Alessandro Rallo, CEO at DoubleUp Group, discusses the launch of Norppa Kasino and the ‘ethical twist’ that the company is bringing to the gaming industry through its support for animal welfare.

Rallo explained that this particular brand will focus on ‘giving something back’ to seal protection charities, and follows on from the success of its Doggo Casino brand.

CasinoBeats: Congratulations on Norppa’s launch! Can you talk us through the brand and the story behind its creation? 

Alessandro Rallo: Given we have so many Nordic team members, Finland has been on the radar of DoubleUp Group ever since we launched Doggo Casino. We’ve known for a while that we wanted to create a second brand that Scandinavians and Finns all around the world could relate to. We’re also using its launch to see how far we can go with a hyper-local brand.

Truthfully, Finns, wherever they are in the world, are a unique audience amongst Scandinavians, they have great experience with casinos, and they really do know exactly what they want so we thought it’d be a nice touch to deliver a reliable brand that truly speaks to them. 

We’re true believers in simple experiences and we made it our mission to simplify the entire process for players at Norppa. There’s been far too much noise from casinos in the last few years when it comes to things like promotions and wagering requirements with little underlying substance, so we just wanted to strip it all back.

CB: You’ve described yourself as one of the ‘first truly philanthropic, animal-centric casinos’. What was the inspiration behind launching such a purpose-led brand? 

AR: The Norppa brand has been built from the ground up primarily by Finnish employees, all of whom are passionate about animals. In fact, I’d say that one of the core values that holds us together at DoubleUp Group is our collective love of animals, so naturally we’ve tried to implement this into what we do as much as we possibly can, and that’s clear to see with Norppa.

We want to be perceived as a business that genuinely cares about the causes we shout about. There are companies out there that share pictures of their summer yacht party on social media, whilst we’re sharing news about a donation we’ve made to a local shelter. That’s very much intended. 

Doing things this way has been a success for us, not just in ethical terms, but in terms of bringing new people into the company. We’re on an upward trajectory with regards to hiring and many people tell us that they wanted to join the company in part because they share our values.

Ultimately the concept for Norppa was conceived from our collective passion for animal welfare and wanting to give something back via this purpose-led brand, we truly believe it will resonate with professional partners and players alike.

CB: Looking at the entertainment factor – what’s Norppa got in store for its players? 

AR: We’ve got a strong plan in place to offer players daily promotions and a loyalty program that hasn’t been done before. We’re not going to reinvent the wheel here, but we are going to offer significantly more commitment to our customers than other casinos. They won’t just be receiving the same loyalty bonuses each and every month which is often the norm.

We’ll strip down the site of all the bells and whistles so to speak, instead we’ll keep it all about straight entertainment which we hope should keep retention high. We’re going to keep it real by providing players with a place to have fun, whilst also furthering a purpose driven mission to save a much-loved animal that’s under-threat.  

CB: Last but not least, should the industry be looking to do more to launch brands with an ethical twist?

AR: Absolutely, I feel like people within the industry have changed very much over the last decade and it’s no longer just about numbers and making a profit, we’re all human at the end of the day and we all have causes that are close to our hearts. 

As an industry we could definitely do more to show the world that we’re filled with people that truly do care, and who knows, it might just help change the perception of what we do. Animals are part of society, they’re a fundamental part of our lives, if we can make money and share some of it to help then why not?  

Should we be successful here with Norppa Kasino, we’d certainly like to continue following this strategy of launching ethical brands. Every new site we launch would be linked to a good cause, that way we can build our overall offer around philanthropic endeavours which is a truly unique USP.