Pre-show interview, G2E Las Vegas 2018

What are the main characteristics of your products?

Connective Games is a pioneering software development company that has been supplying the online gambling industry with state-of-the-art technology since 2006. We have built a formidable reputation as the go-to-supplier for poker platforms and content that push the boundaries on both desktop and mobile.

Our technology powers five of the top 25 poker rooms in the world according to PokerScout, driven by our highly-localised approach to product and service. Innovation is in our DNA, and we are constantly moving the needle with new and exciting game formats, tools and features. We were among the early adopters of HTML5 for mobile poker, too.

Connective Games is truly passionate about global online poker and returning the vertical to its former glory. We believe this can be achieved through smart technology, localisation, and an unstinting love for the game.

We also offer an enticing suite of casino and slots games, with the ability to design and develop exclusive games for our partners. Our most recent prouct launch, Social Gaming, has been developed specifically for the US market and allows operators to launch free to play poker and casino games now while states put regulations in place.

How can your company's solutions help develop online market? In that sense, what are the operators and licensees asking for?

The online poker sector has been in decline since the passage of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) and Black Friday. Since then, operators and suppliers have been focused on regulated markets in Europe and on the casino and sports betting verticals as they are seen to be more lucrative.

That said, poker remains an incredibly popular game, especially in new and emerging markets like Asia and Africa, as well as the USA. Here at Connective Games, we have contiuned to drive innovation within the poker vertical and offer a range of cutting edge products and games.

Our product development has always been driven by operator feedback, which is why we have made our platform and products highly customizable. This puts the power in operators’ hands and allows them to offer a truly localized product to their players.

How did the gaming industry in the United States react with the new regulation for sports betting?

The repeal of PASPA and the roll-out of legal sports betting in the USA is perhaps the most significant event in the history of online gambling. The US will be one of the largest gambling markets in the world, and by bringing it out of the shadows and into the light players will be better protected and offered a far superior experience.

The majority of states are keen to offer legal sports betting, but they are also looking to include other online gambling activities, such as casino and poker, in their laws. In that regard, we see a huge opportunity for poker to once again become a significant online gambling vertical and to return to its pre-UIGEA glory days.

The projection indicates that online gaming is one of the business units with the longest horizon in the industry. Why does this phenomenon occur? Do you think that the Colombian model will have resonance in the rest of the LatAm countries?

The world we live in is increasingly online and we undertake more and more aspects of our lives via our mobile devices. This includes playing casino, poker, bingo and placing sports wagers. This is being driven by improvements in broadband and data networks, and the cost and availability of smartphone and tablet devices.

In short, it is easier and more convenient to play through your mobile than it is to walk/drive to your nearest casino or betting outlet.

In terms of Latin America and the model being used in Colombia, I think any country that embraces regulation is doing the right thing, regardless of what those regulations may look like. Of course, the more aligned they are with other regulated jurisdictions, the easier it is for operators and suppliers to enter the market and ensure they are compliant.

What other LatAm markets do you think are, in the future, closer to achieving online regulation and imitating the positive example of Colombia?

Colombia is obviously setting the standard, but I think we are close to seeing progress in Brazil and perhaps even Mexico. I think what is happening in the USA could be a catalyst for even more countries to legalize and regulated sports betting, online casino and poker. It is great news for the industry, with plenty of opportunities on the table.

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