Tag: People

Laila Mintas announces new venture, PlayEngine

Former PlayUp US chief executive Laila Mintas has co-founded a new venture, PlayEngine, and joined as chief executive.

The new business is a “microservices-based” B2B sports betting and igaming platform. The business said that it will “provide its customers with a tailor-made, individual solution that is reliable, scalable, fast and secure”.

Its sportsbook offering will allow clients to accept payments from cryptocurrency as well as fiat money and will include a “travelling wallet” to allow players to use the same wallet in different jurisdictions.

PlayEngine was initially created through the Berkeley Skydeck startup incubator.

“I am very excited about being a co-founder and the CEO of PlayEngine,” Laila Mintas said. “The sports betting and igaming market is just too competitive to work off legacy tech.

“There is a huge need for agile and modern technology and I truly believe that we have the most automated and data-driven product in the market, which will enable the sportsbettin..

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Fanatics hires Brandt Iden as VP of government affairs

Fanatics Betting and Gaming has hired former Michigan legislator Brandt Iden as its new vice-president of government affairs, as the business edges closer to launching its betting product.

Iden was elected to the Michigan House of Representatives in 2014, until 2020 when he reached the state term limit. During this time he spearheaded the efforts to legalise both sports betting and online casino gaming in the state.

He then joined Sportradar, where he was head of government affairs during a period in which the business went public on the Nasdaq exchange.

Now, he joins Fanatics ahead of the apparel brand’s long-rumoured launch of a sports betting operation.

Read the full story on iGB North America

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EPIC brings in Smith as new director of operations

Independent gambling harm minimisation consultancy EPIC Risk Management has named Danielle Smith as its new director of operations.

Succeeding Pete Wallis, Smith will take the lead on a number of key business infrastructure projects at EPIC.

Smith joins the consultancy after almost 13 years with the British army, where she was most recently a life skills developer, having previously been personnel change manager and a commissioned officer in the Royal Military Police.

Prior to this, she spent time as a legal advisor for DWF, a global provider of integrated legal and business services.

“I’ve come into EPIC at quite an interesting point,” Smith said. “There are lots of really tasty projects ongoing and lots of opportunity and potential for the future, so it’s really exciting. I’m super happy to be here, get on board and get involved in the growth of the business.

“What attracted me to EPIC is the passion that everyone has. Passion runs though the company, no matter what level you’re..

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SimWin Sports appoints former DraftKings VP as director

Virtual sports betting operator SimWin Sports has appointed former DraftKings VP Jamie Shea as non-executive director.

Shea has close to 30 years experience in the sports betting industry. She was at DraftKings for four years, where she held the role of VP of sportsbook operations for almost three and a half years and the role of VP of national VIP marketing for 11 months.

Before this, she worked at IGT as a sports betting and PlaySpot specialist and Caesars as a regional sales director.

jamie shea, non executive director, simwin

Currently, she is the chief marketing officer at Strive Gaming.

“Jamie is a real-money gaming all-star,” said David Ortiz, founder of SimWin. “Her work with Strive Gaming, DraftKings and other major players in the real-money gaming world makes her a huge addition to the SimWin team.

“We welcome her guidance as SimWin continues to push towards its first football season, during which she will be integral to the betting and fantasy elements of the game.”


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BHA appoints former Downing Street spokesperson Swift to comms director role

The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) has announced the appointment of Greg Swift, formerly a spokesperson for the prime minister, as its director of communications and corporate affairs.

Scheduled to join the organisation at the end of October, Swift will lead the BHA’s recently restructured Communications and Corporate Affairs department, with Robin Mounsey to serve as interim director prior to his arrival.

The BHA said the new-look department forms part of a wider plan to reform its strategy and structures, with the aim of delivering a more strategic approach to communications and public affairs.

Swift is currently head of news and press secretary to the foreign secretary within the UK government, having previously been head of communications for the Department for Exiting the European Union and the prime minister’s official deputy spokesperson and head of news.

Prior to that, he spent time working in national newspapers, including as assistant editor for the Daily Express.


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Simon Hammon’s lessons from a lifetime in slots: The present

Simon Hammon, recently named chief executive of Relax Gaming, insists he’s not a typical “product guy”. But the games released under his watch, like Starburst during his time at NetEnt, have had a massive impact on the industry. In the second part of a three-part interview, Hammon offers advice for businesses in the crowded slots space of today.

Simon Hammon’s success at NetEnt ultimately took him to Relax Gaming. In part one of this series, Hammon outlined how the move might have looked to some like a “step down”.

But since joining, the business has been growing strongly. For the second quarter of 2022, revenue was up 20% quarter-on-quarter to £5.2m, with six new titles rolled out and the Dream Drop jackpot feature going live.

Its partner base expanded to 15 new operators in that same period, while 132 studios were integrated into its RGS, while its reach extended to Italy and Spain, with a licence for Ontario setting it up for entry to North America.

That business-minded view has..

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Holding back the tide

René Jansen, chair of Dutch regulator de Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), speaks to Daniel O’Boyle about the challenges involved in fighting on two fronts since the country launched its regulated online gambling market. On one hand he’s keeping the unlicensed market at bay, on the other he’s working to ensure the licensed sector moderates its advertising

After eight years of anticipation, it could have been difficult for the launch of the Netherlands’ online gambling market to fulfil expectations.

For Jansen, chair of regulator de Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), the launch did indeed live up to what he anticipated.

“It’s been a success in several aspects,” he says.

But going as expected is only a good thing if the predictions are optimistic. And it’s hard to miss the fact that one aspect of the market launch went exactly as Jansen predicted, in exactly the wrong way.

Advertising turmoil

In May 2021, the KSA chair warned of an advertising “bombardment” when the legal market opened.

Looking at..

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Flutter to lay off staff in UK and Ireland

Betting and gaming giant Flutter will make a number of redundancies in the UK and Ireland, following an internal review.

The business, which operates brands including Paddy Power, Betfair and Sky Bet in the region, did not provide details of how many redundancies there would be or which roles would be affected.

However, a spokesperson did say that it expects the majority of those whose roles are eliminated to find new positions with Flutter. As a result, there would be only a “small number” of job losses.

“These proposed changes reflect the next phase of our integration, as we look to consolidate parallel operating models and position the business to continue growing against a more challenging operating environment,” the spokesperson said.

“While we have sought to minimise the impact this will have on our colleagues, with most employees affected being redeployed into alternative or newly created roles, the proposals may lead to a small number of job losses.

“We are communicatin..

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UK Tote Group names Spencer and Holt non-executive directors

Pool betting operator UK Tote Group has appointed Lord Spencer of Alresford and Mark Holt as non-executive directors to its board.

UK Tote said the double addition would support its ongoing growth plans, with the focus on product innovation, better value, improved customer experience and strong partnerships to create more liquidity and bigger pools.

Lord Spencer is an entrepreneur and founder of interdealer broker ICAP, which became a FTSE100 business in 2006, and its successor, electronic markets services provider NEX plc. He is also one of more than 150 investors in UK Tote.

In addition to acting as a board director of a small number of private businesses, Spencer became chairman of the Centre for Policy Studies in 2020.

Holt brings experience and knowledge from his time working in senior technology roles with a number of businesses. These included spells as chief technology officer at CPA Global and chief technology officer for Trainline.

He is currently chief product and engi..

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