The lines between gaming and gambling online are becoming increasingly blurred. As both gain global acceptance a key market, the US, is still cautious with online gambling and has been regarded as the holy grail for real-money gaming companies. An Australian company, VGW, has raced ahead have found a validated model to legally reach US players.
Laurence Escalante, Founder and CEO of VGW is bullish about the company’s position. “VGW has created the world’s first, legal, US-wide, real money online casino platform that has been approved by both Facebook and Paypal, the world’s largest social network and online payment platforms. This places us as a first-mover in the massive US market with the ability to generate considerable revenues”
Targeting the Open US Market
VGW operates inside the world’s largest social network, Facebook. Facebook has among the strictest criteria for acceptance of gambling, gaming and lotteries and VGW has had their model validated by one of the biggest companies in the world. “Facebook and their lawyers officially approved our Sweepstakes business after three weeks of due diligence on our model, business and legals,” said Mr Escalante. “This was followed by approval from Paypal for payment processing which historically have not processed online casino payments.
This has seen the company have its first profitable, cashflow positive week in September hitting US$15,000 in daily gross revenue for the first time. The notable part of this is that 99% of revenues have been from the US. “The largest revenue producing states are California and New York. This hasn’t ever legally happened in the US before VGW and we are the first to achieve this.”
Primed for rapid growth
The next phase for the company is user acquisition and retention. Facebook ad targeting and promoted posts have allowed VGW to reach high-value spending players. Once in the VGW ecosystem, players have maintained their use, with stable recurring revenues and extended player lifetime. “This retention has been the most significant factor in us being able to generate an effective user acquisition ROI and allowed us to scale our revenue base.”
In July, the casino site had been completely rebuilt to be significantly faster, and able to scale to 200,000 Daily Active Users. Reaching this benchmark would make VGW a significant market player on the radar of gaming giants in the US and Asia.
Future-proofing the company
With this aggressive expansion planned, the company has taken steps to have the right team with the expertise and influence to capital on its market position. VGW has an ASX-experienced CFO and strengthened the board with two online casino veterans from multi-billion dollar gaming businesses – Mansion Group, one of Asia’s largest online gambling groups, and Harrah’s Online Caesar’s online real-money casino.
This corporate development provides investors with additional comfort when approaching the company. “VGW is currently closing a $3 million round from Asian and Australian investors. We have had sufficient support and demand for a $10 million follow-on round from US investors”, said Mr Escalante.
VGW is targeting a NASDAQ listing in 2015. “Funds raised from the IPO allows us to extend our presence in US, Canada, UK and Western Europe. This provides a platform for creating significant shareholder value through strong & reliable cash flows on a global scale.” Investors are invited to participate in next phase to capitalise on this opportunity.