With the door having closed on 2019, Bet.Works’ Chief Risk Officer Jay Rood took time out to share his views on how the industry will shape up in the New Year and beyond. And the biggest change in gambling trends, as he sees it, will be a broadening of choice for bettors who will look to new sports for wagering entertainment.

He explained: “You will see the betting public start to explore all the other sports on the wagering menu. Football, basketball and Major League Baseball was the draw but I think, for example, golf will be a sport that more and more people bet on. It offers a big bang for your buck and has a tremendous entertainment value as it lasts for four days, and has really good television coverage and good data and digital footprint.”

Rood also offered some cautionary advice for operators looking to make a success in the US in 2020. “As the expansion of sports betting continues we will start to see the product start to take center stage and mature,” he said. “If an operator has a product and customer experience that is lacking it could be the beginning of the end for them.”

Turning to regulatory developments, Rood believes that it will be the education of the powers that make laws and regulations, which will make them conducive towards allowing the sector to grow. 

“They will see the opportunity for taxes and fees, and see the compliance framework that allows legalized sports betting operators to compete thus shifting market share from the unregulated operators to the legal jurisdictions for the benefit of the customer, state and operators,” he noted.

As for Bet.Works’ 2020 plans, Rood said the firm will continue to develop its product offering and look for unique customer experience with our clients in the markets in which it operates. “We will be focusing on our current client base as they have multiple options for new jurisdictions. 2020 is shaping up to be a very active year, with theScore and Elite branded sports betting operations looking towards new states.”

Does the Chief Risk Officer have any sporting tips for 2020? It’s a question he gets asked a lot but stressed that he is a bookmaker, not a betting handicapper, the difference being that he has to offer wagering lines on all the events and the players can pick and choose their spots. 

“A bookmaker’s primary goal is to manage the wagering activity to position the liability to maximize profitability and minimize financial loss by manipulating several factors to do so. This is a big difference from trying to pick ‘winners’ thankfully because I can pick losers with the best of them!

“With that being said, for what it’s worth, I would back Green Bay Packers at 10-1 or better for the Super Bowl. I think they have a pretty easy schedule to close out and could end up with NFC home field advantage as the 49ers have a real gauntlet to run to close out the regular season. I think beating Aaron Rodgers at home to get to the Super Bowl would be tough for any of the competition, such as Saints, Vikings, 49ers and Seahawks.”