This year has been exceptionally eventful for SOFTSWISS. With new product updates and promising partnerships dominating the headlines, the company already has big plans for further expansion in 2024, according to Chief Operating Officer Vitali Matsukevich.
Speaking at the recent SBC Summit Barcelona, Matsukevich took the time out to reflect on some of the biggest announcements from this year before outlining what he believed were the biggest trends from the last 12 months.
Taking inspiration from an innovator
Those who attended the conference may well have noticed that the SOFTSWISS stand had taken inspiration from Spanish artists Salvador Dali and Pablo Picasso, as evidenced by the creativity and bright colours.
The choice of Dali as inspiration was no coincidence, however. Instead, Matsukevich explained that SOFTSWISS had chosen this artist for both his profound influence on the art world and his role as a visionary leader.
He began: “Our amazing stand is the result of the hard work and dedication of our marketing team. They came up with the idea and successfully made it happen. I personally thought the idea of emulating the work of Salvador Dali was great.”
“If we speak about Salvador Dali, he was an innovator. He brought something new to the world that appealed to every one of our souls. Years on, and he’s still very famous. His work is excellent.
“Similar to Dali, we wanted to show that SOFTSWISS is an innovator. We have created plenty of new products and we plan to introduce them to the market. We also believe that we can stand the test of time.”
Innovation, Matsukevich believes, has been the driving force for SOFTSWISS in 2023 as the company has marked the year with several new product launches.
One such product that the Chief Operating Officer chose to draw particular attention to is the SOFTSWISS Game Aggregator, which recently hit a milestone of 10 billion in monthly total bets – a huge achievement for SOFTSWISS.
Matsukevich continued: “So far, 2023 has been a fantastic year for us. We have released lots of new features: Tournament Tool, new types of jackpots and many more. All of them have been very successful and have delivered great results for our partners. We are looking forward to reaching even more milestones in the near future. As a team, we are incredibly proud of this achievement. We put in the hard work and it has paid off.”
The success of the Game Aggregator, Matsukevich told SBC, has largely been driven by the individual contributions of the SOFTSWISS team. He explained that each person played a part in creating a new solution – Tournament Tool – which, he is confident, will fuel further growth for both SOFTSWISS and its partners.
The COO said: “I believe that the success of the SOFTSWISS Game Aggregator has been because of the hard work from across the company. Every part of the solution is like a puzzle; you need marketing, account management, technical support, customer service. It all fits together like cogs in a machine.”
“Last year, we scored 7.9 on the Client Service Satisfaction Index, which is produced by independent research analysts Kantar. This year, that jumped to 8.6. Every client that we work with understands that we’re not just providing them with a solid solution, but we are also providing them with a bespoke solution – something that is very customer-service-oriented.
The Game Aggregator is not the only product from SOFTSWISS to make a splash this year, with Matsukevich highlighting the successes of the SOFTSWISS Jackpot Aggregator.
At the time of writing, SOFTSWISS had rolled its Jackpot Aggregator solution to more than 65 different brands, with multiple new partnerships in the pipeline.
He added: “The Jackpot Aggregator continues to bring something new to the market and something we believe will be hugely successful in the future. Recently we released our Network Jackpots which work across all of the brands that we have.”
“It will offer a huge, pooled jackpot which will be available to lucky players. It’s quite a revolutionary solution because no one in the gambling industry has yet been able to connect such a wide network of operators and games together as we made.
“Our Managed Services team has, in my opinion, done an incredible job this year. Part of their team is the Anti-Fraud division which has helped save more than EUR 9m for clients this year. That is a huge saving and is something we’re incredibly proud of. We are in the stage of introducing new features to boost player engagement and improve the possibilities for effectively operating online casinos for our clients. So stay tuned for more news on this.”
More than a one-stop-shop
We have all heard the phrase ‘one-stop-shop’ being used in marketing materials and press releases from across the iGaming industry. But when chatting with SBC Media, it became apparent that Matsukevich disagreed with the turn of phrase. And for good reason.
