Looking Back at the 2019 Gaming in Holland Conference

Another successful edition of the annual Gaming in Holland Conference concluded last week in Amsterdam. In a packed venue, expert speakers presented on a wide range of topics: from future regulation to responsible gaming; from business innovation to match-fixing.

Regulated online market expected to open on January 1, 2021

The regulated online market in the Netherlands is currently scheduled to open on January 1, 2021, said Netherlands Gambling Authority chairman René Jansen in his keynote speech.

Unfortunately, Jansen was unable to give full clarity on the much-discussed “cooling-off period,” during which unlicensed operators who previously “actively” targeted the Dutch online market will be banned from applying for a remote license. However, detailed regulations are expected to be published before summer recess.

Still, the KSA chairman did reveal that the definition of “active targeting” will be based – among other things – on the regulator’s previously published prioritization criteria.

Immediately after Mr Jansen’s address, the regulator published a form on its website (available in both Dutch and English) allowing prospective licensees to express their interest in acquiring a remote license.

Holland Casino continues to prepare for future privatization

Although the Casino Reform Bill did not pass the Dutch Senate, the current government has not yet given up on the idea of privatizing Holland Casino, the CEO of the state-owned operator, Erwin van Lambaart, said:

“Our government, however, is still convinced that providing gambling services is not a     public core task. This means that privatization of the land based Holland Casinos is still on      the political agenda. The cabinet will return to the drawing board in order to come up with a         new bill that addresses the concerns raised in the Senate.”

Van Lambaart also said that he believes that Holland Casino has managed to crack the “millennial problem” that “every land-based casino” struggles to solve:

“Another huge new chapter in our story is what we call the Experience Zone. This is a “venue in a venue,” designed to make millennials acquainted with everything that casinos have to offer. […]

We now can say that this concept is a huge success. 84% of our Experience Zone visitors is highly enthusiastic, and 98% say that they definitely will come back another time.”

Download a free preview of the Gaming in Holland Brand Monitor

Edgar de Beule, co-founder of Sherloq and Markteffect, shared the results of the very first Gaming in Holland Brand Monitor, the largest and most comprehensive brand monitor about online gambling in the Netherlands.

The GiH Monitor enables participating operators to track the development of the Dutch gambling market and the position of their brand within a changing competitive field.

A free preview of the Gaming in Holland Monitor is available for download here.

Gaming in Holland Awards and charity auction

The 2019 Gaming in Holland Awards featured two categories: Innovation of the Year and Responsible Gaming Initiative of the Year. The jury had a hard time deciding between the many outstanding submissions.

In the end, however, the jury found that Holland Casino’s Experience Zone, “a thrilling game zone especially for young, enthusiastic players,” was the deserved winner of the 2019 Innovation of the Year Award.

The Responsible Gaming Initiative of the Yearwas won by Pas Op Gamen en Gokken, an initiative by two former gambling addicts which aims to create awareness among minors and young people regarding the proper risks of (excessive) gaming and gambling.

The winners of the Gaming in Holland Awards were announced at an exclusive dinner, which included a charity auction, the proceeds of which benefited Gaming in Holland’s charity partner Fonds Gehandicaptensport, a charitable fund for handicapped sports.

Watch all conference sessions online

All conference sessions were recorded and can be watched here.

Or take a look at the photosthat were taken during the event.


Upcoming Events

The following events may be of interest to members of the GiH community.

  • 115+ speakers already confirmed their attendance at the World Gaming Executive Summit, 2 – 4 July, 2019 in Barcelona.
  • The Trimbos Instituut, a Dutch non-profit research and knowledge center for mental health and addiction, will organize an afternoon session on online gambling on August 22 in Hilversum.
  • The IMGL Autumn 2019 Conference takes place September 11–13 in Munich.
  • Betting on Sports 2019, the world’s largest sports betting conference & exhibition, will be held 17 – 20 September, 2019, in London. Betting on Sports 2019 will take place concurrently with CasinoBeats Summit 2019.
  • The International Association of Gaming Regulators (IAGR) will hold its 2019 Annual Conference in Montego Bay, Jamaica from 30 September to 3 October 2019.
  • The Responsibility in Gaming Conference, taking place 23 – 24 October, 2019 in Brussels, will focus on what operators and regulators can and should do to create an effective and workable responsible gaming policy.
  • Trade association VAN Kansspelen organizes a large number of member activities throughout the year. Check out their agenda here.


Other News

The Global Lottery Management System (GLMS) has identified 33 instances of suspicious betting activity during the first quarter of the year.


Spanish gambling regulator Dirección General de Ordenación del Juego(DGOJ) has published its new three-year strategy, prioritizing addiction prevention and social responsibility.


The French online gambling market hit a record €1.2bn during 2018, according to latest figures released by the French regulator, ARJEL.


Total revenue from regulated gambling in the Czech Republic fell 21.3% in 2018 to CZK31.3bn (€1.2bn), with the decline down to a lower contribution from slot machines.


Gaming Innovation Group (GiG) has launched its new sportsbook with Guts.com, as it seeks to position its in-house brand as a sportsbook-led operator.


The UK Gambling Commission has fined Gibraltar-based online gambling operator Gamesys £1.2m for failing to prevent gambling harm and breaching money laundering regulations.


Following a change in ownership, Malta-based operator MaxEnt Limited has been stripped of its UK operating license.


Sweden’s Svenska Spel has inked a new partnership with the Swedish Handball Federation (SHF) which will see the operator provide educational initiatives to players regarding the impact that match-fixing can have.


SkillOnNet-operated gaming brand PlayOJO has opted to halt certain television advertising activities in Sweden in an effort to reduce exposure to underage players, and is now urging rival brands to follow suit.


Inspired Entertainment has reached a definitive agreement to purchase the Gaming Technology Group (NTG) of Novomatic UK, for $120m in cash.


Greek gaming operator OPAP has reported a year-on-year increase in revenue and profit for the first quarter, primarily due to ongoing growth within its video lottery terminals (VLTs) and KINO lottery businesses.


Operator GVC Holdings has passed its new payment scheme, which involves reducing CEO Kenny Alexander’s salary to £800,000 a year, at its AGM in Gibraltar. However, GVC noted its disappointment with the 41.96% of shares used to voted against it.