21 Gaming Professionals: “Regulate Dutch Remote Gaming Now”

During last week’s Gaming in Holland Conference, 21 prominent gaming professionals, including Marja Appelman, CEO of the Netherlands Gaming Authority and Erwin van Lambaart, CEO of Holland Casino, voiced strong appeals to Dutch Parliament to make the utmost haste with regard to regulating the Dutch remote gaming market and passing the long-pending remote gaming bill. Watch the video here.

In his opening speech on the future of Holland Casino, CEO Erwin van Lambaart said, among other things:

“The discussion of this proposal has been postponed repeatedly in recent months. This enables illegal gaming operators to continue their illegal operations even longer. Dutch consumers and players receive insufficient protection and thus, illegal gaming wins ground.”

Read the full transcript of Van Lambaart’s speech here.

Presentations from other conference speakers are currently being added to our website. Don’t forget to check back over the coming days for more.

A full recap of day 1 can be found here.

 

Remote Gaming Bill Status Update

The Parliamentary Committee for Security and Justice has officially requested that the secretariat of the Lower House put the remote gaming bill on the plenary debate agenda ahead of all other Security and Justice legislative proposals and that the debate will be held before summer recess.

The Committee has also requested State Secretary Dijkhoff of Security and Justice to inform the Lower House about the Ministry’s latest proposals with regard to the new lottery regime ahead of the plenary debate on the remote gaming bill.

The Dutch sports sector is now also asking Parliament to hurry up with the remote gaming bill. MP Mei Li Vos of ruling coalition party PvdA is also quoted as saying that she wants to make haste as well.

Meanwhile, Swedish operator Betsson is openly threatening to breach its self-enforced advertising ban in the Netherlands if the remote gaming bill is delayed any further.

 

Netherlands Gaming Authority to Consider License Applications of New Lottery Operators

Last month, the District Court in Amsterdam found that The Netherlands Gaming Authority (KSA) had unjustly refused to consider the application for a charity lottery license of new Dutch market entrant Lottovate.

On Monday, the KSA decided to comply with the Court’s verdict and to consider Lottovate’s application after all – as well as those of any additional applicants. If approved, Lottovate’s license will be valid through 2016.

We asked Peter-Paul de Goeij, Managing Director at Lottovate Nederland, what the regulator’s decision means for his company.

“Hopefully, our license application will now be approved,” De Goeij said. “Next, we would like to start operating as soon as possible, even though this may take considerable time. However, if we do win a license, we expect to be treated in an identical manner as other incumbent operators when the new lottery regime comes into force at the beginning of 2017.”

“Being a Dutch charity lottery, we will naturally contribute to local good causes. At this point, we are already in advanced talks with three Dutch charities, including KNGF Geleidehonden and CliniClowns, who are hoping for additional funds to organize their activities.”

“We would also be more than happy to contribute to Dutch sports. Unfortunately, NOC*NSF is insisting that its member associations will not sign any deal with competitors of incumbent operator Staatsloterij/De Lotto, even though the latter’s contributions to sports have been declining for years.”

“We would welcome discussions with other registered charities, or even sports organizations, who are looking for additional funds.”

“As far as the new lottery regime is concerned, we feel that it is important there will be provisions to guarantee a fair and transparent distribution of charity funds. At present, operators distribute funds as they see fit, without any meaningful transparency regarding their decision making process, either upfront or after the funds have been allocated.”

“This, we think, is not be the best way to assure fairness and impartiality with regard to the division of lottery funds among charities and sports.”

 

Dutch Lottery Operators: “Remove Restrictions on Private Charity Lotteries, but Not in Our Home Market”

The Association of Charity Lotteries in the European Union (ACLEU) has been calling for the removal of restrictions on the operation of private charity lotteries in the EU, in order to “maximize returns for charities,” since at least 2014.

The introduction of a private charity lottery next to an incumbent state lottery in countries such as Spain, Sweden, and the Netherlands “led to an increase of turnover of the state lottery, as additional target groups were created and the overall interest in lotteries expanded,” the ACLEU declared in a public consultation document submitted to the Norwegian government.

Additionally, the ACLEU maintained that the Norwegian government should place no restrictions on the number of available charity lottery licenses.

Five member lotteries of the ACLEU, BankGiro Loterij (NL), Nationale Postcode Loterij (NL), VriendenLoterij (NL), People’s Postcode Lottery (UK), and Svenska PostkodLotteriet (SE), are operated by Dutch media company Novamedia, which also sought to enter the Norwegian lottery market with its “Postcode Lottery” format. Four other members of ACLEU (out of eleven) are minor Dutch charity lotteries.

Yet, while Novamedia is looking to expand into Norway, as well as other countries, it has also been trying to keep competitors out of its Dutch home market by mobilizing the beneficiaries of its charity lotteries to lobby on its behalf against both foreign lottery and new online operators.

Based on the stance taken by ACLEU, these efforts can only be be qualified as detrimental to local Dutch charities.

 

Prima Networks to Supply Dutch Staatsloterij/De Lotto Combination with Casino and Poker Games

Speaking of Dutch lottery operators, Prima Networks has signed a letter of intent with the newly-merged Staatsloterij/De Lotto combination to become the operator’s primary casino and exclusive poker supplier ahead of the expected regulation of online gaming in the Netherlands.

Prima Networks is already certified to offer poker, casino and bingo in Italy and has received ARJEL certification to offer poker in France.

 

Other News

The very idea of “problem gambling” is an alien concept to young gambling addicts, UK magazine Varsity writes.

 

Paddy Power will halt betting on U18 sports in Ireland.

 

Czech President Miloš Zeman signs new gaming regulations into law.

 

The gaming industry opens its doors to London Technology Week.

 

Manchester United is looking to acquire its own eSports team.

 

US daily fantasy operators DraftKings and FanDuel are reportedly discussing a merger.

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