As the gambling industry continues to navigate its way through the storm caused by COVID-19, flexibility and diversification have become more important than ever for the sector to overcome this period of uncertainty.
Altenar spoke to SBC News about focusing upon the new opportunities that have arisen over the last few weeks, emphasising that people, products and partners are at the forefront of its company philosophy.
“This is a science fiction movie that we live on. And unfortunately not only the “bad guys” die at the end,” said Dinos Stranomitis, Director and COO at Altenar.
“Joking aside, this is a serious emergency situation in all aspects, especially for a company providing a Sports Betting solution. Who could imagine that one day, no sports events would take place for a week or a month or even longer?”
In a time when job security may not be guaranteed, Stranomitis explained that Altenar has dispelled any worries by guaranteeing that all employees will remain at the company, with a work-from-home policy rolled out until it is safe to return to work.
He added: “Altenar has already communicated internally that ALL employees will stay and we fulfill all obligations to the moment. Our people feel safe, working from home and they will become our best ambassadors when all this story becomes history. During this particular period, we create loyalty because Altenar is loyal to our people.”
Meanwhile Stanislav Silin, Chief Executive of Altenar, explained that this global pandemic has offered an ‘excellent opportunity’ to focus on both current and new staff members.
He said: “As in any period of uncertainty, there are both challenges and opportunities. We chose to focus on the latter, whilst adapting to the challenges. And this is the philosophy we project within our company.
“Because of how our organisation grew, we had no difficulty to adapt to 100% remote work, and are suffering no productivity loss because of that.
“This is an excellent chance to focus on people, both those that are already part of our team, but also, potentially new talent that may have been left behind by companies that do not value their people assets as much as they value the financial ones. In the end, when this period will eventually be over, we are confident to come out stronger than ever before.”
‘Trendy’ products such as virtuals and esports have also come high on the agenda for Altenar, explained Stranomitis: “Altenar are intensively working on product projects that are trendy at this moment, such as more virtual sports, more esports, plus other ideas queued for a number of months due to busy schedule.
“This gave us the chance to reshuffle some of the departments by moving people around in order to take advantage of the lighter offer we currently have.”
Adapting the product portfolio to one that is less reliant on sporting events can be advantageous during this period where more than one third of the world has imposed restrictions on both travel and sporting events.
The key to engaging with an audience, according to Silin, is to be ‘well prepared’ and expect that traffic may be lower – but this will be replaced by new peaks in the near future.
He added: “Despite the challenge of reduced schedule of competitions, we believe this is the time to focus on product aspects we did not have as much time for in the past, and this includes our Virtuals offering, esports and other aspects of our product that are not directly related to traditional sports events, as there are very few of them at the moment.
“From the technology point of view, we consider this period of slowdown as an excellent opportunity to deal with technical debt and work on various upgrades, across both software and infrastructure stacks, as the lower than usual traffic right now will invariably be replaced by new peaks in some not so distant future. We will find ourselves well prepared.”
The final important step outlined by Altenar was a focus on partnerships. While the current climate may not be ideal for securing new partnerships, Stranomitis stressed that Altenar is working alongside its current partners to ensure that they stay ‘strong and viable’ for the coming months until the sporting calendar resumes.
Silin concluded: “It is also an opportunity to strengthen our business relationships with both our customers and suppliers. As Dinos pointed out, we are in constant contact with our current partners, and are also continuing to sign new ones, both to sell our products and services to, as well as to identify strategic deals for acquiring additional content.”