SBTech is a sponsor of this year’s Betting on Football Conference taking place at Stamford Bridge on April 21st.
Tom Light, Vice President of Business Development & Commercials at SBTech and Head of Traders Itay Cohen spoke to us about why football is the company’s lifeblood, Gary Lineker and why they chose to get involved as a sponsor of this year’s #bofcon.
SBC: What’s the most important thing for operators to get right ahead of Euro 2016, and what’s the most challenging aspect of major international competitions such as this?
Tom: During the Euros we tend to see more non-punters come into play, players who need a simple and convenient way to bet – for example, casino players who like football. Thus, I believe that the most important element for operators to work and focus on prior to The Euros is UX and usability of their betting product; making it fun, exciting and easy to place bets throughout the event.
On a more professional sports level, I would say the addition of Fast Markets – the new generation, the millennials, want everything quickly and immediately. Bets on quick one minute intervals, where the results are settled quickly and not stick the funds in the ‘Open Bets’, such as ‘What is going to happen in the next one minute, goal, corner, free-kick, throw-in, etc”. Additionally, to work on the experience and derivative markets of the extra time which is very popular during the Euros.
SBC: How important is the sport of football to your business?
Tom: How important is your blood to you?
SBC: What effect will the major mergers of recent times have this year, if any?
Tom: To make it simple, we can look at this in two phases.
Phase 1 – the next 1-2 years – Integration time and merger processing.
Phase 2 – in 2 years – Seamless operation as 1 entity.
I believe in phase 1 these operators will become weaker and slower, which provides a good opportunity for the agile operators to push forward and take over some market share, as well as enforce their position in the market which they will need to do good in phase 2 – the merged operators will come stronger than ever.
SBC: What does 2016 have in-store for you?
Tom: It definitely is going to be exciting! We have signed on board with many big operators who are due to launch, prior to the Euros, in various regulated markets and sponsorships specifically for the Euros.
We have improved our product tremendously. Prior to The Euros we have been pushing many new innovations and features, as well as many new derivative and Fast Markets.
SBC: Euro 2016 – who’s going to win, who’s going to shine and who’s going to slump?
Tom: Since I habitually lose in betting I will hand you over to SBTech Head of Traders, Mr. Itay Cohen for this one.
Itay: The sports romanticists will have to hold their breath with a Cinderella Story for at least a couple of years, since it will end up as Gary Lineker would say, ‘Football is a simple game. Twenty-two men chase a ball for 90 minutes and at the end, the Germans always win.'”
Austria was having the second best results in the qualifiers, and they got a relatively convenient draw in the group stage – so they may be the tournament’s sensation.”
England is used to considering themselves as the World Champions, although they didn’t win any World Cup / Euro in the last 50 years. Although England had perfect qualifications, in addition to the fact that it is favorite for qualifying to the semifinals, I will not bet against history.”
You can join Tom Light, Itay Cohen and the SBTech crew down at the Bridge on April 21st where there’ll be unbeatable opportunities to network with hundreds of sports betting delegates and chances to learn from the best with a packed schedule of forward thinking, expert filled panel sessions.