Cricket betting to rise from the Ashes thanks to Sportradar – part three
In our third and final chat with Sportradar’s Head of Premium Cricket Services (PCS), Charlie Bruce, we look at how knowledge, accuracy and passion sets the foundation for Sportradar’s comprehensive cricket product and how this could see the offering expand across the company’s functions into the virtual, gaming and media spaces.
Q. What sets Sportradar apart from other organisations in terms of cricket data, products and services?
Charlie Bruce (CB): The content is a lot more in depth. Other companies will have about four or five hundred live matches throughout the year, whereas we cover 1,200. Other companies might have 20 markets during the game and we’ll do two or three hundred. Some, when there is a wicket for example, will suspend for a couple of minutes and reorganise their pricing, whereas we’re typically out in under 10 seconds. So there’s lots of little things like that that add up to making it a better service, a better user experience and a better-looking product.
When our first customers began using our service, they were primarily interested in getting a good-looking cricket product, rather than making money (given that they felt you couldn’t really make a profit from cricket betting), so we built our systems to make sure that the experience was as user-friendly as possible, and that’s something we’re really proud of. We realise, when we work with companies, that it’s a big ask for them to invest money in a sport that typically doesn’t do as well with betting. So, to do that, we have to make sure we’re by far the best at every single metric. This is something that we’re keen to do and are proud to provide.
Having said that, the main thing that really sets us apart is the quality of our pricing. Again, cricket betting is incredibly hard. Across the industry the return rate is about two per cent which, given any costs, basically means you’re losing. We’re actually really really proud to get a rate of five per cent now.
The reason we’re able to do that is simply our approach. We’ve got a dedicated team – 10 guys who spend their whole working lives thinking about cricket, watching cricket, trading cricket. The guys that are trading are the guys that analyse our cricket and betting data and built the models. We all love the maths and science behind cricket and our product – no-one likes it if a punter finds an edge anywhere.
We all have a shared passion for cricket and a shared passion for data and modelling. So, when we’re not trading we’re building models, we’re interrogating other models available, we’re discussing the probability of (Virat) Kohli getting a 50, or Anderson taking more than two wickets. To outsiders, they may look at us as a fairly strange bunch, but we are absolutely passionate about how we approach our predictions.
I think that kind of dedication to cricket, and to the oddities that the game of cricket provides, means we can build systems that are just so much more complex than the ones that are already in use. That’s what gives us our accuracy and, ultimately, makes the difference for our customers.
We’re certain this kind of business model is something we can replicate for all our customers. You may find this approach in other industries, but in cricket betting, it’s totally revolutionary and we’re thrilled that we’re currently the only ones who are really offering this.
Q. What is the future for cricket at Sportradar do you think? What kind of products and services could be provided?
CB: We talk a lot to companies in Asia and everybody is wanting fantasy products and gaming products. And this is something we already have the data and experience to provide. It’s just a matter of understanding the needs of the customer and building those products. This is something that’s really high on our agenda.
We’re also in the process of developing a product for media companies. We have some big customers already, like Bleacher Report for example, so I’m sure that will continue to grow.
Things like scouting products for people who want scores too. We’re also starting to build a virtual cricket product.
So, in general, it’s about diversification – using the experience and knowledge that we’ve got, within the current betting part of our business, elsewhere within the business to replicate the same success.
If you would like more information on Sportradar’s cricket betting products and services visit https://www.betradar.com/betting-solutions/premium-cricket/ or to inquire contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.