Philosophy – GS Intel

PHILOSOPHY

Our philosophy is shaped by decades of real experience in the sports, financial, and technology sectors. It is an approach to the global sports betting markets unlike any traditional handicapping or tipping service. The reason for that is simple: a singular method or system does not consistently address the ever evolving and changing dynamics of the market. Put another way, a traditional handicapper is limited by both resources (human and capital) and does not have the skills or infrastructure to sift through the thousands of daily betting opportunities. The obvious shortfalls with relying on a single handicapper are overwhelming. Some of those include the physical inability to analyze the complete market thereby isolating the best bets, the overuse of dated and useless (ATS) Against the Spread stats designed to impart the illusion of research, and the sad fact that most to not actually wager themselves, which in our opinion erodes all trust and confidence. Our philosophy is that consistent success in these markets can only be achieved by a robust intelligence cycle that incorporates market timing and adherence to sound money management principles.

The GSI Intelligence Cycle

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The method we derive and ultimately decide on a pick for our clients is by aggregating and weighing data according to models that generate statistical probabilities of a particular outcome. An easy way to understand this is by looking at each section of the intelligence cycle as a confirmation. When multiple areas of the intelligence cycle are in agreement, the confidence rating of that pick has increased. When there are conflicts between the areas of the cycle, the pick will either be downgraded (depending on the conflict) or altogether eliminated from a possible choice.

In an effort to explain the importance of this intelligence cycle, we have explained each section to give you a better understanding of what we do. However, due to the nature of the information, we have omitted certain elements for commercially sensitive reasons and to protect our interest and those of our clients.

Quantitative Analysis

The volume of data in the global sports betting exchanges mirrors that of the financial markets. Virtually 24 hours a days, 7 days a week sports are being played around the world which means that wagers are also being placed. Given the staggering amount of betting options that include IN-LIVE betting, half-time wagering, team totals, Asian Handicaps, fixed odds, futures, and a plethora of prop bets, we (just like the largest bookmakers) use computers to scan the markets looking for vulnerable pricing, value plays, and exploit those instances where the bookmakers have mis-priced a game. This effort could not and is not accomplished by a single person. By contrast, this component of the intelligence cycle is the product of years of trial and error while building a stable of in-house models that very from sport to sport that generates what we believe to be a fair price on any given event. But one must also understand that there is no magic formula that will unlock the mystery of how bookmakers price events because it changes daily. Therefore, our models are constantly being updated to reflect those pricing patterns and identifying where the value is for our clients.

Bookmakers

Bookmakers are vital sources of information. Particularly credit bookmakers who handle the majority of wagers placed throughout the globe. Despite the volume of licensed and regulated bookmakers throughout Europe and the Caribbean, the credit/agent markets still hold the overwhelming majority of “sharp” or sophisticated action. This is especially true for the United States and Asian markets. These secret networks of runners, agents, and bookmakers, often referred to as “offices” cater to both recreational players and what is referred to as syndicate play. While there are numerous benefits to these arrangements, one of the most compelling reasons is that it allows sharp players to “get down on games” that will not be restricted by cooperate approvals. The information coming out of these networks is extremely valuable, so much that a great deal of secrecy often precludes most people from ever tapping into this pipeline of information.

Currently on the market there are a number of software applications that purport to tell you where the action is being held and where the public money is positioned. We have done a great deal of due diligence and can affirmatively declare that this information if of little to no value because it is usually incorrect and/or interpreted incorrectly. The most important concept to understand when trying to use “handles” to determine how to bet a game is what those handles actually represent. The driving concept behind this lure of being given this “insider bookmaker data” is to blindly adopt a strategy of fading the public based on these percentages but that is a strategy that will surely fail. For starters, bookmakers are not going to give you any data that is valuable because that creates an obvious conflict of interest. Secondly, what is most important behind these numbers is the identity and the amount of money those figures represent. For example, knowing that 5000 recreational players have wagered $200 on a game is not as valuable in knowing that a syndicate has just placed four $25,000 bets between four different credit shops off the radar and certainly not being provided to you by a software program. While the dollar value is the same the information is vastly different. As such, a major component in identifying picks for our clients is to follow these type of unreported wagers.

On the other side of the equation, its just as important to know where the “square” money has been placed. These players are responsible for sports book revenue and no operation could survive without these losing players. These core group of players are enticed with rollover bonuses, parlays, and routinely bankrupt their account and deposit again. Its not enough to know where a handful of players have placed their bets but we have to examine factors that include: How often they lose, How often they win, ratio of account balance to play, timing of play ( Is it a chase play?),etc. We then aggregate this information and it factors into our overall calculus of confidence. The fact remains that losers will remain losers unless they do something different and we are happy to know where those consistent players are so that we do not share the same fate.

Human Intelligence (HUMINT)

There are human factors that cannot be captured in the numbers and important information is often not reported to the media but is to those responsible for making the markets. It is no different than evaluating a stock with great financial and analyst forecasts, but behind the scenes an accounting scandal is brewing that will cause the price to plummet. We spend a significant amount of time trying to collect as much information as we can on a particular event that we release because it increased the odds of success when placing the bet or it helps us to avoid a catastrophe. Those collection methods include but are not limited to- reading local school newspapers, social media, and talking to sources.

Psychology

This is perhaps the most underrated component of sports gambling. Simply put, this is the science of comprehending the line and how it shapes emotional public and professional opinion. Remember, the goal of the bookmaker is to draw an equal amount of action to both sides of the line, but this feat is rarely achieved. Part of our filtering process is seeking to understand the initial perception of the line and how it makes a player think and respond. To be sure, this is a subjective component of the process that we have converted into an objective static number. While contrarian principles are featured prominently to this scoring, there are times when the odds makers have just mis-priced a game. That is when we must refer back to the quantitative area of the intelligence cycle. But sometimes, if it looks to good to be true, maybe it is…

In summary, we firmly believe that no other sports service deploys such exhaustive criteria before releasing information to their clients and are committed to the policy that to best serve the information needs of our clients we must constantly be evolving as a firm with respect to technology and collection methods. We look forward to welcoming you as a new client.

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