In early April, the 5th through the 7th to be precise, the Planet Hollywood Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas will play host to iGNA, which is the acronym for the iGaming North America conference.
The conference is now in its sixth year, and for the second year, the iGaming North America awards will be handed out as part of the festivities. The iGNA awards recognize the accomplishments and initiatives of the people and businesses in the North American iGaming space.
In the run-up to the conference, iGNA solicits nominations in each of its seven award categories, the short-list of finalists was revealed on Tuesday.
Last year’s winners were:
And here are the finalists for the 2016 awards, along with my best guess on who will walk away with the trophy:
My pick: Resorts
Resorts online casino launched in February of 2015, over a year after the other operators in New Jersey. Yet the company has already crossed the million-dollar-mark in terms of monthly revenue, and is on an upward trajectory that will likely see them pass Caesars and possibly one or more other competitors before the end of the year. A big part of ResortsCasino.com’s success was their multiple marketing campaigns.
My pick: Borgata
Borgata continues to lead the way in New Jersey, topping the states online poker and total monthly revenue charts every month since launch, and at or near the top in monthly online casino revenue. With Golden Nugget taking this trophy last year for its over performance, it seems like Borgata is the obvious choice in 2016.
My pick: Playtika
It’s somewhat uncommon to see repeat winners at industry awards, but Caesars Interactive Playtika is the top social casino platform in the world, and it’s not even close.
My pick: PayPal
With the addition of PayPal the industry is expecting payment processing concerns to lessen, and while the online payment eWallet hasn’t affected this change yet, I feel as if the company’s embrasure of legal online gambling is the biggest development in payment processing thus far.
My pick: FanDuel
This is a tough category to handicap, as the obvious choice is FanDuel or DraftKings. But lost in the shuffle is the approach taken by Star Fantasy Leagues, one of the few DFS operators calling for regulations before the fit hit the shan, and along with StarsDraft, the only company to leave states on their own accord.
Still, I think the award goes to FanDuel.
My pick: NYX Gaming
NYX is another late addition to the New Jersey market, but they’ve had massive success powering Resorts online gaming sites as well as Golden Nugget’s after GN switched to NYX (from Scientific Games/Bally Technologies) in late 2014.
My pick: Flower City Gaming
Since Geocomply won last year, and since neither PayPal or Income Access didn’t make the final cut in this category, I’m going to go with Flower City Gaming/Star Fantasy Leagues, for their unique B2B and B2C DFS and season-long fantasy products.
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