iGaming USA: The Fight for Consistency, with Chris Oltyan, CEO of Compliable

The excitement generated by multiple states opening up in the US is unmatched anywhere in the gaming world. However, new opportunities bring new challenges and now US operators are looking for solutions to keep their offerings consistent from state to state.

Many industry commentators have likened each American state to being its own country, with its own framework and set of rules. How can operators best manage this? Is it possible to ensure equal levels of success in every new state they enter?

We spoke with Chris Oltyan, CEO of market-leading compliance agency, Compliable. He gave us his thoughts on how best to approach multiple US state penetration, ensuring your brand is fully compliant and agile enough to respond to the constantly evolving regulatory landscape.

As regulatory jurisdictions around the globe become increasingly fragmented, how does this impact multi-jurisdictional operators and their ability to maintain a consistent offering across different regions? How can this be better managed going forward?

“The area I’m best placed to comment on is the issue of employee licensing, which has quickly become one of the biggest challenges faced by operators during this period of explosive growth in sports betting in the U.S. Each state has its own list of rules and requirements which makes the process both complex and laborious, with employees having to fill out vast forms and compliance teams having to monitor all of these and ensure accuracy amidst the ever-changing regulatory landscape.

“This problem effectively gave birth to Compliable. Our scalable platform allows employees to securely enter their information just once, with the data then being auto-populated across multiple forms making it simple to apply for different jurisdictions. This not only clears up the licensing picture for sportsbooks, but it also dramatically reduces the time it takes to get employees licensed across different states.”

As states across the US continue to open up, speed to market has become a priority for operators. Is this something that Compliable can help with going forward? How?

“We are in the middle of the Olympics but there is another major race going on within U.S. sports betting. When new states open, speed to market is essential and will ultimately determine the winners and losers. However, one of the biggest blockers can be licensing as the different rules in different states create major headaches for compliance teams to ensure all employees, vendors and affiliates are licensed properly.

“Compliable solves this problem, accelerating the process of moving into new states. For one of our largest sportsbooks customers, we managed to reduce the licensing process from five weeks to three days, and across the board our customers have reported a 91% reduction time in submitting license applications. As I always say, there are two people in this life, the quick and the disappointed!”

What role does technology play in the compliance process? How can it be best leveraged by operators?

“Licensing is a terribly complex, time-consuming and draining process for operators, vendors and affiliates. After we discovered the issue, we realised we had to build a fully scalable, flexible technology platform that could solve the problems the biggest compliance teams were faced with, those managing hundreds if not thousands of licenses.

“Fortunately, the reaction of the industry has been incredibly positive, and we’ve been able to secure some significant funding which has enabled us to hire more engineers and data security specialists. We are learning all the time thanks to a collaborative approach with our customers which is informing the way we shape and evolve the platform.

“As one of our clients said: ‘Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night stressed out about licensing…then I remember Compliable and go back to sleep.’ If we can make all compliance teams sleep easy, we will be doing our job properly.”

Managing the relationship between operators, regulators and affiliates can be a complex and sensitive process. What impact do these relationships have on compliance and how can they be better managed going forward?

“Navigating the minefield of licensing in the U.S. is an unenviable task. Some states require occupational licenses which can be a real pain as operators need to make sure firstly that they are properly licensed but also their vendors and affiliates. In fact, we found out that for some operators, answering questions on behalf of vendors and affiliates, as well as guiding them through the complex landscape, was using up to 40% of a compliance team’s time. Compliable removes all of that hassle, guaranteeing vendors and affiliates are licensed properly without having to hold their hand every step of the way.

“We have strong relationships with regulators around the country because, ultimately, they realize our platform has been designed to help reduce workload, streamline the licensing process and improve accuracy. Sports betting in the U.S. has brought a lot of opportunities but also many challenges, and that applies to regulators too. When you combine the boom in online sports betting with what has been a terrible year for state budgets, regulators are chasing their tails to get everything up and running – and start getting those all-important tax dollars coming through the door. We look forward to continuing our work with regulators during these really exciting times for the industry.”

Editor’s Note:

From speaking with Chris, it’s clearly a very exciting time in the US region. The boom in online gaming has followed closely behind what was a tough year for the entire economy. This means the appetite for iGaming is not likely to slow down anytime soon but it also means regulators will be eager to get those well-needed tax dollars in as soon as possible. This has created an atmosphere of urgency and brands are moving as fast as they can to take advantage of these market opportunities. Tackling the issues of compliance and administration is a key aspect that can be laborious and time-consuming. In an environment where timing is everything, partnering with a 3rd party supplier like Compliable has the potential to streamline your operations and free up vital resources. Enabling you to concentrate on a quick and successful launch, in your hunt for the American Dream!

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