Online slots boost German gambling tax revenue by 15.5%

Online slots boost German gambling tax revenue by 15.5%

The growth in online slots saw German gambling tax revenue hit €596.1m in the third quarter.

Germany.- Tax revenue from gambling in Germany came in at €596.1m in Q3, a rise of 15.5 per cent year-on-year. Most of the growth was due to the expanded licensing of online slots, with ten operators licensed (another two licences have just been granted). For the year to date, tax income is up 20 per cent at €1.96bn.

Online slots generated €123.2m in tax revenue in Q3, up from just €32.7m in the first quarter of this year. The 5.3 per cent tax rate on online slot stakes was one of the biggest controversies about Germany’s new regulated market, which many believed would fail to prove competitive.

Meanwhile, online poker, which pays the same rate, generated tax revenue of €8m. That’s more than twice the total in Q3 2021 despite no poker licences having been issued yet (some operators are still able to offer poker under Germany’s transition regime announced in 2020).

Lottery remained the biggest generator of gambling tax revenue, with €409.5m (up 8.4 per cent). Tax revenue from sports betting fell by 47.8 per cent to €53.4m, with Bremen Berlin, Brandenburg, Hesse and Schleswig-Holstein reporting negative tax income. Totalisator taxes totalled €1.8m and other racing taxes €191,000.

As for the geographic breakdown, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany’s most populous state, logically generated the most tax revenue (€138.3m). This included €19.5m from online slots and €24.7m from online betting. Schleswig-Holstein, the one state with a regulated online casino offering prior to the new regulation introduced in July 2021, saw €18.8m in tax from online slots.

Germany grants two more online slots licences

The Sachsen-Anhalt state administration office has issued online slots licences to Interwetten and Novomatic’s Admiral. That means there are now twelve operators licensed to offer online slots in Germany.

Interwetten will operate via interwetten.de and lasmegas.de while Admiral will operate under slots.admiralbet.de. Both already hold licences for sports betting, while Novomatic is licensed for online slots under other brands. Earlier this month Tipico gained a German online slots licence.

Meanwhile, Germany’s new federal gambling regulator, Die Glücksspielbehörde (GGL), has said it will put pressure on ISPs to block the lottery betting site Lottoland. It noted that lottery betting is not permitted under Germany’s fourth interstate gambling treaty and said it believes the vertical to be a risk because players can confuse lottery betting with the actual lottery itself.

The GGL said it may seek to issue “sizeable” fines against ISPs that don’t comply with its orders. The GGL is due to take over online casino licensing from the Sachsen-Anhalt state administration office at the start of 2023.

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