IMG Arena – one of the world’s biggest sports data firms – has just announced that its virtual tennis product will launch sometime in April 2020. The product has been developed in conjunction with the ATP Tour, allowing logos and official tournament names from the ATP Masters 1000 series to be used.
It’s been described as “an authentic, fan-first experience” and it’s expected to try and fill the live tennis event void that exists as a result of the current global situation. Once the product is live, sportsbooks around the world will be able to take advantage of the turnkey third-party platform. This can be achieved by a simple one-step integration with their existing software. Punters will find themselves able to place bets on a number of bet-types.
Freddie Longe, the current Managing Director of IMG Arena said: “The result is a game-changing product that maximizes player engagement and operator returns. As with all of our virtual sports offerings, we have developed the most realistic look, feel, and betting experience.”
Largely Non-US Focused
Unfortunately, the virtual tennis betting product is unlikely to find its way to most US bettors anytime soon. Despite many states choosing to allow forms of online sports betting, most follow Nevada’s lead in mandating that punters can only wager on live sports events that are governed by a regulatory body.
However, there are some loopholes; Nevada, for example, states:
“A virtual event shall not be approved … unless an approved gaming device is used to determine the outcome(s) and to display an accurate representation of the outcome(s) of the virtual event.”
Other countries – particularly those located in Europe – already enjoy a sizable virtual betting market, and it’s likely we’ll see IMG Arena pushing the product out to these countries. It remains to be seen whether they’ll attempt to penetrate the US market.
Who Are IMG Arena?
IMG Arena was founded in 2012 and aims to bring sport and the sports betting industry closer together. This is achieved using federation services and world-class sports content.
Their expertise includes “the creation and delivery of some of the world’s best sporting content.” This is achieved through their Live Streaming service, their Events Centres and their Virtual Sports products. They’ve also teamed up with Leap Gaming to help distribute their games to a wider audience. This partnership has also allowed their games and technology to penetrate new betting markets around the world.
IMG Arena’s virtual games look the part; they render in crisp HD and are exciting and enjoyable to watch. It’s clear they’ve spent a lot of time developing their new tennis product, and we expect it to be a success – especially in the current sporting climate.