Snaitech CEO: Retailers have learned online gaming is not the ‘enemy’

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Snaitech CEO: Retailers have learned online gaming is not the 'enemy'

By Iqbal Johal

One of the biggest lessons for retailers during the coronavirus outbreak is that online gaming isn’t the «enemy,» according to the CEO of Italian firm Snaitech.

Fabio Schiavolin said there were many things for retailers to take out of the period, which has seen shops closed and live sport suspended, including the importance of converting from retail to digital.

Speaking on the ‘An opportunity to revisit the omni-channel approach’ panel on day one of SBC’s Digital Summit, Schiavolin said: «If there is a new spike of the virus, the lesson our retailers have taken is digital isn’t an enemy for them, it can be an opportunity for alternative revenue for the shops.

«They need to be prepared to develop better in the online vertical because if they are not exploiting this, someone else will take advantage of their customers in the online platform.

«When we reopen, there will be a better possibility for us to implement all the tools needed to convert from retail to digital and also be better prepared for an evolution in this market.»

Schiavolin added the online market is a way to evolve and find opportunities, including investing in markets which used to be considered minor, such as lesser-known sports leagues.

He said: «I think this market is resilient; with a lack of full market offering, I wasn’t expecting an average gross gaming revenue (GGR) of €16m ($17.4m) to continue, with just Russian table tennis and Nicaraguan football; but we are very close to the average GGR we were doing in the first two months of the year.»

In the same panel, the CEO of Superbet, Johnny Hartnett, mentioned diversity is key in times such as these; being able to offer products across multiple verticals and platforms, or being available in several markets.

Harnett explained: «Having a diverse business will put you in a better position when unexpected shocks come, which also includes having a reasonable split across sports betting and gaming.

«The online gaming business we own has had a pretty good period over the past couple of weeks as people have migrated from sports betting and from retail to online.»

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