Using freeplay to expand in America with Chalkline’s Daniel Kustelski


Sports betting is increasingly becoming a legalized option throughout America, but many states have yet to fully open up to the activity while others haven’t at all. Chalkline has become North America’s #1 platform for sports betting games and gambling by catering to every shade of legalization, and founder Daniel Kustelski joined us to discuss their strategy.

Chalkline not only offers real sports betting products, but freeplay products as well. This is to help broaden their potential audience. “Right now, I think there’s only three or four states where mobile is legal,” he noted. “What it allows, it allows most of the operators to go into a state, offer some type of engagement, and start to collect data, email addresses, mobile phone numbers, whatever that may be. And that’s what we tell all of the operators.”

But that advice doesn’t just apply to operators trying to break into new markets, but other companies looking to broaden their portfolios, like media outfits. “A lot of companies are trying to figure out, ‘I’ve got eyeballs, how do I turn eyeballs into data, and then data into dollars maybe through affiliates.’ So there’s a lot of different companies that are trying to figure out how do I wrap my arms around these sports bettors or these sports fans and convert them into sports betting personas.”

With Chalkline’s range of sports games, even if gambling isn’t readily available in a territory yet, customers can start getting used to the idea of getting into the action. “I think what we’re seeing in America is the casual gambler, it’s intimidating to go to the retail outlets” Kustelski theorized. “It’s intimidating to download mobile. So how do you actually place that first wager, or how do you engage with sports betting for the first time. Chalkline offers a really great solution. It’s mobile, it’s free to play, and it’s all the same markets that you would see in a normal sports betting app.”

Since they help these non-gamblers get into playing their games, Chalkine has correspondingly seen interest in markets that are just about to open up. “So like, it’s the Tennessees that have legalized sports betting, and they maybe they haven’t quite regulated it yet,” he explained. “Indianas, Iowas, probably a little closer to the east coast than maybe to the west coast just because the legalization’s been happening over there. But certainly once a state starts to mobilize and start to contemplate legalizing sports betting, we start to get some interest from the operators and the media companies. “

Chalkline also helps emphasize the right teams and products for each region its offered in, which can be a huge leg up on broader offerings. “If I’m sitting in Chicago, I’m really only going to care about the Bears, and I’m probably going to have an opinion about the Blackhawks, the Bulls,” Kustelski told Becky Liggero Fontana. “So what we do at Chalkline is we just provide those free to play games that are specific to those regions, or the tastes of those particular operators. Media companies in the south, it’s all about college football. New Jersey, it’s all about the New Jersey pro teams. So we provide these services on our platform where they can just access these free to play games that are personalize for those particular players.”

Liggero Fontana closed by asking Kustelski how it feels to be working in America after the repeal of PASPA. “I’m a bit of a sports betting nerd, so I love the industry,” he replied. “For having done it in South Africa, in Europe and then in Africa, and to come back to the United States and to see it all come to fruition, I mean, it’s awesome. The opportunity is great, but it also just kind of feeds that passion which I thoroughly enjoy.”