The second edition of the Central and Eastern European Gaming Conference (CEEGC) took place last week in Budapest at Kempinski Corvinus Budapest. Delegates took full advantage of the extended agenda which this year has been rolled out between 19 and 20 September (2 days).
The organizers would like to thank the supporters of the event for their contribution to helping make this great event reach the next level in terms of content and networking opportunities. Their grateful thank you goes for the following companies:
Iforium (Gold Sponsor)
NetEnt (Main Stage Sponsor)
SBTech (Registration Sponsor)
NSoft (Bronze Sponsor)
BetConstruct (Lanyards Sponsor)
LottoHero (Networking Break and Lunch Sponsor)
Tal Ron, Drihem & Co. Law Firm (Legal Sponsor)
Second, but also as important, the organizers would also like to thank the delegates who have attended the event, the speakers for their great contribution to the contents and all our media partners for helping spread the important news of the event. With their help, CEEGC has become the most prestigious boutique gaming event which gather C-level executives every year to network and gather information about the Central and Eastern European markets.
From beginning to the end…
The conference kicked off with a short networking session among the delegates who have bumped into each other while registering for the event at the luxurious Kempinski Corvinus.
The organizers were delighted to see that the networking among the attending professionals started straight away and a positive feedback was received about the diversity of the companies which were present at the event. This is the direct result of the quest on which EEGEvents has embarked on when starting to organize their events. The mission is to build a strong community and a platform for the online and land based gambling industry, where every company can benefit of exposure and of course take advantage of the educational sessions.
As the first business card batch was exhausted we have introduced the first panel discussion of the day, which focused on bringing a wealth of information about the current state of the gambling market in Serbia and Croatia. The panel was moderated by Bogdan Coman (Executive Director at Rombet) and featured keynote speakers such as Mirjana Acimovic (President of JAKTA and Chair at EUROMAT) and Hrvoje Vincetic (Managing Director of Casino Adriatic). Both speakers have brought a large volume of updates about the activity in the region. Hrvoje Vincetic stressed on the land-based sector of the gambling market in Croatia which is growing exponentially due to the high volume of tourists. Gambling tourism is an important part of the Croatian gambling sector and has been the main driver of incomes for the state.
Mirjana Acimovic has highlighted the main facts about why the possibilities of Serbia to become an attractive gambling market are real and what is the main evolution factor. The main takeaways of the topic was that the traditional model of gambling is disappearing and the online business is growing. This is due to joint business options where investors can invest in online gambling companies which are already established in the region. Ms. Mirjana also addressed concerns about the fact that the state doesn’t have a well structured regulation and the laws are outdated and in some cases inapplicable. This is a clear call for a new and modern regulation framework.
The PowerPoint Presentation can be requested by e-mail at [email protected]
The 2nd program on the Agenda was the CEEG Awards Contest, where the assigned delegates of the shortlisted companies took advantage of the chance to give a short speech about their activity and of course asked for the votes. The presentations were limited to a short 2 minutes speech and it was among the highlight moments of the morning. The personal touch of the presenters created a magical moment for the audience as they were getting ready to start the first Networking Break of the day.
Roy Pedersen – CEO & Chief Editor at All In Translations has commented:
“For All-in Translations’ 10 Year Anniversary Tour we decided to attend more smaller conferences. Zoltan and Betty are much of the reason for this. They have a unique way of giving a personal touch to the events they organise while at the same time keeping them highly relevant. CEEGC Budapest was another great example where we felt truly welcome, and at the same time it was great for business.”
The program continued with the Eastern European focused panel which was titled as “The growth of regulated markets in the Eastern European region“, which was specially designed to bring the key information about the current state of the gambling market in Romania, Slovakia, Czech Republic and Ukraine. The organziers have picked to extend to only the listed markets because these are the current hot topics of the industry in Eastern Europe.
The panel was moderated Rita McClelland (Content Manager at GamblingCompliance) and the keynote speaker were Dan Iliovici (President of the Romanian National Gambling Office ONJN – the Romanian gambling regulator), Dr. Robert Skalina (Senior Advisor to WH Partners), Jan Rehola (PS Legal) and Iryna Sergienko (CEO at Ukrainian Gaming Industry Association).
