The world’s largest gaming event, ICE, held annually in London, will go transatlantic next year.
The brand had its first taste of the North American sphere of gaming influence this year with its ICE Sports Betting USA in New York (November 27-28), and that sold-out event was used as the launchpad for a fully-fledged omni-channel gambling event.
ICE North America will be held in Boston, Massachusetts, from May13-15, announced the ICE owners, Clarion Gaming. It will transform the sports betting event into a “five verticals” show encompassing sports betting, igaming, affiliate marketing, ilotteries and esports.
The decision was taken after “close consultation with stakeholders active in North America,” said Clarion. The company’s managing director, Kate Chambers, said: “Following the US Supreme Court ruling, it has become clear that there's a need for a professional and, most importantly, a trusted platform to help drive the future of gaming across the continent.
“ICE North America will serve as a stakeholder meeting place and provide the opportunity for brands to establish a competitive advantage in what is a tremendously dynamic market filled with opportunities and cross collaboration across all our five key areas of focus.
“ICE is recognised as being the most respected event brand in the gaming space and has all of the necessary credentials and energy to be at the heart of the development of the industry in North America.”
Chambers had unveiled the iPioneer campaign, taking place at ICE in London in February, highlighting the new ground being broken in the sector. The hugely successful ICE Sports Betting USA and before that GiGse, she said, had evidenced a dynamic approach to Clarion’s US endeavours.
“iPioneer,” she said, “will also translate to the learning opportunities we can offer delivering more ‘how to’ sessions, helping pioneering companies to showcase their brands and connect with the best of the best from the multiverse of sports betting and interactive gaming.”
Industry leaders were quick to praise the initiative. Benjie Cherniak, managing director of Don Best Sports, said: “The ICE conference in London remains a ‘go to’ event for the global gaming industry that is circled on the annual calendar of everyone in the space.
“Expanding the scope to now include the US market makes perfect sense at this juncture as ICE is a brand with the credibility to attract a wide range of stakeholders including not only the usual suspects such as operators, suppliers and platform providers, but also legislators, the investment community and the professional sports leagues."
Initial figures for ICE Sports Betting USA show 650 gaming industry professionals attending.