Game Types Bonuses Slots More
Online Casinos Poker Bingo Games Lotteries Sports & Racebooks Fantasy Sports Forex Betting Exchanges Spread Betting Binary Options Live Dealers
Weekly Newsletter Online Gaming News Payment Methods Gaming Software Gaming Site Owners Gaming Jurisdictions Edit Preferences Search
 
Bonuses! New games! Gossip! And all the player news you can handle. Sign up NOW!

Rebecca Liggero

Rebecca  Liggero

Rebecca Liggero loves meeting new people and traveling – perfect qualities for someone who has won friends and influenced people in the worldwide online gaming community.

After graduating from Bates College with a degree in psychology, Rebecca spent four years in Washington, DC, working in relationship management, dreaming all the while about someday making it big in online gaming. After turning down an opportunity to live in New Zealand, she moved back to Boston and signed on as Senior Account Manager for Casino City – the beginning of a dream come true!

Rebecca’s work on behalf of Casino City (and later for the GPWA as well) took her to trade shows and conferences everywhere – Amsterdam, Barcelona, Costa Rica, Montreal, London, Las Vegas, Macau and many other ports of call – and along the way she began chronicling her incredible around-the-clock adventures in a wildly entertaining and industry-savvy weekly column that quickly became – and still remains – must reading for everyone who is anyone in online gaming. Following almost three years with the Casino City team, Rebecca spent a few months at Everest Affiliates where she was the Brand Manager of the affiliate program. While working on “the other side,” she realized that she truly missed her weekly column and the affiliate side of the business and decided to return to the Casino City family.

One and a half years later, Rebecca resigned from Casino City and joined industry icon Calvin Ayre to serve as the Bodog Global Brand Ambassador and the head on-site reporter for the online gambling industry tablog, CalvinAyre.com. In her new capacity, Rebecca continues to travel the world, and when asked where she is based, her response is usually "on an airplane."

Contact Rebecca at rebecca@liggero.net. Be careful, though – she might quote you.

More about Rebecca Liggero
More articles by Rebecca Liggero

Related Links

Related News

A Calvin Ayre and BodogBrand.com education in Antigua, CalvinAyre.com style (Ya, I thought he was retired too)

30 Jul 2009

By Rebecca Liggero

Surprise! He's back. Well, technically, Calvin Ayre never left "Bodog Land", but he is no longer an online gambling operator, that is for sure. In fact, Calvin sold the "Bodog" database and much of the existing infrastructure to the Morris Mohawk Gaming Group (MMGG), something that many people are unaware of. The "only" thing he kept was the Bodog brand itself, which was then licensed back to the MMGG for their marketing purposes. Even then, he had a plan for the brand beyond online gaming...something that should not surprise anyone who knows Calvin even remotely.

Calvin Ayre is back!

Calvin Ayre is back!

It has become obvious to me over the past few months, especially since Calvin took a step back into the limelight, that no one has a clue what he has been up to over the past few years. After spending a lot of time with this clairvoyant industry icon in Antigua, I am here to answer all your Calvin questions in plain English rather than in the scary legal and technical language that you see in the igaming publications. In true "Bodog Land" fashion, Calvin Ayre's journey since the UIEGA has been a wild one, and his plans for the future are even better, so I hope you enjoy the ride.

However, before diving into the meat of my findings- for those of you just want to know one thing and don't care about the rest- I'll kindly provide the answer:

Yes. He is still single.

Calvin enjoying the Antiguan coast

Calvin enjoying the Antiguan coast

Calvin retires...from online gambling

Take it from me, Calvin Ayre is far from being retired, but it is true that he has zero interest in running an online gambling company ever again. After the US government passed the UIEGA, at the same time the European public companies pulled out of the US market, Calvin decided to sell the entire US-facing operation to Alywn Morris, CEO of the Morris Mohawk Gaming Group (MMGG). Calvin may have sold the operation but he kept the famous "Bodog" brand name, a decision that turnd out to be amazing foresite, and licensed it back to MMGG for their marketing purposes. During the initial transition period following the sale, Calvin served as a Bodog brand ambassador for MMGG, and when this transition period was over, Calvin officially "retired" in May 2008.

