Only a couple of days ago finished a grand reunion gathering all the verticals of the iGaming business – SiGMA. More than 25.000 delegates met to learn, network, and celebrate at the yearly SiGMA Expo event. SiGMA hosted debates, launches, social events, and other initiatives between the 15th and 18th of November.
Due to the Onlinegamblers.com team’s busy schedules, Catie Di Stefano couldn’t attend this event; therefore, I, Liga Tarasova, represented OG on my own. Was it challenging? Was it worth it? Absolutely yes!
This event is always special when it comes to the range of professionals you will meet there. The overall concept is that operations, providers, payment solutions, and game studios (+ more) own a stand, and affiliates and other interests walk around the exposition to find a possible business match.
Typically, operators attract interest by upgrading the booth with creative and fun activities around their products, making the experience more natural and engaging. Opportunities are endless, as you can network with around 25k people, but it is up to you how effectively you will spend the five days of the conference.
At this event, you could also see the prime minister of Malta, Robert Abela. In his speech, he highlighted the importance of conferences like this and mentioned they perfectly reflect the country’s economic and entrepreneurial vision. He also stated that the government is proud of the growth of the iGaming sector, and it is committed to further enhancing it.
My experience at SiGMA Europe
I booked some meetings with products of interest to discuss the potential value specific solutions can bring to OG. After the scheduled appointments, it was fascinating to walk around the floor and meet new people passionate about their innovative and creative products.
This way, you can meet people and learn about different solutions that you might have normally missed. In some scenarios, the companies are small start-ups but with enormous ideas and prospects, so this type of networking is perfect for widening your horizon regarding opportunities for your business.
The highlight of the conference was meeting people I recognize from LinkedIn and just seeing names of the industry people I know but have never met in person.
Another highlight was the launch party for Octoplay. You needed a special invitation for this one, and your name had to be on the list. It was held at Infinity by Hugo’s and had a great atmosphere, free drinks, and plenty of industry people attending. Octoplay is all about fast games and fast integrations. Octoplay is a new game provider led by the old team of Red Tiger and NetEnt (now Evolution).
It was very special to meet some old colleagues across the industry. As I was away from the industry for almost two years, catching up with some people who were used to being part of my life was wonderful.
*I also had the opportunity to meet Maria Florides at Sigma finally. With a broken heart, the team of OnlineGamblers.com learned about her passing just days after meeting her in Malta. Our heart goes to Maria Floride’s family and loved ones during this difficult time. Her passion for the industry has helped a lot of people. OG team sends condolences to her family and may Maria rest in peace.
Suggestions for new attendees
After booking the ticket to the SiGMA, explore the event’s agenda. There are varied panels, speeches, award shows, and parties, so you don’t want to miss something important. Networking is always key when it comes to conferences.
Additionally, due to the high number of attendees, ensure you understand the event map beforehand. This time no indications were showing on booths, so you had to follow the map (online or an actual paper floor map) to find a code for the booth. For example, BR324 marked a game studio you wanted to attend, so you had to understand the sides of the expo building and the topography of the event before you could find it. I must admit, there were times I got totally lost just because of this.
On top of this, I would recommend booking meetings outside of the conference venue. You can organize meetings in the business centers of Malta, such as St Julians, Sliema or the new Birkirkara business center. This way, you can see the island more and skip the heavy traffic back and forth from the conference. In the evening, joining activities happening around St Julians will be easier.
Finally, don’t forget to get a little “me time” and a well-deserved sleep among all the fantastic social activities. You won’t miss anything as there is always something happening. The event is a proper beehive, so you must prepare for hectic days full of socializing and planning.
More about SiGMA
Founded by Eman Pulis, SiGMA is the world’s leading hub for everything involving the iGaming industry, such as regulation, responsible gambling, and even marketing related to the sector. From casino to land-based to even crypto-betting, the summit brings together operators, providers, IT experts, innovators, entrepreneurs, and investors from all stripes together for three days of panels, discussions, keynote speeches, workshops, and a wide variety of fun and engaging networking events.
With SiGMA expanding into other areas through verticals in digital marketing (Affiliate Grand Slam), emerging technology (AIBC), and medical technology (Med-Tech World), the SiGMA Group as a whole has proven itself as a rising star in several industries, uniting the best and brightest in several leading economic sectors with incredible growth potential.
Agenda for SiGMA 2023
- January – Nairobi
- March – Dubai
- May – São Paulo
- July – Manila
- September – Limassol
- November – Malta
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