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Stats Perform’s 2022 product launch: exclusive preview with Nick Cockerill, VP betting products

Stats Perform, a market-leading sports technology company across betting, media and tech, this week unveils its latest products at a blockbuster virtual launch. EGR talks to Nick Cockerill, Stats Perform VP betting product, about the launch and why the new products will increase the entertainment value of every bet

As a company focused on enhancing the entertainment of sport, including sports betting, Stats Perform’s products have become synonymous with trust and unrivalled enrichment. The firm’s 2022 sports betting product launch event can be watched live on 2 March at 1pm (GMT) or on-demand. It sees the company’s pioneering brand Watch & Bet get a state-of-the-art relaunch as well as showcasing flagship new betting products that will elevate sportsbooks to next level entertainment status.

EGR Intel (EGR): Your launch has two standout slogans: ‘light up your sportsbook’ and ‘content built-for-bettors’.  Why are these messages important?

Nick Cockerill (NC): As betting has evolved, certainly in the last five years, and certainly in football for example, we’ve seen a huge acceleration in betting not just on teams but also on specific players and markets like cards and corners. Bettors are using these market types to make events more exciting, including in-play and in same-game multis, and it’s the fastest growing area of participation.

Stats Perform’s Opta statistics already provides the data operators need to model and trade stats markets live. But it’s still difficult for bettors to find information on, say, how many attempts at goal a specific player has had in the last five matches or how many they normally have in a season, or in the last 10 minutes of a match.

We see this as a customer essentially betting in the (metaphorical) dark. So, one of the things meant by our slogan ‘light up your sportsbook’ is we can enable operators to inform bettors about their selections, better help them track it, and overall add to the entertainment of the bet, which is ultimately what it is all about.

‘Content built-for-bettors’ essentially means recognising that a sports bettor watches and consumes sport in a different way to a non-betting sports fan. They’re interested in different metrics, data and types of analysis than a broadcaster might show, and for different sections of a game. Stats Perform understands betting customers, so we’ve created products to target their specific needs, pre-match and in-play. These also help ‘light up the sportsbook’ for bettors.

 

EGR: Why the blockbuster virtual launch?

NC: Sportsbooks are technology-first, customer-centric organisations that employ large numbers of talented software engineers who consume information in this way. Apple’s keynote is now a virtual launch event. Spotify, Salesforce, all the leading tech organisations, now launch online. It might have been pandemic-induced, but it’s actually very effective. So, essentially, sportsbooks are technology-led organisations, and we want to reflect that in how we talk to them.

EGR: Why are you relaunching and renaming Watch & Bet?

NC: Our new features for livestreaming within sportsbooks are truly transformational. They make more streams more relevant to more bettors and turn Watch & Bet into a different product, skyrocketing its value to bettors and sportsbooks. A different product needs a different name, to bring livestreaming inside sportsbooks into an illuminating new era.

EGR: You’ve said that one of the reasons for joining Stats Perform last year (from Sky Bet) was to unlock the potential of Opta’s data in betting. Do you think you’ve achieved this?

NC: We’ve definitely made a huge leap. Opta is uniquely beloved and trusted by fans. It is the source code for many fantastic products. What we’re launching this week is 100% the most significant change in unleashing access to Opta player data and stats in the history of sports betting. It’s a big step in a journey of collaboration with operators to find better ways to provide data, new metrics, new and easily digestible content, offered at scale, in the right places.

EGR: Is there any detail in the new products which might not be obvious at the first look, but you think has great potential?

NC: Most definitely. One of the tools is a brand new Opta statistics API. At first glance it’s very compelling but the more thought that goes into how it could be used, pre-game and in-play, the more attractive and beneficial it becomes.  We’re encouraging product managers, engineers and architects to take a good look at the uses we’re presenting, but also to delve into the technical detail and get creative in how the tool could help achieve their goals.

There’s similar potential to get creative with our other new products and features, particularly those in our livestreaming service. These are going to be key ingredients in some amazing new experiences.

If I had to name one ‘easter-egg’ feature specifically to look out for, it’d be the Selection Assistant. This is part of our new stats API. It’s come from our innovation team and it’s such a clever way of distilling a vast database into something meaningful.

EGR: Is this what you mean by your theme “limitless options”?

NC: There are so many ways operators can use the products we’ve built, as they’re available within our hosted Content Player or via APIs for custom integrations. Strategically, we’ve taken what we are good at, which is collecting, processing and distributing data and video at scale, and we’ve thought about what operators are good at, which is building brilliant experiences for their customers.

We’ve built and will continue to build products and data services that empower operators to differentiate themselves from competitors in a way which suits their customers.

EGR: How does Stats Perform research and develop ‘next level’ products for an enhanced user experience?

NC: It begins with the way the experts in our innovation, product and engineering teams collaborate internally and with sportsbooks. We have excellent relationships with sportsbooks and they’re our first port of call for research and development.

We also have equivalent relationships with broadcasters, publishers, fantasy games, teams and leagues. We’re unique in that sense and it gives us early insights into sports fan needs, and since bettors are fans, that’s a tremendous advantage.

We have extremely popular fan- and bettor-facing properties like OptaJoe, TheAnalyst.com and Soccerway. These provide unique intelligence and testing beds for new products. For example, we refined one of our new products through testing on Soccerway. The latest versions deliver a 6.35 times increase in banner ad performance, which is astonishing.

EGR: What’s next for Stats Perform?

NC: What comes next will partly be informed by the ideas our product launch event inspires at sportsbooks. I’d encourage everyone in sportsbook product, marketing and engineering to watch it.

We’re also into prototype phase with another major new development that will be announced shortly. This uses some of our new products as a foundation layer, along with our AI team’s expertise. Together with Opta’s trusted brand and our unbeatable livestreaming rights, we have amazing ingredients to work with, and it’s an incredibly exciting time.

Stats Perform’s 2022 sports betting product launch event “Light Up Your Sportsbook” is available to watch live on 2 March 2022 or on-demand.

After eight years operator side at Sky Betting and Gaming, PokerStars and Flutter, Nick Cockerill joined Stats Perform to head up betting products at the start of 2021. His prior experience ranges from account services, payments, operational tech and sportsbook product and design.

Artificial intelligence | Data | Launches | Livestreaming | Opta | Product | Promoted content | Sportsbooks | Stats Perform | Technology

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