Talk about delivering on a promise! Now in its third year, SiGMA, “Summit of iGaming Malta”, has absolutely grown up into one of the must-attend iGaming conferences of the year. The fruits of a year’s worth of hard labor and preparation from organizer Eman Pulis and team have paid off for 2017’s edition of the Summit and we are surely off to a solid start.
We’re at a new venue this year to accommodate the massive growth of SiGMA, the Malta Fairs and Convention Center (MFCC), located in the center of the island. While some prefer venues closer to the action, there is no other choice with this many exhibitors, speakers and delegates in attendance.
First impression upon walking in the doors today was “wow”. The floor was so busy and full of both familiar and new faces, it was overwhelming (in a good way). Collecting badges was a surprisingly painless process despite the crowds and the smaller details such as ample supplies of bottled water, slick exhibit hall maps and more throughout the event were appreciated.
Our first stop on the expo floor was with hosting company Leaseweb, a brand new exhibitor to iGaming-dedicated shows. Senior Business Development Manager Gerg Behr told Calvinayre.com Leaseweb has been in hosting business for 20 years and is now ready to expand their clientele in the iGaming space.
“We are a global company, we have about 18 data centers which gives us a global spread, we have a huge network”, shared Behr.
“What sets us apart is we’re a really personal company where people can actually call us and you can get your account manager on the phone, they can discuss your needs and requirements and get it down over the phone instead of having to send a ticket”, he added.
After much research and consideration, Behr and his team chose SiGMA as the first event to book a booth and debut their brand to the iGaming industry.
“We scouted a lot of conferences last year, we’ve done a lot of research and SiGMA for us was a really good mix to start, a multi-marketplace. A lot of iGaming companies are here and we like the atmosphere here, the mix of B2B and affiliates and so on, so it was a really good place to come”, shared Behr.
Extreme Live Gaming, a live casino provider and part of the Novomatic Group, also choose to book a booth at this year’s installment of SiGMA.
“Now we’re focusing mainly on the regulated markets and I think that’s just a general trend of the online gaming industry and for us to be focused and sure that as we grow as a company it’s focused on regulated income, I think that paves the way for real solid growth for Extreme”, said Darwyn Palenzuela, CEO of Extreme Live Gaming.
Palenzuela complimented SiGMA as a wonderful event for showcasing their latest live casino games and promised to reveal more new HTML content at ICE 2018, so stay tuned for that.
SiGMA Day 1 also featured three conference tracks and we enjoyed the small touches such as professional voice overs reading out the name of each session and its panelists, accompanied by slick motion graphics. We also enjoyed the live projection of speakers on big screens as they talked, a feature ensuring all delegates could clearly hear every panelist and speaker comment.
After today’s affiliate M&A panel we caught up with Michal Kopec, Head of M&A for Better Logic, to uncover exclusive advice for affiliates who wish to sell their businesses.
“The most important thing is to make sure you list all the assets you are selling, so if you have a number of websites, just make sure the websites are on the list. If you have a number of affiliate accounts, make sure you list them all”, shared Kopec.
“Make sure that the data is there, that you have historic data from lets say two to three years back, it makes the whole process so much easier for us”, he said.
“Make sure that you have Google Analytics data, make sure that your finances are OK…its important data to be prepared because if you don’t have it and to get it, it will make the process really, really long”, he added.
As things started to wind down for the day, we were treated to a special ride back to town from the conference venue thanks to Michal Pederson, Co-Founder of LetsBet.com.
“We’re super excited to announce LetsBet.com at SiGMA here, we have 50 of our business partners and affiliates joining us in a little bit more comfortable ride back to St. Julian’s rather than the shuttle bus and taxi. For us its about visibility and launching the brand but on the bus we’ll have a bit of prosecco, cupcakes and just hang out a bit”, he shared with CalvinAyre.com.
LetsBet.com is set to launch in early 2018 and Pederson was excited to reveal some of brand’s unique features to affiliates and other business associates at SiGMA.
“For us its about three things. We believe that live streaming is the next big thing and so far people are just using it for live Casino dealers and we really want to take it to new heights. Its social aspects & features…we’re trying to take that social atmosphere from land based and put that into online and last but not least gamification”, Pederson revealed.
“Its a mash-up of three things and we’re super excited about it!”, he shared.