Following the money in Esports

first_img Following the money in Esports AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter As esports completes its move from subculture to the mainstream, there are big rewards in store for those who grasp both its past and its potential. Ready, player one? Email Address Tags: Online Gambling Video Gaming 20th June 2018 | By Stephen Cartercenter_img Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Topics: Casino & games Esports Finance Marketing & affiliates Video gaming As esports completes its move from subculture to the mainstream, there are big rewards in store for those who grasp both its past and its potential. Ready, player one? By Hai Ng Competition is in our blood. We have taken natural selection way beyond survival of the fittest to competition as entertainment. Trust humans to turn an evolutionary urge into ratings. By now, most of you reading this publication should be aware of esports and what it is. Competitive computer gaming has been around ever since the first video games – Pong for two, anyone?Today there are plenty of competitive video games to choose from but the moniker of esports is reserved for a select few titles, just as there are sports and then there are Olympic sports.What has made esports especially interesting over the past couple of years is how much attention it’s attracting – and how much money too. Money Talks “People need to eat/To put shoes on their little baby’s feet.” Today you can do that by playing video games. With the current top earner in esports having made well over $3m, baby doesn’t have to worry about going barefoot.In May, Epic Games – publisher of current hot game Fortnite – announced they were going to put up $100m in prize money for competitions.While details are developing on how that’s going to work, it’s already making serious waves inside and outside the world of esports. If Epic drops that scratch as a single tournament prize pool, it will blow away the current record, held by Valve’s prize pool for The International 2017.Here is a little perspective. The International 2017’s prize pool was $24,787,916, with the first-place team taking home a cool $10,862,683.To make a comparison with traditional sports, each player in the winning team of Super Bowl LII is getting just $112,000 from a reported purse of about $11m. If you’re the top golfer at the FedEx Cup, your baby’s feet will fare better, with a $10m prize from a $35m purse. It’s All About the Benjamins “Wanna be ballers? Shot-callers?/Brawlers, who be dippin’ in the Benz wit’ the spoilers?” What becomes important is to follow the money and see what’s fuelling all of this esports spending. That $24m prize pool from The International 2017? That was almost all crowdsourced by Dota 2’s developer, Valve, from players purchasing The International Battle Pass – a digital-download content package consisting of in-game cosmetics (aka skins), game play modes and more.Prices start at $2.49 and top out at $36.99 and with every sale 25% of the proceeds go directly to the prize pool.At the time of writing, The International 2018’s prize pool is up to $11,060,315 with about three months to go before the event. And Epic’s $100m for Fortnite? Well, estimates put the revenue for this free-to-play game at about $7m dollars a day, generating more than $223m in revenue for March 2018.A figure of $100m suddenly doesn’t look so out-of-hand for an effective marketing play. Contrast that with the NFL’s revenue of $14bn in 2017 and it seems that games publishers are quite a bit more generous.Gold Digger “She take my money when I’m in need/Yeah, she’s a triflin’ friend indeed.” The world is buzzing over how to get a piece of esports action. From building arenas to building teams and from creating games to developing platforms, investing in esports is à la mode in many circles and the gaming industry is no exception. While major esports events often still happen in traditional sporting venues, including stadiums and basketball arenas, purpose-built esports arenas are starting to pop up, varying from small, cosy facilities to much larger spaces. Las Vegas alone has two, with one more in the works.The logic behind investing in venues isn’t difficult to figure out. Events need a space to happen and for those that require very specific infrastructure, such as esports, specialized spaces can drastically reduce costs.Major esports events around the world can bring in significant numbers of attendees, even to locations that may otherwise seem challenging. One great example is Katowice in Poland. Every esports fan has heard of Katowice.With a population of fewer than 300,000 people, the southern Polish city has hosted ESL’s annual Intel Extreme Masters since 2013.The 2018 edition attracted more than 150,000 people to the 11,500-capacity Spodek arena and brought in a reported €22m of advertising value – all during the Polish winter, when temperatures of 5°F are not uncommon.There’s an argument to be made that purpose-built esports venues provide spectators with a better experience, potentially leading to higher revenues. That’s certainly the view of the city government in Arlington, Texas, where plans are under way to build the largest esports stadium in the US.While many in the bricks-and-mortar gaming industry are seriously considering esports venues in their properties, many in the igaming world won’t want to be left behind. Building or extending platforms to embrace esports wagering seems to be a natural step. New entrants such as Unikrn and Esportspools join more traditional bookmakers, including Pinnacle in Europe, to offer esports wagering; with New Jersey being handed a win by SCOTUS on PASPA, we’ll be seeing many more esports betting options here in the US soon.The team-investment option may be something of a different challenge for someone from the gaming world to undertake. But if Las Vegas can have an NHL team (one that might actually take the Stanley Cup in their first year), why not an esports team as well? Franchised leagues are becoming the norm, which provides the potential for a stable esports team ecosystem. With franchise fees starting at $10m, it’s not something for the faint-of-heart but it’s still a bargain compared with many traditional sports leagues (say, a reported $500m fee for Las Vegas Knights). Some, then, are attracted to game development and publishing but picking a winner is not easy – and neither is buying one. Take Tencent, the world’s largest investment corporation. They bought some real winners but they couldn’t foresee Fortnite coming up to nip the heels of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds.Game development is no more of a sure bet than any of the other options. Mo Money Mo Problems “It’s like the more money we come across/The more problems we see.” In some instances that’s not just a catchy chorus. All this money is already transforming esports and, some say, not necessarily for the better. What was once a geek culture is now very much pop culture, and painfully visible to a world that isn’t familiar with, or understanding of, its quirks. Many in the esports and competitive-gaming world are finding out the hard way that they can no longer get away with certain behaviors that were tolerated by a closed community.While this may be a positive change for the community some will say that the surge in interest that’s put esports under the spotlight is the cause of degradation in behavior.Then there is the challenge of esports being top heavy, with a large pro scene fuelled by lots of money but no real ecosystem to feed it. To make things worse, the level of social acceptance outside the community for esports professionals is often still a punchline or a nightmare, depending on your perspective.The scourge of “gold diggers” in the industry doesn’t help, either. Everybody’s an esports expert now and many of them have never played a video game – competitive or otherwise – much less attended a real esports event. But they all “know” what’s best for the business or they know someone who knows someone.In some ways esports is like Josh Baskin: a kid in a man’s body.While many outside esports are drawn by the light of all that burning money, those in the industry know that cash isn’t what drives it. It’s the spirit of competition. Like Josh Baskin, we need to grow up fast without losing the magic that made esports what it is.At the rate the sector is colliding with the mainstream world, it won’t take long for things to come to a head one way or another. There is lots of potential for profits in esports if we simply look at the long game; till the land instead of pillaging the orchards. There’s plenty for all to build upon. Game on!Hai Ng is iGaming Business North America’s fantasy and esports editor. He is also co-founder of Neomancer, a unique technology strategy and management firm. Hai has more than three decades of experience in the technology sector, with a decade in igaming. 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GVC online soars despite retail woes

