BE: Marco, what does your brand stand for?
MB: Pinnacle has over 20 years’ experience in online betting. We’re considered the first that had turned esports into a competitive sport. Our low margins allow us to offer the best odds in the industry.
BE: What is particularly innovative in your company?
MB: Pinnacle is characterized by the fact that customers are not limited. We allow customers to be winners. Most other bookmakers would kick out customers who are not profitable for them.
BE: Which markets play the biggest role for you at esports? Why?
MB: For us the most important markets are Northern Europe, the CAS regions and Southeast Asia. They watch and play the most esports. Betting also plays a big role.
BE: How do you see the effects of Corona on esports?
MB: Esports is the only major content bookmakers could offer during the Corona Pandemic. Yes, we register a greater interest. Many bookmakers are trying to expand their esports portfolio. Twitch numbers are up, turnover is growing. It’s sad to say, but esports has benefited from Corona.
BE: On a global level esports is still a niche. What needs to change to make esports mainstream?
MB: The whole ecosystem of esports must become more professional. The top leagues are well organized, but the middle segment is very chaotic.
BE: Why is data so important in esports?
MB: Data is important in every sport. Esports is no exception. As bookmakers, we need data to show who is playing, what results are achieved, etc.
We need non-delayed data if we want to offer our customers the best product. Here the esports has a lot of catching up to do compared to the traditional sport.
BE: How do you choose your partners, what are the most important criteria?
MB: As far as our data suppliers are concerned, the most important criteria are how much data we get (which means the volume) and how accurate the data is. For us, accurate means above all non-delayed. In the betting business, data must be fast.
BE: You cooperate with Bayes, which launched BEDEX, the first independent esports data marketplace for in-game data. Why? What are you looking for?
MB: From a long-term view, we are looking for data that meets our high standards.
BE: How do you get value out of Bayes’ official data?
MB: We think about data in various categories. The first is simple: when does the game start, what is the result? But then it gets more complex: with the help of machine learning we create better models that make the game even more accurate. The goal is to offer the customer a wider set of attractive betting options.
BE: Can you share insights about the onboarding process?
MB: That varies from provider to provider. Often the onboarding process takes between three and six weeks. The question is how well our systems fit together: Are the data structures compatible or do we need to initiate transformation processes? Roughly speaking, the steps are as follows: Integration, collection and storage of all available data, tests by our research team and then transformation.