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PLAYTECH

don’t think there’s any going back now.

CI: Land-based casinos are interesting because

they are the driver for so much technology – but even so, they can also be very slow to adopt that technology…

PC: In our view there’s been a lot of talk about

server-based gaming, for example. It’s been a catchphrase for a lot of companies for a while but when you actually look at it, they’re building a system with downloads, content on demand, a lot of really very neat and clever features – the problem is in two years time it’s just another legacy system because they can’t extend it to be a real integrated platform so they can offer something simple like lottery tickets or instant scratch product, or poker online, or kiosk services… There’s been a number of companies that have implemented server-based game technology but there’s been very, very few that can put a system that has a wide-ranging platform they can support and basically future-proof it for any product that comes on the market.

CI: But you can do that?

PC: Yes, we can. And we’re starting to see more land-based operators understand that if they don’t move into the online space it’s actually going to become more competitive for them.

CI: What do you do that’s so different to your

rivals then? Please explain…

PC: At the actual architecture level, it’s one system; the same code base that’s used for the development of the management system online is the exact same code base we use for the management system that we would install in a land-based casino.

CI: That sounds so simple – so why isn’t

everyone doing it?

PC: As a company, Playtech has over 1,000 staff

worldwide, of which between 75 and 80 per cent are pure R&D software developers. This ratio is pretty much unheard of in the industry. The only thing we do is develop software; we only operate business to business. We’re also not out there trying to operate web sites ourselves and we’re not in competition with any land-based operator at all. These are some of the big differences – our flexibility and our business model.

CI: It sounds almost too good to be true…

PC: This is what some operators say to us before

they see a full demonstration and actually see this working, see how fast we can get content to market, see how quickly we can come up with a design for a completely localised game, because they know their players that well; we can have a game deployed – on terminals, in their operation – in less than 12 weeks. They’re all disbelieving until they actually see the technology.

CI: What are the next steps for Playtech – and

Videobet?

PC: It’s very clearly set out in our mission goals. We

are committed to being the world leader in the supply of single solution gaming products and platforms. This is how high we set the bar, and this is what everything is working toward. The best at technology level, services level, game content level… we’re always striving for that. Playtech has made a number of strategic alignments and acquisitions in the last 12 months which has helped us broaden the portfolio and to identify ‘world’s best’ product. Even if we don’t currently have the world-leading product in any class… You can see by the acquisition of Virtue Fusion, arguably the best bingo product available online in the world today – we already had a very competitive bingo product but we could see the synergies we could achieve by working with the team at Virtue Fusion, so we acquired the company. As a company we’re not so much inward looking as we are always evaluating what’s going on in the market.

own?

CI: Do you have a game-neutral terminal of your

PC: Interesting phrase! We can put our land-based

Videobet software into four different cabinets from four different manufacturers; we don’t deal in hardware.

in?

CI: What jurisdictions are you presently active

PC: We’re currently active in operations in the UK,

Romania Czech Republic and Italy, and many more to come. We have previously deployed equipment in places like Dominican Republic, Goa, Cambodia… Romania still shows good growth, Italy is very strong and will show growth for the next five years. Then we’ll be looking to focus, make sure we have the right product, and move on from there. We’re certainly not lacking any opportunities, that’s for sure. We recently achieved GLI11 certification for our

product, which is pretty much the gold standard in the industry; it’s a big plus as it’s a recognised certification in terms of security and the robustness of the platform itself.

“We recently achieved GLI11 certification, which is pretty much the gold standard in the industry; it’s a big plus as it’s a recognised certification in terms of security and the robustness of the platform itself.”

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