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Finnish gambling market projections

Athira A

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Finnish gambling market projections
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Veikkaus, which is a Finnish state-owned company, has the monopoly over all gambling activities in the country. The company provides a wide array of games, including the Finnish national lottery, fixed odd betting, football pools, scratch tickets and so on. In total, there are 20 different kinds of games organized by the company. Most of its revenues are derived from the national lottery, which is extremely popular among the Finnish population. Interestingly, Veikkaus is managed by the Finnish Ministry of Education and the proceeds from its operation are channeled back to it. In 2010, these profits amounted to 463 million euros. The rules of the games, on the other hand, are controlled by the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

This model of regulating gambling activities in the country has been ubiquitous in the Nordic countries, but recently a new trend of liberalization has emerged. The national monopolies are having a harder time maintaining a customer base as people are switching to the online casinos, which are more difficult for the authorities to keep away. Internationally licensed online gambling providers are still able to reach the customers in countries where it is illegal for privately owned companies to provide these services. Some countries have tried to employ the banking sector in order to limit the power of such companies to process transactions for the customers. There has been a case of resorting to Apple in order to remove some gambling applications from the App Store as well.

As stated by the editor of the Finnish website Netti-casino.biz, it is interesting to see what path Finland will take when it comes to liberalizing the gambling market. There is a precedent for both liberalization as well as toughening of the regulations. Sweden and Denmark are already accepting applications from private companies for gambling licenses, while Norway is trying to strengthen the hold of its national monopoly over the market. There are no signs as to which direction Finland will follow yet. There are some obvious advantages to be had with liberalization. The government is not able to collect taxes from underground markets, which emerge when activities that are in demand are banned by the regulators. With a regulated market, it could see a surge in the tax revenues.

Online gambling is gaining popularity in Finland

Veikkaus’ revenue report shows an increase in the share of the digital activities. The company’s digital revenue increased by 10% from last year and in Q1 comprised 44% of the total revenues generated. The number of weekly active online customers stands at 626,000, which is an 11% increase. This shows that the monopoly is coping successfully with international providers, which might give the regulators less incentive to liberalize the market. Veikkaus claims to have captured 90% of the online market and furthermore, plans to “renew the company’s strategy in 2018 to respond to the strong change in the operating environment.”

Source: http://netti-casino.biz/casinouutiset/ennuste-suomen-rahapelimarkkinoille/

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Kevin Pietersen extends Betway ambassador role until 2023

George Miller

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Kevin Pietersen extends Betway ambassador role until 2023
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Ashes winning batsman Kevin Pietersen and global betting brand Betway today announce an extension of their partnership until 2023.

Retaining his role as Official Global Cricket and Brand Ambassador for Betway, Pietersen will share his experience, knowledge and opinion on world cricket through bespoke content and behind the scenes access with the bookmaker.

Paul Adkins, Marketing and Operations Director at Betway, said: “Kevin adds real value to our cricket offering and Betway customers across the world have enjoyed his unique and honest insight.

“The cricket pages of our exclusive Betway Insider blog will continue to be full to the brim with great content from one of the most talented players in the game’s history, as we look to capture the thrill that comes with every ball.”

The initial focus for the partnership will be the start of the Indian Premier League on Saturday 19th September, with Pietersen giving weekly updates and his views on the action, including ones to watch and predictions for the week ahead.

The former England international will also support Betway across its partnerships with Cricket West Indies, recently extended to 2022, and Cricket South Africa.

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Compliance Updates

Solverde Group Secures Online Sports Betting Licence in Portugal

Niji Narayan

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Solverde Group Secures Online Sports Betting Licence in Portugal
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Solverde Group has secured online sports betting licence in Portugal. The new licence will enable Solverde to accept online sports bets through its Solverde.pt website.

Solverde, which operates five land-based casinos across Portugal, also holds an online casino licence in the country, offering a range of casino-style games via Casinosolverde.pt.

