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STATE OF PLAY – Frank Fahrenkopf interviews Martin Storm on the industry state of play

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Martin-Storm-Frank-Fahrenkopf STATE OF PLAY – Frank Fahrenkopf interviews Martin Storm on the industry state of playReading Time: 4 minutes

 

Frank Fahrenkopf, former Founder & President of American Gaming Association, and current Non-Executive Director, BMM Testlabs interviews Martin Storm, BMM’s CEO on the industry state of play.

Fahrenkopf:
BMM’s 2019 business performance has been strong after an impressive 2018. What do you attribute continued growth to?

Storm:
Frank, BMM continues to outperform. We maintain our emphasis on test and certification, everywhere around the world for gambling products. We remain focused on organic growth – Revenue up 29% and EBITDA up 46% in 2018, and 2019 looks very good too. For the longest serving gaming lab that’s operated successfully for nearly 40 years, we repeatedly outperform our segment CAGR of 5-6%.

We continue to rate first among global labs for quality of testing, time-to-market and customer service. We rate first because of our people, our talented leadership, management and staff. It’s truly a privilege to work with them all, as their professionalism, commitment and care make growth happen for BMM. What a differentiating factor they are.

Fahrenkopf:
The gaming testlab market around the world is dominated by BMM and GLI, who certify more than 80% of all gaming products. Even with GLI’s acquisition of NMi in Europe, it seems that BMM is growing appreciably in the online test segment. How did that happen?

Storm:
In the early years I did not want to invest in the online test segment due to our focus on U.S. licensing and U.S. legislative restrictions, even though we wrote the first comprehensive set of gaming standards for Online Gaming in 2001. We had a look at TST some 10 years ago as a possible acquisition but the culture and numbers didn’t work for us. Then GLI’s acquisition of NMi in 2017 made available some very talented staff who chose BMM as their new home. We committed to them and their results have been remarkable.

Our European online business is growing at some 40% CAGR and can continue to do so into foreseeable future. Large online customers wanting to go everywhere can only choose BMM or GLI in online, so we are both competing actively for that business, and we win our fair share.

Fahrenkopf:
Speaking of GLI, while BMM has been very strong in international land-based testing markets for many years, it still remains the challenger brand in the U.S. Now that the jurisdictional gap between the companies has closed materially in the U.S., what should we expect next?

Storm:
Any major supplier in the U.S. that wants its slot machines and gaming systems certified, understandably wants a certification process that covers all the jurisdictions in a market to maximize product sales opportunities, without having to spend additional funds to test a second time for a handful of jurisdictions not initially covered. Because only GLI has complete jurisdictional coverage, it has essentially guaranteed itself of the vast majority of business within North America. While BMM is working on the last handful of tribal jurisdictions (from more than 300), GLI continues to offer free tools and services for jurisdictional exclusivity, effectively depriving major suppliers of competition among gaming labs, costing those same suppliers millions of dollars per annum. The time for real competition amongst labs in the U.S. is now, and its nearly here.

Fahrenkopf:
Has this exclusivity enjoyed by GLI served the U.S. gaming industry?

Storm:
It has certainly served GLI very well. James Maida, CEO and Owner, and Kevin Mullally, VP of Government Affairs, have worked very closely together in many jurisdictions over many years now developing regulatory relationships that have maintained those exclusive positions. When combined with their government lobbyists and tribal representatives, James and Kevin have been a very formidable and intimidating team.

But to answer the question directly, no, I don’t believe GLI’s continuing, effective monopoly for Class III games certification has served the gaming industry well. Having only one lab that can test for all jurisdictions in the U.S. has been inordinately expensive for gaming suppliers and operators, as a material inefficiency in the gaming industry. Industry experts have told us that testing costs have been too high for too long. With competition limited, testing performance has been slow – it seems to have taken GLI more than 10 years to make process and quality improvements in pursuit of BMM’s performance. And we know that testing quality is lower in markets serviced by only one gaming lab, as evidenced by the high number of product revocations. In my opinion, and others, GLI exclusivity in just a few gaming markets is the premium paid for by the gaming suppliers and their operator customers, and also regulators through administration and management overheads.

Fahrenkopf:
What happened in Illinois – that was huge news?

