Oshi Casino is what I think of as the second generation Bitcoin casinos. Where the first generation were relatively simple ‘hand made’ casinos by bitcoin programmers and the second generation are people from the fiat Casino industry that have moved into the Bitcoin space that obviously have a lot funding behind them and experience in the industry. Oshi Casino falls into the second category; it has a lot of games, that are well designed, the casino is run by a professional team and it accepts both fiat and Bitcoin.
Most of the second generation Casino owners would not be interviewed (yet) so it was nice of Oshi Casino to do this and give some interesting insights into their business! Follow this link if you are interested to read an Oshi Casino Review.
When did you first get into Bitcoin? Can you give some details?
It was back in 2015 and I was thinking about becoming an online casino operator. In order to do that I wanted to start within a niche and the best place to go is where something is expanding, because there’s always flux and therefore it’s easier to find a foothold. Fortunately the bet I made on Bitcoin has proven worthwhile so far.
Where did the inspiration to create Oshi come from?
Previously I used to work in a company called Betfair and then Unibet and in that time I saw how online casinos were principally just the same and I figured there must be some way of introducing product improvements. So, along with the freedoms Bitcoin gives I figured it was worth building a product driven online casino.
How does Oshi make money? What are the numbers?
Being a casino, we have a 3% house edge. Because Bitcoin value have escalated so much over the last year, it’s difficult to use Bitcoins as a means of reference. In USD , it’s typically $30k to $40k month in gross revenue and then we obviously subtract expenses to have net profit.
How big is your team? What do they do and what are their backgrounds?
- CEO: he originally comes from iGaming marketing and manages the overall business
- CTO: he comes from iGaming and manages our whole technology stack
- COO: he looks after affiliate management and general customer operations
- Front-end developer: works on new product development/HTML/CSS/etc
- Recruiter: she helps find resource as and when we need it
- Categorizer: he works through the various casino games, categorizing them and adding them to our systems
- Various translators: we always have a flow of translation work which needs to be done as we expand into new languages etc.
What was the process of turning the idea of the site into reality?
Put simply, it’s been a process of software/product development, along with persuading the best talent I could find to be a part of this whole project. As we’ve all worked together, the business has formed and along with that is a deep belief among us all that we can do something awesome together.
What are the critical components of Oshi Casino?
We are what’s known as a white label casino, in other words we have a partner called SoftSwiss who handle the transnational and customer services side of things. It means we can focus on marketing and product development for the customer interface. In other words our mission is to build a casino people love, along with getting the message out there.
We also have control over which bonuses are given out.
What was the greatest challenge you faced?
Facing the consequences of bad decisions. And from that being able to survive long enough so we could start making good decisions, from which we’ve grown.
On a lower level finding the right technologists has been a huge challenge but I’m very fortunate to work with some great people who believe in the project. Another huge challenge has been design. We’ve found it really hard to work with a designer who understands the usability constraints of our platform and who could come up with a look and feel that was sympathetic to the brand. In the end after many tries we decided to follow the usability route and make design a secondary thing.
What are your future goals for Oshi Casino?
We want to be a wealthy and trusted brand, with a great customer experience no one else offers. On a more granular level it is to have such a good offering that our marketing spend is more efficient than anyone else’s so it allows us to scale.
We think there are huge opportunities within non-English-speaking jurisdictions where cryptocurrency is being used a lot. South America looks especially interesting at the moment, along with Asia of course.
Ultimately we want to give customers the best experience of any online casino.
If you were to start the site again today what would you do differently? Why?
I would have cut down on wasted effort and focused more on things customers really want. The trouble is ‘you don’t know what you don’t know’, so at any time you do what you think is best and it turns out sometimes it was wasteful.
The number one thing for me, the writer would be… Understanding the real motivations for gamblers. I’ve come to realize gamblers want uncertainty and stress. Giving them comfort is not why they gamble.
Had I really appreciated this at the beginning, we might have made a lot more progress.
What are the biggest factors of your success to date? What did you do right?
Believing in Bitcoin was huge. Ironically I didn’t look at it from a business perspective as such. I just thought much like open source software, this is a manifestation of the Internet and people’s desire to move away from centralized power. Being a moderate libertarian, Bitcoin just resonated with me.
Being persuasive and helping people understand the opportunities for us all if we work together.
Being able to have a vision and come up with answers to people’s problems. For example we built a whole game search infrastructure which no other casino has and it makes it easy to find new games… That’s quite a big deal for customers.
What’s your advice to someone who wants to start a similar business?
If you think it’s going to take a year, except that it will take two years. Ask yourself what your genuine unique selling proposition is. If you don’t have one, then how are you going to compete with everybody else who also doesn’t have a USP?
Get people invested, whether it shares or whatever because just paying them money doesn’t mean they going to deliver you the kind of resourcefulness you’re going to need in order to get your start-up off the ground.