Sportradar showcased its Managed Trading Services at ICE North America
(Boston, SoloAzar Exclusive).- Eduard Blonk, Managing Director of Sales at Sportradar, spoke exclusively with SoloAzar at the lastest ICE North America. “The profile of the North American player is still being defined as states continue to enact legislation”, he said.
What are the latest innovations that you presented at ICE North America?
Innovation is at the heart of our entire 360-degree betting offering. And this is crucial in the US market where sports are largely at the forefront in terms of data and technology. One of our core offerings, which is underpinned by cutting-edge technology, is our signature all-in-one solution, Managed Trading Services (MTS). MTS is a trading and risk management service that combines the latest technology with our trading expertise, offering everything a bookmaker needs to build and manage a successful sportsbook. This includes our market-leading pre-match and live data and additional betting entertainment options, including streaming and statistics, that can effectively increase engagement and therefore revenue. The key to MTS is that it is fully-customisable, meaning it can be integrated at whatever level required. This is important in emerging markets as it is flexible enough to suit large, established operators as well as the smaller ones just starting out.
With what expectations and objectives did you arrive at this inaugural event?
Obviously with 12 months since the PASPA decision, we expected there would be a lot of people there who wanted to discuss the current situation and how they can develop and leverage as the market continues to emerge. We have been supplying data and odds to licensed bookmakers in Las Vegas and been the official data partner to the US major sports leagues for many years. We are therefore not a newcomer to the US market. Across the last year, we have also continued to expand our footprint in the US with four offices there now and a total of 300 employees. Our knowledge of the US sports market is therefore sound.
As the trusted supplier to over 600 bookmakers in more than 100 countries too, ICE North America gave us the chance to both share this knowledge and showcase our services, which will ultimately help to create an industry that is fair and opportune for all. This is one of our key objectives. We sit at the intersection of the sports media, betting and integrity industry. As the market leader of sports data intelligence, we engaged in conversations with stakeholders to demonstrate the best ways to leverage from a legalised betting market, both from a commercial and risk management perspective.
What is the profile of the North American player? Do you produce different products for the different North American markets?
At the moment, the profile of the North American player is still being defined as states continue to enact legislation. Like our MTS, all our betting services can be tailored for different operators and their customers in various locations, not just in the US but across the globe. With almost two decades of experience across the industry worldwide, we understand the need to offer bespoke services that utilise the trends and technology that are effective on a wider scale, in a way that is suitable for and can target the local punter.
The US is largely ahead of the game in terms of sports data and technology. Some sports leagues are using this to create personalisation and other ways of bringing fans closer to the action. The US market will therefore combine sports media content with betting as a way to achieve this. We have mirrored this with our marketing solution ad:s, which utilises our sports media content solutions to help operators understand and engage their customers. ad:s is again underpinned by our comprehensive data and can also be applied in customisable ways to suite an operator’s offerings and the local market.
How do you see the current North American market?
The development of the US market will be an ongoing process with each state continuing to apply varying regulations. What we have seen so far, in New Jersey for example, is that mobile gaming is proving popular with predictions saying that it has and will account for between 80 – high 90 per cent of revenue. Europe has shown us how online markets are now mobile first. More than that, the way the industry has developed in Europe also tells us that in-play is a large part of that mobile popularity. Despite this, other states in the US are taking more of a wait-and-see approach as the debate between online versus land-based betting continues.
We have already seen operators, sports leagues and gaming companies coming together and making moves to leverage from the opportunities on offer with the emerging US betting market. This is continuing to change the scene in the US as we know it. As more and more states open to sports betting, this activity is likely to continue. What is important is that all key stakeholders, including bookmakers, sports leagues and legislators work together to ensure the creation of a successful US sports betting market.