first_img Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Topics: Finance AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter GVC online soars despite retail woes Finance Online takings up by a quarter in Q3 thanks to World Cup boost Ladbrokes owner GVC was boosted by online sales and England’s Fifa World Cup success in the three months to September 30.Total group net gaming revenue rose 14% in the quarter, according to Thursday’s Q3 results announcement, and has risen 10% so far this calendar year to date compared to 2017.The performance was aided by online net gaming revenue rising by 28% year-on-year, driven by a 31% increase in online sports betting. Ladbrokes.com was up 23% and Coral.co.uk  up 29%, in what GVC described as “very pleasing” NGR growth with sports wagering 9% ahead.While digital performance was positive, GVC’s UK retail was down 2% year-on-year. European retail was, however, up 24% year-on-year with growth in all regions. The company said it recorded considerable trading increases even discounting the impact of the World Cup, which finished in mid-July.GVC also said the integration of Ladbrokes Coral, which it acquired earlier this year, was “progressing well”.Discussing the performance, CEO Kenneth Alexander said: “The group’s performance in the quarter was very pleasing with momentum continuing across the Online and European Retail divisions.“As highlighted in our H1 results, we will look to consolidate our position in markets where we are taking market share through the reinvestment of excess returns, and the board is confident in its full year expectations.”GVC added that the “imminent” launch of its New Jersey app on iOS will trigger a “full playMGM marketing campaign” in the state.Alexander added: “We believe our sports-betting joint venture with MGM is best placed to be the market leader in the US and we have taken the first steps on that journey with the soft-launch of our sports-betting app in New Jersey.”Meanwhile, CFO Paul Bowtell is to leave the company in March to take up a role with Alchemy Partners. He will be replaced by Rob Wood, currently CFO of the Ladbrokes Coral UK Retail business, which is GVC’s largest division. 18th October 2018 | By contenteditor Email Addresslast_img read more

