NetEnt has combined playing live roulette with betting on football in preparation of the upcoming FIFA World Cup.
In early June, the game developer launched the Sports Betting Widget, an industry-first gadget that allows players to bet on ongoing World Cup matches while playing one of NetEnt Live’s online table games.
The widget lets casino operators offer live sports odds—before and during matches—inside live table rooms. With this, bettors can monitor their sports stakes in real time even if they are playing with their favorite online dealers.
Henrik Fagerlund, NetEnt’s chief product officer, said:
“This is a product unlike anything the market has seen before and we are releasing it at a very exciting time. Sports Betting Widget offers a new type of cross-sell opportunity, as operators will not have to worry about missing out on sports-betting revenue while gaining revenue on other products, as players can use both simultaneously.”
Greek online casino and sportsbook Stoiximan is the first to utilize the Sports Betting Widget, and NetEnt hopes that other casinos follow suit as well.
Ioannis Kalambokis, Stoiximan’s head of casino, said:
“We always want to offer the ultimate User Experience to our members. That’s why we worked closely with NetEnt in order to create an innovative way of combining Sports Betting with Live Casino. With Sports Betting Widget our members can now play our live casino games without worrying about missing out on in-play betting during the World Cup action.
Live Sports Roulette
Sports Betting Widget is not the only service NetEnt has to offer to football aficionados. As part of their World Cup campaign, the software provider is also set to launch its Live Sports Roulette on June 14. Similar to the Sports Betting Widget, the Live Sports Roulette will allow NetEnt-affiliated casinos to update their live table clients on in-play sporting events.
The new offering will show detailed statistics of a sports match. In a football match, for example, bettors will be able to see game scores, team goal attempts, ball possession percentage, and more game-related statistics. In addition, dealers will give commentaries about the ongoing game from time to time.
“Live Sports Roulette offers a truly immersive football experience, while players enjoy our live games. With the World Cup just around the corner, it’s the perfect opportunity to introduce Goal Smash Roulette, giving players a chance to win daily prizes as well as staying on top of all the action during the tournament.”
The Goal Smash Roulette, on the other hand, is another promo NetEnt offers for the World Cup. This awards lucky bettors with a share of the €75,000 prize pot. The promotion is divided into five stages in which the first stage offers €10,000. The prize will increase by €5,000 every stage until the fifth stage that will offer a total of €25,000. Ten winners will be drawn for each of the five stages.
World Cup Betting
Online casinos and sportsbooks like NetEnt’s affiliates aim to capitalize on this year’s prestigious sports competition through multiple promos and gimmicks. Bookmakers consider these offerings logical because—as several reports claimed—the World Cup is the biggest betting event in the sporting scene.
According to an ESPN report, betting interest on the quadrennial World Cup has been increasing, and it continues to dominate the betting market. In June to July 2014, Nevada Gaming Control Board recorded a total wagered amount of US$87 million on the “Other” category —where regulators placed the 2014 FIFA World Cup. That amount was 300 percent more than the US$26.3 million reported wagered amount from the same months in 2013.
However, sportsbooks are at a loss whether the trend will continue for this year’s World Cup. The bookmakers are more worried—in particular—with the North American market. This is because the matches are played at ungodly hours in the US. In addition, the country’s national team failed to qualify for the prestigious tournament.
Nick Bogdanovich, director of William Hill trading, told ESPN:
“I think it will be a slight increase, 5-10 percent. There is such a higher volume of sports betting in 2018 that it will overcome the US being out and the time difference.”
Jason Simbal, vice president of risk management at CG Technology, said:
“Three of the top five games in terms of handle in 2014 were US games. Who is waking up at 4 a.m. local time or staying up to watch the games. If I was making a line on the overall handle, I’d make less [than 2014] a slight favorite.”
According to sportsbook bet365, Brazil is the favorite with the 5.00 odds to win outright, followed closely by Germany’s 5.50. The bookmaker also considers Spain and France as serious contenders with the odds of 7.00 and 7.50, respectively.
Moscow and other Russian cities will serve as venues for this year’s 2018 FIFA World Cup. The best football teams from 32 different countries will compete for the golden World Cup Trophy and the right to be called the best in the world. The tournament will start on June 14, with hosts Russia kicking off against Saudi Arabia.