WGES 2019 Day 2 recap

TAGs: eSports, WGES 2019, World Gaming Executive Summit

WGES delegates returned to the W Barcelona on July 4th for the second day of the main conference, a mixture of sessions dedicated to C-level panels, eSports, innovation in technology, marketing and more.

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The weather here in here in Barcelona continues to delight everyone in attendance, making for the best networking opportunities beside the pool and along the beach. The evening before, delegates enjoyed an official WGES BBQ and party, resulting in a more “Spanish time” start today and laid back atmosphere.

This morning’s C-level panel focused on the future of gaming and looking for growth in a crowded marketplace, featuring Per Wilderstrom, CEO of Fortuna Entertainment Group, Lucy Buckley, CEO of Netktan, Itai Zak, CEO of GoWild Gaming and Jesper Karrbrink, Chairman of Green Jade Games. The group talked on the latest innovations and how they are using such technology to maintain a competitive edge.

“We are absolutely focused on, as I think many are, when it comes to a great experience through online channels, in particular the mobile, obviously. And I think in particular in the Czech Republic and in Poland I think we do rather well”, Wilderstrom told in an exclusive interview after the panel.

“Otherwise, I think that we from an omni-channel perspective, if not innovative, we really try to make sure there is a seamless experience from the customer perspective”, he said.

“And we talked earlier today about AI, we are we not fully there yet but we love insights, we are absolutely obsessed about insights and how we can monetize that and automate that. So I think from an innovation perspective, I would say how we work with data and insights, I think that is giving us a competitive advantage at this point in time”, Wilderstrom added.

eSports opportunities continue to grow in the gambling space and with opportunities follows more competition. Pinnacle, the industry leader in eSports betting offerings, has to keep on their toes in order to maintain their leadership position in this space.

“Its really been challenging”, shared Paris Smith, CEO of Pinnacle.

“The growth has slowed down a little bit, the new companies are coming in strong, they’ve got a great user experience, so our response to that is it increase our user experience, pushing the product offering, looking at some data rights and making sure that we have that quality product for our players”, she revealed.

While WGES has a strong focus on the European gambling markets, there were also sessions dedicated to emerging markets such as the regulated U.S. market, regions in Asia and also India. is the oldest and the largest poker company in India, currently capturing approximately 50% of the market share. CEO Naveen Goyal was here at WGES to participate in an AI panel and to talk with delegates about opportunities to partner and obtain a piece of the coveted region.

“One of the ways we’ve achieved [our position in the market] over a period of years is a very good use of personalization, machine learning, artificial intelligence. We believe the core competence is understanding our players”, Goyal explained to

“So rather than focusing on what new features, new products, we care more about the user experience. So the moment they come on app, how can we make them understand what is poker, how to play poker. And then for existing users, how we can make the experience much better for them”, he said.

“I think this has really paid off well, and this is how we are where we are”, he added.

Our world is becoming more and more digital by the minute and established land based casinos do not want to fall behind. Portuguese casino brand Solverde launched an online site two years ago with great success and Solverde’s MD, Américo Loureiro, spoke to delegates on the process of going online and his vision for the future.

“In 10 years time, I believe land based, they will reduce the number of equipments, that they will give more offers like shows and more entertainment activities and online is growing and is the most important- everything”, he said.

“It doesn’t matter if its an online customer or a land based customer, it should be a customer and we should treat him like that, he’s just a new revenue stream or a new channel with revenue”, Loureiro added.


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