IN-DEPTH 26 October 2016
Luck on your side
Digital acquisition expert Ilan Nachmani is about to undertake the biggest challenge of his career, as the VP of marketing for new online casino Pots of Luck. The gaming industry veteran sat down with Gambling Insider to explain why he is looking forward to being put to the test
By Gambling Insider
Ilan Nachmani has seen almost everything there is to see in his nine years working in digital gaming. It’s for this reason that he isn’t daunted of the prospect of launching his new online casino project, Pots of Luck, which is due to reach the public’s awareness in mid-October. He is set to leave Karamba Casino, where he has been working as the VP of sales for three years, in a bid to stretch his metaphorical wings and go it alone.
Of course, affiliates will play a key part to Ilan’s strategy, a factor which he is quick to explain. When Ilan sat down with Gambling Insider he was keen to stress that his established affiliate network, and acquiring new affiliates, would be prioritised to ensure Pots of Luck’s success.
Let’s start from the beginning, what’s your experience in the gaming up to this point? And how has this prepared you for launching your new project, Pots of Luck?
It’s a long story, but one filled with many successes. I started my online gambling work at Euro Partners. I was there for almost three years, working as a sales director. And then I left Euro Partners and I worked for two years at allslotscasino. com, which represented Microgaming in the digital operator industry, and then I became the VP of sales of Karamba. So in total I’ve been in the gaming industry about eight or nine years.
Now I’ve begun a new journey, as I am embarking on a new challenge with Pots of Luck, and it’s going to be a very different experience for me representing the online operator as the face of the brand. Specifically, my title at Pots of Luck is VP of acquisition and I have a number of responsibilities within the company, but mostly I am looking forward to monetising all the traffic that will come from mobile for the product and managing all the digital traffic from all over the world. We will be receiving traffic from all over the world because we are a regulated brand, Pots of Luck is regulated all over the world through Nektan,which is a PLC company based in Manchester.
I’m looking forward to starting again. When I came to Karamba I was also starting from scratch, and I have fond memories of my time there but I am at a point now where I don’t want to speak about past successes, I have had some great times in the industry but now all I can think about is my new challenge at Pots of Luck, which includes building the new platform, increasing the number of games providers and improving the player journey so that when we star to bring traffic to the site we will have improved every aspect of the product offering for the players.
Are you genuinely starting from the ground up, or is the project already off the ground to a certain degree? What are going to be your first steps in getting some momentum behind the brand?
The project is going live soon, probably by 5 October. Of course I will be at BAC and at SiGMA, two great event that I enjoy that are coming up so soon after we launch Pots of Luck, so that will be a great opportunity to get out there with the brand and introduce it to people, including affiliates. At lot of my friends are Scandinavian people who I have developed a friendship with during the past few years, from the beginning they were a partner but now they are best friends of mine. That is one of the reasons that we are going to launch Pots of Luck with at least three languages from the start. Those languages will be German, Swedish and of course the platform will be available in English. We are regulated in England, and I am looking forward to the new challenge of launching Pots of Luck there. It’s a very exciting time we have reached in launching any new brand, and getting its name out there. We are also looking forward to improving all aspects of the product offering for gamblers once the platform is officially launched. Already the mobile product especially is looking amazing but we need to improve and finalise all aspects regarding the product, which we will do in the next two or three weeks.
How do the affiliates fit into the plan to successfully launch Pots of Luck?
I have been working with affiliates for a long time, and the affiliates who I have worked with know that for me successful affiliate programs are all about great relationships. All of my affiliates trust me, we’ve worked together for a good number of years, so it’s just about trust. I know everything about my affiliates, a new affiliate will start as my partner but very quickly they become my friend. The affiliates I have been working with for years are just looking forward and waiting to see what my next challenge is going to be. No-one knows yet, but soon everyone will know that I’m going to be managing Pots of Luck, and I’m sure they will be very excited to get cracking on marketing the brand.
Are you going to be focusing on maintaining your relationship with your existing affiliates or are you going to be looking to attract new affiliates specifically for the Pots of Luck brand?
Of course new affiliates are also a priority that we need to think about and concentrate on securing. But having all of my existing affiliates at my disposal to promote Pots of Luck from launch will be an excellent push at the start of the project. It should help us get off the ground quickly.
When you talk about maintaining relationships with affiliates being about trust, what does that mean specifically?
It’s an ongoing process, day by day. Contacting affiliates to update them on what we are doing, what we are looking forward to, what we have planned for the brand is very important. As I mentioned before, I have such a close relationship with my affiliates that I can honestly say that we used to be partners and now we are best friends. I go to visit them when we’re at the conventions. I know everything about them, and they know everything about me.
Have you got any other people working with you on the Pots of Luck project that many affiliates would have a recollection of?
Acquisition-wise, Yoni Sidi is one of the best guys in the industry. He used to work for Winner Affiliates, managing a lot of departments, for 10 years. Now he is with me, he’ll be my wingman so I am very pleased about that. He’s an English guy, he knows about all the English affiliates, he’s very connected to them through all those years spent working at Winner. He is one of the key accounts in the industry regarding the UK and the rest of the world. In the UK he is very well known, you want to be with him. He’s a gladiator, if you went to war you’d want him on your side.
As I have already said the mobile platform for Pots of Luck already exists, 50% of traffic is going to be from mobile. We have a great mobile platform that is incredibly user-friendly, we have a great CRM, and we are building a VIP level which is very important for the players. With the VIP platform, one of the best guys in the industry managing that, his name is Tsahi Schmuel. He will be managing the CRM and managing the VIP platform. Players will have a great user experience when it comes to our brand, and Tsahi will be the man ensuring that this is the case. I’m happy that we’ve got a great team in place from the start.
Are you launching the mobile and desktop platform at the same time?
It is already done, the product are ready to go live, but we are waiting at the moment. We will start to push both products in the middle of October.
How confident are you that Pots of Luck will be a success?
I know it will be a success. I know my ability, I know the targets, I know what the players want and I know what my affiliates want. We will need to be, and we will be, the best in conversion, the best in payments, and the best in flexibility regarding affiliates. If you need to implement server to server pixels we will be flexible, we will have many games providers. Players will not leave us because we will have all the best games providers, if you want to play NetEnt games, Microgaming games, IGT, Blueprint, or any major supplier specifically we have those games for you. Of course the 24/7 service that I have believed in from the beginning of my time in this industry will be in place for affiliates, this is a great example of what it will be, a very tight relationship with all my affiliates. I really believe in real partnerships, and that will drive what we do.
What additional practical help are you going to provide affiliates, and what is your overall feeling as you head to the launch?
Whatever we need to provide for affiliates we will do. Nektan will provide us with a 24/7 service to build all the things we can provide to help affiliates. We will listen to what they need. Of course all the things we have already built work very well, we have checked them and we are very pleased, but that doesn’t mean the hard work stops there.
In terms of my own feelings, I am incredibly pleased to the be the managing director and face of the brand. I am very excited about the new challenge. It’s going to be hard work but I believe I will get all the support from my affiliates overcome all and any challenges that will face in being successful.