Swopstakes wins the 2015 inaugural Innovators’ Circle in Tucson Arizona

swopstakes wins 2015 innovators circle award

Image copyright Scott Jagow and the Paulick Report – http://www.paulickreport.com/news/the-biz/survivor-meets-deal-or-no-deal-racing-game-wins-symposium-competition/

Swopstakes, a racing jackpot based on multiple race outcomes, received a $15,000 USD cash prize for winning the Innovators’ Circle at the wrap-up session of the Global Symposium on Racing & Gaming in Tucson, Arizona on Wednesday.

The inaugural Innovators’ Circle award contest attracted 89 submissions in a process that started in early September 2015. Submissions came from North and South America, Australia, Europe and Africa.

Six Faces Pty. Ltd. Director of Strategy, Shaun Pyrah, presented the Swopstakes product in a Shark-tank style pitch off against an Equine Standing 3D CT Scanner, 20 Wins a Million, and the Thoroughbred Stock Exchange.

In his presentation Shaun declared:

“We’ve looked at the success of Daily Fantasy with Draft Kings, with FanDuel and we’ve said how do we apply that type of model, which is obviously attractive to a market racing isn’t reaching, to racing… That’s why we constructed a game that doesn’t look like a wagering site. It looks like a game. And it’s definitely a combination of Survivor meets Deal or No Deal.”

The three judges of the Innovators’ Circle were John Ford, CEO of BAM Software & Services, Mike Tanner, CEO of U.S. Trotting Association, and John Hartig, Chairman and CEO of the Daily Racing Form.

Dean Hoffman in and article for Thoroughbred Daily news said:

“[Pyrah] presented his idea … a competition offering “life changing prizes, social skill-based game play on real time racing and sports.” Swopstakes is a multiple race wager and Pyrah distributed live tickets to audience members to demonstrate how the promotion works.”

Scott Jagow, reporter of an article in the Paulick Report, wrote:

“A horse racing jackpot game that combines elements of Daily Fantasy Sports, “Survivor”-style pools, and the game show “Deal Or No Deal” won the first ever Innovators’ Circle contest Wednesday at the University of Arizona’s Global Symposium on Racing and Gaming.”

Jagow continued with:

“To give people a feel for the game, Shaun Pyrah of Six Faces, the company that designed Swopstakes, distributed game tickets and offered a $3,000 vacation package as the ultimate prize for a five-race contest.”

Harness Link covered the conference highlights here: http://www.harnesslink.com/News/Aussie-wins-Innovators-Circle-prize

Swopstakes goes to the USA as finalist in Innovators’ Circle 2015 in Arizona

Innovators' Circle logo 2015

Six Faces Pty Ltd has been invited to the Final Round of the Innovators’ Circle 2015 at the 42nd Global Symposium on Racing and Gaming, held in December 7 – 9, 2015 in Tucson, Arizona, to present Swopstakes at the Symposium’s exhibition hall, followed by a pitch-off on the main stage.

Innovators’ Circle is a pitch competition to stimulate innovation in the horse racing industry. The competition consists of two rounds: a Preliminary Round, and the Final Round consisting of an exhibition and a pitch-off presentation.

This prestigious event is a rare opportunity to present our Six Faces innovation to industry professionals and investors.

A Grand Prize consisting of Fifteen Thousand U.S. Dollars (USD$15,000.00) will be awarded to an Entrant deemed by the panel of judges to be the best entry according to the judging criteria.

Apart from the Grand Prize winner, each Entrant presenting their entry/entries at the Symposium will receive a prize of One Thousand Dollars (USD$1,000).

Shaun Pyrah, Six Faces’ Director Strategy, said

“We are delighted to be selected to present Swopstakes in the Innovators’ Circle.    The event offers Six Faces an outstanding opportunity to demonstrate the convergence of social gaming with traditional sports, especially to the major American operators”.