The panel was rated among the top 3 panels of the event as its content has focused on the highly debated changes of the Czech Republic’s regulatory system and the awaited changes is the law, Slovakia’s possible market regulation, the key points on which the Romanian gambling sector wants to improve and of course the state of the Ukrainian gambling market.
Jan Rehola (PS Legal), has highlighted he’s main comments about the current regulation of the Czech Republic and he has encouraged the attending companies to show interest in the market as it will become one of the most competitive market in the region.
Dan Iliovici (President of the Romanian National Gambling Office ONJN – the Romanian gambling regulator) has pointed out that major amendments are coming to the regulatory framework on the Romanian market and he plans to focus also on the responsible gambling program implementations in the land based sector.
Dr. Robert Skalina (Senior Advisor to WH Partners) has stressed on the importance of paying attention of the Slovakian gambling market, a market which has recently been in the focus of many online newspapers that cover the industry. A possible new framework is to be announced soon.
Iryna Sergienko (CEO at Ukrainian Gaming Industry Association) expressed an open invitation for all the industry to join the upcoming event in Ukraine, where all burning questions about the market will be discussed with the government officials. The Ukrainian market will be regulated in 2018 and it is important for the regulator and legislator to understand the demands of the industry in order to create a competitive market for all.
The PowerPoint Presentation can be requested by e-mail at [email protected]
After the “quality gambling industry update” (quoted from the event survey) the delegates got the chance to dive into the world of cryptocurrency, smart contract and blockchain.
The program continued with a new episode of the Innovation Talks series which was titled as “Innovation Talks – The Cryptocurrency Effect” and was moderated by Joseph F. Borg (Senior Advisor to WH Partners and VICE-PRESIDENT of BitMalta).
The delegates have rated the panel among the top 3 panels of the agenda and received a full scope around what Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies mean for the industry and that this is only the start of the blockchain revolution.
Keynote speakers of the panel were Jonathan Galea (Blockchain & cryptocurrencies lawyer, President of Bitmalta), Jarek-Górny (COO of SiGMA), Max Krupyshev (COO of Cubits), Dr. Andreas Glarner (Partner at MME Legal Tax Compliance). The expert have tackled the potential effect and benefits of the blockchain technology in the remote gaming industry and the future of ICOs.
Jonathan Galea – Legal Counsel at NetEnt & President of Bitmalta commented:
“Safe to say that CEEGC is quickly becoming the the go-to boutique gaming conference, with a fantastically balanced range of topics covered in sufficient detail. It is going from strength to strength, so I’m certainly very eager for next year’s event!”
The program continued with the traditional EEGEvents style “Complimentary Lunch Break” where as usual, the delegates have taken the advantage to feast with a great variety of food options, including vegan and dietary. The lunch break gave way for more networking as delegates got the chance to continue where they’ve left off while enjoying a good meal.
Soon after the delegates enjoyed a good meal, the program continued with the panel which focused on the Central European gambling market, particularly on Austria, Germany, Hungary and Slovenia. The panel which was titled as “Where is the Central European gambling industry heading?” highlighted the concerns of the market which are located in the region. Moderated by Mihnea Paul Popescu-Grisogono (Founder at Casino Life & Business Magazine) the discussions included the main stories which shape the industry in region. Keynote speakers of the panel were Gabor Helembai (Partner at Bird&Bird), Helmut Kafka (President at Automatenverband), Jaka Repansek (Founder at Republis) and Dr. Joerg Hofmann (Head of the Betting and Gaming Group of Melchers Law Firm).
Opposite to the Eastern European panel, where some anticipations were discussed, the panel has shown the critical situation in which the industry currently is and all speakers have concluded that they are mostly facing the same political issues when it comes to a clear regulation.
As the discussion unfolded and came to an end, delegates understood that there is a huge market which is waiting to be regulated accordingly and there is need for a better lobby.
Julia Peeva – Gambling Compliance Officer at EGT Interactive stated:
“Attending all events of EEGMedia so far, we are pleased to share that the 2nd edition of #CEEGC showed us a huge growth and steps ahead in the online gaming industry.
