Product & technology

Building deeper relationships

5 minutes read
Paul Malt, head of games at Betsson Group, explains the operator's new approach to finding content for its casino sites.

One of the greatest challenges faced by operators with an international footprint is ensuring that the content they offer players in each market they are active is properly localised. 

Player preferences in Latin America are different to player preferences in the Nordics and operators must understand this regional diversity if they are to succeed in each country. 

For Betsson Group, regional diversity is an absolute priority – we have over 20 brands live across 15 regulated markets and go to great lengths to localise the game lobby for each brand in each market. 

This means partnering with a huge number of developers, which for Betsson currently stands at over 170 different slot studios, but we are taking this a step further by also working with developers to create exclusive games for our players. 

This not only means that we can diversify our content offering and stand out from our rivals, but that we can also tailor content to the specific needs of players at each brand and in each market. 

At present, we are working with a small number of developers to create this content, but are looking to expand this number to around eight or ten over the coming months.  

While we are selective with the developers that we work with and seek out those we believe to be a good fit, we are also interested in hearing from studios that would like to work with us. 

Below, I discuss what we look for in a development partner and some of the benefits they can access by working with us to create bespoke and exclusive games. 

What we look for in a developer partner

One of the most important factors we consider when identifying a developer partner is their passion and dedication to creating truly excellent slot games. 

We want to see that our ambitions and visions are aligned, and that the team behind the studio is smart and committed and shares our love for online casino. 

Trust is also a big factor for us as we share data, experience and knowledge with our developer partners to ensure the games we create together are a success. 

It does not matter whether the studio is established or new, large or small – we just want to see enthusiasm, creativity and talent as well as an understanding of regional diversity. 

What is in it for the developer

There are plenty of upsides for the developer, from gaining additional exposure across our brands and game lobbies to being granted access to unique data and insights. 

We take an art and science approach to game development, combining reams and reams of player data with the creativity and talent of our in-house team and that of our developer partner. 

This approach allows us to understand player behaviours and ensure that future game releases tap into their psyche and deliver the experience they are seeking. 

Let me explain by way of example. In Q2 2020, we launched over 500 new games to players in the Nordics and the most popular was an exclusive title, Joker Megaways. 

To create this game, we looked back at our data and found that Joker-themed slots were hugely popular with players in the region – one in two active players had played a Joker-themed slot. 

Megaways is obviously riding an unprecedented wave of success right now, so we realised there was huge potential by combining the two. 

By sharing our unique data and insights with our developer partner, and combining this with our own development talent and that of the studio, we created a chart-topping slot in the region. 

In addition to data and insights, the developer can also gain incredible exposure across our game lobbies which is particularly powerful for new studios trying to make a name for themselves. 

It also helps to foster a much stronger relationship between the studio and our casino team, and improves the chance of having their in-house, market-wide titles stocked in our lobbies. 

Why Betsson Group is taking this approach

Operators understand the value of exclusive, bespoke and localised games and many have invested in their own studios to create this content at the scale they require. 

But we do not believe that is the best option. An in-house studio requires incredible investment and ultimately stems the flow of creativity and innovation when it comes to game creation. 

By taking the approach of partnering with a small number of developers, we gain access to the best talent and expertise in the market which in turn allows us to deliver superior content. 

Betsson’s goal is to have the most regionally diverse game portfolio of any platform in the market which ultimately means that the experience our players receive is tailored to their preferences more so than at any other brand available in their country. 

And we see this as the star ingredient in our recipe for success. 

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