Without a doubt. ICE 2020 was a fantastic show for us. We kicked off the Monday before the start of the conference in style, announcing the acquisition of our B2B Critical Gaming Supply Licence from the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA), which certainly set the tone from then onwards. As I’m sure plenty of our industry associates would agree, delegates were certainly hard-pressed to find another stand at the show that could offer extensive experience in delivering industry-leading B2B solutions across online and retail sports betting technology. This was none more so the case than for our comprehensive package of solutions bespoke for the LatAm market. With our regional LatAm team setting up camp at ICE to speak to the wealth of experience we have incorporated into our tailored iGaming offering on the continent, we can certainly say that with the feedback received, our goals and expectations were more than met. Given what we’re able to offer our partners there, we certainly had plenty to talk about. This included everything from a faster site, to full coverage of regional sporting events, a fully bespoke mobile solution and tailored regional casino games, bingo and lotteries that are sure to broaden the horizons of any player.
What was the feedback from attendees? What products and distinctive features from your portfolio proved to be the biggest highlights?
When it came to the global stage, our sportsbook proved to be our winning fixture. However, for the LatAm side of things – there were plenty of distinctive bespoke regional features within our platform that proved to be the biggest regional highlight for us. Our operations there are spearheaded by our Business Development Managers Araksi Sargsyan and Gevorg Rushanyan, who have both proven instrumental in tailoring our bespoke LatAm portfolio to ensure our current (and future) partners get the very best out of the region. Providing an intuitive multi-lingual, multi-currency, customizable interface that can be easily integrated, using unique APIs, with new or existing platforms, we’re able to cater to every operator’s need on the continent, whether online or land-based. Majoring in in-play and cashout functionality, we offer a thrilling and dynamic live component to core South American sports such as football and tennis. Ultimately, a flexible, customisable platform has to be the central goal – and our ability to be highly modular in delivery has made us an incredibly valuable partner. To illustrate, when an operator goes live in LatAm for the first time, a wealth of components are needed (from payment providers to varied website layouts) whereby parts must be swapped out, or switched around. In short, a one-size-fits-all product just can’t link up with modern demands, so we’ve developed our products accordingly – all of which have proven to be a key gamechanger for any ambitious partner looking to make their mark there.
What are the upcoming moves, plans and projects in Digitain's Latin America agenda this year?
For us, that’s a very interesting question. We kicked-off our Latin American operations at SAGSE 2018, which means we’ll be approaching our first two-year anniversary soon enough. It’s been fantastic to see how far we’ve come, with the upcoming GAT Expo conference in April proving to be an excellent benchmark for our progress on the continent. I’m incredibly proud of the work we’ve already done here, but it’s definitely too early to talk about complete success.
When it comes to upcoming plans, Brazil is definitely going to be one to watch this year, with the adoption of its first gambling bill proving to be a landmark turning point, and we expect to see plenty of exciting developments in 2020. The last year on the continent has seen us plan our future operations meticulously, and we can’t wait to begin rolling out our services to Brazilian players and operators. One of our biggest keys to global success at Digitain has been our dedication to flexibility, and we’re on hand to tailor our products and services in any way they need. We’ve been assembling an elite team that are native to Brazilian Portuguese over the past year and are more than ready to kick things off having already done extensive research into the market and tailored our services accordingly to Brazilian gaming preferences.
Could you share your prospects and outlook for the LatAm gaming industry in 2020? What should we look out for in terms of new technology, demands and markets?
When it comes to new markets, a regulated Brazil can’t come fast enough. The country has some of the most passionate gamers around who crave the thrill of live action, and I’m fully confident some of the country’s key stakeholders are ready to bring the best of fair gaming to one of the region’s most lucrative markets. However, we shouldn’t hold our breath, as many of us already know, the LatAm market is a dynamic and complex region where regulatory changes depend on political decisions which are sometimes subordinated to economic circumstances – many of which are outside of the industry’s control.
New technology is a much more interesting question; and one that we can be far more solid about when it comes to talking prospects and outlook. In short, 2020 will be all about mobile. Latin America finished 2018 with 19% growth year-over-year on mobile platforms and the predictions say that by 2021 there will be over 235 million smartphone users. Latin America is going through a rapid progression in development and quickly catching up to global market leaders. Ramping smartphone adoption rates and improved user interfaces, coupled with increasing affordability, mean that mobile-first solutions are top of the list when it comes to operator’s demands for the region, which is certainly not going to change any time soon. My advice if you want to stay ahead in LatAm this year – make it your priority.