Atlas World Sports CEO Talks Latin American Expansion Plans and Brand Identity

Atlas World Sports CEO Talks Latin American Expansion Plans and Brand Identity

The flourishing sporting culture of Latin America has transformed it into a strong prospect for businesses in the betting and iGaming sectors, with affiliate businesses also benefiting from recent regulatory developments.

A multitude of affiliate businesses have already made their presence felt in various Latin American markets, with many others aiming to tap into this high-potential region. Atlas World Sports, the platform that offers sports fans the essential data, stats, and news for making informed bets, is no exception.

Before taking the stage as a speaker at the 2023 SBC Summit Latinoamérica, Robert Kraft, the Founder and CEO of Atlas World Sports, sat down for an exclusive interview with SBC Media.

During this conversation, he shared valuable insights into his journey of entering the United States market, the company’s strategic approach to entering Latin American markets, the delicate balance between embracing cultural differences and preserving brand identity, and potential challenges that affiliate businesses may encounter when expanding into Latin America.

SBC: Could you share your experience of launching your affiliate business in the United States? What factors led you to identify an opportunity in this market, and what were/are the challenges you encountered during the process?

Robert Kraft: Launching an affiliate business in the United States has been an exciting and rewarding experience. The decision to enter this market was primarily driven by several factors that indicated a significant opportunity for success. The United States offers a vast consumer base with significant purchasing power, rendering it an appealing market for affiliate marketing in a ‘fresh’ landscape following the PASPA ruling at the Supreme Court level.

However, entering this market was not without its challenges. One of the main difficulties encountered during the process was competition. With numerous European-established affiliates looking to expand to the United States, gaining visibility has required careful planning and execution of marketing strategies. Establishing trust with potential customers is always a challenge when trying to win over consumers accustomed to well-established brands.

Furthermore, adapting to the new regulations and legal requirements poses additional challenges. Understanding tax laws, obtaining necessary licenses, and complying with various state-specific regulations demands thorough research and attention to detail.

Another significant challenge was building partnerships with sportsbooks, leagues, etc., who were willing to collaborate with a new affiliate business. Convincing them of our value proposition required demonstrating our expertise in driving traffic, generating sales leads, and delivering results.

SBC: As a business, your core offering revolves around generating informative content to assist bettors in making informed choices. What strategies will you/do employ to set yourself apart from competitors in the affiliate space? 

RK: As a business operating in the highly competitive affiliate space, we understand that our success hinges on providing bettors with informative content to help them make well-informed choices. To set ourselves apart from competitors, we will employ several strategies that prioritize quality and innovation. 

By publishing various aspects of sports betting and in-game action, such as odds, statistics, team performance, and player profiles, we aim to provide bettors with comprehensive insights that go beyond basic information. Additionally, we will focus on creating unique and engaging content formats.

This multi-dimensional approach will not only cater to different user styles but also enhance the user experience by presenting information in an easily digestible manner. Furthermore, hyper-personalization will be a key element of our strategy. We understand that every bettor has unique preferences and requirements. By leveraging data analytics and user feedback mechanisms, we aim to tailor our recommendations according to individual betting styles or specific interests. 

This personalized approach will foster stronger connections with our audience while simultaneously setting us apart from competitors who adopt a one-size-fits-all approach. 

Atlas World Sports recently launched our Atlas AI, which simulates each game 10,000 times. We truly are a partner of each user, as Atlas is in the business to help each of our users #BetBetter.

Lastly but importantly, building a strong community around our brand is crucial for differentiation in the affiliate space.

SBC: What is your perspective on striking a balance between embracing regionalism and maintaining brand identity in regions like Latin America?

RK: In the ever-evolving global marketplace, striking a balance between embracing regionalism and maintaining brand identity is crucial, especially in regions like Latin America.

Latin America is a diverse region with unique cultural, linguistic, and economic characteristics that must be considered by businesses operating within this market. Embracing regionalism involves understanding and appreciating the distinct preferences, values, and behaviors of consumers in Latin America.