Storm:
The wonderful news is that BMM is now licensed in Illinois through the new Illinois Gaming Board. This major U.S. commercial gaming jurisdiction will now allow multiple qualified labs to service gaming suppliers and compete for business with the state itself, and the many suppliers who have reached out to me are thrilled. Thanks to all those that supported us all these years.

Fahrenkopf:
So what’s next for BMM?

Storm:
Frank, we are keeping it simple. We continue our focus on land-based gaming testing and certification, and have advanced our position in aligned segments that we can command over time – online and sports betting, machine inspections and cyber security. That combined with market access completion with tribes, enhanced operational coverage, staff development, and productivity evolution will see BMM grow its leadership amongst gaming labs in the U.S. and worldwide.

Fahrenkopf:
Martin, thanks for the update.

Storm:
My pleasure Frank.


Source: Latest News on European Gaming Media Network
This is a Syndicated News piece. Photo credits or photo sources can be found on the source article: STATE OF PLAY – Frank Fahrenkopf interviews Martin Storm on the industry state of play

George Miller (Gyorgy Molnar) started his career in content marketing and has started working as an Editor/Content Manager for our company in 2016. George has acquired many experiences when it comes to interviews and newsworthy content becoming Head of Content in 2017. He is responsible for the news being shared on multiple websites that are part of the European Gaming Media Network.

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Kosovo Police Officers Arrested in Crackdown on Illegal Casinos

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6-13 Kosovo Police Officers Arrested in Crackdown on Illegal Casinos
6-13-1 Kosovo Police Officers Arrested in Crackdown on Illegal CasinosReading Time: < 1 minute

 

At least 10 police officers have been arrested in Kosovo during a large-scale operation to close down illegal casinos.

Police said it was the biggest operation of its kind ever carried out in Kosovo and followed a year-long investigation. Twelve illegal casinos were demolished and gambling machines seized

Jetish Maloku, chief prosecutor for the eastern district of Gjilan, said that police had arrested at least 35 people on suspicion of illegal gambling, prostitution, and trafficking people, guns and drugs.

At least 10 of those were border police who were alleged to have facilitated illegal cross-border activity.


Source: Latest News on European Gaming Media Network
This is a Syndicated News piece. Photo credits or photo sources can be found on the source article: Kosovo Police Officers Arrested in Crackdown on Illegal Casinos

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Tipsport and Betgenius strengthen partnership with Streaming deal

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Betgenius-Tipsport Tipsport and Betgenius strengthen partnership with Streaming deal
Betgenius-Tipsport-1 Tipsport and Betgenius strengthen partnership with Streaming dealReading Time: < 1 minute

 

Tipsport, a leading Czech sportsbook operator across retail and online, has signed an expanded agreement with Betgenius to include the supplier’s in-demand Streaming service.

In addition to in-play pricing for major sports, Betgenius will now supply Tipsport with live streams, along with with official trading content, for thousands of new fixtures.

With the majority of events played at off-peak times, the Betgenius Streaming service will enable Tipsport to drive turnover and player retention around-the-clock, including when scheduling is traditionally quiet.

The service offers high-quality, real-time content from a range of sports including football, basketball, tennis, table tennis and volleyball.

Betgenius has been a partner to Tipsport since 2016.

Vladimir Horak, Business Development Manager for Central Europe at Betgenius, said: “Market leaders like Tipsport understand that offering a differentiated product, as well a well-rounded service at all times of the day, is vital for growth. This expanded partnership will do just that in what is an increasingly competitive Czech sports betting market.”

Petr Komárek, Head of Data & Streaming at Tipsport, said: “Driving sportsbook innovation and enhancing the end players’ betting experience are common values held by both Betgenius and Tipsport. Adding Streaming is the latest landmark in our partnership. The service perfectly complements our offering, especially at off-peak hours, and will give our customers even more ways to engage as they bet.”


Source: Latest News on European Gaming Media Network
This is a Syndicated News piece. Photo credits or photo sources can be found on the source article: Tipsport and Betgenius strengthen partnership with Streaming deal

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BtoBet’s Alessandro Fried Discusses Aspire Global’s Acquisition of Sportsbook and Tech Company

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1-8 BtoBet’s Alessandro Fried Discusses Aspire Global’s Acquisition of Sportsbook and Tech Company
1-8-1 BtoBet’s Alessandro Fried Discusses Aspire Global’s Acquisition of Sportsbook and Tech CompanyReading Time: 4 minutes

BtoBet founder Alessandro Fried has discussed about Aspire Global’s acquisition of the sportsbook and tech company and what next awaits the newly expanded iGaming group. Of one thing he is certain… the future looks very bright for the entire group.

