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EU Sees Major Gambling Brands Ads Halved on IPR-Infringing Sites in 2021

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The European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) has welcomed the 55% decrease in advertising from major gambling brands in the EU being placed on websites which infringe upon intellectual property rights.

The reduction was reported by the European Union’s Intellection Property Office (EUIPO) in a new study. The study found, during 2021, advertising from major gambling brands – including EGBA members – had decreased by 55% on IPR-infringing websites in the EU, despite overall advertising from all sectors increasing by 26%.

The study analysed the amount and type of online advertising found on IPR-infringing websites and apps in the EU, such as streaming sites for sports, movies or TV shows. These websites and apps generate revenue by selling advertising space and, according to EUIPO, advertising from legitimate brands can be placed on these websites or apps unintentionally because of the “very complex internet advertising ecosystem”.

According to EUIPO, the presence of advertising for brands on IPR-infringing websites and apps “can confuse consumers and mislead them” to believe that the content provided on these sites is legal.

On IPR-infringing websites, EUIPO found a significant 55% decrease – from 18% in Q1 to 8% in Q4 – in major gambling brand advertising during 2021, which follows a previous 20% decrease in 2020. The study also found that, in 2021, advertising from all gambling brands – including major brands and other brands – had decreased marginally on IPR-infringing websites, from 28% in Q1 to 25% in Q4. In terms of mobile apps, gambling accounted for less than 1% of advertising impressions for apps.

The EGBA welcomed the progress made in recent years to reduce the placement of advertising from major gambling brands, including EGBA members, on IPR-infringing websites and apps. However, EGBA recognised that, with gambling representing 25% of advertising impressions on IPR-infringing websites, there is still more work to be done by the entire gambling sector to ensure its advertising does not support IPR-infringing online content.

In recent years, the trade association has worked closely with the European Commission and various cross-industry stakeholders at EU-level within the framework of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) which aims to limit IPR-infringing online advertising. The MoU is a voluntary agreement facilitated and coordinated by the European Commission, and is open to all partners. EGBA encouraged gambling operators to join the association and its members “in signing up to the MoU and its aims.”

“I’m pleased to see consistent and significant, year-on-year progress by Europe’s major gambling brands, including our members, to reduce the placement of advertising on IPR-infringing websites and apps. But there is still more work to do, and we encourage Europe’s gambling operators, and their advertising affiliates, to play their part by ensuring their advertising, and its placement, is conducted in a responsible way. We look forward to continuing our cooperation with the European Commission and other stakeholders, at EU-level, to reduce IPR-infringing online advertising,” Maarten Haijer, Secretary-General of EGBA, said.

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Zitro’s Altius Glare is Now Live at Gran Casino Extremadura

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Zitro’s Altius Glare is Now Live at Gran Casino Extremadura
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Zitro continues to expand its Glare cabinets family in Spain by having now deployed the Altius Glare at Gran Casino Extremadura, owned by Orenes Group, in Badajoz.

The visual quality of Altius Glare, never seen before in the industry, and its design, which includes a huge 55” screen combined with a 27” Full HD screen that provides a giant real estate for 4K graphics and an intelligent LED halo, make this new cabinet shine with its own light in the gaming hall of the Extremadura casino.

“We did not hesitate to include Zitro’s cabinets, which are having incredible results not only in Spain but worldwide. As a reference in the entertainment industry, our commitment is to offer our customers high quality products with the most advanced technologies,” Gregorio Hernández, Director of the Casino Division of Orenes Group, said.

“We are grateful to Orenes Gran Casino de Extremadura for expanding the portfolio of Zitro products they already offer in their gaming hall. Altius Glare together with its multi-game Wheel of Legends offers a unique immersive gaming experience, which we are convinced will appeal to all customers of Gran Casino Extremadura,” said Jaime Aníbal-Álvarez, Zitro’s Director of Casinos – Spain.

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Flutter Completes Acquisition of Italian Gaming Operator Sisal

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Flutter Completes Acquisition of Italian Gaming Operator Sisal
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Flutter Entertainment has announced that it has completed the acquisition of Italy’s online gaming operator Sisal. The €1.913 billion deal was first announced in December.

“Flutter is pleased to announce that it has received all necessary regulatory confirmations with respect to the acquisition of Sisal and the transaction completed on 4 August 2022,” the Paddy Power owner said in a statement.

Italy is the second largest regulated gambling market in Europe after the UK, with total estimated gross gaming revenue in 2019 of €19 billion.

The business, which employs about 2500 people and is headquartered in Milan, expects to generate EBITDA of €248m this year.

Flutter said that Sisal has performed strongly since the transaction was announced with year-on-year growth of 58% in revenue to £402m and 51% in EBITDA to £120m during the first half of 2022. It noted that the previous year was impacted by Covid-related retail restrictions.

The company said the deal has been completed using debt facilities agreed at transaction announcement in December, bringing Flutter’s expected weighted average cost of debt to approximately 3.4% for the second half of this year.

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AstroPay Appoints Fayyaz Ansari as CFO

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AstroPay Appoints Fayyaz Ansari as CFO
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AstroPay has appointed Fayyaz Ansari as its Chief Financial Officer (CFO).

Having worked in finance for over 20 years, Fayyaz brings with him a deep understanding of the global payments industry. Prior to joining AstroPay, he was working at Skrill, NETELLER & Income Access (part of Paysafe Group Plc) as CFO of their digital wallet division and board member of their regulated entities. He will be based in the UK with responsibility for overseeing all aspects of AstroPay’s global financial management and activities.

Fayyaz’s extensive leadership experience includes controllership, treasury, financial planning and analysis, tax restructuring, corporate finance, performance management, M&A and strategic planning. He also managed other aspects of the finance function which includes banking, investments, financial systems and was involved in fundraising as well as coordinating efforts for an exit via a trade sale/ IPO.

“I am delighted to welcome Fayyaz to AstroPay where he will undoubtedly make an immediate impact as we aim to become the world’s leading payments platform. His wealth of experience will be essential in implementing our strategic plans to accelerate growth and position AstroPay for the future. Fayyaz and the team will contribute to our mission of providing financial freedom to millions of people worldwide. He is an excellent addition to the AstroPay team and I look forward to working with him in our journey,” Mikael Lijtenstein, CEO of AstroPay, said.

“I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to join AstroPay as the next step in my career. I am excited about working with a team that is passionate about the business, has a clear strategy and always puts customers’ needs first. With its commitment to global expansion, a strong business model, a focus on diversity and proud history, AstroPay is well positioned for extraordinary growth and impact. I believe the company’s unique value proposition and strong foundation will allow the business to grow and execute its vision of making payments much more accessible to customers around the world,” Fayyaz Ansari, CFO of AstroPay, said.

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