Kindred exec: Gambling industry needs to “raise the bar of innovation”

By Owain Flanders

The gambling industry needs to “raise the bar of innovation” by increasing the involvement of B2C businesses in the creation process, according to Kindred head of gaming Cristiano Blanco.

Speaking on an ‘Operators and Innovation’ panel during the CasinoBeats Malta Digital summit, Blanco argued that the standard of gaming innovation had recently fallen for a number of reasons.

He said: “Some of these reasons are valid, such as lack of resources, different priorities, financial problems, etc; but we are reducing the line of innovation to fulfil our need to innovate, even if we aren’t being innovative.

“In my opinion, the industry needs a wake-up-call because we need to raise the bar of innovation a bit more.”

Blanco explained that because the bar for innovation is so low, B2B companies will often use this to their advantage when pitching “new” products.

“For example, when the majority of slots are offering 20 pay lines, we will get a pitch for a slot with 23 pay lines and they will call it innovation,” Blanco explained.

“That is not innovation. It might work better or not, but it is just something different.”

As a solution to this problem, Blanco believes B2C businesses need to increase their own innovation to raise the bar once more – something he said would “definitely be good for the industry.”

He commented: “As innovative projects struggle to come out of the B2C world then we reduce the level of innovation and begin to call it something which it is not.

“I would like the B2C to help and be more active when it comes to innovation because at the moment we are not, especially when it comes to the big operators.”

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