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Interactive


SBC SUMMIT BARCELONA - DIGITAL SEPTEMBER 8-11, 2020 KAMBI - SPORTS BETTING


Kambi: safeguarding sportsbook integrity


Prior to his appearance at the SBC Summit Barcelona – Summit, Oliver Lamb, Head Sportsbook Controller at Kambi, discusses the threat corruption poses within sport and the significance of in-house industry collaboration to ensure integrity is of the highest standard.


Could you tell us more about your role within Kambi with regards to the integrity of the sportsbook?


Oliver Lamb, Head Sportsbook Controller, Kambi


Sure. I wear a few hats at Kambi, but one of my key roles is overseeing the Sportsbook Control team who are our sports integrity guardians. Tey work 24/7 across 4 time zones in order to ensure that the Kambi platform is as free as possible from any match fixing concerns.


Teir work ranges from informing traders which events are higher risk and should not be offered, investigating integrity alerts from internal and external sources, and liaising with integrity associations and regulators to ensure their kept in the loop and no stone is left unturned.


It’s important not to spook people about the subject, this corruption only happens on a very limited basis and the vast majority of the sports that we watch can be enjoyed without any concerns as to manipulation. However that does not mean that we should let down our guard or take our role in the fight against match fixing any less seriously.


P108 NEWSWIRE / INTERACTIVE / MARKET DATA


How real is the threat of corruption in sport, particularly the issues of competition manipulation and illegal betting?


Te fact that my team deals with multiple investigations on a daily basis is enough to tell you that the threat is very real. As in any walk of life, there will always be bad actors out there trying to take advantage of any perceived weakness, be it in a sporting event’s set up or a bookmaker’s risk management controls.


It’s important not to spook people about the subject, this corruption only happens on a very limited basis and the vast majority of the sports that we watch can be enjoyed without any concerns as to manipulation. However that does not mean that we should let down our guard or take our role in the fight against match fixing any less seriously.


Having been in the sports betting industry for a number of years, how would you say the industry’s approach to integrity has changed during that period?


It’s changed greatly since I was first on the trading floor nearly 20 years ago. Back then there was no less passion for sports or abhorrence of match fixing than there is today, but there simply wasn’t the integrity framework in place on any level like there is today. Tere were no clear escalation routes out to integrity associations like there are today, little international cooperation between regulators and certainly no communication lines with the sporting federations.


Fast forward to the present day and we’re in a much better place. Whilst match fixing itself hasn’t gone away, the mechanisms that kick in whenever there is a case are there now. Be it operators, regulators, sports or law enforcement, there’s a really strong network now where everyone has a clearly defined, and respected, role to play.


Operators are increasingly looking outside of the box to gain an edge. How does Kambi approach events, particularly new sports betting markets, and ensure its integrity is protected? What type and level of information is sufficient to give the green light?


We ask ourselves these questions on a daily basis at Kambi. As I said earlier, our integrity team block multiple games from our offering each day on integrity grounds before we’ve even opened the betting. Tis proactive self- regulation is built on hard data from millions of events that we have offered over the past few years, as well as expert insights from trading leadership. If we can’t guarantee sufficient levels of integrity on an event, we’ll focus our resources elsewhere and offer something more reliable.


In terms of whole new betting markets, the pandemic is a case in point. We’ve seen pop up events in various sports that generate significant betting interest, but given their ad-hoc nature don’t have the vast hinterland of insights that other more established events would have. We’ve approached these events with open eyes and made sure we ask ourselves the right questions before offering.


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