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Lithuania’s Online Gaming Growth Fails to Offset Land-based Decline in 2020

Niji Narayan

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Lithuania’s Online Gaming Growth Fails to Offset Land-based Decline in 2020
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Lithuania’s regulated gambling market saw revenue decline in 2020, despite a 47.1% jump in online gaming revenue mitigating much of the country’s land-based struggles.

Total revenue across all verticals and channels declined 8.1% year-on-year to €103.5m, with the online advances accompanied by a 39.1% drop in land-based revenue to €43.9m.

With customers confined to their homes between March and May as a result of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, igaming participating grew sharply. Total customer spends surpassed $1bn, a 64.3% year-on-year increase, while total revenue grew to €59.6m.

Category A slots were the primary source of online revenue, after the product’s total almost doubled year-on-year to €29.4m.

Despite major sporting events being suspended between March and mid-May as a result of Covid-19, sports betting contributed the second-largest share of any vertical. Betting revenue was up 10.5% to €26.5m, on stakes of €444.1m, a 5.2% improvement on 2019.

Online table game revenue soared, albeit from a low base, to €1.9m, while revenue from Category B slots was up 47.4% to €1.2m.

After Covid-19 pandemic forced in-person facilities to shut their doors from 16 March to 17 May, Lithuania’s land-based market struggled, however.

Customer stakes across all products fell 39.5% below the prior year’s total, to €288.6m.

Category B slots – which limit stakes to €0.50 per spin and have win amounts capped at 200 times the original stake – made up the majority of revenue for the year, at €20.3m, down 37.9%

Table games followed, though again revenue fell, to €10.2m. Category A slot revenue – with uncapped stakes and winnings – dropped 36.1% to €7.8m.

Retail sports betting’s contribution, meanwhile was almost halved, to €5.7m. Not only did the sector face the Covid-19 shutdown, but also saw most major sporting events suspended as a result of the pandemic.

The country’s national lottery Olifėja also reported a year-on-year decline in revenue for 2020. Ticket sales fell 6.7% to €106.3m, and after payouts to players, this left revenue of €46.9m, down 5.9%.

Baltics

Lithuanian Regulator Issues Fine for Illegal Ads on Basketball Website

Niji Narayan

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Lithuanian Regulator Issues Fine for Illegal Ads on Basketball Website
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Lithuania’s Gambling Supervisory Authority has fined an employee of a digital media business for placing illegal gambling ads on basketball news and information website Krepšinis.net, after a court confirmed its authority to take action.

The site was found to be hosting gambling ads with slogans and animated backgrounds, and featuring promotional bonuses, all of which are prohibited under Lithuanian regulations. These ads also lacked the mandatory warnings required in gambling ads.

The regulator said that Krepšinis.net had been a “refuge for illegal gambling advertising for several years.” This, it explained, was due to the site being registered outside of Lithuania, making it difficult to enforce advertising regulations.

However, the Vilnius City District Court ruled that advertising gambling in a way that contravenes Lithuanian law on the site is not permitted, as the site targets Lithuanian customers.

“With gambling advertised on Krepšinis.net, law-abiding Lithuanian portals found themselves in an unequal situation, and citizens were illegally encouraged to participate in gambling,” the regulator explained.

After conducting an investigation, the Gambling Supervisory Authority determined that the ads were placed by a business named UAB All Media Digital, which provides advertising services for websites. As a result, the employee responsible for placing the ads was fined €1500.

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Baltics

Tom Horn Gaming continues Latvian charge with SynotTip

Zoltan Tundik

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Tom Horn Gaming has deepened its Latvian footprint after taking its portfolio of award-winning slot games live with SynotTip, an operator brand powered by SYNOT Interactive, part of the SYNOT Group.

SynotTip runs on a platform provided by a Czech content aggregator and platform provider SYNOT Interactive and is lauded as one of the biggest operator brands in Latvia, with a number of new players steadily growing every day.

Through the agreement with SYNOT Interactive, the operator’s users are now able to enjoy Tom Horn’s popular titles like 243 Crystal Fruits, The Secret of Ba as well as some of the most recent additions.

Ondrej Lapides, CEO at Tom Horn Gaming said of the partnership: “Combining our strong product and the local competence of SynotTip allows us to confidently look forward to strengthening our presence in Latvia. Our focus on high quality content and superb technology aligns well with our new partners.

We already see that our products are in huge demand among Latvian players and we’re looking forward to catering to their increasing appetite for an exciting online gaming experience that is safe and fair going forward.”

“We’re extremely happy to onboard Tom Horn Gaming as we continue to improve our content offering with exciting new titles that appeal to local audiences. Tom Horn Gaming is a leading igaming supplier in many markets, including the Baltics, and its expertise in slot provision coupled with a profound knowledge of the local player preferences is a guarantee of success.

We’re sure this will be a long-lasting and fruitful partnership and together we will grow our footprint in many regulated markets for years to come, “ added Michal Hýbl, CEO at SYNOT Interactive.

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Baltics

Entain Plc Completes All Enlabs Takeover Duties

Niji Narayan

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Entain Plc Completes All Enlabs Takeover Duties
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Entain Plc has announced that it has contractually completed its €370 million takeover of online gambling group Enlabs AB.

Issuing a market statement, Entain confirmed that it had secured 67 million Enlabs shares, corresponding to 96% of the Nordic Nasdaq First North firm’s total shareholding.

Prior to this announcement, 94% of Enlabs shareholders had approved of Entain’s revised SEK 53 per share offer, disclosed on 22 March – qualifying its takeover approach as unconditional for Enlabs shareholders.

As part of its buyout obligations, Entain had extended its offer acceptance period until April 1, in order to enable existing Enlabs shareholders to accept its deal terms.

Completing its outstanding duties, Entain maintains its revised deal timetable in which the FTSE100 betting group expects to declare the full settlement of its Enlabs takeover on April 13.

Updating stakeholders, Entain emphasised that remaining unsettled Enlabs shares held “no financial exposure,” allowing the company to proceed with the full settlement of its deal – for which Entain will not extend its acceptance period any further.

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