Can Asian operators capitalize on the virtual sports opportunity?

In just under two decades, virtual sports have gone from being a niche vertical dismissed by many as cartoon betting, to one of the fastest growing areas in gaming, with operators in Asia increasingly taking notice. Neale Deeley, managing director for gaming at Betradar, said that virtual sports now account for 12 percent of over-the-counter betting in the UK, and 20 percent of sports book profits in Italy. While in the booming Nigerian market, virtual sports bring in more than 50 percent of all betting revenue. Inspired Gaming cites Italy as a case study, where from a standing start in 2014, its software helped to create an EUR1 billion market ($1.2 billion) in just one year, according to its website. It says operators have experienced a 25 percent increase in revenue by adding virtuals to their sportsbook. While some claim that virtuals lack the thrill and excitement of sports betting, technology has...

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