The new licence comes after the national regulator Serviço de Regulação e Inspeção de Jogos (SRIJ) last month revealed that online gambling revenue drastically increased under lockdown.

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CEEGC 2020

Gaming in Central and Eastern Europe in focus at #EGC2020VE with +10 industry experts from the region

Zoltan Tundik

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Reading Time: 7 minutes

 

Central and Eastern Europe in focus at European Gaming Congress VE (Virtual Edition).

#EGC2020ve  The CEE gaming industry has been in the highlights of many media outlets and believe it or not there is always something big happening in this region.

In the Czech Republic: Just one week ago, Czech Lawmakers have voted in favor of a new decree to ban all electronic and mechanical gaming machines in the Czech capital. The decree awaits a nod from the city council.

If it gets the council’s approval, it will mean the end of all legal slot machines and video lottery terminals in the Czech capital once the current licensing period completes in 2024.

In Austria: The Austrian Financial Police have carried out a total of 278 inspections on suspected black-market gambling venues since January, resulting in the confiscation of over 660 gaming machines. Over half of the seized machines were found in Vienna, the capital city of Austria.

In a statement issued on July 28, Austria’s financial police set out the progress it has made this year towards a reduction in illegal gambling in the country. It made clear that the majority of illegal gambling activity is taking place in larger urban centers such as Vienna and Linz.

In rural areas, illegal gambling has been largely reduced – for example, in the states of Burgenland, Styria and Vorarlberg combined, only two devices have been found since January.

In Poland: The new figures published by Poland’s finance ministry have revealed that while the gambling revenue decline for the year to date, newly regulated products helped mitigate the falls in online betting and land-based gaming.

The gross gaming yield projections provided by H2 Gambling Capital revealed that the total for the year to June 11 is expected to fall 9.5% from 2019’s figures. This is significantly lower than the 19.6% decline projected across all EU markets.

Poland’s lower projected decline was due to the development of newly regulated verticals such as online casinos and land-based arcades. Online casino revenue grew 96.7% for the year to June 11, aided by growth from Totalizator Sportowy’s Total Casino site.

Also in Poland, ace football striker Robert Lewandowski has signed an investment deal with Movie Games, in a Polish manufacturer of sports-related video games, which has gained publicity during the coronavirus lockdown.

According to Movie Games, Lewandowski will become a shareholder in a company that is going to be started in launched by September to develop sports video games.

Lewandowski said in a statement released by Movie Games: “I see a huge potential in this segment.”

In Bulgaria: The National Revenue Agency (NRA) has officially assumed the power of regulating the gambling industry in Bulgaria. The country’s National Assembly passed a resolution to this effect last month. It replaces the State Commission on Gambling (SCG).

NRA Director Galya Dimitrova, who has the option to nominate a deputy to oversee the regulated gaming market, will be in charge of all proceedings.

The previous licenses will remain valid until they expire. NRA will process license applications and renewals within six months.

SGC was dismantled from the gambling regulation responsibility following several scandals, leading to the resignation of Chairman Alexander Georgiev in February after he was questioned in connection to an investigation into Vasil Bozhkov, owner of Bulgaria’s oldest betting operator, Eurofootball.

The is plenty of news to share about the Hungarian, Slovakian and Romanian gambling industry as well, but we will leave that to the professionals who will join the 3 special panel discussions at the virtual edition of European Gaming Congress 2020.

The virtual edition of European Gaming Congress 2020 is taking place between 6-7 October and gathers top names of the gaming industry who will present their insights to create Europe’s largest gaming compliance gathering.

THE EASY AND FREE REGISTRATION PROCESS IS SPONSORED BY ALTENAR AND YOU CAN REGISTER FOR FREE HERE!

The conference will cover +28 jurisdictions and you have the opportunity to dive into quality information about the CEE region via 3 special panels.