In his view, Matsukevich believes that SOFTSWISS isn’t a one-stop-shop. At this stage of its development, the company is offering a product ecosystem for the iGaming industry.
He explained: “Nowadays, everyone claims to offer a ‘one-stop shop’ solution. But who actually achieves that? Very few companies. But we took this strategy five years ago when we decided that we wanted to redefine what ‘one-stop shop’ meant to people. We wanted people to hear that phrase and automatically think of SOFTSWISS. Now we are going beyond the idea of one-stop-shop, offering our clients a comprehensive ecosystem for their iGaming business.
“By partnering with us, our clients can cover all their requests. Some come to us for casino solutions, then add sportsbook software – because the demand for sports betting is increasing year by year. If operators want to complement their online casino with solutions to boost player engagement, we can fulfil this request with our jackpots, which can be launched on sports too. Recently we’ve seen a great number of people asking about retention solutions, and we can cover all these requests with SOFTSWISS products, which are already integrated with each other.”
SOFTSWISS leverages its extensive industry expertise when working with clients, crafting solutions oriented on the operators’ business conditions.
Vitali adds: “We thoroughly analyse our partners’ businesses and offer comprehensive support at every stage, providing the most advantageous and tailor-made solutions. To lead clients to success, we track emerging trends in the iGaming market, forecast their development, and actively use artificial intelligence-based tools. The expertise and experience of our employees allow us to handle requests of varying complexity and create new solutions based on our clients’ needs.”
One of the most popular trends that SOFTSWISS has had to respond to in the last 12 months is the increasing demand for retention-focused products.
As we’ve seen in markets such as the UK and the US, the costs of player acquisition have skyrocketed; it has become more important than ever to retain your player base.
“A business cannot simply grow without retaining its customers. It is much better to retain your player base than to be constantly attracting new players,” Matsukevich commented. “If a betting company can continue to engage players but also retain them, then they will do better than their competitors in the long run.
“In the last few years, we have actively been working on developing and improving our knowledge on player retention. We already have plenty of tools to help our clients retain their customers in a more simple yet effective manner. But there is always more work to be done, especially as the industry continues to become ever-more competitive.
“For our Game Aggregator, we have paid a lot of attention to the games available in its portfolio so that our clients can enjoy the products we have to offer. We have ensured that we have improved the quality, speed and stability of our solution and will continue to enhance our product.”
In recent years, we’ve seen many gambling companies turn their attention towards gamification as a means of overcoming the challenges posed by player retention.
And while this is an effective solution, Matsukevich argued that this needs to be complemented by a more holistic solution which fosters a sense of community among players.
He said: “Gamification isn’t the silver bullet for player retention woes. It is a solution, yes, but it is just one possible avenue to take. Gamification itself really became a thing around five or six years ago. Since then, we’ve seen every company say that they’re gamifying their products.
“At SOFTSWISS, what we’re trying to do is bring something different, something disruptive. We are trying to give customers the chance to be a part of something bigger – whether that’s tournaments, jackpots, or competitions. This in itself creates a sense of community between players and makes them feel like they are a part of something greater.”
When looking towards the remainder of 2023 and what comes next, Matsukevich noted that a big focus for SOFTSWISS is going to be customer service and the development of a more experiential user experience.
To do this, however, is no small feat. But Matsukevich is confident that the experience of the SOFTSWISS team combined with the launch of new features and tools for boosting player engagement will make this vision into a reality.
He concluded: “Going into 2024, you can expect even better customer service from us. We are always striving to improve in whatever way we can. We are always working on developing our own personal growth – both as employees and as a company.
“Time and experience play a significant role in doing that. We have also been creating tournaments and gamification features. Ultimately, we want to unite the community and unite players to create something much more social. Players compete against one another, leaderboards will add an additional sense of competition. We have been paying close attention to some of the developments taking place in the B2C space, and we have tried to innovate and bring something new.”