‘One size fits all’ philosophy no option for Evolution Gaming


Q&A with Amy Riches, Head of Marketing at Evolution Gaming.

I think we would all like to know who Amy Riches is and how you experience working at Evolution Gaming.

Having worked at Evolution Gaming for 4 years, it has been an incredible experience to witness the phenomenal growth of this company. Evolution has developed and evolved at such an incredible pace, there is always something new and exciting to work on. The 10th anniversary year was a special year indeed and with the constant momentum, there is always a new challenge to push us forward further.

Founded in 2006, Evolution Gaming has been a true pioneer when it comes to live casino gaming. What exactly has helped Evolution Gaming to revolutionise the live casino market?

In the 10 years since Evolution was founded in 2006, we have focused on our key pillars of operational excellence, customer optimisation, product innovation, maximising mobile, our land-based offering and regulated markets, whilst ensuring a scalable, reliable solution of the highest quality for our licensees. That has brought us to the point where we offer the best technology, the best-trained dealers, the best games and playing experience, and the greatest flexibility to deliver what operators and players want.

We continually push boundaries in terms of product innovation so that we can take the player experience to new levels. Examples of this include our award-winning Immersive Roulette, our Baccarat Squeeze options, Dual Play Roulette solutions, as well as Dream Catcher, the first title in our brand-new game category Live Money Wheel. It was a momentous launch for us because Dream Catcher exposes Live Casino to players who don’t usually play table games and therefore don’t play Live Casino. There are millions of slot, bingo, and other players who we are reaching out to with this product.

We are never content to sit back.

The games are not the only focal point – there are so many things behind the scenes that continue to widen the gap between us and our competitors, such as our Game Integrity and Risk operations, which are paramount in our operations. This is another aspect where we have invested heavily in innovative solutions in this field and where our level of experience is difficult to beat.

After a decade, Evolution Gaming is still growing in popularity. What do you believe is the most important factor?

With the increasing number of Live Casino providers in today’s marketplace, our extensive experience, resources and investment in continued innovation and improvement sets us apart.

Getting to the point where you can deliver true operational excellence and all the other things that mark Evolution out as a leader — and being able to deliver this from our own studios, from on premise studios and via Dual Play tables in land-based casinos — does not happen overnight.

Today we have 200-plus tables operating across our seven European studios. We also have a growing number of Dual Play installations in land-based casinos.

We are also fortunate that we work with many leading operators, so when new markets regulate we are in a strong position to enter these markets and offer first-to-market advantage.

We have always focused on what the operator is looking to achieve and what players demand. That’s essentially what our focus on ‘customer optimisation’ is all about.

With Evolution, operators have so many options to differentiate their Live Casino product – dedicated tables and environments, dedicated dealer teams that get to know players, native speaking dealers, live promotions at the table that can be linked to key calendar events or to promotions and attractions in the land-based casino.

Not only that, but our licensees have access to an amazing portfolio of games. This includes exclusive games that are the result of our agreements with partners like Scientific Games — titles such as Live Three Card Poker and Live Ultimate Texas Hold’em for example. The portfolio also includes unique Evolution titles such as Baccarat Control Squeeze and our new Dream Catcher Live Lucky Wheel.

What new innovations in your live casino products can operators – and their players – look forward to in the short term?

This year has been an exciting year in terms of product releases and demand for our products. The two unique Progressive Jackpots available on Live Casino Hold’em and Live Caribbean Stud Poker respectively have been key additions this year. Likewise, Dream Catcher, our first title in our new Money Wheel category appeals to a whole new player segment. We see Dream Catcher broadening out the market for Live Casino in 2017. The new game has been developed specifically to expose Live Casino to a new type of player, particularly slots and bingo players who don’t typically play table games. Dream Catcher is a different kind of game for the world of Live Casino.

A key focus for 2017 is also the extension of our Dual Play portfolio to maximise the convergence opportunity for land-based casinos and online operators. Interest for our Dual Play Roulette is high. Our latest installation at Grand Casino Bucharest is available across our network and allows players to play at their favourite table, wherever they may be.

There are lots of exciting developments in the pipeline for the rest of this year.

Gaming revenues generated on Evolution Gaming’s platform using mobile devices exceeded 50 percent for the first time. Where do you expect this to go?

Mobile continues to be key driver of growth and an area with exciting activity. We have completed the rollout of portrait view gaming on smartphone. We feel this could be another incremental revenue earner for operators. When players have full choice to play games just the way they want on smartphone, there is a greater likelihood that players will enjoy ad-hoc gaming sessions whenever they have a spare few minutes. Other game enhancements such as in-play deposits ensure the whole process is smoother and a better gaming experience than ever.

No industry has grown so rapidly and was reshaped so frequently by new technologies as the iGaming industry. How is Evolution Gaming experiencing these constant changes?

Continuous investment in infrastructure has been a key feature of Evolution’s growth as the thrill of the live gaming experience online has shifted from novel addition to an online gaming site, to a must-have key component. The technology, as the company name suggests, is continually evolving.

Evolution is committed to delivering the very best online experience to players – ranging from the highest quality video streamed, native speaking dealers, best equipped studios with the latest technology, fastest and most realistic games available online – to be as close as possible to the real casino experience.

Evolution does not subscribe to a ‘one size fits all’ philosophy. Our success is founded on providing each customer with exactly what they need.

Evolution Gaming is licensed and regulated in five iGaming jurisdictions and certified in three European countries. What’s next?

We will continue to strengthen our general position in the European market, while monitoring developments, as we always do, in re-regulating markets. We have a proven track record of being first to market in new markets, so naturally we will be looking to extend that record. We view our continued growth confidently, with good opportunities to further widen the gap to our competitors, through our strategy with its clear focus on profitable growth. To support future expansion, we intend to start the establishment of our third major studio in Tbilisi, Georgia during the year, which like our production studios in Riga and Malta will be able to serve multiple markets and customers.

Just this month, we also announced that our games are officially certified in Serbia too.

The global online gambling industry is expanding rapidly now as well with many new markets becoming available. How is Evolution Gaming preparing for this?

With the rapid expansion of the online gaming industry, we too are expanding. Our new Live Casino studio in Canada marks our eighth studio and is a very exciting period of growth for us and is our first major expansion outside of Europe. Our new studio will be in the New Westminster Vancouver area of British Columbia and will provide Live Casino games and services for BCLC (British Columbia Lottery Corporation) and we hope to launch before the close of 2017.

We will maintain a strong focus on Europe and our dominance there. With this in mind, we are creating a third major central Live Casino studio, this time in Tbilisi, Georgia. The Tbilisi site is designed to evolve into a fully independent studio operation. Operating as a major central studio serving multiple Evolution licensees, the new studio will add significantly to the capacity of Evolution’s existing major central studios in Riga and Malta.

As ever, we will continue to monitor developments in re-regulating markets to ensure we retain our unrivalled track record in rapid rollout of Live Casino services in these re-regulating markets.