Netherlands Gaming Authority Hits Bet-at-Home with €410,000 Fine

The Netherlands Gaming Authority has fined online operator bet-at-home €410,000 for offering online gambling in the Netherlands without a license.

The Frankfurt-listed operator was sanctioned for specifically targeting Dutch consumers by promoting its products in the Dutch language, incorporating the Dutch flag in its marketing, and allowing its website to be accessed from Dutch IP addresses.

The Netherlands Gaming Authority, which warned bet-at-home about its activities in 2012 and 2014, said it also received reports about the website targeting Dutch citizens “via a television channel aimed at the Netherlands” in May last year.

In response, bet-at-home reportedly threatened to take legal action against the Dutch regulator.


Netherlands Gaming Authority Outlines Its Role in Preventing Gambling Addiction

The Netherlands Gaming Authority has today published a document outlining its vision on its overall coordinating role in preventing gambling addiction.

In order to prevent gambling addiction among Dutch players, the Netherlands Gaming Authority has been tasked to oversee and coordinate all efforts to counter problem gambling. The regulator will therefore organize structured consultations with all relevant stakeholders: operators, care providers, knowledge and training institutions, municipalities, and other authorities, with the goal of promoting cooperation and coordination of efforts.

Additionally, the Netherlands Gaming Authority will advise municipalities with regard to local oversight of land-based gaming machines and lotteries.


Stars Group Completes Its Acquisition of Sky Betting & Gaming

The transaction, which is valued at $4.7bn, “creates the world’s largest publicly listed online gaming company and unites two iconic brand portfolios with strong technology platforms and teams. This significant scale also positions The Stars Group to both secure and expand upon its global footprint,” Rafi Ashkenazi, The Stars Group’s CEO said.

The deal greatly improves The Stars Group’s revenue diversity, creating a balanced spread across poker, casino and sportsbook with a broad geographic reach.

Approximately 75% of combined revenues are now derived from locally regulated or taxed markets.


Upcoming Events

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

  • In 2018, the iGaming Super Show, EiG and Amsterdam Affiliate Conference come together as iGB Live!, a consolidated three brand event. The first edition of iGB Live! will take place 17-20 July 2018 at The Amsterdam RAI.
  • The International Masters of Gaming Law (IMGL) will be organizing their annual autumn conference in Prague, Czech Republic, 5-7 September 2018.
  • Eurocoin Gaming is inviting its customers to participate in a two-day co-creation workshop in order to design a new game concept for the Dutch market on September 12-13.
  • The preliminary program of the 12th EASG Conference on Gambling Studies and Policy Issues, which is scheduled to take place 11-14 September 2018, has now been published.
  • Betting on Sports Week returns to London in September. Over 2,000 delegates from across the world will make their way to the Betting on Sports Week to join the international betting and gaming trade conferences Betting on Sports 2018 and Betting on eSports 2018, held 18-21 September at Olympia London.
  • The 2018 edition of Blockchain Live will feature eight conference stages, including one focused on gaming and gambling. No less than 3,000 attendees are expected to gather in The Grand Hall, Olympia, London on September 26, 2018.
  • The Lisbon Affiliate Conference will take place on 17-20 October 2018 and is expected to bring together the key stakeholders in the iGaming affiliate industry.
  • Clarion Gaming has launched ICE Sports Betting USA, a two-day event to be held in New York on 27 and 28 November, 2018.


Netherlands Gaming Authority CEO Marja Appelman Steps Down

Netherlands Gaming Authority CEO Marja Appelman will step down from her position as of August 1, 2018, following her appointment to the post of Executive Director of the Housing Market Directorate at the Ministry of the Interior.

In the wake of Appelman’s departure, the position of CEO will be eliminated, with the Board of Directors permanently taking over the CEO’s duties.

Appelman will also step down as the Chair of Gaming Regulators European Forum (GREF). She will be replaced in that role by vice-chair Claire Pinson of French regulator ARJEL.

In her farewell interview, Appelman again stresses the need for a quick enactment of the Remote Gaming Bill: “It’s a fact of life that people gamble. Blanket prohibitions are simply not effective. We do all that the current Gambling Act allows us to do, but every time we manage to shut down a website of an unlicensed online operator, another one pops up. Even if one is opposed to gambling, one should still recognize the need to regulate this activity.”


Other News

On Monday, Minister for Legal Protection Sander Dekker paid a working visit to the Netherlands Gaming Authority.


The District Court of The Hague has ruled that online game developer Betsoft, as well as several online operators, are liable for damages for having copied the design of physical slot machine games developed by Novomaticand Novomatic subsidiary Eurocoin Gaming.


Jack’s Casinohas signed a sponsorship deal with Dutch football club PEC Zwolle.


Holland Casino Utrecht has opened an “Experience Zone,” which offers low stakes, game tutorials, and more social interaction to draw a younger crowd.


Dutch lottery operator De Lotto has launched a new TV ad.


The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has released a “ground-breaking approach to understanding the full range of harms gambling can have on society.”


Online betting operators are the real winners of the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Brits alone are set to wager an estimated 2.5 billion pounds on the World Cup, a 50-percent increase on the previous tournament.


The legislative agenda that ARJEL operates under is “not suited” to the rate of development in the gaming industry, according to the French gambling regulator’s European and international affairs officer, Claire Pinson.


PaddyPower Betfair and FanDuel have confirmed the completed merger of their US businesses, creating the largest online sports destination in the US.


Poland’s online gambling blacklist has been upheld by a local court as permissible under the country’s gambling laws.


Veltyco Group plc, the gaming website promoter, has terminated plans to acquire Ruleo Alpenland GmbH, operator of the BTTY branded sportsbook in Germany and Austria.


Following a recent hostile takeover, Spanish gaming operator Codere has pulled funding for its non-profit Codere Foundation, which is still controlled by Codere’s founding family.


Gaming operators wishing to make their businesses more attractive to potential buyers, would be well advised to have in place a credible strategy around responsible gambling, Haide Hong, Managing Director of The Blackstone Group says.


Kindred and Playtech have partnered to improve AML processes through artificial intelligence.


Winamax has become the third operator to launch a combined French-Spanish online poker network.


Game data that is being collected during sporting events is extremely valuable to betting operators.


Sportradar has taken a huge step towards expanding its business in the North American market by unveiling Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) and Silicon Valley-based growth equity firm TCV as new investors.


Sporting Index, the UK’s largest spread-betting firm, stands to lose tens of thousands of pounds to an avid high-stakes gambler after miscalculating a novelty World Cup offer.