Gaming Innovation Group is to enter the Croatian market after signing a share purchase agreement which is to see the firm acquire 75 per cent of Top Games, subject to regulatory approvals.

As part of the deal a local partner, which it is said “has a successful history in land-based casino businesses,” is to retain the remaining 25 per cent of a company that qualifies for a remote gambling permit.

Payment for the acquisition is solely based on a contribution of resources by the shareholders, with no cash being paid. The local partner will upfront the initial costs, with GiG providing rights of use of brand, a gambling platform and operational expertise.

Providing market access to one of GiG’s in-house brands, the collaborative partnership model expands the firm’s B2C igaming offering across regulated markets.

The Malta-based organisation is planning to enter the online casino market in Croatia via this partnership in the first half of 2020.

In financial terms GiG is expecting a moderate impact on its revenues deriving from this agreement from the second half of next year, with an accelerated increase in H1 2021.

Richard Brown, acting CEO of GiG, explained: “I’m excited to further expand our B2C business by entering another regulated jurisdiction. Croatia is a very interesting marketplace for gambling and supports our strategy to grow our own brands in high potential and regulated markets. 

“GiG has a track record of creating responsible gaming experiences with a captivating UX. This is a good opportunity to showcase the strength of our online casino offering and our passion for providing end users with a safe, responsible and competitive online gambling experience.”

Croatia has a population of approximately 4.1m and is a regulated market that currently boasts six licensed online casinos, with IP blocking preventing access to offshore and non-regulated operators. 

The total gambling gross win in Croatia has an estimated total value of approximately €360m in 2020, with online gambling subject to a gambling duty of 15 per cent.