Ahead of next week’s AskGamblers Awards 2018, we caught up with three winners from last year – BitStarz, King Billy and ShadowBet – to find out more about the sites and their thoughts on the awards.
Thoughts on AskGamblers Awards
Srdjan Kapor, Affiliate & Marketing Manager, BitStarz
We’re not just biased because we won last year, we promise :), but we really prefer AskGamblers Awards to for example EGR as the AskGamblers Awards is a players’ choice award. We also look at AskGamblers as a very fair, unbiased and neutral source for information about casinos out there, hence making this Award even more special to us.
The Awards this year really has this Academy Award vibe to it and once more, we’re super happy to be nominated for best Casino for the second year in a row, and I feel I might just have to prepare a speech, just in case and all that 🙂
Ruslan Legenzov, Affiliate Manager, King Billy
We absolutely love it. We fell in love with it last year with the AskGamblers quick-pace, Eurovision style production and wonderful presenter and we can’t wait to see, what the guys, have in store for us this year! As far as our expectations are concerned, we must say that the bar is even higher this time.
However, we must also point out that after getting the Best New Casino 2017 award, we have now been shortlisted both for the King Billy Affiliate program at the prestigious iGB 2019 Awards as well as for the AskGamblers Best Casino 2018 Awards. That’s a lot of “silverware” for a 20-month old operator! The industry sees something in King Billy and keeps rewarding it.
Artur Różycki, Head of Affiliates, ShadowBet
At the beginning, I would like to thank AskGamblers for the nomination and I would like to thank all the players who voted for us. This year the formula is much different, making it harder to win for small and new casinos. Well established casinos have much more fans on AskGamblers, making it easier to win, so this year our expectations are lower, but it doesn’t mean we are not going to fight till the end It’s very nice, that AskGamblers decided to start Awards where players, not judges, decide who is the winner. I believe it’s a fresh approach. For me, the Award from players is the most worth one. We are here for the players, so let them vote for the best
Tell us about your team
SK: At BitStarz, we’re all working remotely from all over the world, so you could totally say we stay true to the cryptocurrency ethos of not being limited by borders, haha. This of course has its perks but also challenges for sure, but we do believe the perks outweighs the challenges by far.
Not being able to meet people face to face occasionally can be viewed as a downside, and also keeping everything together as we’re also growing is a challenge, but nothing we cannot handle of course 🙂
RL: As King Billy Casino is growing, literally by the hour, so is our team. It has now more than doubled since the launch of our casino and we are not about to stop anytime soon. Both our A-level team, seasoned professionals with 10+ years backgrounds in the igaming industry and our junior entry-level staff, have one thing in common, however. They are all humble Servants of the King!
Our biggest challenge is to avoid “success myopia” and keep trying, on a daily basis, to always improve, little by little. I will give you an example. When an unfavourable review is published on AskGamblers about King Billy, the whole office “gets on fire”. Why was there an unfavorable review? What did we do wrong? How can we be sure that there will not be something like this in the future? And so on.
AR: It’s not easy to build a good team, but we believe people are the key to success. We’re constantly looking to upgrade our skills, but on a daily basis it’s a lack of time during the day, which slows us down to implement all our ideas. With a lot of regulation changes these days, we need to be very careful and attentive to meet all strict compliant requirements. This cost a lot of time and money, so at the end of the day, this is the biggest challenge that we face.
What makes a good online casino?
SK: For us, a major thing is to add the human element. Innovation and reliability are great things, but adding personality to the equation just gives you that rare dynamic that makes all the difference.
Every person at BitStarz has been hand-selected by the founder and one of the senior advisors to ensure quality not just in terms of skill, but also personality which permeates all aspects of the BitStarz operation.
Also, quality over quantity is our motto here. It’s important for us to have a solid foundation and grow slowly and steadily. We’re not your Walmart where all you care about is bringing in investors and try to grow as fast as possible and maximise profits, we always stay true to our original vision of being a trusted brand with a boutique feel.
RL: One: belief in the casino’s story and myth (every casino worth its salt should have one) by the staff itself. Two: an excellent leader to push everyone forward.
These, for us, are the two internal values everything stems from. You have them? You can even reach out to the stars like Elon Musk’s SpaceX. You don’t have them? You go down in the gutter, sooner or later.
AR: I think the 1st and most important is trust. Players must feel 100% safe. In my opinion, this is the reason, why ShadowBet got Players’ Choice reward in 2017. Our support, compliance and marketing team are working very hard to meet all standards. We don’t try to be misleading or aggressive in our communication. We don’t hide anything, we want to be 100% transparent. Second most important thing is fast payments. Every player who is winning in the casino wants to withdraw as fast as possible. We know it, that’s why it’s one of our priority.
Affiliate Industry Review is the exclusive media partner for the AskGamblers Awards 2018, held in Belgrade on 17 January.