“Gaming Industry Needs to Improve Self-Regulation or Face Regulators’ Wrath”

If the online gambling industry does not improve its responsible gaming and player protection efforts, it can expect some heavy-handed interference from regulators, EGR Intel observes:

“The Netherlands will open its regulated market in the next 12 months and Sweden is likely to follow suit in near course. These are both hugely important countries to the industry, and both have shown an intent to place player protection at the forefront and to protect their local gambling industries.

Online gambling must be cognisant of this dual focus from local regulators and must get in front of the debate to avoid being regulated out of business. Imposing restrictions on its highest value customers might seem an odd strategy for any business, but these types of affordability tests may be a step the industry can’t afford not to take.”

 

Sweden to Postpone Gaming Liberalization?

Sweden’s regulatory chief and liberalization advocate Håkan Hallstedt has unexpectedly resigned from his position, potentially dealing a blow to hopes that Sweden could be ready to embrace a fully-liberalized online gambling market.

 

Uproar over UK Parliamentary Fixed-Odds Betting Terminals Report

The Association of British Bookmakers (ABB) is demanding an urgent inquiry into a parliamentary report calling for fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBT) maximum stakes to be reduced from £100 to just £2.

The FOBTs All-Party Parliamentary Group, which issued the report, has reportedly been funded by the Hippodrome Casino, major land-based gaming supplier Novomatic, casinos and arcades company Praesepe, and pub chain JD Wetherspoon.

“This is a deeply flawed report funded by vested interests who would directly benefit if its recommendations are ever implemented,” Malcolm George, ABB chief executive, said.

“The report is the view of a tiny group of anti-betting shop MPs [which] has been financed by those with interests in the casino, arcade and pub industries.”

“We strongly believe that the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards should urgently investigate this All-Party Parliamentary Group,” he added.

 

SUZOHAPP to Exhibit at ICE 2017

The must-attend gaming trade show will be opening its doors again between February 7-9 at the ExCel Centre in London. Once again SUZOHAPP, applied technology solutions provider for self-service machines, will be exhibiting with a vast array of components and solutions displayed at booth #N4-110.

Ferry Bostelaar, SUZOHAPP Regional Sales Manager, said: “SUZOHAPP has been serving the Industry for over 60 years and has continually proven its dedication to providing the most innovative, value-adding solutions and components. We are particularly excited to exhibit at ICE this year and show just how committed we are to the gaming industry.”

Examples of key solutions include:

  • Comestero Changers range.
  • SCAN COIN products.
  • The Cash Complete product range, which includes the unique CashComplete software platform that is the ultimate solution for superior financial and operational control of cash.
  • Cash Redemption Terminal, a complete redemption terminal for cards or tickets. Cleverly designed so that access for service requirements and cash clearance are separated, the CRT includes all the payment methods to ensure that customers have entire redemption possibilities.

Ferry Bostelaar concluded “We invite operators to visit us at Booth #N4-110 to find out how we can support them drive their business forward!”

 

Dutch Lower House Okays Holland Casino Privatization

Yesterday, the Dutch Lower House passed a bill that will privatize and split up state-owned Holland Casino. The bill, however, must still pass the Senate before it can be enacted. Holland Casino is currently the only land-based casino operator in the Netherlands that is allowed to offer live table games, such as roulette, blackjack, and baccarat. Its sale might net the Dutch treasury as much as €1bn.

The bill proposes that Holland Casino’s fourteen individual branches will be split up: ten of these – as of yet, it is unclear which ones – will remain part of Holland Casino. Four will be sold separately, while an additional two land-based casino licenses will be newly created.

By and large, the adoption of this bill is a significant victory for the liberalization of gambling in the Netherlands. However, several (formally non-binding) motions that were simultaneously adopted with the bill itself could have a negative impact on the wider gambling industry in the Netherlands. For instance, the Lower House called upon the government to restrict opportunities for casino operators to operate adjacent leisure facilities, such as hotels or bars.

Sebastiaan Hoek, spokesperson for Holland Casino commented: “Holland Casino understands that the gaming market needs to be modernized. It is now up to Holland Casino to prepare for such changes. To us, as an organization, it is important that the continuity of all our branches, as well as the current policies that protect the public interest, are safeguarded.”

Ron Goudsmit, founder of easyplaytime and Honorary Chairman of the European Casino Association, added: “Hopefully, the government will understand that nowadays casino customers are increasingly looking for a broader entertainment offering. There is a clear international trend that an increasing share of total revenue is being derived from other sources than gambling as such.”

 

Other News

The Appeals Court in Amsterdam sided with the District Court in Alkmaar and upheld the suspension of Stichting Loterijverlies’ management.

 

ESSA found no suspicious betting activity in the Netherlands.

 

After the launch of Football Gladiators at ICE 2016, StakeLogic will launch of a brand new 3D slot game “Darts Heroes,” featuring four world-class darts players – Gary Anderson, Michael van Gerwen, Raymond van Barneveld, and Phil Taylor.

 

Well-noted Dutch poker professional Marcel Luske has initially lost his copyright complaint against PokerStars over claimed use of his International Rules of Poker.

 

The Dutch Eredivisie has followed the example set by France and Spain by setting up an eighteen team eLeague that will mirror the nation’s premier football league over the course of seventeen rounds of FIFA17.

 

According to the Supreme Administrative Court of the German state of Nordrhein-Westfalen, Sports betting operators who are licensed in a EU member state do not require a local license to offer their services.

 

Betsson’s Italian-facing online gaming brand StarCasino.it has been named as an official betting partner of current Serie A champions Juventus FC. Will we see similar partnerships in the Dutch Eredivisie? For instance between Betsson-owned Kroon Casino and Oranje Casino and a Dutch football side?

 

Daily fantasy sports (DFS) giant DraftKings is to expand its contests across Europe after securing a new gaming license from the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA). The daily fantasy operator hopes to launch in Germany by the end of March.

 

In the world of table games, blackjack and baccarat (and to a lesser extent, craps and roulette) continue to dominate, while new games face steep hurdles for success.

 

Artificial intelligence is about to conquer poker.

 

Americans will be betting $4.7bn on Super Bowl 51.

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