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Compliance Updates

Swedish Regulator Issues SEK300,000 Fine to Yggdrasil for Supplying its Online Gaming Software to Unlicensed Operator

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Spelinspektionen, the Swedish gaming regulator, has issued a SEK300,000 (€26,200) penalty fee and a warning to Yggdrasil for allegedly supplying gaming software to an unlicensed company operating in Sweden.

Yggdrasil received its software licence on 22 March 2023. This permitted it to create, supply and install gaming software used for online games in Sweden. This licence expires on 20 June 2028.

The regulator said it began its investigation on 16 January 2024, when it began to investigate websites being run by unlicensed operators in Sweden. It is understood that Yggdrasil was a supplier for one of these websites, according to Spelinspektionen’s decision outline.

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This contravenes chapter 11, section 6 of Sweden’s Gambling Act. This section outlines that game software licensees must not provide software for anyone that does not hold a licence.

In response to the investigation, Yggdrasil said it had corrected the issue on 23 January 2024. It stated that the contravention had come about due to a breach in contract between itself and a retailer. Yggdrasil stipulated that it no longer “manufactures, supplies, installs or changes gaming software for players without the necessary licence”.

The regulator acknowledged that Yggdrasil complied with its order, but added that this is expected of all licensees.

“Yggdrasil has promptly taken corrective action and removed games and all other types of assets belonging to Yggdrasil from the website in question and ceased the violation since it was notified by the Gaming Authority,” reads the decision.

“The collaboration cannot, however, be considered to have been active in a different way than what one must normally be able to expect from a company that has chosen to operate licensed activities under supervision.

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“The mitigating circumstances do not outweigh the seriousness of the offense in such a way that it can be considered minor or excusable. In summary, the Swedish Gaming Authority assesses that the violation is serious.”

Spelinspektionen concluded that a warning would be given rather than revoking Yggdrasil’s licence in Sweden altogether. This is also combined with the penalty fee issued.

The fee must be at a minimum of SEK5000 and set at a maximum of 10% of the company’s turnover in relation to the preceding financial year. As Yggdrasil’s net sales hit €514,566 in 2023 – the equivalent of SEK5.8m – the fee could have been as high as SEK580,000.

The post Swedish Regulator Issues SEK300,000 Fine to Yggdrasil for Supplying its Online Gaming Software to Unlicensed Operator appeared first on European Gaming Industry News.

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Compliance Updates

Playnetic strengthens European presence with licence to operate in Sweden

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Playnetic, the new immersive B2B iGaming provider has announced that it has been granted a Swedish licence, following regulatory approval from the Swedish Gambling Authority, Spelinspektionen. 

The licence allows Playnetic to launch its catalogue of innovative iGaming titles in Sweden, enabling the company to finalise partnerships with prominent operators across the country. 

This significant milestone marks a major step forward in supporting Playnetic’s ambitious growth plans, which include increasing its foothold in other European markets, as well as continued expansion in regulated markets across the globe. 

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Dan Phillips, Playnetic CEO said: “Since launching in early 2023, Playnetic has been exploring expansion opportunities in Europe to penetrate new markets and we are thrilled with achieving this milestone.  

“Thanks to our experienced compliance team, we were able to obtain this licence promptly, which is a huge positive as the market entry lines up perfectly with our regulatory roadmap for 2024. We are looking forward to launching our innovative suite of games which feature captivating themes and mechanics to players and operators in Sweden.” 

The post Playnetic strengthens European presence with licence to operate in Sweden appeared first on European Gaming Industry News.

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Balkans

Bulgarian President Approves Gambling Law Amendments

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Bulgarian President Rumen Radev has decided not to veto the proposed amendments to the Gambling Law, which include a prohibition on gambling advertisements in the media.

Previously, President Radev had indicated that he was deliberating on the changes to the Gambling Law and was awaiting input from his advisors before making a final decision.

The prohibition on gambling advertisements in the media was approved by a significant majority of deputies during the final session of the 49th National Assembly. Despite objections raised by various media outlets, gambling operators, sports clubs, and other businesses between the readings, the amendments were endorsed. Some stakeholders argued against the ban, suggesting that public discussion should precede its adoption.

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The initiative for the amendments originated from GERB and DPS, and it was introduced unexpectedly during the last days of the 49th National Assembly by Yordan Tsonev (DPS) and Temenuzka Petkova (GERB). The bill swiftly progressed through the legislative process, passing its first reading in the budget committee and subsequently receiving approval in the plenary session. An extraordinary meeting of the Committee on Budget and Finance was convened to facilitate the voting on the amendments before the deputies commenced their pre-election recess.

The post Bulgarian President Approves Gambling Law Amendments appeared first on European Gaming Industry News.

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Asia

Thailand Considers Limiting Gambling Areas to 5% of Total Project Space

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The Thai government is exploring the possibility of restricting gambling areas within entertainment complexes to no more than 5% of the total project space. This proposal was revealed by Deputy Finance Minister Julapun Amornvivat, who also chairs the House committee responsible for evaluating the potential establishment of casino resorts in the country.

Amornvivat noted that the allocation of space for gaming activities within these entertainment complexes would be determined based on input from various governmental entities involved in a project.

Last month, Thailand’s cabinet approved a report from the National Assembly committee that examined the feasibility of introducing casino resorts in the country. The Ministry of Finance was tasked with conducting a 30-day study to assess the viability of implementing such a policy.

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Each proposed venue would require a minimum investment of THB100 billion ($2.75 billion), according to the committee report. Amornvivat recently requested a two-week extension for the study period to further evaluate the matter in collaboration with 16 other government agencies.

The special House committee’s study focused on three main areas. First, it examined the potential impacts of introducing entertainment complexes with casinos on various aspects of Thai society, including economics, politics, social dynamics and the environment.

Second, the committee analysed the business framework of integrated entertainment venues, exploring revenue generation mechanisms such as taxes, fees and licensing structures. It recommended the implementation of specific casino taxes and the establishment of a fund aimed at addressing the negative effects of gambling activities.

Last, the report highlighted the importance of conducting a comprehensive review of the legal framework governing entertainment venues and gambling laws in Thailand. This effort aims to update existing legislation or develop new laws that align with the evolving societal landscape.

The post Thailand Considers Limiting Gambling Areas to 5% of Total Project Space appeared first on European Gaming Industry News.

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