All the three members of EGT Interactive compliance team, were grateful to participate in such dynamic and quality conference. The great speakers selection discussing the hot topics, future regulation updates and trends shaping the industry in 2017, and great organization on all levels, brought us essence update. These two days of attendance grabbed us every time when a new discussion / presentation was initiated.
One of the most interesting parts was about the cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology.
For me personally, the honor to present this year’s #CEEGC edition winners in the company of Mr. Dan Iliovici – President of the ONJN Romania was a huge compliment and real excitement!
Looking forward to take part in the next big gathering organized by EEGMedia!”
The panel was followed by the final networking break of the day and the second Innovation Talks panel. The panel was titled as “Innovation Talks – World Cup, Technology Innovation, Affiliates Turning Operators – what are the challenges ahead?” and it focused on the latest innovation suppliers and affiliates are bringing to the table. Moderated by Tal Itzhak Ron (Adv. and Notary at Tal, Drihem and Co. Law Firm) the discussion was very constructive and gave way for the keynote speaker to address concerns about the technology which is being delivered and about super-affiliates taking over the industry.
Keynote speakers of the panel were Assaf Stieglitz (Founder and owner of odds1x2.com), Angelo Dalli (CEO of Bit8/Lotto Hero), Kostandina Zafirovska (CEO at BtoBet) and Amnon Goldrat (Founder, VP Business Development at FinTech Logic).
Kostandina – Nina Zafirovska – CEO at BtoBet commented:
“CEEGC in Budapest was the event that brings together experts in the industry together with Central and Eastern European regulators to exchange thoughts and knowledge for development of iGaming in the region. Great experience with wonderful people.”
The constructive discussion gave way to move forward with the program as the final session of the day was announced. The education continued with the IMGL Masterclass which was titled as “The devil is in the details as regulators apply stricter rules” and was moderated by expert Dr. Joerg Hofmann (Head of the Betting and Gaming Group of Melchers Law Firm)
The panel way joined by Jaka Repansek (Founder at Republis), Dan Iliovici (President of the Romanian National Gambling Office ONJN – the Romanian gambling regulator), Dr. Robert Skalina (Senior Advisor to WH Partners) and Tal Itzhak Ron (Adv. and Notary at Tal, Drihem and Co. Law Firm)
As Mr. Dan Iliovici was the only regulator in the panel, the panelist have managed to ask the vital questions about the creation of a regulatory framework and what is the impact of politics in regards to the design. Mr. Dan Iliovici was clear to express he’s experience when it comes to drafting a law or adding amendments. He also mentioned that the creation of a competitive gambling market is the key concern of the regulator however the legislator is the one who will make this happen.
Mr. Jaka Repansek has stressed on the fact that the creation of a regulatory framework should focus on the cycle where the industry addresses the regulator and the regulator than heads to the legislator. The creation of this cycle is important and is a key ingredient of having a well regulated market.
The concerns of the affiliate industry were raised by Mr. Tal Itzhak Ron, who underlined the fact that applying for a second class license as an affiliate is only correct if the regulator is blacklisting non-compliant affiliates. Questions were also raised about the recent hot topics about the legal role of affiliates in media and advertising campaigns.
All attending keynote speakers of the IMGL Masterclass agreed that technology is way ahead of the regulatory frameworks and it usually takes about 5 year for the regulator and legislator to catch up with them. Thus, all regulators should attend technology conference to learn about the new methods that are implemented by operators and suppliers to keep up with the demand.
The first day concluded with a Networking Party sponsored by iGamingRadio which was held at 4Bro Downtown, one the hippest venues in Budapest at the moment. The delegates got the chance to unwind, enjoy a few drinks and network in much more relaxed manner.
The second day of the event has been scheduled to start later because of the exhaustive networking session on which some of the delegates embarked after the Networking party. The program started with the 3rd Innovation Panel, which was rated among the top 3 panels of the event. We can certainly say that the Innovation Talks series has become a great platform where suppliers and operators can exchange information and even start collaborations to enhance the offer of the industry.
