To “accelerate” the company’s digital gaming, sports and iLottery strategy, gambling product and service provider Scientific Games has appointed online slot development expert Ashley Sandyford-Sykes as senior vice president of the recently created SG Digital business unit.
Sandyford-Sykes is expected to join SG Digital on May 1 and will be based in London, the company said in a statement on Wednesday. He will be fully responsible for SG Digital’s nine game studios, which have released slot gaming titles including Rainbow Riches, Foxin’ Win, and Wild Play Superbet.
Sandyford-Sykes, considered to be one of the industry’s leading experts in online slot development, was the brains behind Openbet Casino and Microgaming Quickfire. Last year, Sandyford-Sykes served as trainer for Totally Gaming Academy’s Online Slot Development courses, a program designed to educate developers on content, market expectations, regulations, mathematics, and design.
His arrival at Scientific Games “completes the full set” of product and technology appointments in the company. Sandyford-Sykes will join former Ladbrokes Chief Product Officer and Sportsbook Director Keith O’Loughlin, who joined Scientific Games as SVP for sportsbook and platforms; Dylan Slaney, previously a Global Innovation Director at Dunn Humby, who will serve as SVP Gaming; and ex-Oracle VP Chris Armes, who was appointed as SG Digital’s chief technology officer.
Sandyford-Sykes, O’Loughlin, Slaney, and Armes will report to SG Digital Chief Operating Officer Jason Walbridge, according to the company.
Scientific Games’ legal director for the UK Sue Dawson will also take on the additional role of deputy general counsel at SG Digital, while Ryan Ripley will become the interim chief financial officer for the new SG business unit.
The “extremely powerful team” is tasked to mature the group’s European Union-centric development and product capabilities in addition to “establishing new capabilities in North America to meet the growing demand for our gaming products and be prepared for sportsbook expansion, should the U.S. become a newly regulated market,” according to SG Digital CEO Matt Davey.
SG Digital was launched in February to incorporate the group’s existing interactive business-to-business products and services portfolio with the sports betting products of the recently-acquired NYX Gaming Group.