In September 2020, Digital Gaming Corporation rolled-out a collaboration with BetMGM; lauding an “esteemed partner” which would form the base of the online gaming solutions provider’s US charge.
Five months on and Neill Whyte, chief commercial officer of DGC B2B igaming solutions, has been offering an update to CasinoBeats, looking into how the firm will rise above the rest, why localisation is not an issue and assessing short and long-term strategies.
CasinoBeats: Why was now deemed the right time to enter the US market?
Neill Whyte: Digital Gaming Corporation has been at the forefront of developing online digital content since 2014 and upon the repeal of PASPA we saw it as a natural progression to explore the igaming opportunity in the US market. And what an opportunity it is.
Over the past 12 months both New Jersey and Pennsylvania have been growing at a phenomenal rate and with Michigan having just launched, now is the right time for us to enter the action.
CB: New Jersey’s igaming performance last year represented a record for the Garden State, how will Digital Gaming Corporation go above and beyond what is already on offer?
NW: If you look at the providers currently in the market, you see a number of incumbent suppliers mostly from the land-based sector that have the largest share of player wallet. But when new, online-focussed developers enter, we have seen that the balance shifts quite significantly as players engage with games they have not been able to access previously.
“…our games have proved to be hugely successful in New Jersey”
For us, we were diligent in doing our homework and carried out extensive market research to guide our product roadmap. It was still a risk, but our games have proved to be hugely successful in the New Jersey market to date and we believe they will be just as popular in additional states as we roll out our content across the US.
Another reason for their popularity is that these games have been developed by experts that know exactly what it takes to deliver a fun and entertaining online casino experience. This is where we believe we can contribute to the market with our portfolio of slots that have been developed specifically for online play by US developers.
We also understand that different operators attract different players, and this must be reflected in the portfolio of games they offer. To that end, we actively work with our partners to ensure the games they take from us will meet the exact requirements of their players, allowing them to deliver the best possible player experience.
This is backed up by our commitment to deliver a minimum of four games a month so that our partners can target various player groups and have a consistent delivery of quality content to offer their players.
Using our professional service and specialised solutions, we aim to maximize our partners’ performance by ensuring they offer the right experience, to the right player, at the right time.
CB: Why was BetMGM the ideal partner to secure entry?
NW: BetMGM, a joint venture backed by Entain and MGM, is one of the largest operators in the US market and is expanding rapidly into states such as Pennsylvania and Michigan. It has been fantastic working with the team and as a supplier they are everything you look for in an operator partner – experienced, knowledgeable, professional, accommodating and collaborative.
“We are only focused on the US market, so for us localisation is not a big issue”
Of course, we have signed deals with other operators that will be announced in the coming weeks and we have enjoyed very similar experiences with them. Through these partnerships, we will be able to establish DGC as a tier one online casino content provider as the market continues to roll out and mature across the USA.
CB: How much does localisation play in your international expansion strategy?
NW: We are only focused on the US market, so for us localisation is not a big issue. Our igaming product development division creates online casino games that appeal to a broad spectrum of players, with engaging entertainment created by teams with a global track record attuned to US tastes. Through its US based studios, DGC’s experienced team of developers has proven its ability to develop cutting edge, innovative and world-class online games for use in regulated markets.
What we are interested to see is whether localisation will be required on a state-by-state basis. To some extent this is dictated by the different regulations in each, but player preferences will also play a part.
We analyse data a lot to try to determine early on which games are resonating with players and then try to understand why players are turned on or off by certain games and features. We then make quick changes to our product roadmap accordingly. Whatever happens we will make sure that we provide the right games to our partners for the markets they enter.
“Whatever happens we have gone to great lengths to ensure that we have the right technical footprint from the get-go”
CB: What can we expect from yourselves in the US in both the short and long term?
NW: The B2B igaming solutions division’s rapid emergence as a leading games provider owes much to its exceptional catalog of content as well as to the service and technologies it deploys to create exceptional player experiences.
In the short term, our focus will be on New Jersey with four to six new games set to go live in the state each month this year. We have only just entered the market and we are still building momentum. We have several operators that we will be launching with over the coming months and want to ensure we get them up and running and provide them with the assistance and support they need.
Of course, entering more states is the ultimate goal and we are already making great progress with Pennsylvania and Michigan. We are also keeping a very close eye on what is happening in the likes of Indiana and Connecticut and other states that may regulate in the future for igaming products.
Whatever happens we have gone to great lengths to ensure that we have the right technical footprint from the get-go so when the time is right to enter additional states we can do so quickly and efficiently on day one of the market opening.
We also want to do this responsibly; this is a main focus for us. As part of an industry that takes responsible gaming seriously, we are committed to promoting a responsible culture within the business and with our business partners.
DGC is a full member of both the National Council of Problem Gambling and the iDevelopment and Economic Association, through which DGC works with others in the industry to promote responsible gaming best practices.
Ultimately, we want everyone that engages with DGC – whether that be an operator, regulator, affiliate or player – to have the best possible experience.
DGC’s igaming solutions division is committed to providing games that entertain, solutions that perform and distribution that delivers. Our goal is to be the players’ preferred choice, for sports betting and igaming. By providing that, we believe we will foster unrivalled loyalty in what is set to be one of the largest regulated online gambling markets in the world.