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Entain, the leading global sports betting, gaming and interactive entertainment operator, is to launch a global innovation hub, Ennovate, with a first lab to open in London. Ennovate will invest up to £100 million in innovation projects, start-up investments and collaborations with UK, European and global partners, with £40 million specifically earmarked for innovation investment in the UK.
Ennovate supports Entain’s ambition to be a global leader in interactive entertainment, providing great products and moments of excitement for customers. As media, entertainment and gaming converge, customers expect richer experiences, with greater variety of content, immersive experiences, personalisation and social interaction which increase their enjoyment and engagement.
First technology companies working with Ennovate include Verizon, BT, and Theta Labs, all looking to develop ground-breaking experiences for customers in gaming and interactive entertainment. Not-for-profit organisations are also collaborating with Ennovate, using technology for innovations which bring societal and environmental benefit. All external partners will collaborate with Entain’s own tech team and use the Ennovate Hub to conceive, develop, experiment and bring their innovations to life.
“We want to lead the way with new, exciting products and experiences for customers and use our cutting-edge technology to pioneer innovations in sport, gaming and interactive entertainment for the metaverse,” Jette Nygaard-Andersen, Chief Executive of Entain, said.
“We also want to use our position as a global technology leader to help drive innovation more widely. Working with partners around the globe, Ennovate will demonstrate how Entain’s industry-leading technology can both revolutionise experiences for consumers and deliver real benefits to society,” she added.
Ennovate’s first dedicated innovation lab will be located in Charterhouse Square, Farringdon, at the heart of London’s entrepreneurial tech community, close to the UK headquarters of TikTok and Snapchat. It will host members of Entain’s innovation technology team, working alongside its commercial and not-for-profit partners.
Opening this spring, the location is being fitted out with cutting-edge technology, to create a unique environment for building and trialling new entertainment experiences. These will include developing new entertainment products for the metaverse, a virtual reality space where people will be able to interact in a computer-generated environment.
The centrepiece of this and future Ennovate labs will be an Experience Zone, enabling customers, investors, partners and employees to try out new immersive experiences in sport, gaming and interactive entertainment.
“Our goal is to bring the most exciting experiences in immersive sport, gaming and interactive entertainment to life as the metaverse takes shape. Working with partners we believe we can achieve great things faster, both for customers and to apply these technologies and skills to benefit wider society,” Sandeep Tiku, Chief Operating Officer at Entain, said.