‘Know your customer’ is a phrase that almost always applies in the betting space to the person at the sharp end of the betting equation, namely the punter placing the bet.
But it has equal if not greater importance further up the supply chain, especially if you’re a bespoke software supplier to those wanting to establish or enhance their sports betting business.
A firm advocate of the “consultative” KYC approach is Conall McSorley, Business Development Director of platform and sportsbook provider gbet. Key to that process, he believes, is understanding.
“It’s important to read the industry news – look beyond the headlines, listen to operators and understand what’s really happening with their businesses,” he said. “Then use that insight and knowledge to address specific needs and concerns that an operator might have.
“An operator wants to know about your capabilities, sure, but only to the extent that you can resolve their pain points and ultimately significantly improve their offering…otherwise why bother considering migration?”
He added: “The operator may want a player account management platform, a fully functional sportsbook, a betting exchange or all three – which gbet provides.
“Perhaps they’re currently with a supplier that controls their risk management and they want the option of owning their risk function, or outsourcing it. Whatever they want, it’s vital that they have confidence in your ability and proven performance to deliver.”
According to McSorley, a classic operator frustration is the inability to integrate quality 3rd party content to their offering. This is why gbet has almost 30 pre-existing integrations for operators to choose from, including identity validation right through to payment processing and fraud prevention.
“We run through all of the integrations to the platform and ascertain which ones the operator wants,” he explained. “What we have seen though is that operators increasingly want the freedom to choose their 3rd party suppliers as opposed to being spoon fed 3rd party content or worse still, be force fed content on a glorified white label.
“Capturing those requirements, and getting firm agreements in place, are the fundamentals to ensuring a smooth journey to product delivery. It can be a pain point for all parties if those things aren’t well documented and agreed early in the process.
“A clearly defined roll out plan is vital. Where the process can fall down is when all parties involved aren’t in entire agreement about what role each of them has.
“To counteract that, we get every customer to sign off technical requirements and mutual obligations and responsibilities even before we get to commercials. All parties must know exactly what each other is doing…and what the milestones for project management and delivery are.”
For some operators, the need to take an open approach to the process can feel invasive, but with gbet NDAs are signed very early in the process and therefore operators have nothing to fear with being open. McSorley insists that there has to be transparency.
He said: “We look at an operator’s current and projected transaction levels, concurrent user numbers and concurrent event/market numbers, as well as up time expectations. All of those components play into the end user expectation which we need to match and exceed from a technical perspective on behalf of the operator.”
That level of transparency is vital in what McSorley described as a consultative business where, “the customer’s success is our success”.
“We don’t dictate at all,” he said. “We don’t say you have to have a such and such feed provider for example. It’s completely open ended to the point where operators can have as many feed providers as they wish and they control for example their own risk strategy whether in-house or externally.”
McSorley concluded: “It’s really an open ended discussion where we as a tech provider are saying ‘…you guys operate, you know the market, tell us what you want and we’ll deliver it.”