Every week, CasinoBeats breaks down the numbers behind some of the industry’s most fascinating stories. A number of Spelinspektionen updates in Sweden, Dutch ad ban introduction, Chelsea ending a potential Stake alignment and an M&S tussle all feature in our latest reflections.
Zimpler is to terminate partnerships with EU-licensed gaming companies that do not possess the relevant Swedish licence following a warning from the country’s gambling authority.
This saw the Spelinspektionen order the company to cease providing payment service solutions containing the e-identification system BankID.
An injunction was issued, alongside a warning of a €25m fine, should the promotion of illegal gambling not be terminated by July 31, 2023.
Action taken by the SGA began following an anonymous tip that suggested that Zimpler “specifically developed payment solutions for certain gaming companies that provide games in Sweden without the necessary licence”.
The Dutch gaming authority, Kansspelautoriteit, warned the industry “not to push the boundaries” regarding an untargeted advertising ban that entered into force at the turn of the month.
Amid much talk in the build-up to the new rules coming into effect on July 1, the prohibition is intended to heighten protections for vulnerable groups against the risk of gambling addiction.
“Recruitment and advertising activities should not reach minors, young adults and other vulnerable groups,” the country’s regulator reminded.
This saw advertising on TV and radio, as well as in newspapers and magazines, become outlawed. Furthermore, ads in public places, such as billboards and bus shelters, and buildings accessible to the public, including casinos, slot machine arcades, cinemas and cafes, are also not permitted.
However, ads via the internet, direct mailing, on-demand TV, social media or in the online gaming environment remain permitted under strict conditions.
Golden Matrix has detailed an amended and restated Meridianbet purchase agreement, with the cash and stock transaction now having a value of approximately $331m.
The online gaming developer, licensor and operator unveiled the acquisition in January, when an “ongoing drive to scale the business as a whole at a rapid growth rate” was stressed amid a $300m purchase price being initially detailed.
However, this latest development comprises an extended closing date, as well as modifications to additional terms of the definitive agreement, pursuant to which Golden Matrix will acquire Meridianbet and its related companies.
Under the terms of the revisions, among other changes to the consideration payable to the sellers, the cash required to be paid at closing has been reduced from $50m to $30m, with $20m in non-contingent cash consideration due post-closing.
The Administrative Court in Linköping, Sweden, has overturned a SEK 6m (€500,000) sanction that was issued by Spelinspektionen to AB Trav och Galopp.
The latter appealed the fine by the Swedish gambling authority, contesting the size and warrant of the authority’s penalty related to deficiencies in its handling of money laundering controls between 2019 and 2021.
Spelinspektionen noted systematic shortcomings within its investigation, highlighting interactions related to eight customer accounts. ATG contested the claims, stating that suitable risk-based actions had taken place during the relevant period.
The Administrative Court has agreed with ATG, noting that while there were shortcomings, they weren’t serious enough to warrant a warning and sanction fee. As a result, Spelinspektionen’s sanction fee has been overturned.
26 Capital Acquisition hit back at attempts by Universal Entertainment, and various subsidiaries connected with Okada Manila, to scrap a long mooted merger, by committing to a lawsuit that is set to get underway next week.
The Miami-based publicly traded special purpose acquisition company filed suit against UE Resorts International, Tiger Resort, Leisure and Entertainment, and two further entities, after accusing these parties of having “dragged their feet” and “making virtually no effort to move forward”.
The merger agreement, that would have seen Okada Manila become a publicly traded company on the NASDAQ, was first agreed in October 2021, in a transaction that implied an enterprise value of $2.6bn, and would provide up to $275m in cash.
NHS England will be opening seven new gambling addiction clinics this summer to support those that are suffering from gambling harm.
It was stated that the number of people that have been referred to gambling harm clinics over the past year has increased by more than a third, rising to 1,389 patients (2021/22: 1,013 patients).
This latest figure is also up by almost four-fifths compared to what was reported two years ago (2020/21: 775 patients).
The NHS is “adapting to new healthcare needs” with the addition of seven new clinics in Milton Keynes, Thurrock, Bristol, Derby, Liverpool, Blackpool, and Sheffield, bringing the total number of gambling addiction clinics in England to 15.
Chelsea reportedly abandoned plans to align with Stake in a front of shirt sponsorship deal, with the club now thought to be in discussions with other interested parties as the start of the new Premier League season looms.
The potentially lucrative one-year agreement would’ve come ahead of a voluntary withdrawal of such agreements from sides in the English top flight. However, a slew of industry partnerships have been witnessed across recent weeks.
This leaves the Stamford Bridge club in a state of limbo a little over month out from the start of the Premier League, with Chelsea set to host Liverpool in its opening fixture on Sunday 13 August.
The arrangement with the betting and gaming operator was thought to be on the cards after a potential deal with Paramount Plus fell through.
Spelinspektionen declared a 15 per cent year-over-year decrease in traditional media advertising spending by the country’s gambling companies.
Publishing the figures on its website, it was reported that Swedish gambling companies’ advertising spend in traditional media in 2022 was SEK 3.4bn (€285m), down by SEK 600m YoY (€50.4m) compared to 2021’s figure of SEK 4bn.
Advertising spending in traditional media by gambling companies in Sweden hasn’t surpassed SEK 5bn since 2019’s SEK 5.7bn, while the country’s highest spending amount over the past seven years was 2018’s SEK 7.3bn.
Traditional media includes purchased advertising in printed press, TV, radio and outdoor advertising, with some digital media purchases also accounted for.