Post retirement, Calvin retained an interest in the Antiguan brand licensing organization, BodogBrand.com, which kept all the rights to the trademark Bodog brand. With Calvin's help, this organization worked furiously to identify new businesses and online gaming operators that could bring the brand into Europe, Asia, and beyond.

While it is true that Calvin has no direct involvement or contractual relationship with any BodogBrand.com licensee, serving as a Bodog brand ambassador is something he is willing to do for any new licensee should they need it. As Calvin himself describes, "I am primarily focusing on branded venture capital or licensing and launching media ventures that support the branded venture capital and licensing operations". Translation into English- Calvin still retains at least a partial interest in the Bodog brand, he is still involved with BodogBrand.com, they are always looking to more licensing deals, and he is working on two new media projects, Bodog lifestyle digital content and CalvinAyre.com, both of which compliment the Bodog brand. See? Simple.

Calvin representing the Bodog Brand

Calvin representing the Bodog Brand

BodogBrand.com is reborn

Besides embarking on adventurous and luxurious vacations around the world, lets take a closer look at what Calvin's been up to since May 2008, starting with BodogBrand.com. From the beginning, Calvin's vision for the Bodog brand has always remained the same- Bodog will become a global, inclusive digital entertainment and lifestyle brand, a structure and model similar to Richard Branson's Virgin brand. Although not commonly known, BodogBrand.com was born in 2005 and the first two licensees were Bodog Music and Bodog Fight, both which succeeded in attracting millions of viewers and capturing years and years of Bodog brand recognition. At present, there are three Bodog brand licensees that are within the online gaming space and BodogBrand.com is actively evaluating non-gaming licensees.

Gorgeous Antiguan sunset

Gorgeous Antiguan sunset

As previously explained, the first online gaming licensee to strike a deal with Calvin and the Bodog brand was MMGG, a US-facing business, operating at bodog.eu. The next licensee was Bodog Europe, the UK and future Canadian-facing business, operating at bodog.co.uk and bodog.ca, the most recent Haydock Sports, an Asian-facing business, operating at bodog88.com, and the upcoming licensee is expected to be a stand-alone Bodog branded poker network, operating at bodogpoker.com, the details of which to be announced in September 2009. Other longer-term plans include identifying the right group to open up South America to Bodog in addition to signing on other licensees from other non-gaming areas, both digital and non-digital.

The absolute beauty and power of this licensing model is that the all current and potential licensees, both gaming and non-gaming, can feed off the Bodog brand strength and use it to their advantage. Rather than compete against each other, the individual success of each licensee helps to lift the others, and as a direct result, the Bodog brand continues to grow exponentially. "I believe the Bodog brand will be on many different products and services," Calvin claims, "the Bodog brand is going to massive when we're done".

View from Calvin's boat

View from Calvin's boat

Sunny Antigua, beautiful home to Calvin Ayre

You would think that a person like Calvin would choose to live in London, New York, Paris, Hong Kong, Rome, Vegas, Berlin, Moscow, I don't know, maybe even Ibiza, but Antigua? Why Antigua since 2006? Actually, the answer is pretty straightforward and makes perfect sense when you think about it. "Before I stepped down from my role in the online gambling world, pre-2006 Bodog had is headquarters and was licensed in Antigua, so naturally I spent a great deal of time here" Calvin explains. To further prove his reasoning, BodogBrand.com is also headquartered in Antigua, so it was almost essential for him to remain on island to stay connected.

Snorkeling with an industry icon

Snorkeling with an industry icon

Another reason why Calvin chooses to reside in Antigua is because his working relationship with the Antiguan government has always been extremely positive. He claims, "Antigua has always been a pioneering and amazingly forward-looking place when it comes to online gaming- people don't give them nearly enough credit for that. Antigua was one of the first jurisdictions to license and regulate online gaming, and after the "white listing" by the UK last November, Antigua-regulated licensees are now entitled to advertise on a level playing field in the UK". This "white listing" helps explain why Keith McDonnell, Bodog Europe's licensee, chose to launch Bodog Europe under an Antiguan license...and yet another reason why Calvin likes to remain on island. So they can drink rum punch together, obviously.

