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Orchadia Systems launches new gaming platform to drive recovery of retail betting on the high street

© Roger Blake

The hard hit retail betting industry is set to stage a recovery thanks to the UK’s accelerating economic rebound, and a new gaming platform launched by Orchadia Systems which is aiming to bring transformational change to the sector.

With retail betting going through a transition and as customer habits change, the inefficiencies in the industry are becoming unsustainable. But thanks to a new gaming platform that is using state of the art artificial intelligence, video analysis and ID detection technology, inefficiencies could be a thing of the past. Orchadia Systems’ latest technology is providing betting shops a cost effective, scalable, and flexible solution that tackles head on the concerns of rising expenses and the socio-economic effects of gambling. And all this in a far more COVID secure and compliant environment.

As more customers opt in to gamble online, high street betting shops have struggled to catch up with new customer expectations such as instant payouts while at the same time working to promote enjoyable and controlled gambling to reduce the challenge of addiction. This is all against the backdrop of rising costs for staff, media rights fees (to show the events customers are betting on), and regulatory compliance.

Betting shops’ inefficiencies also extend to ambiguous betting slips, underage gambling attempts and anti-money laundering measures. 

Orchadia’s digital platform will help retailers avoid the myriad of problems such as illegible handwriting and inaccurate betting slip submissions that mean time and money is spent verifying winners in an inefficient manner. Similarly, the machine-orientated approach sees KYC (Know Your Customer) problems are removed as cameras in each machine can catch potential money launderers and underage gamblers before they use the betting shop to commit a crime.

Ochadia Systems’ automated solution could reduce the running costs of a betting shop by over 50%. In one case, exemplified in a trial in a BetXS shop in the Republic of Ireland, operating costs were reduced by over €11,000 a month from €19,000 to between €7,500 and €8,000 per month.

An in interview this week, Orchadia Systems CEO Colm Finlay said, “The betting shop is home to a business model that has not changed throughout the rise of the internet and digital connectivity. And in many ways, that’s an admirable testament to the betting shop’s place in British and Irish culture. However, this business model is at breaking point, with potential new customers preferring to place bets online and costs of attracting and training employees, broadcasting events for people to bet on, and paying for papers, stationery and utilities, now becoming prohibitive.”

With operating costs firmly on the minds of retail betting businesses, there’s a renewed drive for innovation and change that can help to reduce overheads while building better experiences for customers.

“Orchadia Systems’ secure, scalable and flexible platform has the potential to save shop owners thousands in operating costs and breathe new life into the betting shop,” concluded Finlay.

“The gambling industry in the UK and Ireland has taken some seismic hits by the COVID pandemic and the decline of the high street” said Orchadia Systems’ Len Bartlett. “With online gambling on the rise, expectations of the customer have changed to the point where it’s becoming harder and more expensive for bookies to satisfy their customers. Orchadia Systems has the technology and the determination to halt the slide.”

“We are absolutely confident that Artificial intelligence and automation is the answer to most of the challenges the modern bookmaker faces. By adopting a solution that can supply all the information a customer may need, make the placing of a bet safe and easy, pay out any winnings, while detecting criminality at the same time, betting shop owners can drastically reduce their costs and spark a revival in their fortunes and the retail gaming sector as a whole.,” concluded Bartlett.

As the high street emerges from a prolonged period of lockdown, businesses need to adapt by leveraging new technologies and finding cost savings so that they can thrive in the years ahead.

For UK and Irish betting retailers, there’s a big opportunity to change business models so that they are aligned to evolving customer habits.