The “GAMING REPORT: CENTRAL EUROPE (PART ONE)” panel discussion will focus on the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Poland. The discussion will be moderated by Jakub Kolomicenko (Head of the legal department at Endorphina) and will be joined by Jan Rehola (Director at IFGR and Partner at PS Legal), Ewa Lejman-Widz (Head of Polish Desk at WH Partners), Anna Wietrzyńska-Ciołkowska (Legal advisor, Local Partner at DWF Poland), Jakub Myszkorowski (Chief Commercial Officer at STATSCORE) and Dr. Robert Skalina (Senior Advisor at WH Partners).

The “GAMING REPORT: CENTRAL EUROPE (PART TWO)” panel discussion will focus on Hungary and Slovenia under the moderation of Dr. Robert Skalina (Senior Advisor at WH Partners).

The discussion will be joined by Helembai Gabor (Attorney-at-law at Bird & Bird Hungary) and Jaka Repansek (Media and Gaming Expert, Partner at Hipther Agency).

The third panel discussion is going to focus on the updates from Romania and Bulgari and is titled “GAMING REPORT: EASTERN EUROPE”.

The discussion will be moderated by Ana-Maria Baciu (Managing Partner Simion & Baciu Law Firm) and will be joined by Dan Iliovici (Vice President of ROMBET – Romanian Gambling Organizers’ Association) and Georgi Dimitrov (Legal counsel at EGT Interactive Ltd).

You can find more details about the speakers’ and moderator bios below.

AS MENTIONED ABOVE THE EASY AND FREE REGISTRATION PROCESS IS SPONSORED BY ALTENAR AND YOU CAN REGISTER HERE NOW!

The HIPTHER FESTIVAL includes a full week of conferences that are designed to bring together innovation with compliance via several talks and discussions in multiple industries and will run between 5-9 October.

The festival includes the following conferences:

  • PICANTE Marketing Summit (#MS2020ve) – 5 October
  • European Gaming Congress (#EGC2020ve) – 6-7 October
  • PICANTE TECH Conference Europe (#TCE2020AutumnVE) – 8-9 October

The registration is free and you can attend all three conferences with just one registration!

You can find more details about the Agenda here or you can register here!

For further inquiries about the speaking/sponsoring options, make sure to send an e-mail to Andrada Marginean (B2B Sales Executive at Hipther Agency) or subscribe to the weekly newsletter on the following link.

For media-related inquiries, please contact Alexandru Marginean (Marketing Specialist at Hipther Agency).

Ana-Maria Baciu – Managing Partner Simion & Baciu Law Firm

Ana-Maria Baciu is a regulatory and intellectual property lawyer, assisting clients in various industries, including gambling, IT, e-commerce or pharmaceuticals, for more than 20 years.

In the gaming field, Ana-Maria has been guiding betting & gaming companies, solution providers, marketing affiliates, other companies with an interest in this sector and industry-relevant associations, on the full range of regulatory and operational gaming aspects.

Read in full here…

Ewa Lejman-Widz – Head of Polish Desk at WH Partners

Ewa is heading the Polish Desk of WH Partners as part of the strategic partnership under the WH Partners brand with Izabella Żyglicka and Partners, a very well reputed full-service law firm in Poland and a member of Ally Law.

Ewa is a business lawyer with over 12 years of experience. She assists clients on matters related to gaming and gambling, contract law, M&A and IT service market law.

Read in full here…

Anna Wietrzyńska-Ciołkowska – Legal advisor, Local Partner at DWF Poland

Anna Wietrzyńska-Ciołkowska is a corporate lawyer dealing with M&A transactions focused on the gambling and insurance sectors.

She advises clients from the gambling sector on setting up a business and obtaining a permit to run a gambling business in Poland, providing gambling services to Polish residents from other jurisdictions, organising promotional lotteries, organising betting transactions, distributing gaming machines, gambling components in computer games or lotteries, acquiring gambling companies and structuring cooperation between partners in such companies, outsourcing of gambling functions, restrictions on making payments or advertising activities in gambling, as well as matters related to gambling tax.

