Changing the world? We would love to meet you!

The Play Well Challenge is an initiative of Flutter and the Responsible Gambling Council (RGC) to find and support tech solutions to address key challenges in the gambling sector.

We are looking for:

Startups that can help promote positive play behaviour by educating, empowering and assisting customers.

Initiatives at any stage of solution with a clear plan to scale up and methods for measuring impact

Companies located globally

Showcase in front of industry leaders

Changing the world? We would love to meet you!

We want every customer entertained, whether they are on the casino floor, betting on the upcoming match online, or purchasing a lottery ticket. To know what it means to play for fun. To play well. This covers gambling as one of multiple forms of entertainment, and means customers setting limits, sticking to them, and understanding how the games work to ensure they have a positive play experience.

As long as gambling has existed as a form of entertainment, there has been risk associated with it. And it's important to keep that risk minimal, to keep the fun, fun.  Gambling should always be for entertainment and not exceed your budget or time limits. As part of the gambling industry, we have a collective responsibility to define what it means to play well and we want to be a driving force in leading that conversation. As a business, we want to give our customers the tools and information they need to play well – protecting their play, keeping it fun and helping people look after their wellbeing (both financial and personal).

And, as part of our Play Well strategy, we want to be open about what to look for when gambling for fun slips into something else and how that can be avoided altogether so we can minimize the potential for people to experience harms related to gambling.

As a company powered by technology, we are combining our passion for innovation and our dedication to championing
responsible play to create our first call for Play Well solutions: The Flutter and RGC Play Well Challenge.

We are seeking entrepreneurs and startups committed to creating a better customer experience for everyoneto help us solve key challenges in the gambling industry and ultimately create a safer gambling environment for players. If this sounds like you, read on!


About The Award:

In 2023, Flutter and RGC will be bringing the innovative capabilities of Alpha Hub (Flutter's startup partnership programme) together with our commitment to 'Play Well' under our Positive Impact Plan to create our first call for solutions dedicated to finding technology solutions to challenges that the industry faces in promoting positive play/responsible gambling.

Each of the following three themes has a series of challenges we would like to explore. Applicants can apply to solve as many challenges as they can, although we do recommend that applicants focus on one challenge.


1. Lead Progress Within Gambling Operators

Operators face obstacles when encouraging uptake of responsible gambling (RG) tools and practices. The main barrier is that many customers perceive that RG tools, such as budget and time limits or breaks in play,are only for those experiencing a gambling problem. Likewise, statistics on RG programs tend to highlight the negative consequences of gambling rather than the positives of a recreational hobby.

We would like startups to help us:

  • Calculate the operator’s Return on Investment (ROI) for Play Well tools that encourage positive play.
  • Incorporate Play Well tools in a retail (betting shop) environment (where the user is anonymous) by providing effective behavioural recognition tools and education.
  • Address the stigma around problem gambling and improve responsible gambling language and communication methods to focus on prevention for all players.
  • Screen marketing communications, games, and wagers against responsible gambling guidelines.


2. Promote Positive Play with Our Customers

Play Well tools and education should be seamlessly integrated into the player experience to increase engagement and uptake during play.

We would like startups to help us:

  • Ensure players are engaged with an appropriate communication method that is tailored to their demographic and culture.
  • Use mindfulness or other mental health techniques to promote positive play.
  • Reward positive play (e.g. utilizing a tool) to incentivise uptake.
  • Gamify responsible gambling tools.
  • Make Play Well “sticky” with players during play by incorporating tools into the play
  • Keep players informed about their play history and habits by utilizing play summaries, player assessments and data analytics.


3. Effective Interaction between Operators & Customers

By harnessing in-game markers, we want to intervene the moment any risks are identified.

We would like startups to help us:

  • Develop methods to increase early intervention, before and after a bet is placed.
  • Effectively intervene and motivate change in play behaviour when risks are identified (preferably real time and in advance of bet placement).
  • Forecast how a risk profile might change over time.
  • Effectively interact with customers in an online gambling space.

