Although it was a huge year for Xpoint (Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer of the company), Ben Cheeseman, Xpoint’s CPO, will tell you that they are just beginning. Cheeseman talked to SBC Americas to discuss the company’s successes, the markets it is looking to enter, and the future of Xpoint in 2023.
SBCA – Can you start by walking us through the key milestones starting in 2022?
Cheeseman: As we launch our geolocation products earlier in the year, we now have a list of iGaming and sportsbook partners that are available to us in North America. It is amazing to see our team accelerate in just eight months and be live in a new market. Officially launching, Xpoint announced several new partnerships that will allow us to expand our position as a top geolocation provider.
With the start of the NFL officially, the sports betting and fantasy football boom is back. It has been an exciting time for our partner companies as they track the geolocations of their users. That’s incredible for us. This is a huge step forward in our efforts to establish a vast amount of data and get a lot from partners. We are also proving we have the ability to work throughout Canada and the US. Xpoint is not slowing down. We will provide geolocation services to more clients yet to be announced, as well as venture further into North America.
SBCA – Have you had any memorable moments?
Cheeseman: It was incredibly thrilling to see our geolocation products, Verify (for real-money gambling operators) and Lite (for fantasy sports products), live on the market. We had been discussing this concept since 2019, so it was great to get all of the positive feedback and support from the industry. The products changed the way that geo-compliance was seen in the marketplace. Instead of being regulated, they allowed us to create location-based data which can be used for marketing purposes. Our geolocation products were to be combined digitally and physically, making geo-verification more than a utility. We have succeeded in that.
SBCA : This year we’ve witnessed you launch Xpoint Verify & Xpoint Lite. How has that been received so far by your partners?
Cheeseman: Our focus is on building our products and partnerships in parallel. This is why Cheeseman prides itself on being trusted, deeply embedded partners. We have received overwhelmingly positive feedback from our partners about what they offer in geolocation. It’s exciting for Xpoint to be the second incumbent in a monopolized space. This is also exciting for North American iGaming operators because they finally have a choice.
It’s not something that is widely used in this market, but location-based data or location-based Fraud detection are real opportunities and advantages for us. Providers have access to more data that can help detect fraud than any other U.S.-based geo-verification service. As we grow our North American presence, we are constantly improving our tools and systems to assist our partners in using their location-based data to aid fraud analysis. Unlike other services, our partners have the ability to pipe Xpoint data into their own databases, allowing them access all of the necessary information to identify and analyze fraud.
SBCA: What were the most important lessons from 2018? These will help you to plan your 2023 strategy.
Cheeseman: The most important thing for our operators is that players are approved quickly and without any friction by geolocation. It can be frustrating for users if geo-verification fails to or struggles to approve them.
It is important to understand both the consumer and operator needs in order to create a roadmap that addresses them. We believe that geolocation utility can be a conversation and the potential of it. Our goal is to work invisible while understanding the operators’ players and adding value to their business.
SBCA Is there a particular market you see yourself expanding in over the coming months?
Cheeseman: Latin America is one of the fastest growing markets over recent years, with no sign of it slowing down. This is a key area for Xpoint, as providers are beginning to realize the importance of this market.
We are focusing on North America’s next gambling powerhouse and have expanded our North American operations. Our South American business is expanding rapidly and we are looking to expand our team. We also plan on opening our fourth Colombian office. Online sports betting has been established in these countries, so we have our eyes on first. We are already talking to providers about the possibility of forming partnerships in Puerto Rico, once online betting becomes legal.
SBCA: What role has Acies funding played in driving Xpoint’s growth to 2022? What can we anticipate from Acies in the coming 12 months?
Cheeseman: Some of the most influential individuals in gaming have backed our business, and we believe in Xpoint’s bright future. This is a huge compliment to me. We welcomed three new investors this year: Acies Investors and The Raine Group. These investors joined our current investors, Bettor Kapitaland Courtside Ventures. We have been greatly helped by their extensive network of contacts and ability to connect with larger clients. Their trust in our work and their belief in us is a sign that they see real value in geolocation. Since the beginning, our focus has been on strategic investments and not just money. These guys have the best reputation in the market. Their backgrounds are strong and their portfolios are impressive. Xpoint is a great choice for them, which makes it super exciting.
I believe the next twelve months will be big for Xpoint. Our company is now considered a reliable secondary source for geolocation and are in talks with several Tier 1 providers. Our focus now is to increase our market share, and improve our product using live data provided by our partners. We have always believed data is important. In the weeks ahead, we will be announcing exciting partnerships, as well as more information about our product and our overall business growth. As it was, we’re here to stay.
SBCA: What direction do you foresee the geolocation market heading over the next twelve months? Where does Xpoint fit in this picture?
Cheeseman: Sharing data is key to unlocking the value of the player and allowing operators to understand the player. We need to keep silent when geolocation checks are important. Digital and the physical world come together to enable us unlock geolocation, fraud and marketing potentials, as well as customer understanding.
To help answer business questions, we will work closely with operators. As the industry changes, we are also developing more systems and tools to assist our partners in using their location-based data as a means of fraud analysis and micro-geofencing.