By tailoring Atlas World Sports’ products and marketing strategies to meet these specific demands, Atlas aims to establish strong connections with local users. This approach not only enhances brand relevance but also fosters customer loyalty. Furthermore, embracing regionalism allows businesses to tap into the potential of local talent and resources for efficient operations. However, while embracing regionalism is important for success in Latin America, it is equally crucial to maintain brand identity.

A strong brand identity provides consistency across markets and helps build trust among consumers. It conveys core values, establishes credibility, and differentiates a company from its competitors. Therefore, while adapting to the local market’s needs and preferences is essential for growth in Latin America, it should not compromise the essence of the brand. Striking a balance between these two aspects requires careful consideration and strategic decision-making.

Atlas World Sports has begun to conduct thorough research on each country within Latin America to understand its unique betting/sports characteristics along with cultural norms while aligning its offerings with its overall brand positioning. This will involve language adjustments as well as adapting product features or app design without losing sight of the core essence of the Atlas World Sports brand.

SBC: Is Atlas World Sports eyeing an expansion into Latin America? Are there particular markets that catch your attention?

RK: Atlas World Sports is indeed eyeing expansion into Latin America, a region known for its passion and love for sports, and now legalized sports betting! With its rich sporting culture and growing economy, Latin America presents a promising opportunity for Atlas World Sports to tap into new markets and reach a wider audience. Among the specific markets that immediately capture our focus are Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, and Colombia, along with others like Puerto Rico.

These countries have thriving sports industries with strong fan bases for various sports, such as football (soccer), basketball, baseball, American football, and more. Additionally, they have consistently produced top-tier athletes who have made their mark globally, which can always circle back to regional marketing implications and opportunities. Brazil stands out as one of the largest markets due to its immense football following. With numerous talented players emerging from Brazil every year, there is significant potential for partnerships and talent in this country.

Mexico also presents great opportunities with its passionate fan base across multiple sports. Argentina has a deep-rooted love for football and has produced legendary players over the years. Lastly, Colombia boasts a vibrant sporting scene with notable successes in football.

SBC: When discussing Latin America, it’s essential to recognize that it’s not a homogenous entity. However, if you were to highlight specific traits or challenges for affiliate businesses in Latin American countries compared to regions like the US or Europe, what would those be?

RK: When discussing Latin America, it is indeed crucial to acknowledge that it is not a homogeneous entity. The region comprises diverse countries with distinct cultures, languages, and economies, so there are certain traits and challenges that affiliate businesses face. 

Firstly, one major challenge is the varying levels of economic development and infrastructure across Latin American countries compared to regions like the US or Europe. This can impact potential partnerships and access to markets. Additionally, cultural differences and language barriers pose unique challenges for businesses operating in multiple Latin American countries. Understanding these nuances is essential for successful affiliate operations in this vibrant but complex region.

SBC: For those in the audience more accustomed to the European affiliate model, could you outline the significant disparities in operational methods and business models when compared to the United States/Latin America?

RK: For those more accustomed to the European affiliate model, it is important to understand the significant disparities in operational methods and business models when compared to the United States and Latin America. Firstly, the European affiliate model tends to emphasize Revenue Sharing (Rev Share). In contrast, the US/Latin American model leans towards more of a Cost-per-acquisition (CPA) approach as they are effectively brand-new markets.

Robert Kraft will be speaking on the ‘Launching in LATAM – Fundamentals of Brand Identity’ panel, which is part of the ‘Affiliates and Advertising’ conference track at SBC Summit Latinoamérica. This panel is scheduled for November 1, from 1:30 – 2:10 PM. Kraft will be joined by Thomas Carvalhaes (Managing Director, Vai de Bob), Rony Vexelman (VP Marketing, Optimove), Cristian Barbosa (Director of Strategic Partnerships & Gambling, Futbol Sites), Emilia Perez (Marketing Director – LatAm, Rush Street Interactive), and panel moderator Carlos Garcia (CEO & Co-Founder, The Molecula).

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