Bulgarian gambling winnings up 147% year-on-year


Annual winnings over BBG 5,000 surpassed €2.96bn.

Bulgaria.- The Association of Gaming Industry in Bulgaria (AGIB) has reported that regulated operators paid out BNG 5.79bn (€2.96bn) in winnings of over BNG 5,000 in 2023. That’s a rise of 147 per cent year-on-year. That’s according to the National Revenue Agency (NRA), which regulates gambling in the country.

Operators must report all winnings of over BNG 5,000. Smaller payouts are not recorded by the NRA. The BNG 5.79bn in winnings recorded was paid out among 120,853 players, up from 52,852 players the year before. In 2023, the average win was up by 8.2 per cent at BNG 47,909.

Ban on gambling ads

A ban on gambling ads on television, radio, in print and online came into force in Bulgaria last month following publication in the State Gazette and sign-off by president Rumen Radev. Legislators voted in favour of the gambling ad ban last month despite opposition from operators and media.

The gambling adverts that remain permissible are billboards located more than 100 metres from schools and ads on the buildings of gaming halls and casinos themselves. They must feature responsible gambling messaging covering at least 10 per cent of the space. Breaches of the ban will be punishable with fines of up to BGN50,000 (€25,570), with the risk of licence withdrawal for repeat offenders. Television broadcasts of national sports tote draws are exempt from the rules.

As well as advertising restrictions, the bill bans slots and casino gambling in areas with a population under 10,000, with exceptions for national resorts and border areas. The bill also raises the minimum capital to be held by companies that apply for slot machine licences from BGN500,000 to BGN750,000 and introduces a BGN100,000 “social responsibility fee” for online gambling, of which half will go to the Ministry of Health to help fund gambling harm treatment and support.

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