The History of Pinnacle Sports
Pinnacle Sports, or Pinnacle for short, was founded in 1998 under the parent company Pinnacle Sports Worldwide. While they initially had to fight hard just to survive as a company through their first two years as a start-up, they have now become one of the world’s largest and fully licensed online sportsbooks. Located on the island of Curacao and regulated by the Government of the Netherlands Antilles, Pinnacle services customers in over 100 countries. Pinnacle is not a betting exchange, and this has made them one of the most reliable bookmaker websites available. They receive no commissions on winnings or premium charges.
For the first 12 years, Pinnacle focused only on professional sports leagues, such as basketball, baseball, soccer, football, etc. It wasn’t until 2010 that they decided to start taking bets on popular eSports tournaments and competitions (at the time they were the only large company to allow bets on eSports). While they are a private company and don’t disclose their earnings, they did state that even they were surprised at how quickly the eSports betting market expanded. In less than four years, they had already reached the one million eSports bets milestone, with eSports being their 7th largest market by volume now.
As far as betting options go, Pinnacle pretty much offers everything that can possibly be wagered on. This includes all of the popular sports that we mentioned previously, as well as niche markets such as badminton, alpine skiing, handball, ski jumping, and even mixed martial arts. If there’s a sport that features competitive play at the professional level, Pinnacle is offering some sort of betting option for it.
Pinnacle also just recently established an online casino. Everything from virtual card games to bingo can be played from their website, with wagers of course. To help cure that itch for gamblers on the go, they even offer a mobile app for tablets and smartphones for bettors to use.
Then, of course, there’s the new eSports betting market that Pinnacle has cornered. As eSports continue to rise in popularity, new games are coming out every year. Pinnacle is that innovative company that will provide wagers as soon as a demand becomes available. The obvious choices are there, such as League of Legends, DOTA 2, Counter-Strike, and StarCraft 2. But look for unique and less mainstream games as well, such as Smite and Hearthstone.
Below we will outline the different type of specific bets that can be made on Pinnacle.
Outright (Future): Outright bets involve choosing a specific team or competitor to win an entire tournament before it begins.
Matchup (Head-to-Head): A Matchup bet is essentially picking the winner of a head-to-head matchup or who will perform better. For example, will Player A post a better KDA then Player B is considered a Matchup bet.
1×2: A 1×2 bet is a live bet that can be made during an ongoing event or matchup. The 1X2 refers to the three type of bets that can be made, 1 is for a home win, x is for a draw, and 2 is for an away win.
Total: A total bet is a wager on the total number of points, games, kills (for eSports), or goals scored by both teams or competitors combined. Total numbers are listed on Pinnacle, and bettors have an option of picking the over or under, with each option having an associated odds.
Team Total: Just like a Total bet, Team Totals are specific to just that team or competitor. You can bet on whether the Total is over or under the posted total number, each option having associated odds.
Live Betting: Live bets are exactly what they sound like, betting during live events. Pinnacle offers unique bets throughout the course of an event that bettors can wager on.
Parlay (Accumulator or Combined bets): Parlay bets are a combination of two or more bets on one or more games. In order to win, all bets must be predicted correctly. The more games that you parlay, the bigger the potential payout becomes.
Handicap (Spread bet): This is a type of bet that bookmakers give to bettors as a sort of advantage. Typically the handicap is provided to the team that scores first blood. You’ll often see something like Team A (+1) and Team B (-1)
Proposition: A Proposition bet involves a more specific bet, such as how many games a team or competitor will win in a given tournament.
Payouts and Deposits
One of the best things about Pinnacle is how quickly you can deposit and withdrawal money. Deposits and withdrawals are usually processed in under 2 hours, with most being completed in 30 minutes. They also offer a multitude of payment options, such as bank wires, credit cards, debit cards, NETELLER, and even Skrill. Even specific targeted customers have options, such as China Banking, iDebit for Canadians, and POLi for Australians.
This is the one negative aspect of Pinnacle and an area they admit they need to improve on. Pinnacle does not offer live support, such as online chat or even phone support. The only way to contact customer support is through email or postal mail. They also offer an online form that can be submitted, a sort of ticket based system.
Most companies, especially ones trying to garner a foothold in the eSports betting market, provide incentives to help attract customers. Those normally include free bets or bonus cash to use on wagers. However, Pinnacle decided to go in a different direction. Instead they offer some of the lowest margins, garnering higher returns for their players. While at first this was a turnoff (and the reason Pinnacle struggled during their early years), it quickly became a positive benefit, especially for bettors that placed higher stakes.
Pinnacle remains one of the most reputable betting sites for mainstream sports as well as eSports. Their collection of eSports markets is rivaled by no one. Their innovation and ahead of the curve mentality make them a huge player for eSports wagering. Customer Service is an area that could use improvement, but what small problems do arise will be dealt with in a timely manner. While they offer little in terms of bonuses for newer and casual players, they have an established core customer base that will keep them around for the foreseeable future.