GPWA Times Magaine - Issue 23 - February 2013

Flight of the Concorde and other amazing tales The four affiliates we’ve selected for this issue’s interviews are very serious about what they’re doing. They’ve all seen some measure of success – and they work hard every day to make sure their sites remain in online gaming’s top echelon. They live and work in the U.K., the Netherlands and the Philippines. Their sites bring in traffic from around the world, which is a tribute to the quality and drawing power of what they have to offer. Each of them has an interesting story to tell – and yes, one was lucky enough to have flown on the Concorde before SSTs were permanently grounded. Which one was it? You’ll have to read the interviews to find out! *Due to space constraints, we could not print the interviews in their entirety. The complete text will be posted at GPWA AFFILIATE INTERVIEW SERIES Horses? They’re great. Pandas and Penguins? Not so much. How did you become involved in the industry, and what did you do prior to becoming involved in online gaming? When I left school at the age of 16, I got a job as an apprentice plater/welder and became a fully qualified plater/welder with City+Guilds Certificates at the age of 21. I did this job for 27 years until I had an accident at work, trapping my right thumb under an iron girder and very nearly having to have my right thumb amputated as it was a bit of a mess with the bone broken in 30 places. I was working on the night shift at the time of the acci- dent with one other person and I had to drive to the hospital at 4 a.m. with the bone of my thumb sticking out and a mound of flesh dangling at the side of it. My biggest concern was that I was going to bleed to death before reaching the hospital as there was blood everywhere. I still have my right thumb, but it is very badly disfig- ured and I am unable to bend it at the knuckle at all. I have tried doing my job as a plater/welder since I had my accident but re- ally struggled attempting to do the job without the aid of my right thumb and so I decided I needed a change of career. Although I no longer gamble as heavily now, I did have a bit of a gambling problem, losing well over £100,000 since the age of 18, and I thought a great way to recoup all my losses and have a change of career too would be to go on the other side of the fence and be- come an affiliate. If you can’t beat them, then why not join them? Tell us about your sites. What makes them unique? I would say that including some of the no-deposit offers on my sites makes them unique, as I have noticed that not many sites are prepared to do that. Having noticed how much of a drain the no- deposit offers can have on my commissions, I can fully under- stand why a lot of sites are not prepared to offer any no-deposit offers at all. I just think that by having the no-deposit offers on my sites as well as all the other offers, people might be tempted to return to my sites. When did you launch your sites? I launched on April 18, 2011, and on June 18, 2012. How long did it take for you to start earning money? It took me 14 months before I started making a penny and I have thought about throwing in the towel on more than one occasion! Are you a full-time webmaster or do you also hold down an- other job? I am now a full-time webmaster and I have been self- employed since June 2012. We know the idea appeals to you, so we have to ask: Do you feel as though you’re getting closer to the day when you can sponsor a televised horse race? And could you please explain why the idea appeals to you? Yes, the day when I can sponsor a horse race is not looking too far away now as I am earning a lot more money than I did as a plater/welder and it is something I would love to do. I have had a great interest in horse racing since watching Red Rum win the Grand National three times when I was a little boy. I suppose I will know I have finally made it when I am in a position to sponsor my first horse race. How have your sites changed, and how have your players changed, since your sites launched? Well, was doing great until getting punished in the Google Penguin update of April 24, 2012, which put many people out of busi- ness overnight for over-optimization of their websites. I have tried removing as many banners as possible and I am hoping it may recover one day, although I very much doubt it. Matt Cutts, the chief spam engineer at Google, said in his blog that anybody caught up in the Penguin or Panda updates should seriously GARY LESTER Freebetsuk7 GPWA Affiliate Interview Series