Eman Pulis: “Belgrade is fast becoming a hotspot for innovation”

Eman Pulis, CEO at SiGMA Group.
Eman Pulis, CEO at SiGMA Group.

Eman Pulis, CEO at SiGMA Group, granted Focus Gaming News an exclusive interview to talk about the latest edition of SiGMA Balkans & CIS in Belgrade.

Exclusive interview.- The latest edition of SiGMA Balkans & CIS was a success and to talk about this edition that took place in Belgrade, Focus Gaming News spoke with Eman Pulis, CEO at SiGMA Group, about the expo and shared his thoughts about Belgrade as the next iGaming hotspot.

“We opened our doors to over 2,700 delegates, many of whom flew in from across the globe.”

Eman Pulis, CEO at SiGMA Group.

What balance do you make of the latest edition of SiGMA Balkans & CIS? What about the feedback of the attendees and exhibitors? 

Belgrade is a great city with a lot to offer to the gaming industry. This was our first event in the region, and we were blown away by the warm welcome we received. 

As always, networking was a top priority, and we made sure there were plenty of events happening throughout our time there that paved the way for investors, operators, and affiliates to connect. Going by the packed expo floor, fully booked networking events, and well-attended conferences, our delegates definitely enjoyed the event.

Which were the highest points of the summit? Did you enjoy any conference in particular?

In addition to our usual agenda, we did things a little differently this year. We were really excited to be partnered with Centurion FC, who hosted a thrilling MMA fight on the second day of the SiGMA Belgrade summit. For the first time in SiGMA history, we held the weigh-ins for the fight during the expo, which made for a really exciting moment on stage. 

We had a really diverse series of conference topics, with discussions spanning everything from regulation to the metaverse. This really opened up opportunities for delegates to leverage the benefits of cross-pollination and to explore new niches such as web3 gaming.

What can you tell us about the attendance? Did it fulfil your expectations?

Absolutely! We worked hard to curate a list of high-level attendees to ensure we maximised our exhibitor ROI. Exceeding our expected numbers really shows the future success this high-potential region can continue to reap as a hub for iGaming.

Why was it important to bring the expo to Belgrade?

Belgrade is fast becoming a hotspot for innovation, drawing plenty of companies to its shores through its impressive reserves of talent and business-friendly policies. We’ve also successfully opened an office in Belgrade – so where better to launch our first Balkans expo than Belgrade?

Do you think the Balkans is the next iGaming hotspot?

It’s certainly on its way to becoming one, with the region attracting a lot of interest over the past couple of years. Plenty of activity on the regulatory front is helping this region get the attention it deserves, while an ability to provide a rich source of talent certainly makes it attractive to businesses looking to set up shop.

You also held SiGMA Awards Night celebrating the best of the industry in a record-breaking evening where you raised €19,000 for charity. Why are these awards so important and what can you tell us about the art auction? 

Through our charitable arm SiGMA Foundation, we are committed to supporting those in need through fund-raising activities, charity and education. We have a number of projects up and running, including the construction of a school in Ethiopia.

The Philippines will also factor into the foundation’s plans with the implementation of a solar power system to benefit remote locations, and the provision of €20,000 from SiGMA Foundation’s yearly target to improve surrounding amenities.

Closer to home, the SiGMA Foundation will look at social responsibility in Malta, with the intention of creating a social arm for the local scene, primarily addressing loneliness.

Our auction relies on generous donations from artists and patrons around the world. Our Belgrade auction was proud to display artworks from Malta-based British artist Derek Mason and from digital artist Gnomeevil. 

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