Swedish and Maltese regulators seal cooperation agreement

first_img Topics: Legal & compliance Sweden’s Spelinspektionen has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) to enhance cooperation between the two regulators.The MoU aims to facilitate close communications between the two authorities and provide a framework for sharing information on key policy areas. Each regulator will also look to provide the other with the best possible operational assistance to help enhance regulatory processes and uphold key policies.Spelinspektionen director general Camilla Rosenberg explained that many of Sweden’s new igaming licensees held a MGA licences, and had technical hubs in Malta.“By opening the communication channels between the authorities we become stronger in our supervisory activities,” she said. “This is the beginning of a broad and long-term cooperation, and our plan is to initiate corresponding collaborations with more gambling authorities in Europe.”MGA chief executive Heathcliff Farrugia added: “The MGA is always actively seeking to foster relationships with fellow authorities and other international regulatory bodies as we firmly believe that such relationships are key to reaching our objectives, especially in the area of remote gaming which is fundamentally cross- border in nature.“This MoU, signed with the Swedish Gambling Authority, is an important step towards achieving both our respective regulatory goals in vital areas of mutual interest, especially since the MGA and the Swedish Gambling Authority share a significant number of operators licensed by both regulators,” he continued. “We are eager to start this mutually beneficial journey with our Swedish counterpart.”In related news, Spelinspektionen has published regulations on running bingo games for public utility purposes. This sets out rules for the distribution of proceeds from bingo between charitable associations, which may apply for licences either solo, or as part of a group of connected organisations to run land-based games.The regulations state that proceeds must be distributed between all associations annually. However, if the bodies cannot agree on how much each is to receive, any charity raising funds for disabled charities will be prioritised. The remainder will be split between bodies that organise activities qualifying for local government support, and those that raise money for causes involving young people aged between 7 to 25 years old.The regulations come into force from March 15, replacing current regulations. Tags: Mobile Online Gambling AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Legal & compliance 5th March 2019 | By contenteditor Email Address Sweden’s Spelinspektionen has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) to enhance cooperation between the two regulators. Regions: Europe Nordics Southern Europe Sweden Malta Swedish and Maltese regulators seal cooperation agreement Subscribe to the iGaming newsletterlast_img read more

