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Interview: Kamagames CEO Andrey Kuznetsov Provides an Insight Into the Project

Interview: Kamagames CEO Andrey Kuznetsov Provides an Insight Into the Project

Q: KamaGames is well-known in gambling circles. Why don’t we start with its background? Can you please share some information about the company?

A: The first thing that we should point out is that KamaGames is not a gambling company but is, in fact, a social casino operator.

There are very clear differences between social and real money casino games including motivation to play, psychology and mindset while playing, the objective a player aims to achieve and ultimately – what they define as “winning”.

KamaGames is the biggest social mobile poker operator in Europe, and it’s one of the fastest growing operators in the world. The company was set up in 2010 and employs over 250 staff, Its corporate headquarters is in Dublin, Ireland, and we also have offices in London and Dubai.

Pokerist is our flagship title. It has won numerous awards and has been the #1 grossing app in 101 countries on the App Store and one of the top 5 grossing apps in 45 countries on Google Play.

We announced a gross profit of $57.5 million at the end of 2017, an increase of 63% from the year before. We also saw a rise in as the number of Daily Active Users (DAU) to 530,000. The first half of 2018 improved on these results, with DAU increasing 2-fold in H1 2018 compared to H1 2017 and gross revenue growing by 53% in the same period from the already strong base of $57.5 million in 2017.

Q: How is KamaGames different from plenty of other poker operators and casino platforms over the internet?

A: We have two main competitors in the social mobile poker space, Zynga and WSOP/Playtika. Zynga is the market leader in the genre; while WSOP/Playtika has similar social mobile poker numbers to KamaGames.

It’s true that Zynga and WSOP poker games follow Classic Texas Hold’em rules and use casual gameplay, as we do. However, our own poker product, Pokerist, features these points as well as some additional, unique features:

Multi-Table Tournaments – We are the first social casino operator to launch Multi-Table Tournaments, also known as MTT. It’s a very complex feature to develop, so has only ever appeared in real money games until now. We’re very proud of MTT, and it has generated some great results since launch.

Unique Party Modes – Last year KamaGames introduced Poker Party modes, which are essentially the classic game of poker but with unique twists added. These Party modes offer a unique style of gameplay and their own set of rules designed to give players a more fun and casual gaming experience. They have proven immensely popular with our players and we offer at least one Party mode every week.

White Label & Partnerships – Of the developers mentioned above, KamaGames is the only one to offer B2B partnerships. We are working on several unannounced partnerships that we’re not free to talk about yet, but we already have some very fruitful ones in operation already including, Poker Night in America (US TV show), Poker Champions in partnership with Yoozoo Games India, as well as the Tango and Viber instant messaging platforms.

Q: What is the benefit of KamaGames social casino games over others?

A: In addition to the unique benefits listed above, we believe that we engage with our players more than any of our competitors. We provide players with new content, features and other updates regularly to keep them engaged at all times.

We have MTTs, multiple Party modes, and frequent updates, plus we also have a solid engagement cycle of quests, hosted themed events and also hold a number of player tournaments every week.

We also hold all of our different games within one app which makes it easy for players to seamlessly hop from one to the next, maintaining their friends list, chip balance etc.

Q: Where do the blockchain and upcoming token sale fit in?

A: Over the last few years we have had more and more players asking if they were able to buy chips with cryptocurrencies, so we decided to look into what the potential options were and how viable it would be. As a leading social casino operator, we are constantly looking for new ways to improve our games and innovate within the social casino industry. In fact, we recently won the award for “Innovation in Social Casino” at this years EGR Marketing and Innovation Awards in London.

At the same time, we’re always trying to offer something new and exciting to our players, and the launch of the KamaGames Token (KGT) is a perfect example of this. This is a great opportunity to not only thank our players but to also show how KamaGames is passionate about embracing new technologies.

The strategy for KGT is that we are actually implementing a marketing/promotional campaign to attract new players and to reward our existing ones. Our players are given the opportunity to buy our in-game currency, virtual chips, at a more lucrative rate and to also receive additional bonus chips during the first 6 months. This is not our way to raise funding and we are not looking for any form of investment, the KGT is simply a “proxy” to purchasing KamaGames’ virtual currency.

Q: What are the different blockchain implementations to be incorporated into the platform?

A: We are using the Ethereum platform for creating the token, but not within the game. Occasionally, we are asked why our games are not decentralized and why it can’t mimic blockchain more closely. There are numerous reasons why we cannot make our social poker decentralized.

Firstly, we need a much higher transaction and computation speed than blockchain tech can provide at this time. Our games, especially Pokerist, have tens of thousands of simultaneous players and handles all of their interactions instantly.

