Singular, an established international brand in the iGaming industry providing a full spectrum of iGaming and omnichannel solutions, is currently in the process of expending into newly regulated markets that present a huge commercial opportunity’, says CEO of Singular George Shamugia.
“Singular has built a strong position in the iGaming industry as a Tier 1 supplier. We are proud to say that our enterprise solutions have been recognized by some of the biggest brands in the industry which have chosen Singular as their lead platform supplier. Our focus is on strengthening this position and expanding into new markets with our clients.
“At the moment, the industry is undergoing accelerated regulation creating vast opportunities for operators and suppliers. The team has successfully taken our clients’ brands online, even into completely new markets proving ourselves as trusted partners for the growth and expansion of their business. Our 2021 roadmap is lined up with a number of client launches in new attractive markets”, Shamugia said.
Singular opened its first office in the Georgian capital city of Tbilisi in December 2009 with Shamugia and Akaki Meladze as founding partners.
The first focus of the business was social gaming for marketing purposes, but the company’s real take-off happened with Adjarabet, the Georgian leading casino operator. Backgammon and fantasy football were the first applications to assess the compatibility between the two companies. What started as a collaboration on a project basis grew into a strong partnership that successfully took Adjarabet’s business online and shifted Singular into the iGaming business.
As of today, Singular has a global presence across four continents: Europe, Asia, South America, and Africa.
“Our clients are sub-brands of the biggest groups in the iGaming and entertainment industry, one being Adjarabet as a subsidiary of Flutter Entertainment. We are proud to have been chosen by leading industry giants to empower their expansion into new regions”, said Shamugia.
Singular Product Portfolio includes a comprehensive and flexible iGaming platform, Sports Betting Platform with market-leading features alongside a Retail solution and a Casino Core with 7000+ casino games.
For the first time this year, Singular has received its first Golden Brand award, being named as Georgian customers’ N1 favorite software development company.
Q. What are some of the distinguished games created by Singular in Georgia, abroad?
A. Quality over quantity has been Singular’s priority.
Back in 2017, we made a strategic decision to focus on two flagship products and drive innovation in these verticals.
First, we have the comprehensive gaming platform, or as we call it, the CORE, which streamlines all the processes for iGaming operators. The Core iGaming Platform is a combination of more than 30 different autonomous modules that work together to deliver a unique experience. The key modules being the Account Management System, including user registration and management, transactions, game sessions.
Next, we have the Payments and Risk Management module covering anti-money-laundering and fraud management.
Finally, the CORE has a powerful marketing module with a CRM system, segmentation and recommendation engine, and resourceful analytics. In addition, the product has client-facing interfaces such as website and mobile native applications that create a seamless experience for players across all channels.
The second flagship product of Singular is the Sports Betting Platform that delivers pro-trading via the robust trading BSS solution and outstanding player experience through the industry-renowned client-facing mobile and desktop betting applications.
All these products are provided as software as a service solution to our clients across 10 regulated markets.
Q. What growth and expansion prospects do you see in Georgia? And what are the biggest challenges?
A. In this decade, Georgia has managed to gain good name recognition in the iGaming industry thanks to several innovations created first by the Georgian operators/companies, later adopted across the world.
The country also offers a big pool of technical workforce with a solid understanding of the iGaming industry since the population has an affinity for sports and sports-related betting.
Today, international industry leaders such as Flutter Entertainment, and Betsson recruit iGaming professionals from Georgia. These global brands entered the market via the acquisition of the local leading casino operators, a clear indication that Georgia has potential on the iGaming scene, as a market, as a talent creator and solution/software provider.
There are few challenges for the industry with existing laws and regulations that govern businesses in the country, which to some extent hinders global expansion and doing truly international business from Georgia. But on a positive note, we see that policymakers are making efforts to address and modify the existing laws to promote the iGaming business ecosystem. If this trend continues, Georgia has the potential to create an incubation environment for iGaming businesses, especially for the tech startups which are oriented toward international growth.
Georgia also has an advantage over other countries within the industry due to its geographic proximity to post-soviet countries and Asian territories. Because of its location, the ease of doing business, the iGaming talent pool and experience, it is the obvious choice for international brands to utilize the country as a hub and gateway to enter the CIS market and Asian territories.
Q. What innovations may Singular be launching to strengthen its market advantage in Georgia and abroad as well?
A. The iGaming industry has been undergoing increased regulation, and the Covid-19 pandemic accelerated this process across countries that were previously reluctant to legalize online betting. While this poses an opportunity for expansion into newly-regulated regions, operators have been struggling to meet the unique regulatory requirements of these emerging markets. For instance, the US market has been the focal point of the industry for a few years now, but being so different, operators and suppliers cannot enter the market with their existing solutions.
The advantage we have is the modular architecture of our solutions. Singular created one unified standalone software layer/middleware, which allows the games and platforms to be compatible with all the different regulations without modifying a single line of code. Our system will abstract all the regulatory requirements from games and platform providers. As we speak, the first version of this system is being deployed in one of the newly regulated European territories. In years to come, this solution will help Singular to strengthen its already strong position as a platform provider in the iGaming industry.
Q. How could you summarize 2020 and what are your expectations for 2021?
A. The biggest challenge across companies and industries was undeniably the outbreak of the pandemic that no one saw coming. The first and most direct impact that affected a big portion of the brands that had predominantly retail operations was, of course, the closure of casinos and bet shops during the lockdowns. Next, for a short period of time, sports events were canceled, and some of the biggest sporting events like the Euro were postponed. Our clients quickly sought answers into taking their brands online where possible and requested alternative game content.
From one side, the situation accelerated the liberalization and the regulation of many markets which were reluctant to legalize online betting creating new opportunities for market expansion. On the other side, regulatory bodies applied additional restrictions where there was an unexpected surge of online betting activity. However, there is a silver lining in all of these. Not having the constant pressure of the ongoing-super dynamic operation gave us the time to focus on upgrading our products. The situation also gave rise to an even bigger need for innovative products that appeal to a wider audience with a great focus on cross-product campaigns.
This year is expected to be very dynamic since the majority of the postponed sporting events are taking place in 2021. At the moment, we are in full speed with the final preparation for the Euro starting this June. Plus, this year, we have a number of clients going live in a few of the newly-regulated markets in the CIS region. Also, we are releasing news about developments in the US and LATAM region.
In 2020, we focused on internal operations and closing deals with hot leads. The year 2021, I believe, will be a year when we reap the benefits of all the hard work and capitalize on the efforts and product improvements done in 2020.