdiction in this space.
“That’s why the consultancy wing of the Blockchain Office helps mature businesses to the point where they have the knowledge they need before they enter the Sandbox and start having that regulatory conversation.”
He added: “As an Island, we’re really well placed with our financial services, our infrastructure, and our egaming industry experts. We have such a strong support network of expertise that can come in and plug any gaps for early-stage entrepreneurs, so the innovators are free to focus on what they do best: the technology and the innovation. That innovation is what we’re trying to attract here, and I think the Blockchain Office will be the place where everything comes together to create an incredible ecosystem.”
The Blockchain Office is set to open its doors this February, with applications for consultancy services open from the beginning of March.
Isle of Man eGaming will be exhibiting at ICE London in the ExCel Centre from 5-7 February at Stand N6-220, N7. Contact Tony Jones on tony.jones2@gov.im or stop by the stand to arrange a meeting.

 

Playtech BGT Sports Promotes John Pettit to Chief Commercial Officer

Management re-structure ahead of ICE will help grow sports betting business.
Playtech BGT Sports, the market-leading provider of omni-channel sports betting solutions, has announced that John Pettit has been promoted to Chief Commercial Officer.
Pettit, who has been managing director of the UK, Ireland, and Australia, since he joined the provider from Ladbrokes at the end of 2015, will combine his existing role with the management of all customer activities around the world.
As part of a management re-structure designed to support PBS’ plans to enter more regulated markets, a management team with three new territory managing directors will work under him.
Lee Drabwell will be responsible for the UK, Ireland, and Belgium, with Costas Papadopoulos managing Greece, Cyprus, and Africa, and Riccardo Cavallaro taking care of remaining territories in Europe alongside Latin America.
Meanwhile, Hamish Davidson will remain managing director of PBS’s operations in Australia, with Gregor Errath promoted from commercial director to sales director. Errath will be responsible for sales and business development in all territories, working with the local MDs.
Playtech BGT Sports CEO DR Armin Sageder said: “We have some very ambitious plans to grow our business in existing countries and in a host of both regulated, and soon to be regulated, markets around the world.
“I’m sure John and his team will be very well-positioned to help us do that and we look forward to the next stage in our development, introducing great new products and welcoming new customers on board.”
John Pettit added: “It is a very exciting time for Playtech BGT Sports and I am delighted to be heading the team which will help us expand and our customers generate even stronger revenues.”
Playtech BGT Sports and its unique sportsbook products and service will feature on Playtech’s stand (N6-140) at ICE 2019 at London’s ExCeL conference centre between 5th – 7th February.

 

Isle of Man launches Software Supplier Licence

Software suppliers from around the world can now take advantage of the Isle of Man’s reputation for top tier regulation.
The Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission (GSC), has launched a new licence for software suppliers looking to demonstrate their high standards for corporate governance and game fairness.
The GSC’s Software Supplier Licence (B2B) has been developed over recent months after high demand from companies located around the world requesting to be licensed by the highly-experienced regulator.
Software suppliers who obtain a licence can ensure they meet the same high standards as the Isle of Man-licensed operators they supply their games to. While the licence is not mandatory to supply software to Isle of Man licensed operators, there are a host of benefits for those who choose to be licensed.
As part of the licensing process, the software supplier has its games tested and certified. It can then show the Gambling Supervision Commission the testing certificate for its games and this will allow them to be placed on the GSC games registry.
Any games on the registry can be used by Isle of Man licensees without the GSC requesting an additional testing certificate. This will drastically speed up the time it takes software suppliers to integrate their games with Isle of Man-licensed operators potentially resulting in significant cost savings.
Other benefits include the kudos that comes with holding an Isle of Man licence. This can really help software developers strike deals with licensed operators in markets around the world as well as with key business partners in areas such as finance, legal and more by providing testimony that the company is run to high standards of corporate governance.

 

IWG to convert Microgaming slots for instant win market

Microgaming has announced details of an agreement that will see a selection of its most popular and successful slots transformed into instant win games by London-based supplier IWG.
IWG will adapt a range of new and classic releases by Microgaming for the instant win market, carefully tailoring each slot to create a unique instant win gaming experience for players. Combining trusted gameplay and exciting features with new prize structures and win mechanics, the converted games will be earmarked for distribution across Microgaming’s extensive operator base, which spans more than 800 of the world’s biggest gaming brands, later this year.
Through the deal, which represents the first partnership of its kind between the two suppliers, Microgaming aims to leverage IWG’s proven expertise in converting online casino slots into instant win games to extend its reach in this growing sector of the online gaming market.
John Quinn, Director of Content Strategy at Microgaming, said: “IWG has a strong reputation for delivering instant win slot games that keep the key characteristics of a popular title while adding a new dimension to the gameplay, which captures the attention of players around the world. We look forward to seeing this transformation of our popular releases and making them available to our ever-growing network of operators and their players.”

