Like the rest of the online gambling industry - and much of the world -- the sportsbook sector is facing a very tough economy. But unlike certain parts of the economy that are counting on bailouts to get them through tough times, sportsbooks are adapting.
"Rather than hunkering down and hoping it won't affect the sector, most leading companies are innovating and diversifying," says Mark Walker, the global head of conference at Clarion Gaming, which is organizing Bet Markets 2009 in Vienna, Austria, this March. "Loyalty schemes are proving a success on the high street and in-play betting continues to be more powerful. All-in-all I think several companies will emerge stronger from this downturn with new customers on their books and products to keep them satisfied."
Walker isn't the only person in the sports-betting industry who thinks this. At Bet Markets 2009, which runs from March 4-5, many of the 35 industry leaders and 250 industry representatives will be addressing that theme. Other topics that will be discussed at the only conference that focuses on the needs of online and offline sportsbooks includes:
In addition to providing a great deal of information, Bet Markets is also designed to be an excellent networking opportunity.
"With 250 people in the same place it's great to catch up with old friends and forge new relationships," Walker says. "It's probably my favorite part of the two days and I look forward to it again this year."