Andrea Migliozzi
Image: Blueprint Gaming

Blueprint Gaming’s Country Manager Italia Andrea Migliozzi chats to CasinoBeats about how the online casino supplier is targeting Italy as a key market outside of its UK core. Migliozzi discusses how the saturation of the market as well as the maturity of the player-base makes Italy an exciting place to do business. 

CasinoBeats: Italy is one of Europe’s most mature online casino markets with a well-developed player base. Is this why Blueprint Gaming has targeted the country so heavily?

Andrea Migliozzi: The maturity of the Italian online market is undoubtedly a major reason Blueprint Gaming has invested focus on it. A well-developed player base signifies a strong customer pool. 

Italy’s long-established market bears some similarities to the UK, where Blueprint is a leader, and the familiarity and comfort that players have with online gambling makes them receptive to Blueprint content.

The online casino market in Italy has consistently shown growth and 2023 saw a GGR rise of 15 per cent to €2.3bn. The numbers, along with that experienced player-base, dictate that Blueprint has a strong presence in the region.

CB: How does Blueprint Gaming compete in a saturated Italian market?

AM: Like any market, but particularly one as competitive as Italy, partnering with the right local stakeholders is crucial. Getting your content on the right platforms that operate most professionally and intuitively aligns with the quality of games that we put in front of players.

As a result of the focus we’ve had on our Italian profile over the years, we’ve partnered with approximately 70 operators thanks to the hard work of our team on the ground. These close relationships have developed the trust that is required to thrive in any region and are a key strand of our ethos.

The recent deals we struck with the likes of NetBet and William Hill give Blueprint access to the widest possible audience and leverage the brand recognition of established casinos.

We have more partnership announcements with tier-one operators to come soon and thanks to this regular growth we’ve enjoyed over the years, Blueprint content is now available to over 90 per cent of Italy’s online players.

CB: What type of online casino content works best with Italian players and how do you have to tailor your content compared to UK audiences? 

AM: Understanding player preferences is key. Blueprint tailors content by incorporating themes and characters that resonate with the Italian audience. In keeping with their success in other countries, evergreen games such as Wolf Legend and Bison Rising continue to return strong numbers, while most Blueprint-developed Megaways games and Jackpot King-connected titles are always a hit.  

With slots in Italy accounting for roughly 60 per cent of the overall online casino market, there’s a lot of potential for suppliers who can get their offering just right. Blueprint has received approval for around 150 of its 300-plus game catalogue in the Italian market and will continue to follow the prevalent trends to ensure players there get the content they are looking for.

CB: Napoleon continues to be a top seller in Italy as well as brands such as Maradona, The Goonies and ted. What special appeal do these games have with Italian players and what was Blueprint’s strategy to make those titles stand out in casino lobbies?

AM: The nature of a tightly congested market where games are released weekly is that it can be difficult to find space in the operator’s lobbies, let alone get them on the site in the first place. 

Games have to have an appeal to local players to occupy a prominent position on homepages and the reputation that Blueprint has earned over the years allows it that privilege. The challenge is to consistently hit those high benchmarks and this is most certainly helped by our talent in creating remarkable games that make the most of popular licences. 

Coupled with carefully crafted player engagement in the shape of promotions and tournaments, our launches of games such as ‘The Goonies’ and ‘ted’ have been incredibly successful.

Blueprint’s skills in making the most of hit game families have seen the popularity of titles like Napoleon enjoy further growth with the recent release of ‘Napoleon 2 Fat Stacks’. That evolution was mirrored with ‘ted Cash Lock’ and ‘The Goonies Hey You Guys’ which have continued the Italian success story.

Perhaps the biggest brand to debut in the Italian market recently was 2023’s ‘D10S Maradona’ – a game that perfectly highlights Blueprint’s insight into selecting the right brands to bring to market. The legendary player is revered in parts of Italy and the game demonstrates the power of local relevance.

CB: What can readers expect to see from Blueprint Gaming in Italy throughout the rest of 2024 and what titles can we expect to see launch?

AM: There are a host of titles which we expect to prove player favourites. The likes of ‘King Kong Cash Even Bigger Bananas’, ‘Gold Strike’, ‘Cash Strike’, ‘Big Money Megaways’, ‘Bankin’ More Bacon’ are just some of the games recently certified in Italy that will start going live in the coming months. 

In late 2024, we will hopefully see ‘Maradona Full House’, a game designed specifically for Italian players, along with ‘Maradona El Pibe De Oro’, making the most of the insatiable appetite not only for football, but for the Napoli legend.