bet365 and LeoVegas won the main operator categories at the SBC Awards 2020, as a record 41 different companies were honoured for their achievements in the sports betting and gaming sector at last night’s virtual ceremony.
The event boasted a strong footballing pedigree as it was broadcast live from Chelsea FC’s Stamford Bridge with sports presenter Kirsty Gallacher hosting alongside Champions League winner Petr Cech, and a guest appearance from footballing legend turned Hollywood actor Vinnie Jones, who also writes a regular column for EasyOdds.com.
Over 800 guests from around the world witnessed bet365 winning the coveted Sportsbook of the Year trophy for a seventh consecutive year, having already retained the Best Affiliate Program prize earlier in the evening.
LeoVegas was again the judges’ pick in the prestigious Casino of the Year category, seeing off competition from the highly-commended Wildz Casino to record a third successive win.
The Leader of the Year trophies were won by Parimatch’s Sergey Portnov and BetGames.TV’s Aiste Garneviciene, while their companies picked up the Employer of the Year (Operator) and Live Casino Supplier awards respectively.
Other multiple winners included Betsson (Football Sportsbook of the Year and Socially Responsible Casino of the Year), Betradar (Sportsbook Supplier of the Year and Live Streaming Product / Supplier) and Betgenius (Sports Data Product and Live Betting Product).
Andrew McCarron, managing director of SBC, said: “Huge congratulations to all the winners chosen by our independent panels of expert judges. We had a record number of entries this year and the standard was the highest we’ve seen since launching the awards back in 2014, meaning the victors had to be truly exceptional to see off the competition.
“2020 has been a uniquely testing year for the industry but, from the evidence of the awards entries, there have been a lot of positives to take. The innovation demonstrated by suppliers in the development of new products and services, coupled with the commitment of the operators to drive up standards suggests that the industry will enter the new year in a strong position.”
A number of the industry’s other major players were honoured in the operator categories, with GVC (now Entain) named Socially Responsible Sportsbook of the Year, 1XBet winning Esports Operator of the Year, Kaizen Gaming recognised for Marketing Campaign of the Year, and Sportsbet.io picking up the Sponsorship of the Year trophy.
The Rising Star in Sports Betting honour went to theScore, while the equivalent Casino award was won by Rabbit Entertainment. There were also victories for Novibet (Best Mobile Operator App), Wazamba (Innovation in Casino & Gaming Entertainment), and Fitzdares (Racing Sportsbook of the Year).
In the affiliates section, AskGamblers triumphed in the hotly-contested Casino Affiliate of the Year category, while Better Collective took home the equivalent Sports honour and Oddspedia collected the Best Affiliate Product Innovation trophy.
The overall quality of the entries was reflected in the supplier section of the awards, where the honours were shared between 21 different companies, including BetConstruct (SBC Industry Resilience Award) and Digitain (Employer of the Year – Supplier).
There were wins for FSB (Industry Innovation of the Year), Scientific Games (Platform Provider of the Year), Sportradar (Land-Based Betting & Gaming Product), Pinnacle Solution (Esports Supplier), Shape Games (Rising Star in Sports Betting Innovation / Software), SportCaller (Acquisition & Retention Partner), Golden Race (Virtual Sports Supplier), and Inspired (Virtual Sports Innovation).
Relax Gaming clinched the keenly-contested Casino / Slots Developer of the Year title, while Evolution Gaming collected the Innovation in Casino Entertainment trophy and SYNOT Games triumphed in the Rising Star in Casino Innovation / Software category. There were also successes for Aspire Global (White Label Supplier of the Year), Pragmatic Play (Innovation in Mobile), GIG (Multi-Channel Supplier), NetShop ISP (Services Provider of the Year), and Square in the Air (Marketing Provider of the Year).
The payments awards were shared between MuchBetter (Payment Solution of the Year), Trustly (Payment Innovation of the Year), Dimoco (Mobile Payment Solution of the Year), and W2 (Fraud & Compliance Solution of the Year).
McCarron added: “While we would have loved to have staged one of our lavish awards parties, the virtual ceremony was a great alternative in the circumstances and it was pleasing, with the help of our charity partner GVC, to raise some money for Harefield Hospital.
“Events like this are made possible by the ongoing support of our sponsors and partners. I’d like to thank BetConstruct, Golden Race, Neosurf, Metric Gaming and BetInvest for being headline sponsors, as well as all the other companies that continue to work with SBC.”