2 April, 2024

Q&A with Pin-Up Global CEO Marina Ilina: Aiming to be the best

Pin-Up Global CEO Marina Ilina speaks to Gambling Insider about the role of business scaling within the ecosystem, Pin-Up.Investments and much more.

Could you tell us about the markets Pin-Up Global is currently operating in and which it is aiming for next? 

We are now represented in seven countries: Cyprus, Ukraine, Poland, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Peru and India. In the latter, we opened an office at the end of last year. We also realise that this is not the limit and we will continue to increase our presence. Very soon we will have a new office in a new geo.

If we talk about operating in the markets, it is important to understand that the Pin-Up ecosystem is not a gambling operator per se, but a community of independent companies. These, in turn, provide the full life cycle of the entertainment product; each of them may have their own markets and goals (sometimes even competing with each other). Therefore, in the context of Pin-Up Global, we talk more about being present than operating, and we are always open to working with new partners (including licensed operators). The main thing is that our values and vision coincide. This is how the Pin-Up brand enters the markets of different countries. 

What role does business scaling play in Pin-Up Global’s operations? 

Pin-Up Global has no limits in scaling the ecosystem, and it is important to realise we are striving not just to grow through the number of offices, but also to increase the line of our own developments. For example, last year we launched an anti-fraud tool. Now it works for internal clients, but we are considering the option of launching it on the external market as well.  Our hallmark remains the rapid growth of our products and services without sacrificing quality, and maintaining this momentum remains a priority for me.

Can you tell us more about Pin-Up.Investments?  

Within the Pin-Up Global ecosystem, members are the best professionals in the market, who have in-depth knowledge and experience both in the development of gambling products and in bringing such products to the markets where they operate. We want to share our expertise and continue to develop, so we decided to create a new business segment where our specialists can actively interact with promising projects and develop them.

We focus our investments on projects covering gambling, traffic, software development, artificial intelligence, customer service, advertising platforms and arbitrage teams. Our development strategy covers the full range of key segments related to the gambling industry.

I would like to point out that Pin-Up.Investments is not just about financial investment. The project, team, technology, product that will be selected can count on our resources and support in training, opportunities to really practice and hone skills on Pin-Up products and greatly accelerate the growth of their project. We will also help with strategic planning, expansion into new markets and possible integration into our ecosystem. 

How does Pin-Up Global ensure it always has the best expertise within the business? 

Pin-Up is a team of professionals that, as I said, has unique experience in the market, and a constant striving for development and excellence. Within the ecosystem, we create a quality product thanks to the high expertise and competence of the teams. To our clients, independent licensed gambling operators who operate under the Pin-Up brand, we provide not only consulting services in the areas of business, market entry, marketing, legal, financial support and much more, but also the opportunity to use our own developments and platforms. We are also constantly adding participants from different markets to our team, which allows us not only to expand our expertise, but also to create more adaptive or universal products that fit the realities of the countries where we operate. One of our values is “be the first to lead.” That is, we are constantly moving forward and setting trends. 

What other developments has Pin-Up Global been working on recently?   

We plan to actively develop Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning in-house within our ecosystem. We are planning projects related to AI and ML – from chatbots to custom User Experience. With these technologies, we will thoroughly explore patterns of user behaviour to personalise game offerings and create a better user experience. We are also in the process of developing our own B2B platform for even greater convenience for our partners – all Pin-Up corporate products and services will be featured on the platform. In addition, we are developing our own automatic system for detecting failures/bugs in games – Casino Healthchecker for prompt automatic response to incidents. This system will be a part of the author’s anti-fraud product, which we will present on the external market. 

You were included in the Forbes Cyprus 20 Women in Tech Awards list 2023. How happy were you to be among the winners? 

The year 2023 was actually a very eventful year for accomplishments – and being named to Forbes Cyprus Magazine’s “20 Women in Tech” list is certainly one of them. Absolutely, I am delighted! This is one of the milestones of hard work and being results-oriented. All the awards and rankings are a great confidence boost for me and my team that we are moving in the right direction.