GVC Holdings Wins Trio of Honors At 2018 EGR Operator Awards

GVC Holdings Wins Trio of Honors At 2018 EGR Operator Awards

The annual EGR Operator Awards took place at Grosvenor House in London on October 25, and was attended by more than 800 iGaming operators hoping to snag an award in one of the many different categories featured at the so-called “Oscars” of the egaming sector.

Making the biggest splash at the award ceremony, however, was GVC Holdings, the parent company of partypoker, which ended up scooping a trio of accolades, including Operator of the Year, Casino Operator of the Year, and Poker Operator of the Year. After receiving the awards, GVC Holdings referred to 2018 as a transformational year for the company having successful migrated the bwin.party platform following the company’s purchase in 2015, and having completed the Ladbrokes Coral acquisition in March.

“To complete one merger in this industry is bold, to take on two is truly brave and that GVC have managed to pull it off and emerge with all brands stronger as a result is a truly impressive achievement. And success has been widespread, with all online divisions contributing strongly,” explained the GVC statement.

Partypoker Named Poker Operator of The Year

For the second consecutive year, partypoker was named as the Poker Operator of The Year, beating out tough competition from both the Stars Group and Kindred Group to take the award. According to the judging panel, partypoker had demonstrated that it truly understands its customers, and had stitched together a “real mixture of improving the product and customer interaction” in order to devise an extremely successful overall strategy.

Post Black-Friday, partypoker had languished in the doldrums for years and experienced a dramatic slowdown in its momentum and market share. In 2015, however, the brand was taken over by GVC, which then managed to turn around its declining business after implementing a massive overhaul that has since helped the site restablish itself as a top online poker destination capable of competing against the likes of PokerStars and 888poker.

Instrumental in the site’s transformation was the appointments in 2017 of Mike Sexton as Chairman of partypoker, and John Duthie, the European Poker Tour (EPT) founder, as President of partypoker LIVE.

Customer Friendly Changes

At a time when poker sites, such as PokerStars, have spent millions developing their other gambling products, partypoker has remained true to its roots and has stood out as a brand whose primary focus still remains poker.

Under the direction of Chairman Mike Sexton and Managing Director Tom Waters, partypoker was subsequently able to implement massive changes which resonated with its customers, including to its VIP program, online poker software, and live poker tour. It has since been acknowledged as the most friendly poker site in the market, with its growing popularity reflected in its first-half results for 2018 which had grown by a staggering 36% versus the same period in 2017.

As a result, partypoker is now GVC’s fastest-growing brand, beating other products in its portfolio including the likes of Coral, bwin, Ladbrokes, Eurobet, Betdaq, betboo, gamebookers, Crystalbet, and sportingbet. Expressing his delight at having been recognized as Poker Operator of The Year for the second year running, Tom Waters stated:

“Everyone in the team has worked so hard to get partypoker to where it is now and we are excited about how we can now take it to the next level.”

2018 EGR Operator Award Winners

Other egaming operators and affiliates also winning awards at the prestigious ceremony recognizing the industry’s top performers over the past 12 months were as follows:

Casino Affiliate: Gambling.com Group
Esports Operator: Pinnacle
Fantasy Sports Operator: Boom Fantasy
Slots Operator: William Hill
Employer of the Year: Sky Betting & Gaming
Sports Betting Operator: bet365
Game of the Year: Lightning Roulette (Evolution Gaming)
Mobile Operator: William Hill
Socially Responsible Op: Sky Betting & Gaming
Rising Star: SuprNation