For more information on Six Faces, please contact Shaun Pyrah, Director Strategy, on +61 409 787 263 or [email protected]

SBC News interviews Shaun Pyrah

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Following on our 2nd place in the EIG 2013 Barcelona pitch competition, SBC Business Correspondent Mark McGuinness met with our Director of Strategy to discuss the convergence between social games and real money gambling.

Please see  www.sbcnews.co.uk for the original article.


SBC: Shaun it was a pleasure to meet you at the EiG Start-Up Launch pad. For all our readers can you tell us a little about yourself and why you decided to start Six Faces?

Shaun: Thanks Mark.  I was literally raised on racing & gambling.  For me, and my colleagues, it’s an all-consuming business and passion.

Over the past 20 years we’ve worked in some of Australia’s leading wagering organizations, in areas of retail distribution, sales & marketing, product development, and strategic planning. In that time we’ve shifted from State-run Totalizators and on-course bookmakers to a booming national industry. Instead of slow moving monopolies we now have fierce domestic competition, industry globalisation, and relentless, fast-paced change in technology and consumer behavior. All familiar sounding issues, I’m sure.

After a lifetime as customers, and years of working on the inside, we saw these dynamics as opportunity to pool our experience and tackle some looming industry issues.

For operators, we believe we can deliver insight, product innovation, and sustainable competitive advantage.For customers, and particular a next generation audience, we absolutely know we can build a better gambling and gaming experience.

Six Faces isn’t about shaving 0.5% off operating costs or rationalizing infrastructure and jobs, though we certainly understand and value that stuff. We’ve always admired the sort of innovation and disruption that Betfair introduced, and it’s cracking that next ‘big idea’ that really motivates us, and where our skill set is best suited.

SBC; Tote betting (pari mutuel) is one of the world’s predominate legal forms of gambling. Why do you think it has been slow to adopt change given the competitive threats of other perhaps more mainstream gaming products?

Shaun: I think the industry found it easier to ride self-propelling trends for sports betting and mobile. Tote betting was seen as unfashionable and boring; for an older, hard core generation. Not surprisingly, a subsequent lack of innovation and investment have pretty much kept it that way.

Not that there hasn’t been significant change, simply that the emphasis has been on distribution, price, and promotion. The tougher task of product development has been restricted to basic line extensions: Win becomes Quinella, becomes Exacta, becomes Trifecta, becomes First4 – Doubles become Trebles, become Quadrella, become Pick6. This path has ironically evolved a pipeline of even harder core products, products that completely fail to excite a generation brought up with technology, social media, and computer gaming.

Thankfully ugly is only skin deep, and underneath the jaded face of parimutuel you still have the attraction of high margin, risk free pools. In a price-competitive market, with spiralling CPA and increasing overheads around book and risk management, these have to be extremely attractive attributes. Combine this with the opportunity of engaging a connected, global market of social gamers and we think the time is right to take a completely fresh approach to pool betting.

SBC: You mentioned in your presentation Swopstakes which is an innovative new skill based social gaming product. Who shall this bet appeal to and do you think it bridges the gap between pool betting and gaming?

Shaun: The industry discussion has been largely focused around “monetising social”. This is traditional, operator-centric thinking and an approach that’s already struggled. It’s our view that converging markets require a convergent solution, so we flipped the opportunity to focus on socialising real money gambling – to build the bridge from both sides.

SBC:So where’s the sweet spot?

Shaun: Lotteries have the universal appeal of life-changing prizes but the experience is sterile, with next to zero engagement and outcomes based on pure chance. Wagering provides opportunity for skill and excitement but little or no chance of a life changing prize. Neither have anything remotely resembling real game mechanics or community driven social.

Swopstakes changes all of that.

For consumers, Swopstakes is a completely interactive gaming experience. The results are based on real sports and racing events events with life changing prizes, guaranteed winners, real-time player vs. player engagement, with the combined elements of skill and chance. We were naturally delighted when the cross-segment appeal was validated in an independent research study conducted by Vision Critical. For:

  • lotto/lottery players, it’s a game of chance
  • regular wagering customers, it’s a game of skill
  • analysts and pros, it’s a game of value

In terms of socialising real money gambling we’ve gone beyond ‘like’ and ‘share’. Swopstakes is social by design and incorporates true game mechanics, with the winners, prizes, and achievements, a direct function of the real-time interaction between the player community.