This program seeks applications from start-ups and entrepreneurs at all stages of development and from all over the world who are aiming to use and adapt innovative tech solutions to address Play Well issues.


What does the program entail?

  • Participation in a demo day to showcase your start-up to an audience of investors, technology experts and leaders from across Flutter
  • Access to workshops, masterclasses and networking that support your growth and long-term success
  • Access to Alpha Hub Startup Support


Other key considerations:

We are particularly keen to boost diversity into the tech sector and address issues of inequality. We would encourage applications from under-represented founders / leaders. We are willing to consider start-ups of any size and at any stage in their journey – from start up to scale up.

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What's in it for the startup?

Successful companies will receive the following support from Alpha Hub.

Opportunity to Showcase

Opportunity to shine and demonstrate what you can do infront of Flutter leadership as well as the wider startup community.

Networking & Feedback

All the experts will be in the room and there do discuss your company. It is a chance to bounce ideas around in an informal setting.

Startup Support

Should your startup be looking for support, check out what help Alpha Hub can offer.

 Judging Criteria
Judges will be making their assessment based on the following key criteria:

1.     Problem Fit - have you clearly made the case that the solution you are proposing will solve any of the challenges identified? What evidence do you have and what research have you conducted?

2.     Technological Expertise - What is your tech solution and how have you tested it? How does your solution help meet the need of the issue you are addressing?

3.     Your credentials - The experience and expertise of the team implementing the tech solution

4.     Measurement & Evaluation - How are you measuring the effectiveness of your solution and tracking the impact (real-time and potential) of it?

5.     Innovation - How innovative is your solution and how crowded is the market with other potential businesses / solutions also seeking to have an impact in the same/similar way?

6.     Growth & Scale - What is the long-term potential for growth?

7.     Added value - What are the opportunities for Flutter to add value to your start-up, how can our colleagues engage to support your growth and scale?


Stage 1 - Applications

When an application is submitted, it is thoroughly reviewed by the Alpha Hub team. Applications are open between the 26th June and 8th September.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Stage 2 - 1-2-1 call with experts

Shortlisted startups will be invited for an initial 30minute conversation with the Alpha Hub team and judging panel over zoom. The purpose of this meeting is to learn about your project in more detail.

Calls will occur between the 19th and 21st September.

There will be an opportunity for select applicants to join the Play Well team in person, in Dublin between 2nd-4th October.

Stage 3 - Final

Finalists will be notified the week beginning 9th October and invited to the final which will take place on 2nd November in Dublin.

Finalists will have access to workshops as well as demo and networking opportunities. There will be an event in the evening with the local tech community where finalists will present to the judges.


About Responsible Gambling Council :

The Responsible Gambling Council (RGC) is an independent and respected non-profit organization that has been a leader in gambling harm prevention and minimization in Canada, and globally for 40 years. RGC promotes safer gambling culture and practices through research and the development and implementation of leading-edge and impactful programs, products and initiatives including the RG Check accreditation program.


About Flutter: 

Flutter are the global sports betting, gaming and entertainment provider for over 18 million customers worldwide. We operate some of the world’s most innovative, diverse and distinctive brands, and do so in a way which is responsible and in tune with our customer’s needs.

As a company driven by technology, we understand the power that the latest innovations can have on our long-term success. We believe that if we apply the same investment and support to startups using technology for social purpose, we can help provide solutions for social and environmental challenges faced by communities around the world.


About our Positive Impact Plan:

The Positive Impact Plan is our global sustainability strategy that is focused on leveraging our global scale to create maximum impact and contribute positively to our customers, colleagues, and the communities in which we operate.

The Positive Impact Plan identifies four main focus areas: Helping customers to Play Well; Empowering colleagues to Work Better, Working with Communities to Do More and reducing our environmental impact.


About Alpha Hub:

Alpha Hub is part of Flutter Entertainment plc - the world’s leading online sports betting and gaming company, operating some of the most innovative, diverse and distinctive brands in the sector. As Flutter’s startup partnership programme, Alpha Hub helps brands within the Flutter portfolio partner with innovative startups to quickly solve various problems and challenges.


Privacy Notice:

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