Read in full here…

Jan Řehola – Director at IFGR and Partner at PS Legal

Jan Řehola has over eight years of experience in the gambling field, both from the public and private sector.

He holds a Master’s of Law from Charles University in Prague.  Jan worked for four years for the Ministry of Finance – the Czech gambling regulator; firstly, as a Head of the Legal Unit and later, as a Director of Gambling Department.  In his work for the Czech gambling regulator, Jan was responsible for all gambling policy issues, including the drafting of new legislation, the issuing of gambling licenses and cooperation with other European regulators as a member of the European Commission Expert Group on Online Gambling.

After leaving the Ministry of Finance in 2014, Jan became a member of Petroš Sedláčková Legal and co-founder of the consultancy company BetOnSkill Consulting, a full-service international gaming consultancy.

Read in full here…

Georgi Dimitrov – Legal Counsel / Compliance Manager at EGT Interactive

Georgi Dimitrov is a legal counsel at EGT Interactive Ltd., with a focus on legal, regulatory and technical compliance matters related to the iGaming industry. He specializes in international gambling regulation and provides guidance on licensing and certification frameworks, policy drafting, and compliance processes. His line of work involves communication with focal stakeholders in the business such as testing labs, regulators and operators.

Read in full here…

Gábor Helembai – Senior Associate at Bird & Bird Budapest

Gábor is a Senior Associate in the Corporate and Commercial teams in the Budapest office of Bird & Bird. He advises on both domestic and cross-border transactions and investments in various industries. He has a special sector focus on gaming/betting, advising major online and land-based operators, and slot machine manufacturers on regulatory matters.

Read in full here…

Dan Iliovici – Vice President of ROMBET – Romanian Gambling Organizers’ Association

Dan Iliovici is the Vice President of ROMBET – Romanian Gambling Organizers’ Association, one of the most important associations of the industry.

With rich experience in the gambling industry, former President of the Romanian gambling regulator – The National Gambling Office.

Read in full here…

Dr. Robert Skalina – Senior Advisor at WH Partners

Robert Skalina is a Czech Advocate as well as a Registered European Lawyer in Malta. He is based in Prague and works in Malta regularly.

He is a financial service and corporate lawyer and provides advice to a wide range of investment managers, advisors and funds, including private equity and hedge funds. Robert also regularly advises clients in the gaming/gambling industries and has vast experience in the area of mergers and acquisitions and complex cross border transactions.

Read in full here…

Jakub Myszkorowski – Chief Commercial Officer at STATSCORE

With more than 10 years of experience in the professional sport and betting industries, Jakub is now leading the Sales and Marketing operations at STATSCORE, a Polish company aiming at becoming the Biggest Sports Data Center in the world.

As a former football UEFA A coach and soccer performance analyst, he merges the best sports practices into managing the staff.

Read in full here…

Jaka Repanšek – Media and Gaming Expert, Partner at Hipther Agency

Jaka has worked for various TIME (Telecom, Internet, Media, Entertainment) companies since 1996. He is recognized as one of the leading experts on gaming, media and digital law in Slovenia. Jaka graduated from the Faculty of Law at the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia and gained his graduate degree from Cambridge University in England and Faculty of Law in Ljubljana (Diploma in European Community Law) and completed two-year MBA graduate studies at the University of Kansas in the USA.

Read in full here…

Jakub Kolomicenko – Head of the legal department at Endorphina

Jakub Kolomicenko started his practice as a corporate lawyer and member of the Czech Bar Association but then he changed his focus and as an in-house counsel specializes in IP law and all aspects of gaming law

He is currently the Head of the legal department at Endorphina and works with a team that consists of highly qualified international professionals with many years of experience in online casino games creation.

Read in full here…

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