Gamevy signs distribution deal with Microgaming
Gamevy signs distribution deal with Microgaming
Pitch ICE winner in 2015 Gamevy has announced another significant contract as it further lays claim to being one of the most successful start-ups within the gambling sector within the past few years. Under the terms of its deal with Microgaming, Gamevy’s top content – including its innovative lotto products such as Boss the Lotto and The Heist - will now be available through Microgaming’s Quickfire platform.
TotallyGaming caught up with Gamevy’s marketing director and co-founder Helen Walton to discuss this deal and how the company has progressed since it picked up its Pitch ICE winner award over two years’ ago.
TG: The Microgaming deal announced this week clearly marks another step forward for Gamevy - what does this deal mean to you?
Helen: Operators have loved our games - the problem hasn't been selling the content, it's been getting onto people's IT roadmap. At ICE this year we realised that much of our focus needed to be on making a deal with the platforms who would offer the best route to our operators. This deal means we'll be going live with some key operators - I'll be announcing them as soon as the first games go live. We're really excited to be working with Microgaming because they've been so supportive of what we're trying to do - plus I think they have even bigger plans once we start showing traction with their operators.
TG: How many clients do you have now and how many games?
Helen: Gamevy has 10 games (plus a whole pile of instant wins about to launch) which are live on Lottoland, Football Pools and MarathonBet at the moment. We expect five major operators to launch in the next two weeks, and there are 16 further operator launches planned. There are lots of amazing games in development as well.
TG: What do you think the magic ingredient is in coming up with a game concept?
Helen: I certainly wouldn't claim we have a winning formula for innovation success. Our entire team has an input when coming up with new games - one of our most successful games came from a developer - we all get stuck in and I think our diversity feeds a creative process. We don't have a background in the industry and that has helped us too - we haven't been conditioned into thinking that some things 'will never work'.
In fact, our most successful game at the moment was hated by all the experts we showed it to - but it's hugely popular with players. We also change things quite radically - often late in the process. If it seems a game just isn't working then we throw it away and start again. It can feel very frustrating, but the truth is that a new company can't really afford dud games. Then again of course, we don't pretend we know everything in advance. One of the big benefits of being a start-up is our agility - we see what happens when the game launches and we try and make adjustments so that we can learn. It might be as simple as changing the default bet size or it might be more complex involving changing the UI. Those adjustments are crucial to learning.
It's a constant balance between speed of development and quality of product; between listening to others and going with our gut instinct or vision.
TG: How tough has it been since you won Pitch ICE in 2015 to win new business? What has been the biggest challenge?
Helen: Winning business isn't the issue - timescales are. It's hardly surprising that integrating a new supplier is not a top priority when people are going through changes in regulation or massive amounts of M&A, but of course it's frustrating. Like any start-up, we are juggling a lot of balls and it's hard to prioritise between opportunities while at the same time keeping a stern eye on costs.
TG: What lessons do you think start-ups can learn from Gamevy's experiences in there last two years' or more?
Helen: We have done a lot of work ourselves that most companies would have outsourced. It's allowed us to understand the industry more thoroughly, and also to avoid raising funds so we control our own destiny. We've collaborated wherever we can. So many start-ups seem to be terrified of competition, but we believe that if someone wants to copy you, they will. You have more to gain from helping one another and exploring opportunities than worrying about whether someone will pinch your idea. Most companies can't get anything onto their IT roadmap, let alone bother pinching some risky innovation.
Totally Gaming says: The story of Gamevy should be an inspiration for anyone staring up in business in any sector. That Walton, Gamevy chairman Paul Dolman Darrell and the rest of the team have succeeded in an industry and a sector where success stories are hard to find is doubly impressive. With distribution channels beginning to open up, it will be fascinating to see how its products develop in the months and years to come.