Calvin wake boarding in the AM

Calvin wake boarding in the AM

In addition to respecting the government's attitude towards online gaming, Calvin simply loves the relaxing, decompressing lifestyle that comes along with Antigua living. "The ultimate reason why I maintain my primary residence in Antigua is the lifestyle...who would not want to live on the beach and be able to go out snorkeling and wake boarding every morning before logging on to the 'Net? I am from a part of Canada that is as cold as Siberia, so for me this really is paradise. If I want a faster pace or a good party, I can always charter a plane". Now, how can you argue with that? I certainly can't as I saw Calvin's Antiguan lifestyle first hand when I came down for a visit. Always true to his word, my first full day in town, Calvin treated me to ride on his boat, a wake boarding lesson, a snorkeling adventure and several beers in the sun, all before a fresh seafood lunch on the beach. The next day Calvin treated me to a morning ride on the SubCat Antigua, an actual submarine that dives through the coral reefs of Antigua, all before a series of afternoon strategy meetings. This is something that anyone could get used to.

View from Calvin's beach house deck

View from Calvin's beach house deck

So what about the Antiguan nightlife? It's not as bad as you think...especially if you start drinking wine at 4pm on Calvin's fully loaded ocean view deck. Anywhere and anything is fun when you start boozing at 4! Ok fine, so maybe the nightlife is a little quieter than what the online gambling world is used to, but take it from me- if you've got the right crew, you will have fun. However, I hate to blow his cover, but each night I was in Antigua, I stayed out way later than Calvin, the industry's notorious party animal. Don't tell anyone, but I think it's because I am younger than he is...or maybe it's because he had just come from several large nights in London with our very own Michael Caselli. Hmm. Either way, I don't care. I stayed out later.

Antigua at night, quiet and beautiful

Antigua at night, quiet and beautiful

Bodog lifestyle and CalvinAyre.com

Now that you know where Calvin lives, what he has done since the UIEGA passed, and that he has a retained interest in BodogBrand.com, what is he doing right now and what are his plans for the future? Very simply stated, Calvin is now media, which in many ways is exactly where he belongs. His first media project involves Bodog lifestyle digital content, a general Bodog lifestyle website that will be targeted towards a retail audience, mostly in Europe and Asia. The second media project will be located at CalvinAyre.com, an upcoming industry "tablog" (a tabloid blog- clever, isn't it?) which will also serve as Calvin's personal blog. This informational, user friendly and entertaining tablog will serve as a one stop shop for industry professionals providing features such as industry news, cool videos, industry gossip, exotic babes, tales of Calvin adventures, conference and event reporting, "famous" recurring characters, and lots, lots more. Be sure to stay tuned for this, it's going to be good.

Calvin enjoying a ride in the SubCat

Calvin enjoying a ride in the SubCat

The beauty of it all is that these two media projects will work together and connect into other areas of social media online while helping to spread Bodog brand awareness across the globe. Something I have learned over the years is that there is always a motivation behind everything Calvin does- it all connects somehow, some way, and these media projects are a perfect example of just how he does it. To help get these media projects off the ground and introduced into the igaming world, Calvin decided he wanted a protégé...someone who is well connected...someone who could help spread his Bodog branding messages across the landscape of the online gambling industry and beyond...

Calvin and Bodog Becky join forces

Calvin and Bodog Becky join forces

Bodog Becky joins Bodog world

Surprise again! That protégé will be me. As many of you already know, Calvin and I have known each other since 2005 and I greatly respect the work he has done throughout his life and for the Bodog brand in particular. My writing and demeanor at industry events makes it obvious that I have always had a great fondness for the Bodog team in general, especially the Bodog Affiliates group as we have worked together closely for years and I love them. Therefore, it seemed only natural to join forces with Calvin, an absolute marketing, PR and branding guru, when he offered me the opportunity to serve as Global Brand Ambassador for BodogBrand.com and an on the site reporter for CalvinAyre.com when it launches in 4th quarter 2009. My friends, Bodog Becky has been born.

The 'dog is back

The 'dog is back



It comes with great sadness that I part ways with Casino City, GPWA and APCW, a team that I will never forget and that will always remain close to my heart. However, the time is right for a new adventure my friends- a new adventure for me, and another global adventure for Calvin and the Bodog team. He is coming back for some more and this time its going to be fun...for everyone. The 'dog is back.

Woof.

 
About Us | Advertising | Publications | Land Casinos