he awards are a milestone achievement for the Group following its acquisition of bwin.party in 2016 and reflect the success the business has had in improving the quality and breadth of its product offer while reinvigorating the appeal of its brands.
In naming GVC Casino Operator of the Year award, the independent panel of judges recognized the transformation of GVC's offer, including the addition of over 650 new games from third party suppliers and unique in-house content; the launch of a brand new live casino studio; the overhaul of the customer UI across numerous brands, including bwin; and the relaunch of PartyCasino, all achieved while the Group undertook the migration of its brands on a single proprietary technology platform.
This led the judges to conclude, "[GVC had] an excellent performance in casino. [GVC] has had a year of continued success and offered a compelling case in what was one of the strongest fields in the awards. Following the bwin.party acquisition the group is ticking all the right boxes in this key vertical."
Partypoker scooped the Poker Operator of the Year Award, having revolutionized its business over the past year. Initiatives included the launch of partypoker LIVE, a brand new global poker tour with record-breaking tournament guarantees in the U.K., Canada and Russia; the launch of a leading edge multi-table mobile app and a stream of improvements to its desktop product; plus, further steps to improve the playing experience for more casual players.
The judges commented, "Partypoker recorded phenomenal growth rates in absolute terms, but it was even more impressive given the perceived structural decline of the poker market. Management clearly focused on revamping product supported by live tours and strong brand push after a period of neglect."
Welcoming the awards, Shay Segev, GVC's Chief Operating Officer, said, "We are very proud to be recognized with these two prestigious awards. As we near the completion of our technology migration, this is a real tribute to the dedication and skills of our hard working teams. They have been able to create a best-in-class customer offer while at the same time completing a complex technology challenge."