 

AvatarUX Studios strengthens YGS Masters portfolio

Hong Kong-based business adds to diverse range of premier independent studios working to deliver unique Yggdrasil content.
Yggdrasil has announced that AvatarUX Studios will be the latest independent studio to partner with the innovative content provider through its flagship Yggdrasil Game Server (YGS) Masters programme.
AvatarUX is a real-money and social games studio that specialises in highly interactive, portrait-first casino games with an Asian DNA for the European market, featuring action-packed 3D graphics and state-of-the-art in-game gamification.
The Hong Kong-based business becomes the fourth studio to join YGS Masters following Rabcat, Northern Lights, and Fantasma Games with each one working collaboratively with Yggdrasil to develop and deliver unique content in line with Yggdrasil’s global content roadmap.
AvatarUX has a strong focus on user experience, merging video and casual game concepts with casino features, and delivers its games via Swedish born, Asia-based promoter and serial iGaming investor Carl Wahlin. The first game to be delivered is entitled Kingpin.
Through the YGS Masters programme, Yggdrasil will be the exclusive distributor of this new breed of game, while AvatarUX will gain access to BOOST®, Yggdrasil’s collection of proprietary in-game promotional tools.

 

iSoftBet set for Czech expansion with major Sazka deal

State lottery to integrate provider’s powerful GAP solution via NeoGames platform – first deal in regulated Czech Republic.
Sazka, the largest state lottery in the Czech Republic, will power its next-generation online casino product using iSoftBet’s market-leading content, fully adjusted and compliant with local regulations.
The deal will see Sazka’s PGMS platform provider Neogames integrate iSoftBet’s complete suite of games that includes best-performing slot and table titles, giving the Czech market leader access to a diverse and comprehensive portfolio of products that are the best fit for Sazka’s DNA. Products that are subject to this deal have been specifically fine-tuned and customised to cater for Czech players in a rapidly emerging and heavily regulated online environment.
iSoftBet’s offering comes complete with supportive admin tools that set the industry benchmark when it comes to innovation. Sazka will be able to take advantage of various advanced marketing and real-time gamification tools as part of the agreement.
Games include best performing slots, table and video poker games, all of which have been designed, developed and certified for use in regulated markets, including the Czech Republic.
iSoftBet has created some of the best performing games of the last 12 months including popular titles such as Hot Spin and Pearl of the Orient, as well as latest releases The Nutcracker and Jumbo Stampede.
Michael Probert, Chief Commercial Officer at iSoftBet, said: “We’re delighted to be partnering with such a well-established, market-leading brand such as Sazka. This marks an extremely exciting time for us and presents a tremendous opportunity to enhance our presence in a new and rapidly growing market.
“Our games continue to perform exceptionally well, and we are rapidly gaining market share with both existing and new operators in regulated and newly regulated markets.”
Jan Horyna, iGaming Director, Sazka, said: “iSoftBet has an excellent reputation for generating significant revenues for brands via its leading content platform and for producing high-quality games that perform consistently well across regulated markets. We are very excited to be partnering with iSoftBet and look forward for a long and fruitful partnership.”
iSoftBet is exhibiting at ICE 2019 at stand number N5-240 in London between 5th and 7th February.

 

Operator will use the innovative technology provider’s cutting-edge platform to take Indian poker market by storm

Connective Games, the innovative technology provider behind some of the world’s most successful poker networks, has signed a deal to provide Indian poker operator Baadshah Gaming with its powerful platform.
Connective Games has established itself as a true market leader by giving operators the power to localise their poker offerings by customising language, currency, payment gateways and even the game variants offered.
Baadshah Gaming will also be able to leverage the platform’s wide range of features to offer players a big range of tournaments. This will help to establish the brand as a leader in the fledgling Indian market.
Baadshah Gaming is a subsidiary of the Casino Pride Group known as an owner of one of the largest offshore casinos in India and Nepal.
Mr. Madhav Gupta, CEO of  Baadshah Gaming, said: “Connective Games is one of the most powerful and successful online poker technology providers in the world and was an obvious choice for us.
“We were particularly impressed with their mobile product which provides excellent player experiences we have ever witnessed.
“Powered by such innovative and outstanding technology, we believe we will take the Indian poker market by storm and look forward to a long and successful partnership.”
Mr. Serge Mukhanov, CEO of Connective Games, said: “We are proud to have been chosen by Baadshah Gaming to power their poker proposition. The Indian market offers huge potential and we believe our technology combined with their branding will be a winning formula.”
The announcement comes just weeks before the Connective Games team head to London for ICE 2019. Connective Games will be based at stand № N1-351and will be showcasing its poker and casino platforms, games and services.
If you would like to arrange a meeting with the Connective Games team email us at info@connectivegames.com

 

