European companies have been closely monitoring the development of the US sports betting space, as the stateside market becomes a magnet for revenue. 

However, firms must recognise that there are some key differences between their home markets and those on the other side of the Atlantic. 

One such variation between US and European bettors according to Rob Phythian – speaking at the SBC Summit North America in New Jersey – is that the former has much more experience and background with fantasy sports than the latter, resulting in a more ‘player driven’ mindset.

“When we built our US-based software, we made sure we connected with the US audience in a very player-centric, granular fantasy sports way,” the SharpLink CEO explained. “That is the trigger point of getting over to the sportsbook in a different and unique way.”

SharpLink’s approach to the US has seen two major developments – firstly, the firm has gone public under the ticker ‘SBET’ on the Nasdaq, whilst for its day to day operations, it has incorporated a strong technological and data-driven element. 

Uniquely for Phythian, SharpLink is the first firm the CEO has taken public, something he described as an ‘exciting’ process. 

“The team is getting stronger and stronger, and if I can stay focused on driving the business the better off we’ll be. It isn’t that different from running private companies as I have done in the past, but there is the public element that I’m learning as fast as I can.”

Commenting on the technological aspect, the CEO underscored an aim to build a ‘data lake’ of player behaviour, thereby enhancing knowledge of customer trends and preferences. 

Describing the system, he continued: “Now we know you’ve made a bet on the Vikings, it’s half-time and losing your first bet, now we know and go back to the book and pull a second half bet. 

“That kind of intelligence is what we’re logging – we have a record of the user and his behaviour, the size of bets, the time of bets, is he a parlay player or straight player, players versus teams – all of that we’re logging and leverage to the right offer at the right time”

Rob Phythian: The fantasy sports background of US players