To round out this process of “socialisation”, the underlying platform incorporates a player to player affiliate scheme, gifting, and options for free-to-play and play-for prizes games.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly for operators, Swopstakes is a differentiated offer based on high margin, risk free pools.

SBC: Mobile betting is a big driver in the industry. What’s Six Faces view on mobile gaming commerce as it relates to your own product development?

Shaun; Nailing mobile is clearly critical for all forms of commerce. It is quickly becoming the wagering device of choice – even betting at home and in-store. For future customers it may well be their only device.

Treating mobile as a low cost distribution channel falls short of the target, and the same can be said of early industry initiatives around social. The trick is delivering a stand-out UX that plays to the strengths of mobile, without simply shoe-horning the desktop experience onto a smaller screen.

We’re gamblers, gamers, and big fans of 2nd screen entertainment. We all invest enormous time and energy in understanding the context in which games are played on mobile, and what constitutes excitement and fun. With mobile in particular we focus on value-add entertainment that enhance connection with the under-lying events, and the wider player community. Win or lose there has to be a positive take out for all players, especially if we’re wanting them to play again.

SBC: You have showcased the business at EiG and had a good response from the industry, resulting in the company coming a highly commendable second place in the Start-Up Launch Pad (congratulations), what’s next for Six Faces?

Shaun: Barcelona was our first major opportunity to announce and demonstrate Swopstakes to the wider industry. Feedback was tremendously positive and confirmed we have a unique game offer and truly fresh UX.

We’re currently working towards an Australian launch in Q1 2014, coinciding with the start of our domestic football seasons and the Autumn racing carnival. This will position us for a big push during the World Cup.

We’re also very busy chasing down interest for overseas distribution and investment. Swopstakes is designed and built for a global market and can be adapted to all forms of sports, racing, and fantasy sports. Being pool based the game can scale quickly without the risks and overheads of fixed odds.

SBC: Lastly who came up with your memorable company name of Six Faces ?

Shaun: Glen heads up design & innovation within the company – Six Faces was his concept and we’ve had lots of fun with it. Short answer, there’s six of us, and few us have faces worth mentioning!

 

 

 

Six Faces takes the World stage as a Start-up LaunchPad Finalist at EiG 2013 in Barcelona

Six Faces Pty Ltd, the developer of interactive games for the wagering & gaming industries, has been selected as one of only five start-up businesses to participate in the European iGaming Congress & Expo Start-Up LaunchPad.

Six Faces, which was established in 2012 by a group of wagering industry professionals with over 80 years of combined wagering experience, is the developer of a number of innovative platforms designed to assist wagering & gaming operators, & associated industry participants, to acquire, retain & engage new & existing customers.

Six Faces has 3 core products in the market – Harpoon Tipping, Sling Rewards and Swopstakes, the innovative new Sports Lotto product which brings a whole new level of engagement, interactivity and sociability to real-money betting.   Swopstakes offers customers the opportunity to win life-changing prizes while offering operators real competitive advantage and game-changing revenue.

It was the Swopstakes product, in particular, which grabbed the attention of the Start-Up LaunchPad judging panel, and resulted in Six Faces being selected to participate in this prestigious event.

Michael Russell, Six Faces’ Managing Director, said

“We are extremely pleased to be selected to participate in the EiG Start-Up LaunchPad.    The LaunchPad offers Six Faces an outstanding opportunity to present its products to the wider gaming community, especially the major European operators.   We are confident that our products are best in class and that the Swopstakes product, in particular, will be recognised as a unique, must have platform”.

Six Faces will have the opportunity to pitch its offer against the four other finalists at EiG, which takes place in Barcelona between 8th & 10th October.

