Svenska Spel Chair Steps Down over Social Responsibility Strategy

Swedish politician and chairwoman of state-owned gaming monopoly Svenska Spel, Anitra Linnéa Steen, announced she would resign from her position over concerns that the company’s increased focus on profit will come at the expense of responsible gaming and social values.

“For a social democracy it has always been important to have a clear social responsibility,” Steen said in an interview with Dagens Industri. “Svenska Spel has had an effective responsible play policy which was of great importance for social causes, but now has taken another direction.”

Insiders say Steen decided to step down following disagreements with Minister for Public Administration Ardalan Shekarabi over the latter’s proposal to introduce a licensing regime rather than try to preserve  Svenska Spel’s monopoly through IP blocking of offshore online gaming companies, advertising bans, and tougher penalties.

“The government has lost control of the gaming market and we must recapture to secure the protection of consumers. The individual consumer is not protected by a monopoly on the gaming market,” Shekarabi said.

 

CVC Capital Partners Acquires Majority Stake in German sports betting operator Tipico

Private equity group CVC Capital Partners has agreed a deal to acquire a majority stake in German sports betting group Tipico.

Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed, but two sources familiar with the matter put the total value of the company at €1.4 billion euros. They said that CVC’s stake amounted to 60 percent of that.

In late 2014, CVC already took a majority stake in leading British betting firm Sky Bet.

Malta-based Tipico, sponsor of national football champions Bayern Munich, is considered Germany’s largest private sports betting company, representing nearly half of the domestic market.

 

Regulators Take Center Stage at EUROMAT Gaming Summit in Barcelona

Speakers at the premier conference for the European land-based gaming sector include Peter Naessens of the Belgian Gaming Commission and Harrie Temmink, Deputy Head of the Public Interest Services Unit at DG Internal Market.

Mr Naessens will undoubtedly address the recent controversial proposal of the Belgian federal government to impose a 21% VAT on gambling and betting.

Mr Temmink, who has repeatedly warned the Dutch government to quickly regulate online gaming – or face EU sanctions, will deliver the conference’s keynote speech.

 

Other News

The Netherlands Gaming Authority is looking to hire an Inspector Digital Investigations.
Unibet, which just broke its quarterly revenue record, signed a deal with VASCO Data Security to become the first online operator to implement MYDIGIPASS Trusted Digital Identity to verify player identities.

 

Betfair founder Mark Davies, who spoke at last year’s Gaming in Holland Conference, explains why he thinks Paddy Power Betfair shares are currently undervalued.

 

Greyhound racing is still big in the UK.

 

Gambling-friendly states in the US also report the highest incidences of problem gambling.

 

Greece may increase its gaming tax rate to a staggering 35% of GGR, while Russia is mulling a new 10% tax on sports betting.

 

Vidushpat Singhania of Ludus Legal explains how international operators can penetrate the Indian gaming market.