iGaming North America 2016: Online Poker, Daily Fantasy Sports and eSports on the Agenda

I will again be attending the iGaming North America (iGNA) conference next week April 5-7 at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas, Nevada.

It is an interesting time in igaming, last year the big story at the conference in my opinion was daily fantasy sports (DFS). Now with the turmoil that has rocked this sector I am waiting to see what new developments are communicated as there are several DFS panels on the schedule.

Of particular interest is the panel titled “Power Session: DFS 2.0” featuring Joe Asher, Joseph Bunevith, Daniel Wallach, and Seth Young. The majority of these experts participated on a panel at last year’s G2E conference which was one of the most informative and entertaining that I attended. We can only hope for the same here as there will be some vocal and passionate opinions on the stage that do not always agree with each other.

Another hot-topic that could mirror the excitement of last year’s DFS is eSports. eSports and betting on it is an explosive industry and iGNA has two panels on this growing segment. One of the sessions has Rahul Sood, former GM of Microsoft Ventures and current CEO of eSports betting service Unikrn. What is the growth possibility, and risk, for operators looking to break into this sector?

There has also been recent news and developments in online poker with PokerStars going live in New Jersey and the alleged insider trading allegations against Amaya’s CEO.

While legalized online poker has still been slow to gain momentum there are some interesting sessions I am looking forward to on this subject. “Player Ecosystems, Part 2 – Growing Traffic and Doing Right by the Players” has Ed Miller, Jimmy Fricke, and Steven McLoughlin. It is always interesting when iGNA has professional poker players, Jimmy in this case, involved in the conference to provide their thoughts. This time he is joined by Steven who has years of experience in igaming and noted poker authority Mr. Miller. They will be discussing what can be done to grow online poker and Jimmy will be providing some of his opinions on keeping players happy. Timely with some of the recent changes Poker Stars has been making to their rake structure which has not been well received by players.

Also on that topic is the “Executive Panel – The New Deal” session which features PokerStars and Amaya Vice President of Corporate Communications, Eric Hollreiser and Michael D. Cohen, SVP, Corporate Development, General Counsel, Caesars Acquisition Company. The topic will be the competitive ecosystem of online poker. This one should be interesting.

I am looking forward to another great conference, it is still not too late to join me as registration is still open.