Paddy Power and Betfred pull games after Commission warning

first_img Paddy Power and Betfred pull games after Commission warning 3rd April 2019 | By contenteditor Email Address Regions: UK & Ireland Paddy Power Betfair and Betfred have withdrawn recently launched products from their UK retail estate following a warning from the Gambling Commission. The Commission said it was concerned that the new products, widely described as roulette-style games, would undermine or circumvent the new restrictions on fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBTs). The games that have attracted scrutiny are Paddy Power Betfair’s Pick’n’36 and a cyclist racing game launched in Betfred’s retail estate. In Pick’n’36, customers can stake up to £100 on a number between one and 36 being drawn. The game is a lottery-style product, with significantly longer draw times than on FOBT machines, that work to a fixed schedule of start times and can involve multiple players betting on the same event. Betfred’s game, meanwhile, involves two cyclists racing on a track that features the numbers one to 36, in the style of a roulette wheel. When the trailing cyclist catches the first, the number they are on is the winning number. The maximum stake for the game is £500, with consumers able to bet on a host of traditional roulette markets, such as odd or even numbers, colours, rows and columns.Both required the customer to place their bet over the counter, meaning they are not machine-based.A Paddy Power Betfair spokesperson told iGamingBusiness.com that the product in question was only being trialled, with the testing period now concluded.“This game was introduced as part of a short trial in a selection of shops,” the spokesperson said. “The trial was ceased within 24 hours of commencement and this product will not be launched across our estate.”The Commission has now stepped in to order that both products be withdrawn, while a third, unnamed, bookmaker has also been warned against launching a similar product.As of April 1, the maximum stake on Category B2, or FOBT, machines operating across the UK is set at £2 (€2.35/$6.62) per spin, down from the previous limit of £100, with operators warned not to attmept to circumvent the stake cut. The Gambling Commission has already begun investigations into the risks assocated with B1 and B3 machines as it looks to ensure customers do not simply move from B2 to a different category of machine.Despite Paddy Power Betfair and Betfred complying with the Commission’s request, both bookmakers could still face regulatory action as the Commission continues to investigate. Senior staff at each operator could be questioned over the decision to bring the products to market.“We have been absolutely clear with operators about our expectations to act responsibly following the stake cut implementation this week, the Commission’s executive director for enforcement Richard Watson said. “We have told operators to take down new products which undermine the changes, and we will investigate any other products that are not within the spirit and intention of the new rules.” Commission chief executive Neil McArthur has warned that the regulator has been monitoring operators’ plans to manage the implementation of the stake cut and will continue to observe licensees to ensure any changes or new product launches to mitigate the cuts are carried out “with a focus on customer safety”.Image: Lee Davy Topics: Legal & compliance AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Tags: OTB and Betting Shops Paddy Power Betfair and Betfred have withdrawn recently launched products from their UK retail estate following a warning from the Gambling Commission. The regulator said it was concerned that the new products, widely described as roulette-style games, would undermine or circumvent the new restrictions on fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBTs). Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Legal & compliancelast_img read more

Scout slashes losses as client base grows in Q3

first_img Regions: Africa Europe Nordics Southern Europe Sweden Malta Scout Gaming Group has reported a 127.5% year-on-year increase in third quarter revenue, while the fantasy sports software supplier was able to significantly reduce its net loss for the period.Revenue for the three months to 30 September grew to SEK8.2m (£658,856/€769,554/$848,670), with chief executive Andreas Ternström (pictured) noting that this had been driven by clients starting to market their Scout-powered fantasy offerings following an initial learning period.“We have contracted and launched new clients, increased our prize pools and launched new betting related games such as our internal sportsbook, covering fantasy markets,” he said. “This has resulted in all-time high revenues and improved profitability measures across the board.”He said that growth in players meant that the supplier could now offer the world’s largest fantasy pools on European football, which would provide a “strong competitive advantage” for the business going forward.The third quarter saw Scout strike a number of key supply deals, including an agreement with Betway to launch its games in African markets. It also partnered broadcaster Eurovision Sport, a division of the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), to license its games to the union and its partners.A new game, Player Odds Sportsbook, which combines fantasy mechanics with real-money betting, went live in August.The expansion led to an increase in costs for the three-month period, to SEK18.6m. Personnel expenses climbed to SEK9.2m, with other external expenses growing to SEK6.9m, while the business incurred charges of SEK2.6m related to deprecation and write-downs.This saw the business post an operating loss of SEK10.4m for Q3, down marginally year-on-year.After recording a benefit from finance-related items of SEK942,000 and an income tax benefit of SEK14,000, Scout’s net loss for the quarter stood at SEK9.5m, an improvement on the SEK11.9m loss reported for the prior year.Ternström suggested that profitability would continue to improve, with a period focused on signing up new clients, which led to increasing costs, ending during the third quarter.“We now expect successively improved earnings going forward,” he said. “Volatility between quarters may continue to occur as a result of larger customer launches and events but should decrease as the revenue base grows.” Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter 15th November 2019 | By contenteditor Email Address DFS Scout Gaming Group has reported a 127.5% year-on-year increase in third quarter revenue, while the fantasy sports software supplier was able to significantly reduce its net loss for the period. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Tags: Fantasy Sports Scout slashes losses as client base grows in Q3 Topics: Finance Sports betting Strategy DFSlast_img read more

