Predicting 2020: CRUKS, Holland Casino, and Counterproductive Consumer Protection Measures

It is the time of year for forecasting the gambling sector’s fortunes in the twelve months to come. As always, it’s a fun game.

We’ll see an increased focus on the US among European operators. India will be the next grey market destination, and Malta will wane as a gambling jurisdiction.

Looking, however, specifically at the Dutch market, local casino news website Meneer Casino makes four bold predictions, which we think have a more than even chance of becoming reality:

  1. The proposed player exclusion registry CRUKS, which is a big part of the Remote Gaming Act, will not be ready before January 1, 2020. And even if it will be, further trouble can be expected from (land-based) trade association VAN Kansspelen.
  2. The attempts of the Netherlands Gambling Authority to ensure that online operators introduce effective age verification measures prior to the regulated market opening will have a negative impact on the future player channelization rate.
  3. Holland Casino will – finally – get a new logo.
  4. Scientific Games will make an attempt to acquire live casino provider Evolution Gaming.

Read the explanation behind these predictions here.

 

UK Gambling Commission to Consider Ban on VIP Programs

The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) is reportedly considering a ban on VIP schemes if current industry practices do not change, The Guardian reports.

Data collected from betting firms show that some operators rely excessively on high-spending VIPs. In one instance, only 2% of customers accounted for no less than 83% of deposits made on an operator’s website – although, in reality, the reported deposit concentration may not be as unreasonable as it initially appears.

“Operators must improve their interaction with VIPs and we have challenged the industry to make faster progress to improve how they manage their customers. We have also taken robust action against operators who fail to protect consumers and we will be even tougher if behavior does not change,” a UKGC spokesperson said.

Brigid Simmonds, chair of the Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) trade body, said: “Our industry recognizes the need to change practices in this area and we will soon publish the terms of a review for a new industry code of conduct.”

 

Upcoming Events

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

  • The world’s largest gambling exhibition, ICE 2020, will take place 4 – 6 February in London. If you are there, don’t miss the Holland Party which is hosted by Eurocoin Gaming!
  • The Hospitality Summit, which takes place on 4 – 6 February, 2020 in London, is a brand new conference dedicated to hospitality tailored for gaming.
  • GamblingCompliance Global Regulatory Awards 2020, which celebrate excellence in compliance and responsible gambling initiatives, will be awarded on 22 April, 2020 at the De Vere Grand Connaught Rooms in Central London.
  • The World Gaming Executive Summit will return to Barcelona from 30 June – 2 July,  2020. Key themes on the agenda include AI, the future of land-based gaming, CSR, sustainable marketing, regulation updates, fantasy sports, and emerging marketing opportunities.

 

Online Gambling Advertising Restrictions Looming in Spain, Sweden, Belgium, and Greece

Several European countries are currently considering to impose additional, sometimes far-reaching advertising restrictions on licensed online gambling operators.

Spain’s new coalition government has said it will bring gambling advertising regulations in line with those imposed on the tobacco industry.

“We will approve a regulation of the advertising of gambling – online gambling and betting – at the state level and similar to that of tobacco products,” the coalition agreement states. Specific details, however, have not yet been disclosed.

Meanwhile, the Swedish government is also looking to enforce tougher advertising and marketing restrictions upon licensed incumbents.

“There is still an area where we will have to spend a lot of our energy in the coming months, and that is advertising,” Ardalan Shekarabi, Sweden’s Minister of Social Security, said.

“Here we have to regain control, as we need to tighten up the law to remove the aggressive game advertising, especially with regards to dangerous elements that are attached to online casinos.”

Similarly, Belgium’s gambling operators are likely facing further advertising restrictions following a government surveythat found gambling promotions were “omnipresent” in professional football.

Finally, draft legislation released by the Greek government calls for a near complete ban on advertising for casino games powered by a random number generator.

 

Other News

Netherlands Gambling Authority Chairman René Jansen discusses the opening of the regulated Dutch online gambling market at BNR Nieuwsradio.

 

The Netherlands Gambling Authority is looking to hire both a Senior Inspector Online Enforcement and a Supervisor Games of Chance.

 

Operators interested in acquiring a Dutch remote license should use 2020 to get ready for the opening of the licensing process on January 1, 2020, the Gaming Practice Group at Kalff Katz & Franssen says.

 

Authorities in the German state of Hesse will now accept applications for temporary sports betting licenses following the passing into law of the third amended Interstate Treaty on gambling. The Darmstadt Regional Council has said it aims to issue the first licenses in Q1 2020.

 

The Danish gaming authority has published a new guide on responsible gambling, including interpretations of how licensees should comply with responsible gambling rules.

 

Lottoland has gone live with its first-ever sports betting product after sealing a sportsbook deal with Malta-based supplier Altenar.

 

Latvia’s self-exclusion scheme is now up and running, with citizens able to prohibit themselves from gambling for twelve months.

 

“Can boredom trigger gambling addiction?” renowned UK responsible gambling expert Liz Karter asks. Recently, Karter also spoke at the “Women and problem gambling” event co-hosted by Holland Casino and Gaming in Holland.

 

Kindred Group has agreed to donate its exposure rights during the European Handball Championships (EHC) towards the European Network of Active Living for Mental Health (ENALMH).