Online sports books are everywhere. Alas, a new bookmaker takes our tough questions as we ponder “Just What the World Needs, Another Sports Book…”
Whenever a sponsor signs on at The Daily Spread and commissions us to run their banners, we always suggest alternative ways of promoting their sports book.
Due to the witch-hunt mentality of the Department of Justice, coupled with their ‘Never-ever lost’ undefeated record in the courtroom, its understandable that many sports book owners would be hesitant about divulging personal information concerning their book’s ownership.
However, the reluctance of most sports books (and handicappers) to consent to an interview with us makes them look especially guilty. Other than their identity, what are they hiding? Why are they so cryptic in their correspondence?
For the first time ever, someone has agreed to our format:
- We send the subject a list of questions
- After answering, we send a list of follow up questions
- The subject may answer any questions they like, but no questions will be omitted, or otherwise edited from the final publication of the interview
- The subject is sent a final copy of the interview and the opportunity before we publish.
Finally, someone has agreed to participate in a lengthy, in depth Q/A session with the aforementioned ground rules.
Any other sports book interested in participating a Q/A session with us, feel free to e-mail thedailyspread.com
thedailyspread.com: As I look around the Internet, the rotation/schedules, and everywhere else, the first thought that comes to mind is ‘Just what the world needs, another sports book’.
How do would answer such a statement – or basically – what makes your sports book different?
wagerstreet: That’s funny and also true, there are definitely a lot of offshore sportsbooks out there, and I guess the world truly does not “need another sportsbook”, at least not another sportsbook that is using the same antiquated software, or offering the same betting options.
What makes our sportsbook different is that we have spent a lot of time and money developing our own unique Internet sportsbook software and betting interface, and also will institute a multitude of betting options such as in game and interactive betting all available online.
Our site programmers to put it bluntly are geniuses, and we believe that anyone who visits are site and tests out our software will agree.
tds: Where are you located, and what kind of barriers did you encounter in opening your facilities?
wagerstreet.com: We are located in Kahnawake Mohawk Territory, which is in the province of Quebec in Canada. It is sovereign land and is governed by its own set of laws and legislation, it is not easy to setup shop here and unlike Costa Rica sportsbooks aren’t given the same license as the hot dog vendors.
We are subject to an intensive background check, and large fee that insures we would be able to meet the stringent requirements of the Kahnawake’s, and Mohawk Internet Technologies (MIT).
As far as technological barriers are concerned, we could not be in a better place unless you count silicon valley. Our servers are hosted by Mohawk Internet Technologies (in accordance with the Kahnawake Gaming Commission), and are connected directly to the backbone of the Internet giving us in essence a limitless amount of bandwidth, everything is redundant including power supplies and generators, I don’t expect our site to experience much downtime (if any) barring absolute disaster, and our site comes up we believe faster than any other sportsbooks, unless you count SportsInteraction which is also on the Mohawk reservation.
Other benefits to our location include superior telephone service, as well as the ability to send out payments and receive deposits in an efficient manner because of our North American location.
tds:: What are your policies on limits, wiseguys, and the line you deal? In other words – do you enforce the same limits on all players, do you ‘allow’ wiseguy action, and how many different lines do you deal and will the line on the Internet be different than the line I get if I call you personally?
wagerstreet.com: First off we only deal one line to all our customers, the same goes for our limits, our live lines are on our site for the public to see, as are our limits. We will not discriminate between sharps and squares, you will not ever here of us refusing to pay anyone, we are adhere to the motto of old school bookmakers: we book, we pay.
In addition, We will definitely welcome wiseguys as we feel that wise action allows the sportsbook to not only iron out its lines, but also increase volume which in my estimation is the key to running any successful sportsbook, who knows if a guy is good enough I may play a few of his plays as well LOL.
We also do not agree with the philosophy that some sportsbooks have that in essence will not allow some customers to place wagers on certain events. By that I mean if a user has already bet the limit on a side or total, that user will be in essence “locked” out from betting that same side or total over the net. At the same time however the sportsbook is eagerly taking wagers on the same side or total from other users, this scenario will never occur at wagerstreet, as we are not only confident in the security and checks and balances of our Internet system, but also in our ability to book all comers within our specified limits.
Our software allows our customers to also in certain instances bet “over” our limits pending approval. For instance if our limit on an NBA total is $500, the user can opt to wager any amount over the limit, on the net (as long as he has sufficient funds in his account). The customer simply inputs the amount he would like to wager, and the software alerts the customer that the bet will require approval, he would then have the option of lowering his bet or submitting his wager to the approval queue, our line manager will then make a decision as to whether or not we will accept the bet, the user can then check the “status of his request” by clicking on the status link, it is truly a fantastic option that is unique to our system, as a bookmaker and line manager I couldn’t have asked for a better system, there is really no reason for a customer to ever place a wager or conduct any business with us over the telephone because our site handles it all, and does so much quicker and easier than you ever could over the telephone.
We do understand that some of our customers will want to place wagers over the telephone and we do have clerks and a multitude of 800 telephone lines to accommodate those players. Ultimately though we are an Internet sportsbook first and foremost and once our customers experience how easy and efficient it is to place wagers from our online system we honestly can’t imagine them wanting to place them over the phone.
tds: There has been much talk of so-called ‘bonus abuse’. In a famous case, a online casino actually seized a reported $130,000 from players that were running scams on the proprietor by signing up under different names to get multiple bonuses. What is your policy on this?
wagerstreet.com: Our bonus policy is quite simple, we will give new users a 10% sign-up bonus, however in order to receive the bonus amount from a withdrawal the following conditions must be met:
The user must roll his account over twice “bet 2 times the initial post up deposit”, and, keep the money in the account for 30 days.
