iGaming disruption: DLT takes aim at data management
Data-management stands on the precipice of an efficiency breakthrough. I interviewed the CEO of Blockverse, Mario Acevedo, to gauge how his team is spearheading this development using Blockchain technology.
Entrepreneurial roles require strength of character and aren’t for the faint hearted. What first brought you into this role and how did Blockverse all begin?
I’ve worked in several different countries in Europe and I’ve always been focused on data, broadly speaking. I identified issues that both affiliates and operators are dealing with, such as a lack of accurate data, transparency, trust and customization. I saw a great opportunity for innovation using blockchain to replace the existing outdated affiliate platforms. With regards to entrepreneurship, I’ve always thought that nobody can be perfect, but a team can be. To this end, I’m always keen to help people succeed, which is incidentally how Blockverse started. I called up one of my partners and we talked about blockchain and the possibilities that it could bring to industries in general. We found the iGaming industry particularly interesting as there’s a wealth of data that isn’t being used effectively and the reliance on third party data by affiliates and operators complicates things.
What do you strive to achieve in terms of solutions and company growth?
With our product being ready to be pushed to the market, our focus right now is on building relationships and demonstrating how Blockverse can add real value to our customers. We’ve been well received and had positive feedback so far, which gives us great confidence and excitement in the possibilities that lie ahead.
Our goal is to rid of legacy systems so that we can collapse the inefficient value chain and get operators and affiliates to work together via one system. We believe in data and we want to empower our customers with it so they can improve their businesses.
Blockchain is touted as a revolutionary technology set to disrupt many industries. How would you explain your solution to someone who is completely new to the iGaming sector?
The iGaming industry has grown exponentially in the last years, but the tools that they are using are outdated. From a basic perspective, there are affiliates who provide traffic through SEO, website creation and optimisation, campaigns and all the rest of it. Then there are the operators and sports books where real players bet. Naturally, there has to be some sort of communication between the two.
At the moment, this is carried out by old, legacy platforms that are neither safe nor secure. On top of that, customisation options are limited and there is no such thing as real-time data. There are clear inefficiencies in this process since the operator is the customer of these platforms, with very little benefits to the affiliate, despite the two parties working closely together.
Blockchain is incredibly useful in industries where you have a lack of trust, transparency and where there is a heavy reliance on third party services.
With blockchain, our internal solution connects affiliates and operators directly, and gives both parties the possibility to understand where their traffic is coming from, as well as the ability to customise and gain authentic insights into the entire campaign system.
You pride yourselves in being a great solution for data collection and management. Why should affiliates and operators favour your technology over solutions that already exist?
Currently one hundred per cent accurate data doesn’t exist on either side; not for affiliates nor operators. Without accurate data, businesses are forced to make decisions based on a hunch or conjectures. With efficient data collection, and data management, you’re able to build better strategies, do predictive modelling and see real business growth. This industry started with a ‘two-guys-in-a-garage’ set up but has exploded in the last few years. This is why there are still a lot of areas with room for improvement.
Blockverse is the first network that tackles this situation for both affiliates and operators. It brings trust and transparency to the industry, and security and accuracy to the data. We give our customers full control on the platform, agility in integrations via API and first-hand data. This enables them to collaborate directly, sharing media and brand assets, creating and negotiating deals (insertion orders), and reducing manual audits thanks to the first-hand data which will be secured by blockchain.
On top of that, as I alluded to earlier, we are passionate about data. To this end, we also provide powerful insights to help the network identify the best deals, analyse performance by banner or position, and improve relationships – which translates into higher margins.
I’m sure you would at least agree that ICOs are great for fund raising. Do you have a sense of the ICO sector and where it’s heading?
Certainly, ICOs are very useful to raise money, but strictly speaking they aren’t necessary to bring the solution to the industry. There are two ways to do things fundamentally; you can use blockchain, or you can use blockchain based on cryptocurrency. We decided to use the pure form of the tech because including the cryptocurrency side of the equation could translate into more cost for customers, as we can see with Bitcoin’s fluctuations. Pay one way today and tomorrow you might have to pay double. In our view, we do not currently need to add more complexity to our product as we already provide an industry-wide solution to data management issues.
You’ve no-doubt many plans for growth. Could you give us a sneak-peak into your targets moving forward?
The focus now is to onboard clients and grow the Blockverse network. Our main objective is to set a new standard and disrupt the iGaming industry. MBS and SiGMA will both be great platforms for us to meet industry peers, build relationships and show them what Blockverse is all about. We are entertaining the idea of applying Blockverse in other industries, but that’s a conversation for the future.
You’re in a unique position where both MBS and SiGMA are highly relevant to what you’re striving to achieve. Have you planned anything special for SiGMA’s upcoming extravaganza this fall?
We’re waiting to find out if we made the final cut for the SiGMA pitch. But in any case, seeing how this is a major event, we will undoubtedly be present this fall – showcasing our plans for the next era of the iGaming industry, the Blockverse network.