Betsson ends difficult 2019 with weak Q4

first_img Regions: Europe LATAM Nordics Sweden Brazil Betsson has reported year-on-year declines in full-year revenue and profit for 2019, after a year in which the company struggled with regulatory developments in key markets – Sweden especially – ended with a weaker-than-expected Q4. Betsson ends difficult 2019 with weak Q4 Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Betsson has reported year-on-year declines in full-year revenue and profit for 2019, after a year in which the company struggled with regulatory developments in key markets – Sweden especially – ended with a weaker-than-expected Q4.Total revenue for the year amounted to SEK5.17bn (£414.2m/€493.3m/$537.0m), a 4.6% decline from 2019. Chief executive Pontus Lindwall (pictured) said the year represented a “notch” in the business’s growth curve, which had been traditionally faster than the market.This followed a 10.2% decline in Q4 revenue to SEK1.29bn, the operator’s third consecutive quarter of revenue decline. Lindwall blamed this on difficult operating conditions in Sweden – an issue that also impacted performance in the second and third quarters.“We had expected some recovery in the closing fourth quarter, above all in the Swedish market, but we did not reach our objectives there,” he explained.Lindwall said that there had not yet been the market consolidation expected in Sweden, resulting in a large number of licensees competing in a small market, without generating profits.“On the other hand, we have seen declining channelisation, which makes it difficult for the licensed operators who pay 18 percent gaming tax and it also jeopardizes consumer protection,” he added. “High channelisation contributes to competition on equal terms for the companies in the sector that operate in the Swedish market.”During the quarter, revenue from the Nordic region accounted for SEK450.2m of group revenue, down 31.7% year-on-year. The contribution from Western Europe also declined, falling 14.8% to SEK387.7m, which was offset in part by a 37.1% increase in revenue from Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia, to SEK369.9m, with the final SEK81.7m coming from other markets.In total, locally taxed revenue increased 40.5% to SEK464.9m, accounting for 36.1% of the group total for the year.Looking at revenue by product in Q4, casino reigned supreme, accounting for SEK964.1m, and while this was down 11.2% year-on-year, it still represented 74.8% of total revenue. Sportsbook followed with revenue of SEK311.6m, down 9.6%, amounting to 24.2% of the group total. Revenue from all other products fell 41.3% to SEK13.8m.Included in this revenue was an SEK175.4m contribution from Betsson’s B2B deal with Realm Entertainment, operator of the Bets10, MobilBahis, CasinoMaxi and CasinoMetropol brands. B2B revenue could grow further in 2020, following a similar supply deal with Claymore Group’s ibet.The fourth quarter saw an increase in cost of services, which grew 7.7% to SEK450.6m, mainly due to increased betting duties in Italy and Sweden and increased payment costs, as well as a negative currency exchange rate impact of SEK5.9m. This resulted in gross profit falling 17.6% to SEK838.8m.However, operating expenses fell 5.7% to SEK638.3m, which Betsson credited to ongoing work on cost efficiencies, which saw marketing expenditure reduced to SEK211.8m. External expenses declined to SEK183.9m, despite work to expand the business’ product offering and explore opportunities in new markets.However, the lower revenue resulted in operating profit declining despite the reduced expenses, falling 41.3% to SEK200.5m. After finance-related costs, pre-tax profit fell to SEK187.0m, while an SEK17.4m tax benefit resulted in a net profit of SEK204.4m for the quarter, down 34.8% year-on-year.Turning to full-year profitability, cost of services grew 11.9% to SEK1.75bn, including an SEK19m fine levied by the Swedish Gaming Authority (Spelinspektionen) for violating bonus regulations in June 2019. This left a gross profit of SEK3.43bn, down 11.2%.Operating expenses for the year were down 3.9% at SEK2.56bn, following reduced spending on marketing, personnel and other external expenses (not to mention a marginal increase in capitalised development costs), offset in part by increased amortisation and deprecation charges. As a result, operating profit fell 27.5% to SEK865.0m, though Lindwall said he was proud of the figure.“The operating profit shows Betsson’s ability to deliver profitability, also during the challenges that 2019 entailed,” he commented.After financial expenses of SEK54.2m, profit before tax was down 29.6% at SEK810.9m, while net profit after tax for the year fell 27.0% to SEK787.1m.Despite a difficult year, Lindwall said Betsson’s long-term ambitions of growing faster than the market, both organically and through acquisitions, remained in place.“Our efficient organisation, the strong cash flow and the strong financial position provide a good foundation for acquisitions,” he said. “During the fourth quarter we made a minor strategic acquisition and continue to analyse several opportunities, both in locally regulated markets and in markets that will be regulated.The operator acquired a 75% stake in Brazilian sports betting operator Suaposta in December 2019, designed to put Betsson in pole position to grow in Brazil’s regulated sports betting market.“By further increasing the geographical distribution, we can reduce the impact of temporary downturns in individual markets,” Lindwall added. Topics: Casino & games Finance Sports betting Tags: Mobile Online Gambling Casino & games 13th February 2020 | By contenteditor Email Addresslast_img read more

