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Gambling legalisation of VLTs swells turnover in Greece

Niji Narayan

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Photo credits: www.inseinc.com
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The legalisation of video lotto terminals (VLTs) has increased turnover of the leading Greek gaming company OPAP to 1 billion Euros. This rise in revenue has not resulted from new players discovering slot machines, but rather from the legalisation of the existing illegal market.

OPAP has about 10,000 VLTs, a figure which could soon reach 25,000 after the amendment of its contract. However, the country’s Financial Police estimated that there could be more than 100,000 illegal machines in the country. The police confiscate several VLTs from well-hidden spots in cafeterias, internet cafes and other venues every day.

It is estimated that about three-fourth of the official growth of VLT turnover is because of the legalisation of illegal gambling. And it raises the government revenues too. The gambling sector contributed gross gaming revenue (GGR) taxes of 662 million euros in 2017, which is about 35 million euros more than that in 2016.

It should be noted that this tax is not related to the income tax payable at the end of the year, but it is imposed on the turnover of service providers at a rate of almost 30%. This is a considerable increase, as before 2012 that tax was next to zero, while up to 2015 it was only paid by casinos and OPAP.

Last year’s increase in gaming tax revenues mainly stemmed from the dues paid by online service providers (+23 million euros) and to a lesser extent OPAP (+16 million euros). Every year OPAP pays the bulk of these taxes as the amount of tax paid by the privatised gaming giant amounts to 70 per cent of gaming revenues for the state. In 2017 OPAP paid 482 million euros in GGR tax, with all online companies paying 98 million and casinos adding another 81 million euros.

Source: ekathimerini.com

Niji Narayan has been in the writing industry for well over a decade or so. He prides himself as one of the few survivors left in the world who have actually mastered the impossible art of copy editing. Niji graduated in Physics and obtained his Master’s degree in Communication and Journalism. He has always interested in sports writing and travel writing. He has written for numerous websites and his in-depth analytical articles top sports magazines like Cricket Today and Sports Today. He reports gaming industry headlines from all around the globe.

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DouYu International Holdings Ltd Raises $775 Million in U.S. IPO

Niji Narayan

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DouYu International Holdings Ltd Raises $775 Million in U.S. IPO
Photo Source: ft.com
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DouYu International Holdings Ltd, a Chinese video-streaming service which is backed by the Tencent Holdings Ltd, has raised $775 million through an initial public offering in the U.S.

DouYu sold 67.39 million American depositary shares at $11.50 apiece, at the bottom of an indicative price range of $11.50 to $14 a share. The IPO values the company at nearly $4 billion, including restricted shares issued to employees under a share-based compensation program.

In 2018, around 683 million people or roughly half the country’s population, played games on phones, computers or game consoles. The market-research firm forecasts that number will reach 878 million or nearly a third of videogamers globally in 2023.

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Central Europe

Fortuna Becomes the Official Sponsor of Stomil Olsztyn in Poland

Niji Narayan

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Fortuna Becomes the Official Sponsor of Stomil Olsztyn in Poland
Photo Source: polskieradio24.pl
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Bookmaker Fortuna has signed a deal with the Polish football club Stomil Olsztyn and become the official sponsor of the club. The contract will be valid at least until the end of the 2019/2020 season.

The joint marketing plans of Stomil and Fortuna assume activations directed to supporters and the presence of a bookmaker in the club’s social media channels.

“Involvement of the club and players in the struggle for survival of Stomil at the level of Fortuna 1st League in the spring round of the previous season made a huge impression on the whole football environment,” Leszek Haba, Member of the Board, Marketing Director of Fortuna Online Zakłady Bukmacherskie said.

“I am convinced that better days are coming for the Pride of Warmia, therefore, as Fortuna, we want to accompany the team from Olsztyn in the fight for higher and higher sporting and organizational goals. I hope that thanks to cooperation with Stomil we will strengthen our presence in the region, and the club, with our support, will soon refer to the times when, as an equal, it competed with the best teams in the country,” Leszek Haba added.

“We are very pleased that such a company recognized on the Polish market, which undoubtedly is Fortuna joined the group supporting the Club and together we will build #NowyStomil. I believe that this cooperation will bring benefits for both parties,” Robert Jurga, President of Stomil said.

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Compliance Updates

UK Minister Considers Raising the Minimum Age Limit for National Lottery Scratchcards

Niji Narayan

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UK Minister Considers Raising the Minimum Age Limit for National Lottery Scratchcards
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Mims Davies, the Minister for Sport and Civil Society in the UK, has announced that the minimum age to play National Lottery scratchcards and online instant win games could be increased to 18 to protect vulnerable young people.

At present, the age limit for all National Lottery games is 16, but the government will now consult on whether it should be raised to 18 for some or all National Lottery games and products.

The plan is to ensure that young people are rightly protected from the potential risks of gambling related harm, although these remain very low on all National Lottery games.

The Government also announces that it will raise the society lotteries’ annual sales limit to £50 million, increasing the money they can raise for good causes, and the maximum per draw prize to £500,000.

The new limits, which have not been increased for a decade, come after a detailed consultation and will support society lotteries to grow, removing the need for lotteries to slow down their fundraising and allow them to get rid of the costly bureaucracy designed to stop them breaching the current limits.

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