SBC WGES Live Blog Wednesday – E&Y In conversation with the online CEOs: considering gaming’s future – from land to online; from customer to economics
- Session – WGES Customers & Strategy -9:40 CET
- Topic – Igaming CEO thoughts & discussion regarding igaming current trends & future
- Session Speakers – Thomas Roche, Global Gaming Leader, Ernst & Young, United States, Mr Norbert Teufelberger, Chief Executive Officer, Bwin, Austria, Mor Weizer, Chief Executive Officer, Playtech, Isle Of Man, Mr Richard Glynn, Chief Executive Officer, Ladbrokes, United Kingdom, Mr Matteo Monteverdi, Snr Vice President of iGaming., GTECH, Italy Kristian Nylen, CEO, Kambi Services Limited, United Kingdom, Friedrich Stickler, President, European Lottery Association, Austria
- Norbert Teufelberger points that the playing field is getting increasingly complex and harder to focus and navigate. Operators have so many touch points to concur these days, mobile, social, tablet, betting terminals etc… ‘We have 1400 developers in our Party-Bwin operations now and it seems we can never get enough.’ Also the lines are blurring between offline and online innovation as all applications and future developments have to be able to interact digitally to satisfy demanding customers.
- Friedrich Stickler: Gambling is gaming for money, but I see trends towards entertainment and entertaining users. The problem is how to monetize entertainment.
Also the operators, in their attempt to solve this problem may be in competition with regulators that have different objectives, i.e. making sure underaged gambling does not occur, etc…
- Norbert Teufelberger and Matteo Monteverdi focus on the importance of balancing operational costs for igaming. Noting that market entry is now more expensive than ever, and the need and pressure for constant innovation in igaming products means that development and operational costs are being driven up. A further factor is that igaming innovation has shifted into a knowledge based resource, whereby companies are competing and rewarding top tier individuals – these do not come cheap and are scarce resource that must be accommodated by operators.
- Mor Weizer, comments that igaming is not a fair level playing field for operators, in terms of competition entry in new markets. There are still perceived rogue operators that are under the radar and are not being dealt with properly by governments who are prepared to put in high tax levy’s but not prepared to pay or police the market.
- Panel discuss economic downturn and issues it creates in value and growth for business. However panel agree that these are issues that should not slow down igaming innovation and customer rewards and targeting. In a sense the issue of downturn is peripheral as well run igaming operations should be able to survive, yet management have to deliver and process tough decisions that may not be to the liking of staff, regulators and other players in the value chain of an igaming business.