Exclusive interview with Simon Westbury, Head of Sales at Digitain “New products, great deals and even more surprises”

Digitain is one of the rising stars in the iGaming software and platform solution sector, offering a  wide range of casino, esports and skill games. Gamblerspost sat down with Simon Westbury to get his thoughts on the future of the industry and a sneak peak of what we can expect from Yerevan-based Digitain in the future.

Unfortunately, Covid19 pandemic impact still makes headlines. How did the lockdown affect your business plans? 

Simon: Like everyone in the industry we we’re taken a bit by surprise by the speed of impact and the subsequent lock-downs.  The impact on sport, and in particular football, was obviously bad news for our partners’ revenues, as well as potentially on their teams. 

To our advantage, we have developed our own Digitain platform and we pride ourselves on the quality of our sales, product and technology teams, amongst others,  and their ability to develop solutions, in a relatively short timeframe, that our partners will want. 

So, we challenged them to come up with new and engaging content that we could offer to our customers as a viable alternative to the lost sporting events. It’s fair to say we were delighted with the results. 

As well as  agreeing commercial deals with some great esports and casino suppliers – we have developed and launched some fantastic new interactive betting content of our own – including RocketOn and Penalty . We have even launched, during this difficult period, a live Table Football product – professional standard players, playing every thirty minutes and supported by live odds, live video and real-time player statistics. It’s been so successful we’re now offering this product to the rest of the industry – not just our existing partners   

– What are the challenges during this post-Covid19 period? 

Simon: The post-Covid-19 period will undoubtedly be a challenge for everyone, economically and from a social perspective. We will need to get used to, and be ready for the new “normal” 

We believe that we are well equipped to face any new challenges. We continue to be ambitious in terms of plans for growth, we have an excellent team here with a terrific can-do attitude, and we remain positive about the future. 

What do you feel is changing during that past couple of years in the iGaming market? 

Simon: In Europe, the pace of regulatory change can be challenging as well as the cost of compliance in a fragmented space. Providing a responsible gaming environment is key for all operators and we will continue to work with our partners to ensure they have the best toolkit available to help them deliver the safest space for their customers. 

We see expansion for our business in regulated markets, such as Latin America, Africa and Asia.   

If you had to rate all of your company’s achievements in those two decades, which one would be on the top? 

The speed and success of our transition from a B2C sportsbook and lottery operator to a B2B platform software solutions business has been very exciting, not to say extraordinary. We now have over 1700  great people working for Digitain – and we’re one of the biggest employers in the software industry in Armenia – something we’re very proud of. 

– During this digital age and in this iGaming industry, what sets you apart from the competition? 

Simon: I would say three things: 

  • Leadership – and a clear focus on where we are going.  
  • Passion to do things well – and deliver the best for our partners – and their customers 
  • Our people – we believe that our team here are exceptional – enthusiastic, highly skilled and extremely engaged in our overall success. It really is the Digitain Family

– Are you preparing any surprises for your partners for the next two big football tournaments?   

Simon: We have some exciting plans for the Euros taking place next year – obviously I can’t tell you, otherwise they wouldn’t be a surprise. I’m sure our partners – who we regularly consult with on our product development plans will be delighted 

Mobile continues to be a key channel – and we have been Mobile First, in terms of product development, for a while now.  

– What are your plans for 2020 and beyond? 

Simon: We want to be the number one betting and gaming platform provider anywhere – a big challenge but we’re clear about our ambition.  

How much potential is there for growth, and in which markets is the scope the greatest? 

Simon: Europe is a mature market, more or less – so growth there might be limited. Latin America has massive potential, especially Brazil. Africa and Asia are obvious and also India, which is starting to be interesting. The USA is delivering some eye-watering figures as more states go online in one form or another, and we believe more states will look regulate gaming post-Covid-19. 

We will continue to invest in our success. In fact, later this year we will open the first part of a development we are calling DigiTown. As well as housing our whole team together in a brand-new multi-story building – we are investing in the youth of Armenia. We are building a new facility for start-ups and young technology companies to be located and supported in. An incubator campus, if you will, where innovation can be nurtured in order to benefit the whole country. 

In the overall global industry – new markets will emerge, as discussed. Covid-19 might deliver a round of two of consolidation, as companies adjust their business models. 

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