While Latin America is steadily opening up and is full of potential, there’s still plenty to be learned when it comes to appealing, and indeed capturing the interest of LatAm’s millennials.
Ivan Kravchuk, CEO at highly innovative games supplier sits down with Gaming Americas to talk about what it takes to be a success in one of the world’s most exciting growth regions.
Six months into 2021 – what’s the latest for Evoplay across LatAm? How popular are your next-gen games proving to be there?
The last six months have been a productive period for our game development pipeline. Almost our entire games portfolio is now live in LatAm, including top titles from our classic games collection and 20 games that we developed this year. One example of this – Ellen’s Fortune – is now among the continent’s ten most popular real money titles, and we expect plenty more success to follow in its footsteps.
There’s a real surge of interest in LatAm for our games, such as Forest Dreams and Surf Zone, demonstrating the value of disruption and experimentation on a continent where retro themes traditionally perform best.
How much of a change have we seen in playing behaviour compared to this time last year? What patterns are there to analyse and how has that shifted your creative plans?
Having developed an effective strategy that has brought us tremendous success over the past year, we will not be looking to change too much. Our operator partners know what we’re all about, and we do our best to keep excelling at just that. Players are responding well to our offering, so we’ll be continuing with the current roadmap in the coming period.
What’s part of that? Gamification definitely remains high on our priority list, driving engagement by ramping up the entertainment factor to attract the new generation of players. Even our classically-themed slots, therefore, are elevated with high-tech mechanics to provide a cutting-edge experience.
The integration of sporting themes, particularly on a sport-obsessed continent such as Latin America, has also proved to be an effective strategy for retention and acquisition. We’ve got a top marketing team, and a key part of their work is data-driven insights that can identify exactly what we believe players are looking for.
What kind of games do you believe LatAm players are looking for right now? Are there any games in your portfolio you’ve developed with the region in mind?
Players across the globe are looking for entertainment that goes beyond the themes and effects that have become most ubiquitous in our industry – and Latin America is no different. Innovation needs to be more than just a buzzword, even when it comes to the retro slots that perform well time and again.
We’re delivering exactly what LatAm wants – experience on the continent has taught us that players want high-quality, visual designs that can truly stand out. As an Irish-themed game, Ellen’s Fortune may not be the first title that springs to mind when you think of Latin American gambling, but it has performed well on the continent because of its stunning animations.
Evoplay launched its in-house casino engine Spinential last year – how key are products such as these to mitigating regional connectivity issues?
Our branded Spinential game engine has been a key factor driving our success in Latin American markets, where low broadband speeds mean that technical accessibility and speed are essential.
Accelerating loading and download speeds by x10, it saves time and digital storage space, allowing us to make high-quality products which are accessible to the full spectrum of player devices and internet connections.
We are always looking to enhance our proprietary tools and technology, and Spinential is no different. We are currently making improvements to the game engine and will be soon providing our players and partners with a number of exciting updates on its latest technical upgrades.
We’re also planning on incorporating a significant multiplayer element to make our games even more popular with the new generation of players, who have grown up in constant communication with their peers and demand a more social gaming experience.
Looking at a five-year vision for the future – how do you see LatAm developing and what key milestones should we be keeping an eye on?
Latin America is undoubtedly a region that is full of potential. By opening up their gambling markets to legal operators, governments can generate significant taxation revenues and protect local players more effectively. Doing so is therefore the next logical step for those that haven’t already.
In terms of technological trends, multi-channel flexibility, speed and visual designs are the most important determinants of an iGaming supplier’s success in the region. Get that right, and you could be onto a winner.
Last but not least, any exciting launches coming up for Evoplay that we should look forward to?
We’ve got a big announcement pencilled in for the second half of 2021, with a flagship game set to be launched this Autumn along with new iterations of our ever-popular retro title, Fruit Super Nova, which will be enhanced with the addition of even more paylines.
From the first day of its release, the game has been a firm favourite with our fans, including those based in Latin America. So much so, we’ve started to unveil a collection of fruit titles that follow on from the original smash-hit, including the recently launched Fruit Super Nova 40. We’re also preparing to enhance it with a progressive jackpot to ramp up players’ anticipation – so stay tuned for further updates!