For more information on Six Faces, please contact Craig Driver, Director Business Development, on +61 409 811 100 or [email protected]

BetCraft eSports Tipping Official Launch

After the completion of a beta testing phase with participants from leading eSports and software organisations such as Twitch and Blizzard the platform is finally ready for official launch this week.   Enhancement such as player profiles, visualisation of odds predictions, forums and social media integration, we’re ready to open the doors on our free 2 play game challenges.

A full schedule of prizes, both small and grand, has been set to launch from this Friday.

The structure for when and how prizes will be awarded is as follows:

League of Legends LCS NA/EU:

Round Robin weekly winner: $25 Amazon Gift Voucher

Finals week winner: $25 Amazon Gift Voucher
Competition Winner: $100
Competition Second place: $50
Competition Third place: $25

Starcraft 2 WCS GSL KR/NA:

Group Stage winner: $10 Amazon Gift Voucher
Finals Week Winner: $25
Competition Winner: $100
Competition Second place: $50
Competition Third place: $25

Overall Challenge Winner:

If you top out the charts across all eSports you’ll in win a Playstation 4! Even if you’re falling behind in some sports stick in there and keep your average up for the chance at the big prize.

Next Digital partners to provide digital go-to-market strategy for Swopstakes

Six Faces has partnered with Next Digital, one of Australia’s largest full service digital agencies, to develop a comprehensive go-to-market strategy for swopstakes.

Glen Johnson, Director Design and Innovation, described the partnership:

It is really exciting for us to share our ground-breaking new product with an agency that ‘get’s it’.  Next Digital understood that deep challenges in marketing a wagering related product in Australia and met this with a solid methodology to support our lofty targets.  It’s been fun seeing Next Digital’s team embrace our vision and buckle in for the journey ahead.

 

Swopstakes independent research highlights unique features

Our research partner, Vision Critical, conducted a qualitative and quantitative research study on 750 punters.

Vision Critical found that:

  • 83% thought our concept was ‘new & different’
  • 49% would definitely or probably play
  • 62% would play it at least once per week, and
  • that Swopstakes could achieve a 32% share of wallet

Vision critical also stated:

There is clearly good volume potential, especially from heavier customers, who would be looking to play several times a week .. NRL/AFL need to figure centrally as part of Swopstakes, alongside racing.

TipWiz and TipWizPro Launch in February 2013

In February 2013, Racing Victoria will launch its Festival of Racing Campaign.  A feature of the festival will be their Tipping competitions, TipWiz and TipWizPro.  Both competitions are powered by the Six Faces Harpoon Tipping Platform.

Betcraft E-Sports Tipping Platform trial

In a joint venture, Betcraft Pty Ltd and Six Faces Pty Ltd launched the Beta version of the Betcraft Tipping Platform.

The first live competition was conducted on IPl 5 with players from Betcraft and Twitch.TV tipping on who would win each round of the competition.

The markets for tipping, showing odds for who would win, were crowd sourced.  There were some upsets with less fancied competitors winning at big prices.   So, the tipping comp was a close run race with less knowledgeable players winning the competition on the back of upset results.

Glen Johnson, Director Design and Innovation commented:

Underpinning an eSports start-up with our proprietary Harpoon tipping platform represents an early lead in the emerging eSports community development.  We’re very enthusiastic about building an additional experience layer around eSports that can give participants an ability to express their opinions in a competitive and ladder driven platform.

As the space is heating up right now it’s critical that we bring real value to the segment in a format and style that is appreciated by the community.

The trial got a big thumbs up and contributed to Betcraft enhancements that will be in the market over the next couple of of months.

Harpoon V2 due Mar 2013

A new release of the Platform Platform has been released.  It includes new game options for…

  • Last man standing competition.
  • Head to head competitions.
  • Seed prize pools.
  • Improved content management (Upgrade to the blog  ratings  and advertising)
  • Enhancements to player wallet and tip history.