A year after taking charge of live betting technology start-up Metric Gaming and launching its SuperLive product, Team SBC caught up with Peter Bertilsson, CEO & President of Metric Gaming, to discuss his operations progress as Metric Gaming looks to bring market and game play innovation to sports betting
Metric Gaming’s ambitious SuperLive product allows customers to wager on in-game events as they unfold in real time. Offering multiple sports markets, Bertilsson and the Metric team believe that the product may well revitalise the sports betting trends and user habits.
SBC: Hi, Peter. It has been a just over a year since you released your SuperLive product range. How are Metric Gaming’s services progressing within the sports betting market?
Peter Bertilsson: After our initial testing period in production, we implemented several key upgrades in Q1 this year that have already started to pay dividends. Our SuperLive client now houses pre-game and live markets in addition to SuperLive wagering opportunities, and we have replaced our previous visualization tool with one built entirely in-house, which is much more closely tailored to our unique betting experience.
“We have also recently rolled out a first-to-market price feed for golf, allowing our customers to enhance their existing golf offering via a simple API-driven integration. This feed includes live outrights and 2/3 balls, as well as stroke-by-stroke (SuperLive) markets, for all PGA and major European Tour tournaments.
“Now that we have a proven concept, we are working to further expand our coverage, with tennis and basketball planned for roll-out in the autumn.
SBC: Metric Gaming has tied up a number of top-tier betting partnerships. How did your team undertake partnerships as a growth strategy for its product and services?
PB: Our business model is based largely on royalties that are tied to the success of the products and services that we provide our clients. With this structure we become a relatively risk-free proposition, and it becomes incumbent on both parties (our customers to maximize product placement and marketing, and us to maximize product performance and engagement) to drive success. We find this approach properly aligns interests, creating a true partnership that has thankfully proven appealing to our market.
SBC: European sports betting operators have seen a tough set of football results affect their earnings performance in 2015. How can SuperLive products and services help operators to tackle these issues?
PB: Because SuperLive markets aren’t tied to a match’s end result, they are not susceptible to the same “crowd favorite” risk as conventional pre-game bets. Indeed, we see far less team loyalty amongst punters when it comes to wagers on discrete in-game events, such as throw-ins, corners, free kicks, etc., so the betting action tends to be diversified, greatly reducing volatility for the operator. The unique nature of our markets also allows us to implement higher house margins than conventional pre-game wagers, which help increase profits to offset the occasional losing streaks that are inevitable in sports betting.
SBC: A number of top-level operators are outlining the need for Omni-Channel strategies and customer engagement. Can SuperLive products fit in this eco-system, and how can they enhance engagement?
PB: SuperLive propositions are designed for distribution not only via internet and mobile channels, but in-casino and retail shop environments as well. Brick and mortar establishments inevitably seek content that will attract customers to, and keep them in, these physical locations, and SuperLive™ is designed specifically for prolonged user engagement (unlike pre-game wagers, where once the wager is placed the customer may choose to leave the premises to watch the game elsewhere). SuperLive can be integrated directly into on-property betting kiosks or other hardware, including the customers’ own mobile devices, where accounts are managed via cash deposits and withdrawals with an on-property ticketing system. Customers can accordingly enjoy SuperLive™ while watching their corresponding live sports broadcasts at the shop or casino sportsbook.
SBC: 2015 has been a year of corporate consolidation and acquisition in iGaming. However, do you feel that industry discussion and debate on innovation has been somewhat downgraded?
Peter Bertilsson: We do feel that innovation in the sports betting industry has been notoriously stagnant, with no notable breakthroughs in recent memory outside of SuperLive™ and perhaps the Cash-Out option. The vast majority of operators are stuck with outdated technology that is largely incompatible with mobile distribution, and the innovative concepts that product managers are pushing tend to get stuck in a never-ending tech backlog. We believe this environment has been very beneficial for Metric’s growth, as we can provide cutting-edge sports betting products with a relatively simple integration.
SBC: Looking ahead to the rest of 2015, how do you see Metric Gaming growing as a business, and as a sports betting start-up, what are your upcoming goals and growth values?
PB: Metric will be launching tennis and basketball this year to round out our offering to include most major betting markets (Football/NFL/Golf/Tennis/Basketball). We are now increasing the number of matches we offer as well, from hundreds of football matches per month, for example, to thousands. We also have several brand new wagering products in the pipeline that we believe will appeal to both casual and professional punters alike, set for launch this winter.
“On the client development side, we are actively integrating new customers as we speak, with many more in the pipeline. In addition to rolling out our enhanced coverage and new products, we are especially looking forward to expanding SuperLive’s global reach with our existing and future partners.
Peter Bertilsson CEO & President of Metric Gaming