ATG warns over extent of unlicensed gambling in Sweden 

ATG commissioned its own survey on channelisation.
ATG commissioned its own survey on channelisation.

The horseracing betting operator says traffic to unlicensed gambling sites has increased ten times since 2019. 

Sweden.- Aktiebolaget Trav och Galopp (ATG), the Swedish horseracing betting operator, has warned of a steep increase in traffic to unlicensed gambling sites. It says the rate of traffic has increased ten times since 2019, when Sweden’s regulated gambling market launched.

ATG says its research shows that channelisation rates to regulated online gambling as a whole were between 70 and 82 per cent in Q3. Online sports betting channelisation was 88 per cent, while the rate for online casino was 74%. The figures are based on an assumption that the average spend per visit at unlicensed sites is 10 times higher than at licensed ones. ATG estimates that unlicensed gambling market is worth between SEK3.4bn and SEK6.7bn (€585.6m) a year.

ATG claimed that Infiniza Limited and North Point Management Ltd made up 60% of illegal gambling traffic in Q3. It said the most popular site was Infiniza’s, with 150,890 visits in Q3, followed by Infiniza’s (122,135 visits) and North Point’s (108,290).

It said that none of the most-visited sites are on the national gambling regulator Spelinspektionen’s black list. Moreover, 18 of the 20 most visited unlicensed sites had the same game providers as licensed ones. It said that in Q3 the sites no longer accepted direct deposits from Swedish bank accounts via BankID but had done so in Q2.

ATG CEO Hasse Lord Skarplöth said: “The results of our quarterly surveys are alarming and indicate that a significant percentage of problem gamblers in Sweden are linked to unlicensed gambling sites.

“We want people to feel good about their gaming. And we work for a gaming market that will do better tomorrow than it does today. Therefore, ATG will do what we can to help ensure that the fight against the unlicensed gambling companies continues day by day, month by month.”

Swedish gambling revenue remained steady in the third quarter of the year at SEK 6.7bn (€573.8m). The figure is level with Q2 but down by 0.6 per cent year-on-year. 

Online casino and sports betting generated SEK 4.25bn, down 1.4 per cent year-on-year, while GGR from state-owned lotteries and slots fell by 0.1 per cent to SEK 1.4bn. However, land-based casino revenue rose by 31 per cent to SEK 81m. Non-profit lotteries’ revenue fell by 8.26 per cent. Revenue from community games and bingo halls was level at SEK 49m.

Meanwhile, Camilla Rosenberg, director-general of Spelinspektionen, has welcomed proposed amendments to Sweden’s Gambling Act. The changes, which aim to increase player protection, would come into force on April 1 next year. Proposals referred to Sweden’s legislative council include a requirement for customers to give operators written approval before taking part in telephone-based gaming. Meanwhile, gambling operators would be able to access customer data on finance and health to counteract excessive gambling. There will also be higher fines for operators that breach the Money Laundering Act.

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