SBC News Alexey Khobot on the evolution of odds calculations

Alexey Khobot on the evolution of odds calculations

Since it was founded in 1994, much has changed when it comes to calculating betting odds at Fonbet according to Alexey Khobot, the main developer behind the firm’s first software who says that technology has placed an increasing role in the process.

As internet use was not as widespread as it is in 2020, Fonbet calculated its odds independently. This task fell to the operator’s chess Grandmaster Anatoly Machulsky, Fonbet’s former CEO and one of its founders.

Machulsky is said to have personally studied match results, picked out winning bet slips and given them to the cashier who, in turn, paid out the winnings.

According to Alexey Khobot, he could not remember a single time that Machulsky made an error in his calculations, which he found particularly impressive considering that accumulator and system bets were also accepted in addition to single bets.

Bet results from the database and registers were then entered into a unified database onto a central computer for settlement, and the data was then sent out on floppy disks to betting shops.

“It is difficult for an ordinary person to calculate precise odds for a sporting event because so many factors need to be taken into account,” Alexey Khobot said.

He explained that statistics, the physical state of the team players, head-to-head history, injured and disqualified team members, public opinion and the betting company’s margin all need to be taken into consideration. Moreover, odds also depend on the distribution of customer bets.

As time has passed, however, more betting companies have started to use special programmes that analyse statistics and simultaneously suggest hundreds of odds for each game. While a number of betting companies opt to use b2b solutions to calculate and set their odds, most larger companies will use an in-house team of bookmakers to work out the numbers.

Alexey Khobot added: “This is how Fonbet likes to operate, with hundreds of specialists narrowly focused on their own specific niche. Some are responsible for events in sports, others in Live, while senior specialists work with top events. Fonbet tends to avoid hiring anyone for these positions who has less than 15 years of experience in the industry.”

Analysts calculate the probabilities of all possible outcomes for a particular match and apply their own margin in the odds. For example, with equal chances for a total of 2.5 over and under, the odds for each selection are set at 1.95 instead of 2.00.

According to Alexey Khobot, it is this margin that helps betting companies to earn profits. For individual matches, Fonbet will also set higher odds and reduce its margin.

Alexey Khobot disclosed that Fonbet has plans in the pipeline to introduce a third decimal place, meaning odds can be, for example, 1.006, which he explained will apply to events where the probability of a selection is very small and does not even match odds of 1.01.

He added: “In any other situation, this approach is not advisable because the probability is covered by the margin and the betting company rounds up the odds. Also, psychologically it is easier to single out rounded odds from the entire group (1.50, 1.60, 1.80).”

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