The Netherlands rejects appeal against lottery merger

The Dutch consumer authority said the opening of online gaming would create more competition.
The Dutch consumer authority said the opening of online gaming would create more competition.

An appeal was lodged after the merger of Nederlandse Staatsloterij and Stichting Nationale Sporttotalisator in 2015.

The Netherlands.- The Board of Appeals for Business has rejected an appeal against the merger of Nederlandse Staatsloterij (SENS) and Stichting Nationale Sporttotalisator (SNS).

The merger was approved by the Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) back in 2015, but an appeal was lodged under the Competition Act arguing that the merger reduced competition in the Dutch gaming market.

ACM determined the merger did not present a significant decline in competition, noting that another operator, Nationale Goede Doelen Loterij, which runs the National Postcode Lottery, Bankgiro Lottery and Friends Lottery, had a similar size.  

The tribunal decided that changes in measures of competition such as ticket price, payout percentages and jackpots of one of the parties to the merger had limited impact on tickets sold by the other other.

It also said that the opening of online gaming next year would give private operators more chance to compete.

The Netherlands Online Gaming Association (NOGA) voiced disappointment at the decision, arguing it meant gaming would remain dominated by the lottery monopoly until the launch of the online gaming market next year.

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