On July 5, 2023, the South American Football Confederation (CONMEBOL) granted Sportradar exclusive audio and video (AV) and betting data rights, which will enhance the accessibility and engagement of South American football (soccer) for a broad and demanding global audience.


Sportradar, founded in 2001, is a leading global sports technology company creating immersive experiences for sports fans and bettors. Positioned at the intersection of the sports, media and betting industries, the company provides sports federations, news media, consumer platforms, and sports betting operators with a best-in-class range of solutions to help grow their business.


In September 2021, Carsten Koerl, founder of Sportradar, and basketball star Michael Jordan, investor in the company, rang the opening bell at the NASDAQ Stock Exchange, marking its first day as a listed company. This milestone confirmed Sportradar’s leadership as partner of organizations like the ATP, NBA, NHL, MLB, NASCAR, UEFA, FIFA and Bundesliga, with which Sportradar covers close to a million events annually.


We talked about the iGaming industry to Mateo Lenoble, Sales Director LatAm at Sportradar since 2015.


Sportradar’s core business is to provide data for sports betting. What does this mean?


At Sportradar we collect data from sports events. And, with those data, we produce odds, dividends, and information, which we send to bookmakers. Sportradar provides the information at the core of bookmakers’ activities; we are the ones behind them. We do the work that nobody sees. When you go to a website, you see all sports, all matches and games being played, and all odds prices. Well, all that information is the one sent by Sportradar.


Movies like Moneyball and the current boom of bookmakers reveal that data and statistics are at the core of sports. How do you collect the information from different sport events?


Data collection is a cycle that starts with pre-match odds. So, someone goes to an online or physical bookmaker and bets before a game or match starts. From then on, bets are taken and odds shift depending on which market gains strength. If, for instance, too many bets are placed in one market, it is necessary to price up another market to balance them; all this is prior to the game or match. Then we have the live game or match where we have a scout, who is watching the event onsite, or on TV, if aired with no broadcast delay.


The scout transmits real-time information on what is going on. This information reaches an operator in Montevideo, who, with such information from the live game or match and the market, calculates odds pricing. This information feeds itself with data from bookmakers while users place real-time bets. As the different actions take place, bets are balanced. When the game or match ends, bets are closed. At that time, the statistics of the game or match are analyzed and the odds are calculated for the next game or match of those teams, also with the corresponding stats. That is why I say that the cycle feeds itself. Pre-match, live, results.


In which sports organizations do you participate? Do your services reach all Latin America?


The fact that our main office is in Montevideo does not mean that we only work for Latin America. We work with organizations across the world, and we have over 20 offices worldwide, including 4 live operation centers: one in Montevideo, two in Europe, and one in Asia. From these live operation centers we send odds to all markets.


You just mentioned the importance of having no delay during live sports broadcasts. For a technology company like Sportradar, which are the benefits of working at ZONAMERICA?


We chose ZONAMERICA for several reasons. To start with, the tax benefits offered by ZONAMERICA are attractive for companies working with customers abroad. Secondly, the stability of the services provided at the park. As you well pointed out, Sportradar is a technology company. So, support and data and Internet quality are critical for our development. The services and reliability of ZONAMERICA provide certainty not only to Sportradar, but to our customers, as well.


Why did you choose Uruguay to establish in the region?


On account of talent. Human resources in Uruguay are highly competitive, qualified, and multilingual. All our employees have command of both Spanish and English. Support is first given in English, so this is vital for us. To tell you more, compared internationally with different Sportradar offices, the results and outcomes obtained in Montevideo are very good. That is why the company started with 10 people and currently has more than 340. Also, it is worth mentioning that we first started with only two departments: pre-match and live betting, and today the company has more than 10 departments for different products.


Which are those departments?


We have pre-match, live betting, and monitoring. The latter is in charge of analyzing the quality of the information fed by scouts. This is very important, scouts are the first contact point with live betting and we have to make sure that the information is correct. We also have a program planning team, which assigns each operator and scout which game or match to work with and to cover, respectively. One of the most important departments of the company is the one related to Integrity. At Sportradar we are committed to detecting match-fixing to safeguard sports. Those first affected from match-fixing are our customers, so, we have to protect them.


Which are your extension plans for the future?


In 2019 we designed our new offices, and moved in 2020, with the peculiarity that the pandemic-related measures started on the day on which we were supposed to move. So, we had to postpone the opening of the office. We plan to expand because the office was conceived for 250 people, and today our workforce exceeds 340. We have to define whether the expansion will be within the same office space or by getting new offices in Zonamerica. What leaves no room for doubt is that Sportradar grows steadily year after year.


Where is the industry headed to?


I would say that the most remarkable thing is the investment in AI. This is very attractive to bettors and our customers. We are investing in the creation of Netflix-like betting websites. When signing up to this platform, the system knows where you are located and what is then trending in Uruguay. After watching a couple of movies, Netflix makes recommendations based on your preferences, actors, movie genres, directors, etc. We are already using this type of AI-based procedure for bookmakers. From the moment of signing up, bettors receive trends for the country where they signed up. Then, after the first bets are placed, the system starts to understand users’ preferences. From then on, the system is capable of suggesting options that best fit users’ choices. Artificial intelligence is not a forward-looking promise, but present reality at its purest, and companies are heavily investing in it.