Obviously a user may withdraw his initial post-up money, as well as any winnings at any time, however if he intends to withdraw the bonus portion as well he must have met the above two requirements.
Bonuses are only available to one user per household, and under no circumstances will we issue a payment to anyone other than the account holder (or to another sportsbook in the account holders name). Our bonuses are intended to reward new customers, not give a free crack at 10% to those who bet both sides of a game and collecting the bonus juice, that is our bonus policy.
tds:: Tell me more about the Interactive Wagering. It looks like a direct rip-off of World Sports Exchange’s Interactive Wagering. Is this a situation of ‘Good Artists Copy, Great Artists Steal’, or is there something you offer here that I am missing?
wagerstreet.com: Rip off is a bit harsh, however WSEX was the first and only sportsbook to offer this style Interactive wagering, and we felt that their was a large enough market to support competition for this style of wagering. When we sat down with our sportsbook designers we made a list of all the features of the various books that we liked, as well as some features of our own.
tds: Tell me about your software. It certainly looks unique – why did you decide to develop it yourself instead of using one of the ‘sports books in a box’ packages offered by companies like Unified Gaming, Starnet or Cyberroad?
wagerstreet.com: Our software is unique, there is absolutely nothing that even comes close to it, the problem with going with one of the “boxed” packages is that as an owner or manager you have absolutely no ability to add features that either you or your customers want to add, with our site if a customer wants something changed or a feature added, we can accommodate them ASAP.
Also to be quite honest there was virtually no “boxed” software that we feel is even half way decent, you mentioned if the world “needed another sportsbook” and we feel that our sportsbook is a nice addition to an otherwise crowded marketplace, it surely would have been cheaper to buy a boxed solution, but we felt that we would had to spend an enormous amount of money or give away the house in bonuses just to get people to sign up with us over some other book that was using the same software. In the end the decision was obvious, if we wanted to become a major force in this industry, we had to develop our own software if only to differentiate ourselves from the competition.
Custom design of software also allowed us to add features like allowing our customers to place as many wagers on as many different games, all for different amounts on the same page, the user can them confirm al the wagers with one click. You can literally place 30 bets in a under a minute. One thing you will not find on our site is graphics or useless information, basically wagerstreet doesn’t expect that our users will want to research games, read articles on sports, or look at pretty graphics on our site (no matter how scantily clad the ladies might be), and thus we will not offer any of those features. What we will offer is a clean betting interface that loads extremely fast and is very easy to use, and more bang for your wagering buck.
We also allow if bets, parlays, teasers, and buying points also online, and we have implemented other features like a community betting market, interactive wagering, and in progress wagering, in the future we will have WAP (wireless application protocol) wagering so users will be able to place bets via cellphone, palm pilot and other WAP devices.
tds: How does the ‘In Progress Wagering Work’? Do you offer this on all games, or just selected TV matchups?
wagerstreet.com: Basically the way the our “Live In Progress Wagering” works is that we will always offer it on “big game” events such as Monday Night, and Sunday Night Football, and other premier events, the way “In Progress Wagering” differs from the Interactive setup is that rather than using a share price, we will simply update the line or price in accordance with the game situation and score. The problem with “Interactive share price wagering” is that once you designate a game as your Interactive selection you must allow the wagering to continue throughout the game, and if the game is a blowout the action pretty much grinds to a halt.
With our “In Progress Betting if a game is a blowout, we can always switch over to another game and hang a line up for it, this is especially true on Saturday and Sunday afternoon during football season.
Also the way our system will work is that we will have a page or sub-menu dedicated to “In Game Betting” and we will be consistently adding lines on games as they are in progress. This will allow us to put up lines at the end of a quarter rather than wait for the half for football games during the period and inning intervals etc. we will even put up lines during a stoppage in play or time-out in certain situations.
The way a user keeps abreast of all our “In Progress Wagering” events is to click on the “In Progress” Menu, and then keep that page open in his browser, the user can then select how often we wants the page to “refresh” in essence alerting him to new in game lines and props, he can then choose to make his wager on that game, and complete the process in a matter of seconds, its truly revolutionary.
tds: What about your ‘community wagering’? I read that the UK based site flutter.com received 43 million in venture capital funding by such U.S. powerhouse investors like Benchmark Capital and Chase Manhattan Bank. Is your concept similar?
wagerstreet.com: Well we didn’t get 43 million in VC funding if that’s what you mean, but to be quite honest I am not sure how their concept works, the way ours works (or will work) is that we will allow our users to place offerings on any events that they want to, and if another user decides to take them up on their offering they have a bet (provided both parties have sufficient funds in their accounts), we will then pay out the winnings to the winner after collecting a small commission.
tds: Take away all your ‘gimmick’ wagering concepts (Interactives, Community Wagering, In Progress Wagering, etc) and tell me why the average sports bettor should sign up with you?
wagerstreet.com: I am not sure that any of those offerings can be described as “gimmicks” but to answer your question as to why the average sports bettor should sign up with wagerstreet, the answer is that we will offer as many if not more betting options than any other book (gimmick or not) pay out promptly (next day via courier) 2-3 days via regular mail, have extremely reliable software and a lightning fast Internet connection through MIT. We also have a polite and courteous staff ready to serve the bettor, and besides we are just what the world needs, another Internet sportsbook.
tds: How can you be reached?
wagerstreet.com: Obviously we can be reached if anyone has any questions about our features and feels that they want to speak to the manager personally feel free to give us a call and ask for Bob.
tds: Thanks for your time and candor.
thedailyspread.com | September 20th, 2000