Interview with Tony Plaskow from Black Cow Technology
“Go with your gut-feeling and always take good legal advice!”. We caught up with Tony Plaskow from Black Cow Technology to get to know a bit more about The Open Gaming Architecture.
Hello Tony, hope you are keeping well in this festive season?
Very well thanks!
How did you come to enter the online gaming space and set up your company?
I set up the first odds comparison site, Easyodds.com, with a friend in late 1999 which went live in early 2000. Since then I’ve worked at IGT, Bally and now Black Cow Technology and Pixiu Gaming (an egaming consultancy with Kelly Kehn).
I set up Pixiu Gaming in July 2015 as it felt the right time to stop being part of a rigid, limiting, hierarchy and start to focus on driving exciting projects where I can make a material difference.
Alongside Pixiu I am also Commercial Director of Black Cow Technology which is a software company set up by Max Francis (ex-OpenBet for 14 years) that offers The Open Gaming Architecture (OGA) – a very flexible and efficient game server framework with a game development kit.
Can you tell us a little about how your company business is structured?
Pixiu is a full service consultancy primarily focused on helping companies develop and distribute exciting new services and content into the egaming space.
Black Cow licences its game server software, OGA, for use by games developers for distributing their content (as an RGS) or for operators/platforms to enable games to be easily built onto an in-house game server they directly control.
How do you think technology is driving business forward? What are the little secrets that help Black Cow Technology in innovating yet again?
Technology in egaming is slowly starting to make the difference between operators and platforms apparent as those that have invested and understood the importance in technology have progressed passed those still using legacy, monolithic systems.
OGA is built entirely using open-source software (Python on a Postgres database) and is borne of years of direct experience of game servers from both a technical (Max at OpenBet) and commercial perspective (Tony at IGT and Bally etc). Actually OGA is built in such a way that it pro-actively encourages innovation by decoupling the features and functions of casino games from the core platform supporting the games. We believe OGA is significantly more advanced in this respect than other game server offerings in the market.
What make Black Cow Technology? What do you have that will make you succeed that some of the other companies maybe don’t have?
OGA is unique in the way it is built and how it operates (as shown above). We have looked at, and worked with, all the existing game server systems in the market, learning their frailties, and developed something materially better.
Technically we have a software framework that allows developers to build casino games more efficiently and rapidly than any other platform available. OGA also offers the only true Game Development Kit functionality allowing multiple developers to build directly onto the platform remotely and concurrently. OGA, by its very ‘Open’ nature, is also a perfect platform for our partners to develop and test their own Platform Features and Functionality which is increasingly becoming as important as good games for success.
Commercially we are a pure B2B software partner which is also very different from most companies that offer RGS’ in that we do not host, manage or licence our own RGS – we provide OGA to our partners and support them in running THEIR OWN RGS’. Their success is our success.
Which markets do you focus on and do you see any potential in the emerging markets?
We don’t specifically focus on any market but we currently have deals in play in Canada, the US, Europe and Asia so there’s no real regional difference in terms of demand. Black Cow is offering game developers and operators a very different proposition than has previously existed – the opportunity to licence RGS/game server software where you own all the IP and which allows for genuinely innovative game development and platform functionality development.
What challenges and opportunities has the move to mobile presented you with?
As a software platform we are agnostic to the end-media which delivers the content and features developed onto OGA. As a general point the move to mobile has, of course, changed the way people design and deploy games content but OGA supports all that readily.
Are there any other exciting plans in the works that you can tell us about?
We have some very exciting deals to announce (once the ink is dry on the contracts!) and we are very excited to have gone live with our first partner, The Games Company, at the end of June. Watch this space!
What is the main thing that you’d like SiGMA readers to know about your business?
We want people to know we operate in a very honest and transparent manner, working in a genuinely mutually beneficial way with our licencee partners.
What two pieces of advice would you give to any entrepreneur starting today?
I’m not sure I am best-placed but probably go with your gut-feeling and always take good legal advice!
Do you play slots and what would you do with 1 million Euro from jackpot winnings?
I play sometimes, I prefer craps and poker. If I won a million I would give a chunk to charity, buy an investment (a flat or house probably) and blow the rest on a big party.
Are you ready for SiGMA17?
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