Hello and welcome to the SBC News 90, here with highlights from this week’s SBC Digital Summit CIS:

Kicking off day 2, a panel of C-level executives offered perspectives on whether 2021 would see a flood of European operators enter the CIS region. 

Marcin Jablonski, CCO of Polish operator LV Bet, said that, for many operators, the CIS is a totally new territory that may well appeal given western Europe’s regulatory realities. 

Pointing to tighter regulations in Western Europe, most recently highlighted by advertising bans in Italy and Spain and restrictive legislation in Germany, Jablonski said the CIS could mirror LatAm as a huge territory with diverse, evolving approaches to regulation.

Earlier this week, Spanish football clubs were ordered to terminate contracts with betting operators by the end of the current campaign, as they will be prohibited from partnering with gambling firms from next season. 

Speaking at the conference, former Real Madrid midfielder Gaizka Mendieta said he hoped a compromise would be found.

The betting industry does a lot of good for sport, he said, through investment and supporting different organisations at all levels, and backing tournaments worldwide. 

Fellow panelist Revaz Arveladze, former UEFA Committee Head, stressed that it depends how income is utilised. For instance, income from betting partnerships could contribute towards purchasing new players which then allows teams to progress in competitions, creating a domino effect.

Moreover, in less wealthy countries, the Georgian said smaller clubs are heavily reliant on sponsorship deals with betting companies. The former Bundesliga star urged officials to consider their unique circumstances and what the revenue means to smaller clubs, taking each country on a ‘case-by-case’ basis.

One of the most engaging panel discussions looked to discuss and define gamification.

Martin Sandstrom of Double Clap said gamification can place target markets at the heart of the design process, stressing that companies should tailor products to their users, as opposed to replicating rival strategies.

Fellow panelist and specialist gamification consultant Matthias Ciappara said the process could attract a younger audience to products ordinarily popular with a more mature demographic. If engaged and retained, this new audience produces more revenue for companies.

Adding that the industry must make the experience feel more than just a transaction, Ciappara said players need to feel they’re progressing in something and they’re also being competitive with each other.

That’s all for today, I’ll be back next week for your next SBC News 90.

CIS day 2 highlights: CIS a ‘huge opportunity’ for operators