Admiration for Norsk Tipping

12 October 2004

Norsk Tipping, Norway's lottery and football pools operator, has taken first place in the 2004 European Most Admired Knowledge Enterprises (MAKE) Study.

MAKE identifies organizations that are leaders in creating organizational intellectual capital and wealth through the transformation of individual/enterprise knowledge into world-class products, services and solutions.

The Teleos' new 2004 European MAKE panel has recognized Norsk Tipping for its enterprising, knowledge-driven culture and for maximizing the value of its enterprise intellectual capital.

The panel rated organizations against a framework of eight key knowledge performance dimensions that are the visible drivers of competitive advantage.

With only a few hundred employees, Norsk Tipping finds itself among a group of 22 finalists that includes major brands like Airbus Aerospace, BBC, BMW, BP, Nokia, Siemens, Rolls-Royce, Royal Dutch/Shell and others.

Reider Nordby Jr., CEO of Norsk Tipping as well as the president of World Lottery Association's executive committee, is pleased with the accomplishment.

"My understanding is that we have been identified since we are publishing our annual reports in English with a relatively wide circulation, and for the years 2000, 2002 and now for 2004, we are reporting on the intellectual capital in the company through a comprehensive IC rating," Nordby explained.

According to the MAKE study, organizations dedicated to growth through innovation and knowledge management add value five times faster than their competitors. Of course, with the Gambelli case in mind, focusing on growth is like swearing in church.

"We do not at all consider Gambelli as a contradiction to growth," Nordby explained. "Our task is to balance social responsibility and government control with commercial efficiency. It is in no one's interest to have inefficient monopolies. Therefore, we must develop our innovative capabilities and management efficiency, carefully balanced with our social responsibility.

"International Internet bookmakers that are not respecting territorial integrity are taking larger and larger parts of the national lottery market. To be able to gain control and to diminish unwanted effects like problem gambling, money laundering, etc., we need to work to keep our player loyalty within the controlled part of the market. Therefore, a non-aggressive, profile-building kind of marketing is necessary and desirable and quite within the framework of social responsibility."

Norsk Tipping started offering its products on the Internet in 2001. Products are sold through a nationwide network of 4,000 online retailers, with total 2003 revenue in excess of €1.1 billion.

According to Lotteritilsynet (the Norwegian Gaming Board), Norwegians spent NOK 36.7 billion (US$5.2 billion) on money games in 2003--an increase of 22 percent over spending in 2002. This includes the NOK 22 billion put into Norwegian gaming (slot) machines, which was up 40 percent compared with 2002. Norway has a population of 4.6 million.

On June 12, 2003, the Norwegian Parliament altered the law related to games for money prizes, giving Norsk Tipping the exclusive right to operate gaming machines in Norway starting in 2006. The new division is called Norsk Tipping Multispill.

NOK 8,000 (US$1,200) was spent per capita in Norway in 2003. In the same year, Norwegians gambled another NOK 1.4 billion (US$210 million) via non-Norwegian Internet sites.

Norsk Tipping's gambling portal was re-launched in April 2004. Vertical Site and Enonic built a platform with a functionality and architecture that can handle as many as 0.5 million page views per day.

Norsk Tipping has a complex hosting environment based on IBM Websphere Application Server and Oracle database. Vertical Site, which is based on the J2EE framework, fits into the environment. To address the high volume of users, Vertical Site was installed in a clustered environment. Norsk Tipping implemented Vertical Site using its own IT department, supported by Enonic with consultancy work and training.

Rob van der Gaast has a background in sports journalism. He worked for over seven years as the head of sports for Dutch National Radio and has developed new concepts for the TV and the gambling industry. Now he operates from Istanbul as an independent gambling research analyst. He specializes in European gambling matters and in privatizations of gambling operators. Rob has contributed to IGN since Jul 09, 2001.