Delaware igaming revenue reaches $324,958 in February

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter Online gaming revenue in Delaware increased 18.3% year-on-year to $324,958 in February as all of the state’s three licensed operators reported growth. Delaware igaming revenue reaches $324,958 in February Regions: US Delaware Tags: Online Gambling Online gaming revenue in Delaware increased 18.3% year-on-year to $324,958 (£258,083/€291,007) in February as all of the state’s three licensed operators reported growth.The February amount was lower than the $387,865 figure reported in January of this year, while player spending was down month-on-month to $9.9m. However, on a year-on-year-basis, wagers were up 9.3%.Video lottery games generated $210,695 in revenue during February, while table games brought in $83,392 for operators. An additional $30,871 was generated from poker rake and fees in the month.Delaware Park kept hold of top spot in the igaming market, posting $122,590 in revenue off $4.1m in consumer spending for the month.Read the full story on iGB North America. 13th March 2020 | By contenteditor Finance Email Address Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Topics: Financelast_img read more

Upcoming webinar: Will Canada rival the US sports betting market?

first_img The opening of the sports betting markets and what operators need to know Will Canada rival the US sports betting market? Could Canada become the home for sportsbooks wanting to operate in North America? What are the unique elements of the market, synergies with established/developing markets. Uncategorized 6th April 2020 | By Upcoming webinar: Will Canada rival the US sports betting market? Topics: Uncategorized This webinar will look at how the innovation and development of the Canadian sports betting market.In this webinar we will explore:center_img AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter This webinar will look at the innovation and development of the Canadian sports betting market. Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Email Addresslast_img read more