News that BtoBet was acquired by iGaming solutions provider Aspire Global took the industry by storm. And rightly so, because through this acquisition we have assisted to the expansion of an already consolidated group which in all its elements is now at the forefront of the industry’s B2B value chain.

But what was the primary reason that led to this acquisition? There are two aspects that were fundamental. Aspire Global was seeking to increase its B2B product offering to their customers, but was missing on one of the industry’s most important verticals, which is sportsbook. It’s one of the most important in terms of market requirements, but also from a revenue generation point of view. From our side we were looking to have a partner that would push us quickly to markets which we were still missing in our global footprint. So all in all this acquisition was the ideal match with both companies finding a mutual balance in each other to achieve their goals.

During the past days it’s not the first time that I have been asked “what is next now for BtoBet”? The company will definitely continue to uphold its identity as a leading brand on the market, maintaining its own organisational chart, and pursuing a strategy that for the past years has characterised it and put it apart from the competition. This means that the relationship with our partners, the way that we deliver our services and assist all operators, will remain unaltered.

Nonetheless, there is no denying that with BtoBet now forming part of this larger group our partners can expect to have major innovative solutions put at their disposal derivating from an increased investment capacity, and at the same time accessing additional content and products that constitute the group’s portfolio.

It is worthy of mention that through this acquisition, the Aspire Global group, and BtoBet directly, will gain a significant market advantage. The group will have an incredible market cover, with BtoBet leading the way in emergent markets such as Africa and Latin America, and Aspire Global playing a leading role in more mature and new markets such as Europe or the US.

This will in itself create new market opportunities, with Aspire Global now being able to offer a holistic iGaming solution in the markets they are currently present and where up until now they were missing the sportsbook solution. All this without mentioning the tangible potential to generate significant growth, with the group providing the possibility to large customers to enter new markets through the use of a very advanced and complete solution in a very short time-to-market.

During the past days one of the primary questions that I posed myself was “in which way will Aspire Global enable BtoBet in becoming a leading sportsbook platform provider?” The quest for this answer took me to what formed an intrinsic part of our goals from the very beginning… global presence and market share. BtoBet has a very strong presence in emerging markets, but in order to reach the next step we had to push our products in markets such as Europe and the US. However, these markets require a significant amount of investment which is countered by a high level of organisational influence in order to gain access to the industry’s larger operators and bookmakers. In this sense Aspire Global was the perfect match for us, with the group offering stability and carrying a lot of clout in the betting and gambling industry on a global level.

Aspire Global’s iGaming (PAM) platform is already certified in the US and other major markets, and this means that BtoBet with its sportsbook product can now gain immediate access to these yet uncharted markets for the company. This is what we ultimately expect from this new chapter… gaining a strong entry to these new regions that still do not offer a lot of technological alternatives comparable to the ones that we offer today, and take the opportunity to bring to market a complete product covering all the elements of the iGaming value chain. Together we will be able to meet the requests and expectations of all operators that intend to work with us in all market scenarios, whether mature or emerging.

At the same time, I firmly assert that BtoBet will keep its growth momentum in Africa and Latin America. We have invested heavily in these markets in the past and our commitment to these strategic markets will remain unaffected. The very strong knowledge that we have cultivated locally during the past years have transformed BtoBet in the perfect gateway for any Tier 1 or larger Tier 2 operators that want to target these continents, and such position will be further bolstered, in the short term.

BtoBet’s acquisition by Aspire Global is testimony of the success and potential that the company keeps in hold. It all boils down to the sheer determination and talent of each and every member that forms part, and has formed part in the past, of this incredible and fast growing company. This new chapter will mark the perfect opportunity for the company to reach new heights, and we all must evaluate this as another step towards achieving a great group result.


Source: Latest News on European Gaming Media Network
This is a Syndicated News piece. Photo credits or photo sources can be found on the source article: BtoBet’s Alessandro Fried Discusses Aspire Global’s Acquisition of Sportsbook and Tech Company

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