This year’s iGaming Next conference was drawing to an end on Thursday evening, after two days packed with knowledge sharing and networking, attended by some of Europe’s leading iGaming figures.
The corridors, dotted with suits of armour from the era of the Knights of Malta were filled with excited guest, catching up on a year and a half of lost networking time.
Hosted at the Mediterranean Conference Centre in Malta’s capital, Valletta, the event offered companies the opportunity to display their products at the stalls dotted through the 16th century venues’ main hall, the option to network with their peers, and learning opportunities, through panel speeches in the imposing Republic Hall.
One particularly relevant panel, and the penultimate one to be hosted at the event, titled ‘Ensuring a progressive regulatory revolution,’ featured such prominent figures as Phil Pearson, COO and head of sales (and newly-crowned Sales Idol of the Year), Claudio Caruana, Gaming Innovation Group general counsel, Jade Zorab, Amber Gaming MD, and Victoria Reed, Better Change co-founder.
The panelists discussed a number of topics related to the iGaming regulatory market, including issues regarding the Netherlands market, the role and motivation of regulators, and what the future of regulation might look like.
From the perspective of Mr Caruana, regulation can open up iGaming companies to receive investments from major firms. Several of the largest firms, he said, have ESG policies that ban them from investing in gambling firms, but he predicts that as markets become better regulated, they might be more willing to move into investing in the industry.
Mr Pearson, known for his frankness decried that at the moment, regulatory scrutiny seems to fall disproportionately on operators, rather than software suppliers for example.
He also fantasised about a world where a unified, one-size-fits all licence could be introduced across jurisdictions.
“We can work out how to make cans of Coke in every country… Why can’t we do the same with iGaming regulation.”
Asked about the relationship between iGaming and the regulating bodies that govern it, Ms Reed stated that operators don’t see regulators as their enemies, necessarily, and no-one wants to have harmful gamblers on their books.
The conference drew to an end with a surprise, pre-recorded song by Gaming Malta COO Ivan Filletti – met with rapturous applause from a delighted audience.
“It’s been an absolutely fantastic conference,” concluded iGaming Next Managing Director Pierre Lindh.
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