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Swedish online casino shutter would cause instant ‘black-market boom’, says BonusFinder MD

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Swedish online casino shutter would cause instant 'black-market boom', says BonusFinder MD
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Government considers ‘extreme measures’ as activity rises amid COVID-19 restrictions but closures would drive more players to unlicensed sites instead of protecting them

9th April, 2020 ­­– The Swedish government’s threat to temporarily shut down licensed online casinos would have a disastrous effect on the industry and drive thousands more players to the black market, BonusFinder.com has warned.

The minister in charge of gambling policy, Ardalan Shekarabi, this week warned that “extraordinary measures” would be implemented if operators do not take action to slow the increase in igaming activity seen in the last two weeks, as people are told to stay at home because of the COVID-19 outbreak.

According to new data from Sweden’s gambling regulator, Spelinspektionen, there has been a 33% increase in registrations and logins to play online casino games with 17 of the 60 licensed operators in the country in the last 14 days.

Last month, Swedish market research carried out by BonusFinder.com found that almost a third of Swedish online casino players are searching for ‘unlicensed casinos’, with growing numbers turning to black-market brands due to the market’s restrictive gaming regulations, introduced in January 2019.

Instead of protecting players, a shutdown of online casino brands, however, is likely to lead to thousands more players searching for and depositing funds on unlicensed sites, as well as causing further financial damage to licensed operators, according to BonusFinder.com.

Fintan Costello, Managing Director, Bonusfinder.com, said: “The Swedish government will make a colossal mistake if it chooses to temporarily close down online casino sites in an attempt to protect players. As our research has shown, almost a third of online casino players are already looking to the black market for a more attractive offering since restrictive rules were imposed in January 2019. These latest plans would create an immediate black-market boom.

“Swedish legislation requires operators to have strict responsible gambling procedures in place, therefore the right measures are already there. The focus should instead be on ensuring these are adhered to rather than taking a knee jerk reaction to close down all legitimate brands and forcing even more players to unprotected sites.”

 

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HIGHLIGHT GAMES TO LAUNCH SPFL GAME

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HIGHLIGHT GAMES TO LAUNCH SPFL GAME
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London-based video virtual sports specialist Highlight Games Limited today announces that it has acquired rights to use archive footage from the Scottish Professional Football League.

Further to the multi-year agreement, Highlight Games will release a suite of games featuring Scottish football, including a new iteration of its highly successful SOCCERBET game and a range of instant win games.

Games will feature favourite teams and players from the last 25 years including the “Old Firm” Derby – Celtic, Rangers, plus other SPFL Clubs including Aberdeen, Motherwell, Hearts, St Johnstone, Livingston, St. Mirren, Hibernian, Dundee United, Dundee, Ross County, and more. Games will be available in UK retail locations and online both in the UK and in regulated international territories.

‘I’m delighted to announce Highlight Games’ acquisition of rights to the SPFL, which will further extend its portfolio of games and content,’ said Nick Gardiner, Co-CEO, Highlight Games. ‘Our award-winning SOCCERBET product has proven to be highly successful in the territories in which it is now live – in Italy the SOCCERBET Serie A game now accounts for over 50% of all virtual sports bets placed with operators with which it is live – and we have ambitions to replicate this success in the UK with this new SPFL game.’

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Socios.com To Be Official Partner Of The 2021 Ballon D’or Awards

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Socios.com To Be Official Partner Of The 2021 Ballon D’or Awards
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Socios, the all-in-one influence and rewards app for sports fans across the world, will be Official Partner of the 2021 Ballon d’Or Awards, which will mark the return of football’s most desired individual recognitions after last year’s edition was cancelled due to the pandemic.

The creators of Fan Tokens have reached an agreement with Amaury Média, the Amaury Group’s advertising department : L’Équipe (newspaper, magazine), L’Équipe website, L’Équipe mobile app, la Chaine L’Équipe, France Football, le Journal du Golf, Vélo Magazine and le Ballon d’Or.

Socios will have brand visibility on the Red Carpet, where the biggest figures in world football will be shining next Monday, November 29th, as they make their way to the Parisian Théâtre du Châtelet, on the banks of the River Seine, where the ceremony will take place.

Socios will also host two photobooths in which the 750 guests attending the ceremony will be able to take a picture with the iconic trophy and have the chance to earn a Fan Token from one of the platform’s 100+ partners.

Alexandre Dreyfus, Founder and CEO of Socios, said: “We are delighted to be partnering with the Ballon d’Or, the most prestigious individual awards ceremony in football, and to be part of a ceremony that has become one of the most anticipated events in the sports calendar.

“Socios was created to bring fans closer than ever to their heroes, and the Ballon d’Or is the event that gathers football’s biggest stars, so it’s a perfect combination.”

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Falcon Edge, DST Global, D1 Capital and RedBird Capital lead $840 Million investment in Dream Sports at $8 Billion valuation

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Falcon Edge, DST Global, D1 Capital and RedBird Capital lead $840 Million investment in Dream Sports at $8 Billion valuation
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Dream SportsIndia’s leading sports tech company with brands such as Dream CapitalFanCodeDream11DreamSetGoDream Game Studios, and DreamPay in its portfolio, announced the completion of an investment of $840 Million at an $8 Billion valuation, led by Falcon Edge, DST Global, D1 Capital, RedBird Capital and Tiger Global. The round also saw participation from existing investors like TPG and Footpath Ventures, making it amongst the largest investments globally in the sports tech sector.

Dream Sports, with an existing user base of 140 million Indian sports fans, is on a mission to build one of the world’s largest sports ecosystems which includes Sports Content, Commerce, Experiences, Fan Engagement (including Sports Gaming and Esports), Web 3.0 solutions, Fantasy Sports and Fitness Tech. Earlier this year, Dream Sports further strengthened its commitment to this space by announcing a corpus of $250 Million through its CVC and M&A arm, Dream Capital. Dream Capital has built an initial portfolio of 10 companies, largely focusing on thematic early stage investments in India, including, Fittr, SoStronkKheloMore and Elevar. Dream Capital is now expanding its sports, fan engagement and fitness portfolio in India and globally.

Commenting on the investment, Harsh Jain, CEO and Co-Founder, Dream Sports said, “Our vision and mission is to create an entrepreneur-led virtuous cycle of investment, innovation and wealth creation for all stakeholders in the sports ecosystem, from fans to athletes, teams and leagues. Our investors have deep experience in developing sports ecosystems globally, and we are fortunate to have their guidance to ‘Make Sports Better’ for 1 Billion Indian sports fans.”

“We’re excited to partner with the Dream Sports family in their vision of building the leading end-to-end sports tech company in India,” said Rahul Mehta, Managing Partner at DST Global. “We’re very impressed with their customer centric approach, product strategy and ability to strengthen connections between fans and their favorite sports.”

A homegrown company founded in 2008 by Harsh Jain and Bhavit Sheth, Dream Sports is located in Mumbai and employs close to 1,000 ‘Sportans’.

Avendus Capital was the exclusive financial advisor to Dream Sports on the transaction.

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