This is something that blockchain technology can’t currently handle.

Secondly, there are commissions we would have to pay for using an external blockchain.

Thirdly and possibly most importantly, if we move our random number generator (RNG) to the blockchain, it would make the games easier to predict and decrypt. We pride ourselves on making fair, secure and entertaining social casino games, and right now, decentralizing would jeopardize the qualities we value.

Q: How much are you planning to secure through the token sale? What will it be used for?

A: KamaGames tokens will be limited to $25 million and based on sales so far, we fully expect to sell out ahead of time.

The generated revenue will be used as revenue is typically used by a company – company overheads, staff costs as well as future product development. This is not a fundraising exercise in any way as we are already very solvent. This is another source of revenue for us.

Q: There have been mentions that the KGT token sale is different from an ICO. Can you please elaborate on that?

A: There are a few important things to clarify when it comes to the KamaGame Token sale:

  1. We are not looking to raise any funds from investors
  2. We will not be distributing any tokens to the KamaGames Team
  3. Tokens will not be listed on exchanges
  4. Tokens will only be redeemable for in-game currency
  5. This is a supply of services on which VAT is paid, in fact, we are the first in the world to do so during the sale of utility tokens.

For the avoidance of doubt, this is a Token sale to KamaGames’ new and existing players. So this is not an ICO. An ICO (Initial Coin Offering) is an unregulated means by which funds are raised for a new cryptocurrency venture. It is used by startups to bypass the rigorous and regulated capital-raising process required by venture capitalists or banks.

In an ICO campaign, a percentage of the cryptocurrency is sold to early backers of the project in exchange for legal tender or other cryptocurrencies, but usually for Bitcoin and Ethereum.

The main differentiating factor in what KamaGames is doing is that the company is not looking to raise funds and is not looking for any form of investment. The KamaGames Token is simply a “proxy” to purchasing KamaGames’ virtual currency (chips) at a significantly reduced rate.

Q: What is the current status of the project? Can you share the future roadmap for KamaGames’ project?

A: Currently, we are at the Closed Presale stage (which offers 25% bonus tokens), which will be followed by the Presale stage starting September 24th (with 20% bonus on offer) and then the Sale stage on October 8th which ends on November 12th.

Q: Tell us more about KamaGames’ partnerships and collaborations

A: KamaGames has a number of partnerships and collaborations in place at this time which includes:

  • Poker Night in America is a game based on our own flagship title Pokerist, which has been developed in partnership with the US TV show Poker Night LIVE on CBS Sports Network. For the second year of the partnership, we launched a major update to the app including a number of new games, modes, and other additional content.
  • Poker Champions in partnership with Yoozoo Games, India has adapted Pokerist’s unique look and feel to appeal to the specific Indian gaming audience, combined with Yoozoo’s expert knowledge of the region and its marketplace.
  • A partnership with Tango and Viber instant messaging platforms have made our games available via two immensely popular messaging platforms. In fact, Pokerist has been downloaded over 1 million times on Tango, which enjoys a large customer base in the US, Canada, Mexico, and India. Viber has over 664 million users, across 193 countries.
  • We partnered with The Yogscast, a hugely popular platform on Twitch, for a number of Pokerist-themed videos.
  • Our most recent partnership is with Huawei. We’ve added our portfolio of social casino games to the Huawei AppGallery platform which is a standalone app store exclusive to the company’s devices. This is really exciting for us, as Huawei is a huge brand worldwide, having sold 153 million devices in 2017 alone.

Q: Can you give our readers an insight into your team, their expertise?

A: We have over 250 people working for us in offices around the world, so it’s hard to narrow down their individual specialties. Using our Dublin HQ to illustrate, our team has worked in the IT, gaming, legal and marketing industries across the globe with decades of collective experience.

I have served as Managing Director for KamaGames for the past five years and as acting CEO for the past two years. I am responsible for the planning and implementation of business operations across the entire KamaGames group on behalf of the Board of Directors.

Our General Counsel, Roman Abramenko has worked extensively in the planning of international corporate structures and has internationally recognized qualifications in Tax Law, IT Law, and Business.

Sam Forrest, Director of Global Communications & Content, has over 25 years communications experience in the interactive entertainment sector. Throughout his career, he has worked with a wide number of well-known global entertainment brands including Disney/Pixar, WWE, DreamWorks, Nickelodeon, Hasbro, and Marvel.

This team has taken years to build incrementally and is world-class across every department.

I would like to suggest the readers to visit https://www.kamagames.com/ and learn more about the company and our offerings.

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