As the world handles the current situation, many industries were forced to adapt to the best of their abilities in order to overcome the difficult and trying times.
During this still developing situation, what are the measures that bookmakers should implement to continue their growth? Alessandro Fried, BtoBet’s Founder and iGaming visionary entrepreneur, gives his insight – with a focus on the LatAm region – on the underlying opportunities this region still has to offer.
Not a single person ever envisioned that we would be dealing with such a situation. The Covid-19 pandemic has changed reality as we perceive it, with industries large and wide having to adapt to a new reality. But what about the iGaming industry? Operators should be agile and adapt to a new landscape in a bid to diversify their revenues. These are the main topics that are dominating the industry’s current agenda.
I firmly believe that the current situation represents a series of opportunities for all operators, especially retail bookmakers, to diversify and optimise their business strategies, and tackle the underlying problem of an over-reliance on the sportsbook channel by expanding other verticals to their full potential and thus diversifying their revenue stream.
With retails the most affected, now is the time to go digital
However let’s tackle the argument in a linear manner. Needless to say the current pandemic has disrupted the operations for all those bookmakers who have focused the vast majority of their operations on a retail network. This business model has been particularly effected in those countries where governments and authorities are implementing measures to ensure social distancing in a bid to control the outbreak. The answer for a situation that could effectively have a negative impact on both the short term, with a loss in revenue, and also on the long term sustainability of their business, with a loss in player retention, is to expand to the digital mediums.
Numbers at hand such a diversification would surely pay off on the long term in the Latin American region. Considering that the current internet penetration stands at 72%, a year-on-year increment of 3.7% from January 2019, the digital scenario has a bright outlook for all LatAm operators.
However to successfully undergo such a redimension and shift their players from retail to digital, operators need to be assisted with the right technological partner who will be able to pass them valuable regional knowledge, and the right technological solutions that adapt to the local player and market requirements. All this whilst taking in consideration a plethora of elements, amongst which local payment gateways.
Shifting to alternative content
Another fundamental aspect that should be pondered upon is: how can operators prepare for a situation such as the lack of sports they encountered couple of months ago.
You talk about live betting and you immediately relate to the major football leagues, the international sporting events, motor racing, and an infinite list of events considered as player favourites on a global level. Yet surprisingly even in times characterized by a shortfall in sport events, sportsbook operators were still able to provide their players with a diluted form of live betting – consisting primarily up until the time of writing of the Belarusian football league, and horse and greyhound racing.
This shows the importance for operators to have at their disposal the best live sports feed, especially during these trying times, where the data feed is reduced to a minimum.
Nonetheless it would be erratic to state that this will compensate for the lack of engagement and resultant revenue shortfall. Just as it would be unwise in such circumstances for operators not to focus on developing other alternative verticals parallel to their sportbook offer. This will enable them to:
- Offer a wider betting experience to their players
- Distribute their players amongst all verticals with an over-reliance on on particular segment
- Be in a position to better retain their current fold of players
BtoBet has focused on boosting all its verticals in order to place all operators in the position to determine which strategy they want to undertake for their target players, whether they want to focus on sportsbook, online casino, lotteries, virtuals, e-sports and fantasy sports.
Nonetheless throughout these times we are still investing and pushing to provide bookmakers with the best range of alternative vertical content, whilst at the same time keeping focused on delivering a long term plan ensuring our partners will reap benefits by adapting a player-centric approach.
We also offer all our assistance to bookmakers and other operators in diversifying their business model by integrating a wider content for the Virtuals, with games from six leading industry providers natively integrated in the Btobet platform; an Online Casino portfolio consisting of an extensive list of over 8000 games from over 100 providers; and a wide selection of Lotteries, Instant Lotteries and Jackpots, with prizes up to €150 million.
Article was initially published by Latam Media Group and you can find it here