More than half of the states in the US market have legalised sports betting, and according to Continent 8 Technologies’ Chief Product Officer Justin Cosnett, the opportunities that this market presents are huge.
Speaking to SBC ahead of this week’s SBC Summit North America, Cosnett gave us a sneak peak of what Continent 8 Technologies will be showcasing at the event, before explaining why data providers and media suppliers signing exclusive official sports associations with governing bodies of sports is of the utmost importance.
What are you looking forward to at SBC Summit North America?
The SBC Summit North America provides Continent 8 with the opportunity to meet with our existing customers and partners face-to-face, as well as network with the major players in the fast-growing North American sports betting and iGaming industry.
Having been unable to travel to the US since the pandemic began, personally I am excited to be heading to the States to meet with my colleagues, many of whom I haven’t seen in-person for quite some time.
The conference agenda which features senior executives from operators, regulators and service providers enables delegates to gather insights and ideas from the industry. I’m looking forward to participating in the panel ‘Choosing the right technology partner’ where we will discuss platform integration, what an operator should look for when considering a platform provider, and how platform providers can differentiate themselves.
Of course, the highlight for the Continent 8 team is the networking party on Wednesday 1 December at the Meadowlands Racetrack, of which we are the co-headline sponsor. It provides the perfect opportunity for delegates to network in a more informal setting – we look forward to seeing everyone there!
What are you promoting at SBC Summit North America?
Continent 8 has grown rapidly in North America in the past few years. We are now live in 23 states, providing hosting, connectivity and security solutions to operators and suppliers across the US. Our customers in the market include some of the biggest names in iGaming: DraftKings, FanDuel, 888, PointsBet, Bally and Amelco, to name a few.
We’ve been aggressive in our roll-out, with a first-to-market strategy to enable customers to capitalise on the fast-growing market. In the US we offer a range of service options including private cloud, public cloud and AWS Outpost deployment. Our US sites are connected on one secure network which spans 80+ connected locations globally. This includes our increasing presence in LATAM which began with the launch of our cloud offering in Colombia in 2020, with our services soon to be launching in Puerto Rico and Peru.
In the past 12 months we have also enhanced our product portfolio of Connect, Manage and Secure. Our security solutions continue to develop to reflect the ever-changing cyber security landscape, including the launch of our Managed Threat Prevention, Detection and Response offering – a complete end-to-end proactive threat protection solution.
What sports betting partnership has stood out in the past 12 months?
Sports betting partnerships that are of significant interest to me at Continent 8 would be data providers and media partnerships. There are many significant and important deals and tie-ins across the industry, however, data providers and media suppliers signing exclusive official sports associations with governing bodies of sports stand out to me. These tend to be US born deals but with global ramifications.
As a key supplier to the industry, there are potential long-term network connectivity and security considerations on the exchange of data, where speed and reliability will be a key requirement. This will be especially acute where there are multiple suppliers to multiple customers across largely the same landscape, and I think Continent 8 having an existing “on-net” iGaming community within our network brings us some unique opportunities.
What are your predictions for the US market in the next five years?
Already more than half of the country has started to or has legalised online betting. We of course expect further states to regulate in the near future. The growth rate for the US market is staggering, with reports suggesting that the US iGaming vertical could generate $13.5 billion in 2025 (Source: emarket.com), with around 38 US states participating by that time.
The pace at which states have flicked the switch on legal sports betting has caused headaches for many operators. On occasion they have needed to launch in states simultaneously. That’s where, as a service provider to the industry, we must be one step ahead, providing the technical infrastructure and services to enable their launch and for them to grow. The US will continue to throw challenges our way due to the speed of market growth, but the opportunities and market potential is huge, and we are excited for what is to come in the next 5 years.
M&A activity will also undoubtedly continue, driven by the US expansion. Whilst right now speed to market and a desire to be first is driving businesses to seek efficiencies in the technology stack, “later” this will certainly change. It will be key to achieve the full efficiencies of scale which the market is expecting of these large mergers, that they take the full advantages of acquired technology, whilst scaling appropriately.