“His shoes are certainly big ones to fill, but I believe we have phenomenal momentum behind the business,” those were the words of Kevin Reid last week as confirmation came that he would succeed Sean St John as CEO of 1X2 Network.
This has seen Reid, who joined the company in November 2012, take the lead on the direction and strategy of the company, and take on responsibility for the overall management of 1X2 and its 1X2gaming and Iron Dog Studio subsidiaries.
Here, CasinoBeats quizzes Reid on the executive shuffle of the group, jurisdictions of interest moving forward, and getting into celebratory mood ahead of a significant anniversary.
CasinoBeats: How significant is this executive shift for 1X2 Network moving forward?
Kevin Reid: I believe that it gives us the best of both worlds. There were some elements of the role that I’d taken up as time had gone on, and this reshuffle gives us the chance to keep pushing on with the strategies that have led to such massive growth.
Having Sean still involved in a product role means that we still have access to his experience and knowledge moving forward. It’s always significant when there’s a change at the very top of an organisation but we’re retaining the core of what got us to where we are, whilst giving us extra impetus to keep going forward.
CB: How eager are you to get started? And what do you believe you will bring to the role?
KR: Of course, I’m extremely excited to get going. I’ve always felt a fresh surge of energy when I’ve taken a new role in my career and this time it is greater than ever.
Although I have been in the same leadership team for a long period of time there are still elements I’d like to adjust and I’m hopeful I can get these implemented quickly.
I think I bring a focus on commerciality to the role – this industry offers so much opportunity and I want to empower the team to go out and find the deals that work for both parties, whether that is customised games, joint projects, tenders etc!
If it makes sense for us from a bottom line and resource perspective, then I want to get it going and leave nothing on the back burner. I have great support both from the leadership team around me and from the board to go and achieve our goals and I will be pushing hard to get us there in a timely fashion.
CB: It was said that 1X2 is looking to enter “a multitude of new markets” in the next year, what regions are firmly on your radar?
KR: Well nobody wins any prizes for guessing that the USA offers us a huge upside when we enter – for us it’s about moving there fast but also making sure we take a strategic approach to our entry.
We’re also closing in on licenses for various other European territories, including Switzerland after the entire company worked hard to make sure we passed our ISO27001 certificate first time.
Whilst our distribution is extremely wide already, there’s still more to add and places like Ontario, Portugal, Croatia and gaining our full Romanian license will allow us to spread our content even further. Our aim is to enter all regulated markets, we’re just deciding on the order that makes the most sense commercially.
CB: What does the company look for when potentially making entries into new jurisdictions?
KR: I think it’s an interesting balance, a new jurisdiction that many competitors haven’t entered yet means there’s more market share available but on the other hand a more established market is a proven entity that we can judge easier.
Having partners that already operate in the market also is useful for allowing us to see the opportunities and the speed that they’re able to add us makes a difference. Overall, it’s a big jigsaw.
We also assess whether our content fits the players there, for example, we have a strong selection of fruit based slots in our portfolio so if we know they take a large proportion of the market share then it makes sense for us to get in the market, ahead of one that would require more bespoke content development.
CB: Can we expect any significant celebrations regarding the company’s 20-year anniversary? How would you assess the 1X2 Network journey so far?
KR: Definitely! Not least because our team are expecting them! We’re trying to see clients more and more after an obvious period of this being difficult but we’re also planning on running some specifically larger events to celebrate our big anniversary – look out for the 1X2 Network summer party!
We’re also running specific promotions on a monthly basis for our clients, with a real mix of things in there. There’s plenty of new and exciting products coming out that I believe are fitting to come out in a big year for us but unfortunately, I’ll have to come back and talk about those a bit closer to the time.
The journey so far has been a real rollercoaster. The thing that sets us aside is how many lead products we’ve had over the time, so we really do have a breadth of expertise.
Also, in more recent times, adding some industry experience has offered us a fresh impetus and the ability to forge relationships with even more partners and push our best content even further.
1X2 Network has been such a big part of my professional and personal life that the change of role brings up a lot of emotion. I can’t wait to speak to you in another year and I think you’ll see just how fast the progress we’re currently making is!