KAMAGAMES No cash value

KamaGames’ Director of Global Communications, Sam Forrest, explains how Social Casino has become an attractive bet.


riginally, social casino was a complex concept for those in the gaming sphere to wrap their heads around. Why would gamers spend hours playing casino games with virtual chips, valueless outside the confines of the game, with a total lack of cash out option? It seemed, to some, as void of the core feature that makes casino games appealing.

In stark contrast to these early doubts however, the social casino market has hurdled from strength to strength, growing 15% in 2018 alone, according to Eilers & Krejcik Gaming, who at its latest assessment of the market, estimated that the value of the industry now stands at an impressive $5.20bn. These results beg the question – what exactly is driving the growth of social casino gaming?

SHAPING A MOBILE INDUSTRY The advancement of mobile technology has been one

of the most prominent drivers of growth in the social casino industry, as it has been for all forms of online gaming. Not only have mobile phones become a  of most people, they have also given today’s users millions of games to choose from and unprecedented access to these games anywhere they go. Where initially gaming was an activity exclusive to either computers or consoles, this new development of the mobile gaming platform has introduced a new wave of games and in-turn has given rise to social casino gamers – those who play casino games, not for profit, but for fun.

According to App Annie, mobile games was the fastest growing sector of the overall gaming market in 2018, beating consoles, PC/Mac, and handheld gaming. They also predicted that mobile gaming will reach a 60% market share of consumer spend in 2019, up 35% from 2013. The social casino market has unquestionably benefited from this and will continue to benefit as technology further advances and internet speeds soar.


However, as mobile technology continues to make headway, players naturally expect more – more games, more features and more advanced graphics. While social casino games primarily rely on traditional, time-tested table games that most users are already familiar with, they too also have to give their players new experiences with variations on these games.

A prime example of this can be seen with our own flagship title Pokerist. We’ve introduced titles such as Split Bet Poker and Set Poker in order to keep players interested, but in addition to this we have Multi-Table Tournaments to give skilled players a new feature to engage with. From our own experience, it’s clear that one of the most import drivers of growth in the industry is that operators must be committed to giving players these new and intriguing takes on traditional table games.


Personalisation has become a big part of how brands interact with their target audience, particularly brands that rely on online activity. In gaming, this can come in the form of reaching out to players with specific offers that operators feel may appeal to them based on their previous activity or through the use of personalised promo campaigns.

It’s unsurprising that socialisation plays an important role in ‘social’ casino and with that in mind, it’s important to highlight that, unlike real-money gambling, social casino players have different motivations for playing. This, in large part, is reason enough for the genre’s success. Players have no expectation of monetary gain from their activity, instead playing for the entertainment value and social aspect of the game itself. This is something that most social casinos have capitalised on and built their gaming model around.

In gaming, socialisation focuses on the ability to interact with other players over the course of the many highs and lows of the game, engaging with them through in-game chats. We believe these socialization opportunities are responsible for creating ‘stickier’ communities within our own app and have resulted in the steady increase of daily active users (DAUs) which now sits at 630k, a +23.5% increase from the previous year.


Most likely we will see developers target  by providing them with regionally popular games. It’s also suggested that the next frontier for operators will be to branch out into other forms of competitive gaming, still within the realm of social. This comes with the rise of esports and sports betting and without saying too much, you can expect to see KamaGames’ interest in this area in 2019.

CIO APRIL 2019 57

Players have no expectation of monetary gain from their activity, instead playing for the entertainment value and social aspect of the game itself

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