Many equate crypto trading with gambling. Seizing this sentiment, two visionaries launched the crypto-centric casino, Stake, in 2017. In a short span, Stake established itself as a significant player, ranking as the world’s seventh-largest gambling entity in terms of revenue.
Outpacing giants like DraftKings, Stake reportedly amassed a whopping $2.6 billion in gross gaming revenue just last year. This impressive figure marked an increase from the previous year’s AUD 1.8 billion ($1.2 billion) and a stark surge from the $105 million noted the year before that.
Behind the Success: Stake’s Founders and Their Vision
Ed Craven, at 27, and Bijan Tehrani, 28, the brains behind Stake, share a bond that traces back to their RuneScape gaming days. Their early venture, Primedice, a crypto gambling platform, set the stage for Stake’s inception. With Craven touted as Australia’s youngest billionaire, their financial feats are undeniable.
Transitioning from Primedice, Stake diversified its offerings to include video poker, casino games, and sports betting. Unique in its approach, it supports transactions in both fiat currencies and a range of cryptocurrencies – from Bitcoin and Ethereum to Dogecoin and Bitcoin Cash.
Attracting High Rollers and Building Trust
Stake’s allure lies not just in its diverse gaming options but also in its targeted big-budget marketing campaigns. Designed to mitigate the skepticism surrounding crypto-gambling, their strategy was clear: assure users of the platform’s integrity. Their efforts to gain trust were especially vital given the periodic uncertainties in the crypto domain.
Stake’s credibility received a significant boost when Canadian rap sensation, Drake, inked a yearly endorsement deal worth $100 million in 2022. Furthermore, his purported Bitcoin gambling win of $38 million on Stake solidifies the platform’s appeal to high-profile personalities.
Key Sponsorships and Collaborations
Further cementing its position in the market, Stake has bagged sponsorship contracts with renowned entities, namely Premier League’s Everton and Alfa Romeo’s F1 team.
While many online gambling portals cater predominantly to regulated markets, Stake stands out. A bulk of its substantial user base, cited at 600,000 by Financial Times, comes from relatively relaxed jurisdictions, primarily in Southeast Asia, Japan, and Brazil.
Beyond its primary crypto operations, Stake has also ventured into traditional gambling realms within the US and UK, albeit on a smaller scale.
Success often invites contention. A recent legal battle saw Christopher Freeman, previously associated with Primedice, sue the founders for $400 million. He claimed a betrayal, accusing them of being deceitful regarding their subsequent business pursuits.
The crypto industry might be experiencing its lows, but for Stake, the gambling industry remains bullish, indicating its resilience and potential for sustained growth.