ATG: Elitloppet recieving record international interest

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter The Elitloppet at Solvalla racecourse – the largest event on the Swedish harness racing calendar – is set to attract betting interest from a record 18 countries, former racing monopoly AB Trav och Galopp (ATG) has said.In addition to Sweden, bets will be taken from Finland, Denmark, Norway, Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Italy, Hungary, Greece, the UK, Malta, South Africa, the US, Australia and New Zealand.Bets from eleven of these countries will go towards the Swedish pari-mutuel pool, while the remaining countries’ bets will be part of their own racing pools. However, ATG did not say exactly which countries would be commingling, and which would be operating their own pools.“It is truly inspiring that the Elitloppet is attracting so much international interest,” Ylva Svensson, head of international at ATG, said.With sports and racing in many other countries suspended, ATG noted an increased level of international interest in Swedish harness racing, which has continued through the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.“We have taken our mission, to maintain interest in racing in Europe and the rest of the world during this crisis, as seriously as possible,” Svensson added. “The Elitloppet is one of the few sporting events that can be carried out this spring and so it’s receiving extra focus from many international gaming companies.”The race will take place on Sunday 31 May.Yesterday, Sweden’s Minister for Social Security Ardalan Shekarabi put forward an amended set of temporary restrictions on gambling in which he aims to make horse and sports betting exempt from an SEK5,000 (£401/€459/$495) weekly deposit limit. The exemption had previously been recommended by ATG in a consultation held on the original controls. Subscribe to the iGaming newsletter Regions: Europe Nordics Sweden Email Address ATG: Elitloppet recieving record international interestcenter_img The Elitloppet at Solvalla racecourse – the largest event on the Swedish harness racing calendar – is set to attract betting interest from a record 18 countries, former racing monopoly AB Trav och Galopp (ATG) has said. Topics: Sports betting Sports betting 26th May 2020 | By Daniel O’Boylelast_img read more

BGC calls for extension to furlough scheme

first_img The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) has urged the UK government to extend its novel coronavirus (Covid-19) furlough scheme to help safeguard jobs in the gambling industry and also protect historic casino venues.The Job Retention scheme, introduced by the government to help keep people employed during the Covid-19 lockdown, is due to finish at the end of October, with certain aspects of the initiative now being wound down.From this month, employers are once again required to pay the national insurance and pension contributions for their staff, while in September they will also need to pay 20% of employees’ wages, rising to 40% in October.However, after the government last month delayed the reopening of casinos due to concerns over rising Covid-19 cases, the BGC warned that the decision could lead to half of the UK casino’s workforce losing their jobs. The BGC added that further jobs could also be lost if the government did not offer more support.The association has therefore called on the government to extend the scheme to help casinos foot the cost of the extended closure, with the two-week delay expected to cost the industry an estimated £14.0m (€15.5m/$18.3m). Casinos will be permitted to reopen from 15 August at the earliest, but this date could still be pushed back further.“Casino operators have done everything asked of them by Public Health England; they have gone to extraordinary lengths and cost to ensure their venues are Covid-19 secure,” BGC chief executive Michael Dugher said.“They were rightly given the green light to reopen by public health officials who recognised the significant investment operators had made and the negligible risk they posed.”Dugher also said that failure to extend the furlough scheme could also lead to the closure of some of the UK’s most famous casino venues, including the London Hippodrome in the city’s West End and Les Ambassadeurs casino in Mayfair.“Some of Britain’s most iconic casinos, who attract high spending visitors from around the world, are sitting idle whilst pubs and restaurants round the corner are open and doing a roaring trade,” Dugher said.“The government must step in to save these businesses before it’s too late. As a first step, they should extend the full furlough scheme to help offset the £14m casinos are expected to lose as a result of the two week delay and compensate casinos for the wasted costs of the late change of decision on their reopening.” The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) has urged the UK government to extend its novel coronavirus (Covid-19) furlough scheme to help safeguard jobs in the gambling industry and also protect historic casino venues. Topics: Casino & games Finance Casino & games 10th August 2020 | By contenteditor Regions: UK & Irelandcenter_img AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitter BGC calls for extension to furlough scheme Email Address Subscribe to the iGaming newsletterlast_img read more