The final panel of the event was titled as “Innovation Talks – Latest innovations in the field of gambling and hot topics that shape the industry in 2017 and 2018” and was moderated by Konrad Gill(Founder at ViARsys) who expressed that these series of panels are an important part of the innovation which we witness in the industry.
The keynote speakers and presenters of the panel were Andrew Cochrane (CCO at SBTech), Thomas Willomitzer (Founder and CEO at Snapscreen.com), David Gasparyan (CTO at BetConstruct), Valery Bollier (CEO and Co-founder at OulalaGames) and Borislav Borisov (COO of UltraPlay).
Contrary to other conferences, the speaker have discussed the hot topics of the industry and did not dive into sales pitches for the audience. Subjects such as Omnichannel, DFS, eSports and the options to customize your casino brand were discussed in a conversation that could have lasted for hours. We would like to add at least 1 Innovation Talks panel to all our events to continue this initiative.
The final session of the event was the announcement of the CEEG Awards 2017 winners where the hosts were Ms. Julia Peeva (Gambling Compliance Officer / EGT Interactive) and Mr. Dan Iliovici (President of the Romanian National Gambling Office ONJN – the Romanian gambling regulator).
The winners for the CEEG Awards 2017 per category are as the follow:
Sports betting providers
- Best Sports Betting Innovation in 2017: BtoBet
- Best Sports Betting Customer Support in 2017: BetConstruct
- Best Overall Sports Betting Provider in 2017: SBTech
Casino software providers
- Best Casino Innovation in 2017: NetEnt
- Best Casino Customer Support in 2017: Iforium
- Best Overall Casino Software Provider in 2017: BetConstruct
- Best Overall Sports Betting Operator in Central and Eastern Europe: Superbet
- Best Overall Casino Operator in Central and Eastern Europe: LeoVegas
- Best Payment/Finance Solution Provider in 2017: Acapture
- Best iGaming Press in Central and Eastern Europe: Casino Life & Business Magazine
- Best iGaming Service Provider (translation, hosting, consulting, etc.): All-In Translations
- Best Software Testing Laboratory in 2017: NMi Gaming
- Ukrainian Gaming Summit 2017 – 17 November, 2017 – www.ugs2017.com.ua
- Prague Gaming Summit 2018 – 29-30 March, 2018 – www.praguegamingsummit.com
- Mare Balticum Gaming Summit Riga (Baltic Sea Gaming Summit) – 8 May, 2018 – www.marebalticumgaming.com
- Vienna International Gaming Expo – 5-6 June, 2018 – www.viennagamingexpo.com
- Central and Eastern European Gaming Conference Budapest (CEEGC) (September 2018) – www.ceegc.eu/
- European Gaming Congress Ljubljana (EGC) (October 2018) – www.europeangamingcongress.com
UltraPlay records its 10th industry award
UltraPlay has been named the Best Overall eSports Service Provider from the SEG Awards (Southern European Gaming Awards), which were held at the European Gaming Congress, in Milan last week. The winners were announced in the final session of the conference, after the secret vote casted by the attending delegates.
The SEG Awards rewards both B2C operators and B2B providers for their commitment in Southern Europe, with categories ranging from customer service to social responsibility, future thinking, and development in all verticals of the industry.
Dariy Margaritov, Founder of UltraPlay has commented on the company’s milestone: “This is our 10th award received in the past two years. Great work by everyone from UltraPlay and hoping for a prosperous 2020”
UltraPlay is constantly enhancing its overall eSports betting solution. It is now coming with an unprecedented number of 28 titles, as well as 3500 pre-match and 2500+ in-play events monthly, as well as more than 200 markets players can bet on their favorite teams and events.