RSPH and GambleAware join forces to establish a Gambling Health Alliance

The Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH) is to establish a Gambling Health Alliance (GHA) with the support of GambleAware. The new Alliance will seek to ensure that gambling and the harms which arise from it are placed on an equal footing with other major public health challenges, focussing on prevention, early intervention, and increased community engagement.
The Alliance which will initially be established for three years, has the primary objective of bringing together organisations and individuals, specifically policy makers, who have a shared interest in reducing the damage caused to health and wellbeing from gambling.  The Alliance will seek to:
Highlight the rising concerns about gambling related harms;
Engage and influence policy makers, Government, NGOs and the public health community in order to encourage positive action;
Promote evidence so it can be translated into practical steps;
Undertake periodic surveys and polling to inform GHA campaigns to increase awareness of the health harms from gambling.
The Alliance will act as a signposting organisation to other resources relevant to preventing gambling related harm. By creating this network, the Alliance will support the development of a more coherent approach than currently exists, and both better understand gambling as a public health issue and the support which is required to address these issues.
Shirley Cramer CBE, Chief Executive of RSPH, said: “While it is encouraging that gambling is rightly identified as a public health issue, more needs to be done to better understand the harms that arise from gambling, who is affected and what support can be provided to prevent harms from developing or escalating in the first place.
 We have long campaigned of the impact of gambling and issues such as debt on individual health and wellbeing, including the impact of Fixed Odds Betting Terminals in our Health on the High Street campaign, and the impact of High Cost Credit, in Life on Debt Row.  However, we also know that, as highlighted in our Health on the High Street report levels of gambling and gaming are increasing; for example, young people face an unprecedented level of exposure to gambling, with over 400,000 11-16 year olds spending their own money gambling each week.
We are delighted to announce the establishment of this Alliance, which we hope will have the same impact that other alliances concerned with issues impacting on the public’s health, such as obesity and alcohol, are having on raising consciousness and agreeing common goals for the public health and policy-making community to rally behind.  The GHA will provide a forum where we can foster collaboration and share good practice amongst all relevant stakeholders to increase our understanding of the social, economic and cultural factors that contribute to gambling harms and the inequalities in health caused by this.”
Carolyn Harris MP, Chair of the APPG on Gambling Related Harm, said: “As Chair of the APPG on Gambling Related Harm I am delighted to welcome the establishment of a Gambling Health Alliance. This Alliance will provide a vital platform for a wide coalition of organisations to join forces in ensuring that action is taken to tackle problem gambling and the many related harms.
We look forward to working closely with the Alliance and in particular, the public health community, in order to ensure that problem gambling and the harms which arise from it are placed on an equal footing with other major public health challenges.”
Marc Etches, Chief Executive of GambleAware, said: “Gambling is increasingly being considered as a significant public health issue, and this new Alliance provides an opportunity for a wide range of organisations to act together to address it in a coordinated and more effective manner.  As research reveals more about the breadth and complexity of the harms associated with gambling, GambleAware sees clear value in forging new partnerships with those who share our objectives to reduce those harms through a multi-level public health response.”

 

Bryn Kenney wins the Aussie Millions Main Event for AU$ 1,272,598

Like we said, despite Bryn Kenney entering the final day at the bottom of the rung, he was undoubtedly the biggest threat at the Aussie Millions Main Event. He was the most decorated and experienced player with over US$25 Million in live earnings, and he displayed it. After a grueling three-handed battle running over four hours, a deal was struck with Michael Del Vecchio and Andrew Hinrichsen to end the game abruptly. Kenney was granted the victory and now adds Australia to his impressive list of accomplishments.
Final 7 payouts
1st Bryn Kenney – USA – AU$ 1,272,598 (deal)
2nd Michael Del Vecchio – USA – AU$ 1,272,162 (deal)
3rd Andrew Hinrichsen – Australia – AU$ 1,097,739 (deal)
4th Clinton Taylor – Australia – AU$ 483,000
5th Matthew Wakeman – Australia – AU$ 380,300
6th Gyeong Byeong Lee- Korea – AU$ 309,000
7th Hamish Crawshaw – New Zealand – AU$ 242,000
Record-breaking field
The record-breaking Main Event drew 822 players. The final day round saw back-to-back final tableist Michael Del Vecchio leading in the pack however it was Andrew Hinrichsen who outshined early. He eliminated, Hamish Crawshaw (7th) and Gyeong Byeong Lee (6th). Then after the fall of Matthew Wakeman (5th), Hinrichsen claimed his third victim with Clinton Taylor falling to him in 4th place.
Entering three-handed, Hinrichsen was in charge with nearly 70 percent of the chips in play at his disposal. An hour in, that lead was history with Del Vecchio doubling up to reclaim the command he once held. Another two hours in, it switched hands again with Kenney finding his way to the top. The game ended on a deal, and though Kenney was slightly behind in chips, he was still granted the title and the higher payout. As for both Del Vecchio and Hinrichsen, they pocketed the largest cash of their live tournament career.
Full Replay
Watch The Aussie Millions Main Event Final Table with JCarver, RatedGTO and Kevin Martin! from runitup on www.twitch.tv
Article by Tricia David
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