Dutch regulator reports ‘clear shift’ to online in latest market scan

There has been a “clear shift” in casino gaming from physical venues to online across the Netherlands, reports the country’s regulator within its latest market scan.

The Kansspelautoriteit, which recently revealed that growth appears to be levelling off two years after the legal ecosystem kicked into action, has published the findings of an inquiry that examines the entirety of 2022.

During the year, gross gaming revenue came in at €3.4bn (2021: €2bn), which is primarily aligned to an increase in online gambling, as well as a resumption of normal trading in a retail environment. 

Physical casinos, arcades and catering establishments were closed for a number of months in 2021 due to the pandemic.

Despite the online space occupying just 31 per cent of this aforementioned figure, contrasted to land-based gambling’s 69 per cent, a significant uptake of online is elaborated on by the Ksa.

This stems from the €1.9bn (2022: €1.5bn) generated on casino games across both the land-based and digital domains, which is purely driven by the latter. This is evidenced by a 30 per cent fall in land-based table games and gambling machines when contrasted to 2019.

“There has therefore been a shift to online in this sector,” the Ksa report noted. “It should be noted that the land-based market may not yet have returned to pre-corona levels and may recover further.”

Casino games occupied the largest portion of the market through 2022 (56 per cent), with lotteries said to have”grown slightly” and sports betting rising from four per cent to 10 per cent (eight per cent of which is online) year-on-year.

In addition, Dutch players are said to spend an average of 14 per cent less on gambling when contrasted to their European counterparts. However, a trend of spending more in the land-based space is followed.

In 2022, Dutch adults reportedly spent an average of €258 on games of chance at licensed providers, this is up from the €158 through 2021, impacted by widespread closures, and €221 in 2019.

“This amount is also higher because expenses of players who played illegally online before October 1, 2021 were not included, but are now included if they play with legal providers,” the Ksa concluded.