Over the last few years, UltraPlay has been regularly enhancing its eSports product and live betting model, adding new titles and enlarging the number of markets for all games (Decider Map Played, Correct Score, Map Advantage, and much more). The growing number of online operators using the company’s products and the latest 10th award confirms the UltraPlay’s leadership position as a global B2B eSports betting solutions provider. Among the company’s accolades are also:
• Esports Betting Supplier of 2019 from EGR B2B Awards
• Best eSports Service Provider in the Baltics from Baltic and Scandinavian Gaming Awards 2019
• Best Overall Esports Service Provider from Central and Eastern European Gaming Awards 2018 and 2019
• Esports Supplier of the Year from Starlet Awards 2018 and 2019
• Esports Systems and Solutions from BEGE Expo Awards 2018
• Best B2B Digital Product Solution from Global Gaming Exhibition, Macao 2018
• Innovative product of the year from Global Tech Summit Awards 2018.
UltraPlay will present the latest developments of its multiple-times award-winning eSports platform and odds feed, will share extensive knowledge and enhance the online operator’s offerings with its advanced betting solution at BEGE Expo, 20-21 November, at booth 2.12, and SiGMA, 27-29 November, at booth S9.
The Login Casino Awards 2018 Winners Are Chosen
For the past eight weeks readers of the magazine and industry experts were taking part in the voting Login Casino Awards to choose the leaders of the gambling industry. Now we are happy to announce the names of the winners in six nominations.
The results of the voting showed that the winner in the category Best Marketing Campaign is betting company Betcity. Their campaign Cashback for Unsuccessful Bets included guaranteed returns of bettors’ funds in the form of free bets.
Moreover, our readership identified BETCITY as Best Betting Company 2018. Throughout the year, it was not only introducing promotional offerings for its clients, but also working hard on improving the quality of service and partnering with the leading sports leagues of Russia.
“We were anxiously watching the voting numbers updating every day, and today we are happy to announce the winners! Throughout the whole year, we were watching and monitoring what surprises betting companies created for their customers, and slot game developers – for their partners and slot machine lovers. We had selected the best nominees for the voting, and the winners became the best of the best! We warmly congratulate our prizewinners and look forward to the next year to hold the new edition of Login Casino Awards! Impress the market with your developments, create new products, stay tuned!” said Daria Temnenko, Brand Manager at Login Casino.
Slot game Kamchatka, developed by Endorphina, was recognized as the most interesting, colorful and high-quality slot. Its distinguishing features included bright but natural graphics as well as high RTP rate, a bonus game, free spins, and a jackpot. The combination of everything abovementioned, which is an uncommon case with developers, could not leave the industry experts and slot machine lovers indifferent.
Besides, the list of winners also includes:
- Nikolay Oganezov, chairman of the bookmaking subcommittee of Russia’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry, in the nomination “Person of the Year”.
- Tom Horn Gaming – best slot developer. Game multifunctionality, thematic diversity and unique approach to slot creation, including graphics hand painting, brought the company to the first place.
- Slotegrator received the well-deserved title Innovator of the Year. Apart from enhancing its already existing products, in 2018 the developer implemented a solution that allowed its customers and partners to simplify the process of integrating a number of payment systems.
The Award Ceremony can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RUiy8E0a3tU
The voting results of Login Casino Awards become inaccessible for viewing
December 3, the voting results become inaccessible for public view. Nevertheless, readers are still able to vote for those contestants whom they consider the best.
Over the past seven weeks, since October 22, our readers have been supporting their favorite betting companies as well as the representatives of betting and gambling industry.
Starting from today and up to December 10 inclusive the process of voting will be held in a closed format. Hurry up and vote for the industry leaders!
This year Login Casino Awards includes one more category – Login Casino Gambling Awards. Therefore, the traditional list of nominees from the betting sector expended by the online casino software developers and suppliers.
The current leaders in the category Login Casino Betting Awards are:
- Best Betting Company 2018 – BC Olimp;
- Person of the Year – Nikolay Oganezov;
- Best Marketing Campaign – BC Betcity.
The list of those nominated for Login Casino Gambling Awards is headed by:
- Best Slot Developer – Platipus Limited;
- Best Thematic Slot – Tom Horn;
- Innovator of the Year – Slotegrator.
The participants include the leading betting companies, such as bwin and BingoBoom, as well as software developers – Endorphina, Habanero, etc.
The live webcast of the ceremony of awarding the winners will take place on December 19 at 15:00 MSK here.
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