We hope you had a restful and celebratory holidays with your friends and loved ones. The new year of 2019 has already gotten off to a fast start, and BetProtocol is hitting the ground running. In this post we’d like to recap a bit on the accomplishments of 2018, update you on our 2019 roadmap, and present our vision moving forward.
2018: The Year of #BUIDL
BetProtocol emerged from discovering just how hard it was to startup your own online betting application. We searched and searched, and there was literally no “Shopify” or “0xProtocol” for launching betting applications. Things had to be done from scratch, licenses had to be obtained, an expensive backend had to be built, and hundreds of thousands of dollars had to be spent.
The reason for this state of affairs was fairly simple: Compliance and backend processes are hard. Those who managed to jump the hurdles use that barrier to entry as a competitive advantage. They build brand recognition, traction, and a large client base: Another silo reaching for the sky. Everyone building vertically; hardly anyone building horizontally.
Blockchain and smart contracts on Ethereum allow us to standardise compliance and automate backend processes while drastically cutting the costs associated with them. We took a step back and asked ourselves: Wait, what is blockchain actually good for? It can’t just be a fancy marketing term and a fundraising tool, right?
Turns out blockchain is great for eliminating the need for replicating a lot of work that has already been done. It’s great for automation through smart contracts that just work given a set of inputs and triggers. It’s great for compliance and enforcement for the same reasons. Most importantly, it’s great for building standards, for building horizontally.
We looked out at our blockchain based betting competitors, and we saw them doing the exact same thing as operators in the legacy space. They were all building vertical silos. We strive to be different. We strive to build horizontally, to be the substrate.
2018 in review:
- BetProtocol Whitepaper & Website launch
- BetProtocol Alpha and Proof of Concept
- Casino white label development
- Secure Seed Funding
- Key hires
In 2018 we really focused on getting our initial idea down on paper, and then adjusting it to solve the problems we saw in the market: high-barriers to entry, high backend costs, heavy compliance burdens, and thin margins.
With these problems in mind, we then asked ourselves: How can we solve them, or at least diminish them to the maximum, while using blockchain, smart contracts, and our services?
BetProtocol’s Alpha and Proof of Concept were built based on these questions, and after months of development and iteration, we had something resembling a rough protocol MVP. In addition, our first use cases of Casino and Sports Book began development, and the smart contracts necessary for those games began to take form. The feedback we received from early brand partners and advisors was to get a Casino product under development right away, because that’s what the market wants. So we began focusing on that.
In terms of usability and player experience, we realised that the end user really does not care all that much about gaming “being on the blockchain” for the sake of just being on the blockchain. What they really care about is a smooth and enjoyable gaming experience — free of lag, long loading times, and failed txs due to latency issues. We realised that not everything was able to be ported completely to blockchain systems due to the nature of the current limitations of blockchain and Ethereum.
What needs to be handled via API and microservices was built to support as decentralized a structure with blockchain and smart contracts as possible. A balance was struck, and we had created something that was both fast and sufficiently decentralised to ensure fairness and transparency.
In 2018, we also looked at all of our main competitors in the blockchain based gaming market, and sought radical differentiation.
For a full breakdown of how we are different from our competitors, please see our Whitepaper, Competitors section.
I’d like to point out here that we are wager currency agnostic, with the caveat that we will use only the most liquid cryptocurrencies as the betting currencies (ETH to start, then Bitcoin and Stablecoins as they mature). Our competitors use their own tokens as the wagering tokens. The problem with this is relatively straightforward: How am I going to fund a $50 million dollar sports book or casino on them, if their coin’s market cap is less than that?
In 2018 we also launched our website and shot our introductory video:
Securing seed funding allowed us to make some key initial hires on the development and sales fronts, and we are in a great position moving forward to hit our goals in 2019.
Our Vision for 2019
To become the one-stop shop B2B provider for blockchain backend gaming services. This means BetProtocol will provide to its operators:
- Integrated solutions for payments, deposits & withdrawals
- White labels for Casino and other popular gaming genres
- Platform-wide KYC
- APIs for odds, events, and other microservices
- Reporting & Risk Management
- Integrated Back Office
- Developer Support & Documentation
2019: Our Roadmap
- BetProtocol Website refresh (Q1 2019)
- BetProtocol MVP deployed on Ethereum Testnet (Q2 2019)
- Apply for gaming licenses in select jurisdictions (Q2 2019)
- Casino white label MVP open beta (Q2 2019)
- Development of Sports & Esports betting white labels (On-going)
- Key Hires: Developers, Sales (On-going)
- Token Generation Event (TBA)
- BetProtocol deployed on Ethereum Mainnet (Q3 2019)
- On-boarding of first operators (Q3-Q4 2019)
How YOU can get involved:
We are looking for talented developers: frontend, backend, full-stack, blockchain, and distributed systems. If you are interested in joining our team, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Are you a forward thinking brand that wants to get into the world of blockchain based gaming? Send an email to email@example.com
2019 is shaping up to be a huge year for us. We are thankful that you are here and for your continued support.