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Gaming

Understanding the role of compliance in iGaming according to Soft2Bet

Tuesday 27 de February 2024 / 12:00

2 minutos de lectura

(Santa Venera).- Regulatory compliance has such an important influence on how iGaming companies operate that it is vital to understand its role. For this reason, SoloAzar shares the interview that Soft2Bet made to their Senior Compliance Director Ohad Straschnov to understand the work that goes on behind the scenes enabling Soft2Bet and its partners to operate across regulated markets.

Understanding the role of compliance in iGaming according to Soft2Bet

Regulation and compliance are key topics in the iGaming industry and are discussed in depth at every trade show, conference or industry event. The reason is simple, it defines the framework in which every company in the sector works, whether they are operators, providers, or even affiliates (in some EU countries as well as the US). 

It also defines other key aspects such as financial planning, including tax rates and licensing costs, payout ratios or marketing and customer communications rules that iGaming firms must adhere to avoid sanctions and keep operating in regulated markets.     

As a company involved in the iGaming industry, dealing with regulations and constantly evolving requirements is an ever-present feature of Soft2Bet’s work. It impacts how and where we operate, the products we launch and which markets we launch them in, as well as the entry-market timings for these launches. 

With this in mind, we spoke with Ohad Straschnov, Senior Compliance Director at Soft2Bet, to find out how he and his team navigate this environment. This is even more relevant in light of how Soft2Bet has expanded its regulatory footprint in the past year, obtaining licenses in various European countries and initiating regulatory-licensing processes in key markets in Europe and in North and South America. 

Having worked with industry giants such as 888, SBTech and DraftKings, Ohad is highly familiar with regulatory topics, but also fully aware that being on top of compliance requirements is what  enables Soft2Bet to operate and grow in regulated markets. So what does his daily routine look like and how does he ensure S2B is compliant in all the markets where it is active?

Daily work 

"The daily work within the compliance department at Soft2Bet is characterized by a dynamic and closely integrated collaboration. The team engages in regular, in-depth discussions and joint strategizing to navigate the ever-evolving landscape of the online gambling industry. This is particularly relevant for Soft2Bet when taking account of our multi-jurisdictional approach,” he says. 

From ensuring operational activities are in line with legal standards to contract negotiations and conforming to regulations, Ohad’s compliance team monitors and enforces adherence to both internal policies and external regulatory requirements. “This work is critical in identifying and mitigating legal risks, thereby safeguarding the company's interests,” he notes.

This synergy is particularly evident during key projects such as market expansions, licensing processes and acquisitions. “In these instances,” explains Ohad, “the legal team leads the charge in terms of negotiations and contractual aspects, while the compliance team brings highly valuable insights into regulatory nuances. 

“This internal collaboration ensures not only the successful acquisition of licenses but also effective launches in new markets, exemplifying the essential role that the compliance  department plays in the daily operations of Soft2Bet."

Good for business 

But if regulated markets are a great benefit to the industry and part of its evolution, they also push up costs and, of course, taxes, so how does Soft2Bet deal with these issues?

“We encourage stakeholders to view regulation and compliance as being as pivotal and beneficial as any other aspect of the business,” says Ohad. “They enable operators to advertise, showcase the spirit of innovation that iGaming is well known for and they foster sustainable business practices.” 

For a provider such as Soft2Bet, whose platforms are built to be flexible and adaptable to accommodate multiple regulated markets, this means “our partners can grow their business in complete peace of mind and know that we are on top of any regulatory change, whether in relation to advertising guidelines, reporting and testing requirements or responsible gambling tools”, explains Ohad.

Soft2Bet hosted a number of compliance, regulatory and product workshops during ICE London, what did Ohad make of the event and what is his outlook for 2024? 

“ICE was another great event for us as a group and the last one to take place in London (it will be held in Barcelona next year), so in a way it was historic. But as always, the industry panels and meetings that we had were very productive and we look forward to following up on them and updating the markets and partnerships in the coming months.” 

Expanding the regulatory footprint  

Soft2Bet obtained a number of European licenses in 2023 and has applied for new ones in a number of other major regulated markets, what was the rationale behind those moves?

Indeed, in 2023 we obtained licenses in major European markets such as Italy, Romania and Greece, to go with those we already hold for Sweden, Denmark and Malta. We are also going through the regulatory process in Portugal in the EU, New Jersey in the US and Ontario in Canada. These moves align with our aim to significantly grow the B2B side of our business and being licensed in these markets will enable us to go live with partners quickly and in a way that is fully compliant with local regulations,” , says Ohad

For all the talk of company growth, the workload must have been significant, so how did Ohad and his team address each market in which Soft2Bet was applying?  

“For S2B to achieve its goal of obtaining a license in a new market as swiftly as possible, it must first understand and evaluate the licensing and technical requirements, in particular any new or unique jurisdictions where requirements are unlike any other market where the company already operates,” he explains. Such issues can range from ‘simple’ topics such as language to special reporting obligations or specific approval processes. 

Having analysed all these requirements, Ohad’s team then communicates them to the product and R&D teams, “so they are able to determine the efforts needed in order to obtain the license, while putting in the necessary resources to make sure our products are fully compliant with the new regulations and remain so once our operations are up and running”, he says. 

The evolution of national gambling regulations will continue to evolve and as a result so will Ohad’s work in compliance. As for the year ahead, Ohad says the group will be “launching more brands in regulated markets and getting licensed in New Jersey, Ontario, Portugal and more. In particular North America represents a great opportunity and is a major objective for us and we look forward to operating and offering our exceptional products there.”

Categoría:Gaming

Tags: Soft2Bet,

País: Malta

Región: EMEA

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