Entain And UNLV Release Black Fire Women’s Innovation Igniter

In partnership Entain plc and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) have released the Black Fire Women’s Innovation Igniter.

It’s an education, technology, innovation and mentoring program designed to provide a path to careers in the sports betting, gaming, and technology industries for UNLV undergraduate and graduate women.

First of its kind project

The Black Fire Women’s Innovation Igniter program, identified as a first of its kind project, will employ, mentor, promote and bring talented women to the industry and design more egalitarian working environments in traditionally male-dominated fields.


The software will be located in the Black Fire building, a unique 43,000 square-foot engineering space with an esports arena, virtual reality studio and more, featuring a state-of-the-art laboratory.

In addition to providing the tools and services required to bring ideas and designs to life, the program will include realistic, hands-on experiences, internships, and mentoring from top industry executives.

Leading the program

Jan Jones Blackhurst, Chief Executive in Residence, International Gaming Institute and Robert Rippee PhD, Executive Director, Black Fire Innovation Center, will lead The Black Fire Women’s Innovation Igniter project in collaboration with Entain and UNLV. The program is set to be launched with around 20 women in the initial class in August 2021.

Jones Blackhurst said: “Entain is the ideal partner to help us bring this groundbreaking program to life.

“As a leader in online sports betting and gaming, Entain will help us showcase the myriad of opportunities available in these professional fields, further develop our curriculum, and help women see career pathways in a technology led industry where they are not always well-represented.”

Continuing to set precedents

Entain appointed Jette Nygaard-Andersen its CEO last month, marking her as one of the sports betting industry’s highest profile female executives. Igniter’s partnership with UNLV on Black Fire Women’s Innovation offers the organisation the ability to continue setting precedents in the sectors of sports betting, gaming, and technology, and to help ensure business success with talented women in key positions.