SBC Digital India has gathered together the representatives of the Indian gambling market to discuss its opportunities, especially in terms of foreign investments.
The country’s financial news often highlights how much its citizens who gamble spend on this entertainment. Due to the high rate of mobile penetration and the development of new convenient payment systems, Indians are more into gambling now. In addition to this, the lockdown caused a massive surge in player traffic. Users became more interested in poker, fantasy sport, and casual games. All this makes India a region with a great potential for investors.
India needs investors experienced in regulated markets
As has been mentioned above, India’s fast development of the iGaming industry means lots of opportunities for investors. The conference speakers have supported this idea saying that the country has much to offer in terms of the target audience. First, it is a big number of young customers who live in large cities and play online. People from small cities also start using the Internet and entering the market. Moreover, the lockdown has brought new customers to the industry, due to the lack of outdoor entertainment. It has created a layer of users, who can become the core audience for overseas gambling companies.
Speaking about challenges, Sreeram Vanga, Founder of Innopark, has noted that regulatory clarity is the main obstacle for foreign operators. The market requires differentiation of what is a game of skill and a game of chance. Currently, there is an uncertainty concerning this as India’s states have their own gambling laws that differ. That is why the industry doesn’t have a common definition of gambling products and regulatory guidelines for them. At the same time, games of skill are allowed in most territories of India. For example, poker is legal, which means that poker rooms can consider the market.
It is obvious that local operators in the country don’t work in the highly-regulated gambling market. This is the main reason why the industry requires investors experienced in regulated markets. Speaking about this topic, Imran Bukhari, CEO at TrueWave Technologies, has said that the combination of local and international experience will change the market for the better. He has also added that it is high time for operators to enter the region. However, they should understand that Indian players want fresh, innovative, and unique content, which differs from what they already use. Sudhir Kamath, CEO & Co-Founder at 9 Stacks, has said that India needs customized products but managed by international companies with expertise in legal gambling.