“Throughout 2023, GLI saw a significant increase in submissions and certifications as demand for gaming increased”

With days away from the end of the year, companies around the globe are looking back and reflecting on the teachings that 2023 has left them, as well as planning for the year ahead. In an interview with Yogonet, Ian Hughes, Chief Commercial Officer/CEO APAC at GLI offers insights into the company’s milestones as well as its experiences throughout 2023.

The executive also shares his opinion on the new technologies that have developed in 2023, as well as the trends that are sure to cause a boom in 2024, particularly the use of AI. The executive believes that “AI will play a greater role in the industry, which will require strong compliance programs around both its technology and governance.”

What is your assessment of the year? What are your main takeaways and highlights from 2023?

In 2023 our mission at GLI was about delivering outstanding customer service and connecting with the industry. Throughout the year, in all jurisdictions and across all markets, we saw a significant increase in submissions and certifications, as consumer demand for gaming increased.

GLI continued to grow to meet industry expectations, and many of the process improvements and initiatives that were developed in 2021/22 were realized in 2023. At GLI, we aligned our engineering and delivery teams on a truly global basis with improved connections using technology. Our Engineering, Compliance, and Customer Service Representatives traveled extensively in 2023, connecting in person with our customers, regulators, and fellow team members.  

Do you think new technologies such as AI will play a key role in the development of products and services in the gaming industry in the next year? Which other trends do you see gaining momentum?

AI will deliver new services and products to the gaming industry and impact existing products. AI has the potential to improve customer service and create new products around anti-money laundering, compliance, reporting, and responsible gaming, which will all impact the customer journey.

Financial technology and regulation technology will gain momentum in 2024 around enhanced KYC, digital payments, and mandatory card play. The increase in data collection through smart tables and similar technologies using biometric recognition technology will continue to grow for compliance, fraud, and marketing.

AI will play an increasing role in this space, which will have implications for privacy and the protection of sensitive data, so governance around the use of AI and data science will be an increasing trend in 2024.  

Given the evolving landscape of the gaming industry in 2023, what compliance and regulatory challenges do you see ahead for GLI’s clients? And how is the company adapting its strategies and capabilities to effectively navigate and address these emerging trends within the gaming sector?

As mentioned, AI will play a greater role in the industry, which will require strong compliance programs around both its technology and governance. We have already seen regulatory bodies established in Spain for the regulation of AI, and the White House, along with the U.S. Department of Commerce, has released regulations and guidelines for the use of AI in certain industries.

GLI has been and is in the process of developing evaluation frameworks for the use of AI in the gaming industry around specific applications such as AML and responsible gaming. GLI has a strong skill set around the data & systems used in the industry, along with a strong mathematics department that forms the strong base to effectively navigate such trends within our industry.

We see increasing use of cloud-based applications and system interconnectivity in which cybersecurity will play an increasingly important role, and our Bulletproof division is ready to help businesses of all sizes navigate this area and successfully address these threats.

GLI's stand at ICE London this year

What markets and verticals surprised you the most in how they developed this year? Which markets do you expect to gain momentum next year? 

Although not a total surprise, the growth rate of sports wagering in the U.S. continued to be a significant driver in 2023, along with online casino gaming growth across Europe. There was also continued growth of gaming in Asia outside of Macau in jurisdictions such as the Philippines.