Newspaper and Magazine Vendors Increasingly Rely on Gambling-Related Products

Physical retail outlets are likely to remain important for gambling, two recent news reports confirm.

In 2015, newspaper and magazine vendors in Belgium achieved 44% of their total revenue from selling gambling related products, an increase of 10% year-on-year.

As the sale of lottery tickets remains stable, the revenue increase is mostly due to the growing popularity of betting terminals.

Meanwhile in Spain, 40% of the registered users who visit the betting site and online casino Sportium.es – a joint venture between Ladbrokes and local operator Cirsa – end up making bets at the operator’s retail outlets as well.

 

German States Reach Agreement on New Interstate Treaty on Gambling

Last week, the prime ministers of the sixteen German federal states (Länder) reached broad agreement on the outline of a new Interstate Treaty on Gambling to replace the current treaty that has been widely criticized by the courts and the European Commission.

The previous treaty’s restriction on issuing no more than twenty sports betting licenses will be scrapped, to be replaced with an uncapped system in which minimum quality standards are the criteria.

The gaming regulators of the Länder are also instructed to consider recent developments in other European countries with regard to online casino games “in order to investigate which regulatory measures will further contribute to the goals of the Interstate Treaty in this area,” potentially opening the door to the legalization of these games.

The agreement, including the potential opening of the online casino market, closely follows the establishment of the Deutsche Online Casinoverband (DOCV), formed to press the German government on relaxing its sports-only gambling policy. Members of the DOCV include William Hill, Tipico, Bet-at-Home, and Mr Green.

In less positive news, thousands of land-based casinos and gaming halls in Germany could risk losing their licenses and face closure as regulators seek to implement stricter gambling rules in January 2017, when the transitional period of the country’s gambling law which was enacted in 2012 expires.

 

The Future of Sports Betting

Sports broadcaster ESPN takes a look at the future of sports betting:

“Some of the world’s largest tech companies are expected to emerge as bookmaking giants that will compete against established U.S. and international sportsbook operators, state lotteries, Native American gaming interests and fantasy sports sites for a share of the market.

Stock market-like sports betting exchanges will be created to cater to the more sophisticated bettor, while also presenting the sports leagues with a potential opportunity to profit directly off of legal sports gambling.

Robots — fueled by dynamic algorithms, motion-tracking cameras and microchips capable of ingesting troves of real-time data from athletes’ bodies — will increasingly dominate high-stakes sports betting.”

While sports betting remains illegal in most US states, nearly half of all respondents in a recent poll declared to be in favor of legalization.

 

“The Gaming Industry Should Not Rely on the Government to Develop a Positive Vision for Gambling”

Commenting on the latest proposals by the UK Government to enforce strict regulation on gambling, gaming consultant Daniel Waugh at Regulus Partners reiterated his conviction that the gaming industry itself should take active steps to articulate a positive vision for the industry:

“[…] it is not actually the role of government to articulate a more positive vision for gambling. It is up to the industry itself – and in recent years it has not done a particularly effective job of this. […] We in Britain do need a vision for gambling if we are to escape the cycle of boom and bust (or liberalisation and repression) but we should not rely for this on either government or the regulator.”

 

Gambling Operators Facing Conflict Over EU’s “Right To Be Forgotten”

“Gambling operators will have to balance their obligations under an upcoming European data protection regulation carefully with the requirements of national gambling legislation,” GamblingCompliance reports in a free, complimentary article:

“The European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which will enter into force across the EU in 2018, will introduce the so-called ‘right to be forgotten’, allowing customers to ask for their information to be deleted by companies.

But industry experts warn that gambling operators in countries such as the UK may face conflicting obligations under the GDPR and the UK Gambling Commission’s Licence Conditions and Codes of Practice (LCCP), effectively forcing them to choose ‘which regulation to break’.

Speaking at the recent Betting on Sports conference in London, David Clifton, co-founder of Clifton Davies Consultancy, said that under the current LCCP, online operators have to retain records of customers wanting to self-exclude ‘for as long as needed’.

But he said that problems may arise if customers ask to exercise their right to be forgotten and request the deletion of data which operators are required to obtain by gambling regulators.”

 

Unibet Expects to Go Live in the Netherlands in 2018

During its presentation of its Q3 report, Unibet announced that the company expects to go live in the Netherlands sometime in 2018, “subject to Senate approval” of the pending remote gaming bill.

The company’s chairman added that it was increasingly unlikely, due to legislative delays, that the original target date of late 2017 or very early 2018 could still be met.

The company also announced impressive financial results: its top-line revenue amounted to £142m, up 65% year-on-year, while underlying EBITDA grew 72%.

 

Other News

The Netherlands Gaming Authority shut down an illegal lottery in the city of Leiden.

 

Ladbrokes has completed its merger with Gala Coral, confirming that the new combined entity will now be known as the Ladbrokes Coral Group.

 

Spanish operator Grupo R. Franco announced that it will begin a start-up accelerator program for innovative entrepreneurs, emulating the example of UK operator William Hill.

 

The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) is to undertake a consultation on possible changes to its Remote Gambling and Software Technical Standards (RTS).

 

Digital Sports Tech has signed a deal to provide its player proposition betting product – branded as Player Bets – to UK bookie Coral. Player Bets enables customers to create and customize their own bets on the performance of individual athletes across a range of statistics and sports in real time.

 

H2 Gambling Capital published yet another edition of its monthly overview of the iGaming sector in numbers.

 

DraftKings and FanDuel, the two dominant, US-based players in the daily fantasy sports industry, are finalizing terms of a merger, which could come as early as this week.

 

Although they were eventually caught, two Britons showed that cheating in a casino does not have to be hard.