SBC News Adam Smith: Leading FSB in 2023

Adam Smith: Leading FSB in 2023

SBC News Adam Smith: Leading FSB in 2023A few weeks on from his appointment as interim Chief Executive Officer of FSB, Adam Smith is settling into the role and looking forward to the year ahead. 

Smith sat down with SBC News about the global markets on his agenda for the next 12 months, touching upon the reasons why he was attracted by the opportunities at FSB and his strong ties with AFC Wimbledon.

SBC: What attracted you to the opportunity of leading FSB?

AS: I’d say three key reasons. Firstly, the product. FSB has long been acclaimed for its world class, dynamic proprietary technology and the flexibility it offers partners. This was something I wanted to work with and continue to scale. Secondly, the people within the organisation, from the driven, determined leadership team downwards. The passion and knowledge they have for our product and partners is inspiring. And thirdly, the opportunity that’s in the grasp of FSB. This is an award winning organisation with a growing, global footprint across four continents that’s serving major Tier 1 lighthouse clients. There is a positive feeling at FSB about where we are now and where we are going.

SBC: You conducted an end of year strategic review in December. How has that informed FSB’s strategy for 2023?

AS: Our end of year strategic review allowed us to further sharpen our laser focus when it comes to delivering for existing and new partners across our core markets. The primary goal is to ensure that our resources are aligned to support the best market conditions and revenue opportunities for them. 

Our private equity partners, Clairvest, were fully supportive of the review and its outcome, they are highly engaged and we continue to work closely with them.

Our heritage lies in the competitive UK and Ireland market where we have forged strong, successful partnerships through our deep understanding of excellence in sportsbook, trading and technology. 

We’ve been operational in Africa for close to a decade, and in mainland Europe we continue to expand our presence supported by new multi-market partnerships with the likes of Olympic Entertainment Group. It’s these markets, alongside Canada where we’re just about to launch, that will be the bedrock of our operational focus in 2023.

SBC: You’re all set to launch in Ontario. What can you tell us about your plans for this market?

AS: We’re all hugely excited about this. In a very tangible example of how we build and grow existing partnerships we’re going into the province with two current operator clients. One of those is Fitzdares who we’ve worked closely with since 2018. 

Playing a part in their UK growth journey has been hugely rewarding for FSB and we’re all genuinely intrigued to see what unique twist they can imprint on the Ontario market in the weeks and months ahead. We’ll be there to support them every step of the way. It’s also worth saying we’re also looking forward to working with other new partners in Ontario when we launch.

SBC: You mentioned the UK and Ireland as remaining a key part of FSB’s focus. How have you adapted to a market that feels more challenging than ever?

AS: Our UKI partners have enjoyed healthy growth in 2022 so we feel there’s still opportunity in the market for operators and suppliers alike. The key is listening to our partners, understanding the demands of the market and shaping our roadmap through that. For the World Cup, we executed a number of product upgrades including enhancing the volume of content on our proprietary Bet Builder product. 

Our new React powered front end has enabled our partners to offer their players much richer and cleaner user journeys in their day to day experiences. We are also conscious of our social responsibility obligations, especially regarding affordability checks, and we continue to invest in our AML and KYC platform tools. 

So, in summary, it’s about understanding the needs of the market at this time and offering a product that fits those operator and end user demands.

SBC: You recently announced the signing of Tier 1 operator Nairabet in Nigeria. Are there any markets that are particularly high on your agenda within the African region this year?

AS: Yes, our strategic partnership with Nairabet has started well. Migrating a well-established Tier 1 brand with heavy volumes of customers in a huge market requires authentically agile technology and deep know-how within your development team to execute this complex operation well. 

Looking forward, South Africa is a firm part of our 2023 plans and product development is well advanced. Again, having spent time understanding the market, we believe we have the right product fit and corporate skill sets to offer ambitious operators a contemporary sportsbook and iGaming experience. 

There is clear sportsbook synergy between the UK and South Africa when it comes to leading products like horse racing, cricket and rugby and we feel no other supplier can offer the level of trading and operational expertise within these sports to the South African market.

SBC: ICE is just a week away. Can you give us a sneak peek into what you will be showcasing?

AS: We’re all really looking forward to the show at FSB. From an online point of view we’ll be showcasing our new React powered front end that has made such a difference to our partners and their players. In retail, our technology stack of SSBT, EPOS and newly launched Companion App will be on show. 

We’ll also have a supersized interactive touch screen on display that will take delegates through the story of how we collaborate with our Tier 1 global partners to carefully curate the exact experiences they require across product and platform. Come and see us at Stand S1-430!

SBC: We’ve been hearing you have strong associations with the English football club AFC Wimbledon. Tell us more please.

AS: My connection with Wimbledon football club goes back a long way, first going to games at the old Plough Lane ground with my Dad and brother when the club were in the non-league. The club’s meteoric rise included beating Liverpool to win the FA Cup in 1988, a great day! I won’t rehash what transpired afterwards but when the team “moved” and a new fans owned club, AFC Wimbledon, emerged from the ashes I felt compelled to get involved. 

In a classic case of history repeating itself, together with my 2 sons (and quite often my Dad) we followed the team on its rise through non league from the delights of the Combined Counties League to winning the play-off final of the National League (the Conference as it was then), to get back into the Football League (it only took 9 years!) and most recently returning to a new purpose built stadium in Plough Lane down the road from where the old ground was located. 

I now find myself a member of the Dons Trust (that owns the club and new stadium), a shareholder, a Plough Lane bond holder, a Seat Debenture holder plus 3 season tickets. So, I’m most definitely all in!

Check Also

BeyondPlay gains UK licence to enter supplier market

FSB powers OctoBet as operator makes UK debut

Sports betting platform provider FSB has announced the signing of OctoBet, an operator making its …

SBC News SIS delivers racing content across Africa in Bitville partnership

SIS delivers racing content across Africa in Bitville partnership

SIS (Sports Information Services) has partnered with Bitville Gaming to deliver its products to sportsbooks …

SBC News Genius Sports partners BetKing as in-play betting grows in Africa

Genius Sports partners BetKing as in-play betting grows in Africa

Genius Sports has announced that it will power growth with in-play trading services for BetKing. …