iGaming Asia Congress Day 3 Summary

Angelia Ong brings us this 3rd and final summary of iGaming Asia Congress 2013  at the Grand Hyatt City of Dreams, Macau. We talked to Rosalind Wade (Beacon Events), David Leppo (footballbet.com), Sec. Jose Maria Ponce (CEZA), and Tim Craine (Isle of Man e-gaming) . Checkout the previous Day 1 and Day 2 summary video here.

And just like that, the iGaming Asia Congress has concluded. Despite only spanning three days, iGA 2013 was a tremendous success, proving once again that Asia’s booming gaming market is where every gaming company wants to be in.

It’s no surprise considering the impressive turnout the three-day event received, something Rosalinda Wade of Beacon Events pointed out during her conversation with CalvinAyre.com correspondent Angelia Ong. “We’ve got a few more people than last year, ” Wade said, before adding that “[this year] feels a lot more busy. People are staying in the room a lot longer and talking to exhibitors and sponsors. We’re pretty happy.”

The third day of the event also hosted the second wave of conferences. With so many incredible discussions going on, it became evident that it was going to be quite a busy day and it turned out to be. One of the most discussed topics during the day involved mobile gambling, a trend that while still in its infancy in Asia, is fast becoming the medium-of-choice for Asian gamblers betting on “in-play betting”. The popularity of in-play betting in Asia has become the revenue horse for a lot of bookmakers, at least according to David Leppo, CEO of FottballBet.com.  “On average, internet bookmakers in Asia, in-play makes 70-75 of our total gross,” Leppo said. “Without a doubt, it’s the area that we are focusing on and trying to exploit”.

But while the benefits and popularity of in-play betting is already on the table, operators have also been forced to turn up their game to stay on even keel with the bettors who, as Leppo admitted, have become much more savvy in their betting. “Operators, whether or not their Internet-based, sports-based, or land-based, have got to be as savvy as these punters are here in Asia, or else our tenures are going to be very short.”

Leppo’s observation on the difference between a Western bettor and an Asian bettor should also give operators a better idea of what they’re in for when they decide to enter the market. The FootballBet.com CEO understands that Asian bettors are a lot better than their Western counterparts because, in his own words, “Western bettors gamble for fun. Asian bettors gamble to make money”.

More than just the current state of the mobile betting in Asia and the savviness of Asian bettors, another topic that likewise generated more than its share of interest was the discussion involving corruption and money laundering in sports. With Alan Pedley, principal consultant of Gaming Associates, and Chistine Duhaime, a lawyer from the Harvey Law Group, serving as the panelists during the discussion, a number of different subjects were broached including the impact of tightening international controls to combat fraud, money laundering and match fixing,  the involvement of FIFA, Interpol and other agencies with jurisdiction to conduct cross-boarder investigations., and the options bookmakers might have have in the event they spot any suspicious betting patterns.

All told, the iGaming Asia Congress 2013 was another resounding success. From whatever sector of the industry, the prevailing thought during the entire conference schedule seemed to be right in par with the expectations of what these industry experts have for the Asian market.

It’s growing fast and if anybody wants to hop on the train, they better do so before they get left in the tracks.