One of the leading providers of Sports Betting and Technologies services is Kambi. While not the household name as some sports betting suppliers, they have become major players since the repeal of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). Kambi has expertise in risk management, odds and trading along with user interface. I was able to speak with Kambi's Max Bichsel about how the company works with operators to deliver premium service.
1) What is your role at Kambi? I am the Director of Kambi’s U.S. sales. I look after the U.S. business in conjunction with the London office. I am based out of the New York and Philadelphia area. Kambi is the platform for sportsbooks at SugarHouse, Parx, and Rivers Casinos in Pennsylvania, and DraftKings and PlaySugarHouse.com in New Jersey.
2) You just opened an office in Philadelphia. Why that location and not New York? The Philadelphia location made more sense to us. We wanted to go after new talent that had a passion for sports betting and show them the Kambi Way. There’s less competition in Philadelphia than in New York, where professional sports leagues and sports technology companies have offices, along with Google, Amazon, and Microsoft. We currently have approximately 25 people on our team and looking to expand up to 50-60. We have a balance of experience sports wagering managers with the new talent we are grooming.
3) Kambi has been in the news quite a bit over the last year. Give us a quick recap of the market launches and partnerships? In 2018, after the Supreme Court overturned PASPA, Kambi entered agreements with Rush Street Interactive, Parx Casino and DraftKings. In 2019, Kambi partnered with Mohegan Sun in Connecticut on a free to play social gaming site. During the month of August Kambi aligned with Penn National Gaming which enables us to have a significant presence in multiple states and jurisdictions.
4) What makes Kambi different from the more well-known bookmaking services such as William Hill or Caesars? Kambi is a sport supplier that prefers to stay in the background and focus on helping the operators. We give them the tools that they need to be successful and become market leaders. While each arrangement is confidential, Kambi will help operators and enable them to do what they want. We have an exceptional online product that is very attractive to the customers. Once one of our operators secures a customer, the rate at which our operators retain that customer is significantly higher than others in the market.
5) Please compare the customer experience of using a kiosks vs going to a counter to make a wager. The kiosk is less intimidating and alleviates the tension from a novice bettor. The kiosk offers the same experience as wagering on a mobile device with all the same bets available. Kiosks can be placed in high traffic areas where they can maximize revenue.
6) Make the same comparison of mobile vs retail? Mobile is king! Online is taking off and growing exponentially in states that offer both experiences. This is where the industry needs to go. Mobile enables the industry to battle illegal and offshore operators.
7) G2E is next week. Give the attendees a sneak preview of what to expect at the show? We will continue to see a strong emphasis on sports betting and receive news about growth and expanding legislation. In the show room, you will see the new hardware available and online product improvement. During the sessions you will hear from outstanding keynote speakers and obtain information about who is doing well with sports betting and why.