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Sweden’s gambling authority the Lotteriinspektionen has granted the licence applications for sixteen gaming companies, with the country poised to welcome its re-regulated market on the first day of next year.

Hailed as a “historic day,” the authority detailed that a total of 95 licence applications were received, 70 of which involve online games, before emphasising that this is the first in a line of decisions set to be brought forward.

Organisations not on the list, but who submitted fully complete applications within the time-frame duly specified, have been advised that a decision on their case will be announced in the coming weeks, depending on its complexity.

“This is a historic day. I am very proud that the Lotteriinspektionen’s staff under severe pressure, with a whole new legislation, worked out the first license decisions,” said Camilla Rosenberg, director general of the Lotteriinspektionen.

Swedish state-owned operator Svenska Spel made the list, alongside AB Trav and Galopp, in addition to Bet365, Nordic Bet, Bwin, Casumo and Interwetten.

The Betsson Group, who secured its licence for online gaming and betting, took its total number held to 12, and commented in a media release: “The gaming licence enables competition on equal terms and gives Swedish customers access to the games they desire under a Swedish regulation, which on the long term is positive for customers, operators and shareholders”.

“It is good that Sweden opens up the gaming market for free competition in a controlled environment. We look forward to operate on our Swedish home market as a recognised operator on equal terms,” added Betsson CEO Pontus Lindwall.

Numerous brand occupied by Kindred, SkillOnNet and SuprPlay have also received the green light, as did LeoVegas, who also secured its licence to proceed with an offering of online gaming and betting.

Speaking at the time of submitting its application Gustaf Hagman, LeoVegas CEO, praised an exciting time: “Sweden’s becoming a locally regulated market is a milestone for Sweden, the industry and LeoVegas. Now, for the first time, everyone can compete on equal terms in a regulated environment, where responsible gaming is a very important part.

“We believe we have great opportunities to continue gaining market shares in the Swedish market. LeoVegas is a company that operates on several regulated markets, and thus has the right tools and knowledge to create sustainable and strong growth.”