"Think Global, Act Local" - An interview with Marga Fernandez, Sales Director at MGA
The importance of localization and MGAGames entrance into the Portuguese market is in focus this week when we've chatted with Marga Fernandez at MGA.
Marga Fernandez, Sales Director at MGA
Hi Marga! Thanks for giving us the opportunity to chat with you! Could you please tell us a bit about yourself and your history in the casino industry?
It’s a pleasure to have this chat with you. I’m Marga, Sales Director at MGA GAMES, a company based in Barcelona. We specialize in slot games for the Spanish Market but we also have a huge presence in Latam. Colombia, Mexico, Argentina, Peru, Chile are some of the countries where you can find our games already.
As for myself, I did start in the gaming business in 2011. I was supposed to have a contract for 1 month but I’m still here. My first company was CIRSA DIGITAL. My colleagues and I started the project CIRSA DIGITAL that nowadays is SPORTIUM. In 2013 I joined ZITRO INTERACTIVE and went from the operator side of the business to B2B. My experience there was very nice, but sometimes you need new challenges, that’s why I joined MGA GAMES in 2018. I’m glad that I have experience from both the operator and the developer side, as it really helps me in my daily work.
What’s the MGA vision and what it is like working at MGA?
Think Global, Act Local, this is our vision. Localization is the most listened to word in the company. We develop specific products for each jurisdiction. Graphically appealing and technically perfect. We are constantly designing new products to amuse and excite players through their content, prizes and ease of use, but we never lose sight of the need for maximising operator profitability. We have a passion for launching the highest-quality online games into the market, simultaneously offering swift and impeccable technical support and after-sales services to each and every one of our clients.
MGA have a really long experience of entertaining gamers and gamblers through offline machines, handheld games and online slots. How would you describe your company’s focus throughout these areas and what synergies are there?
MGA as a company was founded in 1976, based in the landbased side of the business. MGAGames was born with this knowledge of the gaming sector. And that was the main secret. We have been able to bring the Slot bar machine to the digital world with great success.You can play in a bar or in a casino and 5 minutes later you can play at home at the same machine.
How would you describe the main differences between the offline and online market?
The big difference is when you want to play. The immediacy. In the offline market you always depend on a casino, or sportsbooks shop. Online, you can play any moment, and at any place.
According to our data you’re the highest ranking game provider in the Spanish online market with a lobby share of over 12,5%. Really impressive!
Nowadays, In Spain we hold the 74% of the market share and the 16% GGR of the total for slots in Spain… not bad! The main reason is the localized product of course.
Our slots3 reels are based in the same land based machines that you may find in a bar. Plus, we are very lucky with the collaborators that we have in the games. Our IP is very well known In Spain. A good game with a good IP is a success for sure. Of course, the slots5 reels are performing really well too. Using Branded Names allows us to go ahead in the Spanish market along with the videobingo that’s very popular in Latam.
How do you feel that the competition in the Spanish market has changed during the last years?
The big change is the amount of competitors that you can find in the market. There is a high amount of products. And most of the product is quite good. For us this is a challenge. On one hand we have to improve the product, and on the other we have to give the operator the best after-sales service.
What other markets are you working extra hard to please and how would you say they differ from the Spanish market?
As a company, we want to be present in different countries, but the regulated markets are our main target as we like to do the things well done. Next step is Portugal, we are working hard at this moment in order to have the best product for this market. But each market is different and has its own characteristics. What may work in Spain may not work in Portugal. For this reason we have the word Localization in mind when we talk about the product. And this works for all the other jurisdictions where we are planning to launch, like Italy, Denmark, Germany, etc.
What upcoming titles do you have in your pipeline and why should we be stoked about them?
I can’t tell you the names of the next titles, but what I can tell you is that they are going to surprise the players. As always, our partners are very well known in Spain. And now that we are going to have our Portuguesse Celebrities in our pipeline I’m sure they will not leave anyone indifferent.
Personally speaking, which of your older releases do you enjoy the most?
I guess that my favorite will always be Chiquito. Our first slots3 reels that opened the door to this fantastic Spanish Celebrities that has brought us so many successes to MGA GAMES.
Are there a specific MGA slot that you think had a big impact on you as a company when it comes to revelations or learning?
I think Chiquito opened the way to a new type of slot, but in each new slot we try to improve our product and technology, so we never stop learning!
Which of your competitors do you think have released the most impressive games recently and which of their strengths are you the most inspired by?
Actually, we try not to get inspired by other competitors. We want to be different and unique, the inspiration has to be found at home.
But with that said, I think that the Megaways feature is quite impressive.
What specific game trends do you think we’ll see more of in the Spanish market during the coming years?
At this moment it is quite difficult to talk about the game trends in Spain. Of course slots, roulettes, and betting will be on the top.
Thanks Marga for the chat! Would you like to say something to your fans or future employees before we say goodbye?
To MGA GAMES fans: I promise that the new slots will entertain you more than ever. For future employees: Working at MGA is one of the best experiences. The company cares about us and we are like a big family. It sounds like a topic… but it’s not!