Serious setback for the Swedish supervisory authority Spelinspektiven. She had sentenced the international gaming company Betsson in June of last year to a record fine of around 1.96 million euros. The gaming authority named several violations of the current gaming law as the reason for this step. More precisely, it is supposed to be a violation of the statutory restrictions on bonus and promotional offers.
Betsson is said to have sold vouchers for online gambling
The Swedish gaming authority accuses the listed gaming group Betsson AB, among other things, of having illegally sold vouchers for online gaming offers in the shops of 7-Eleven and Pressbyrån. This resulted in illegal profits for the gaming provider.
The Swedish gaming authority also criticized the fact that the company, with its more than 2,000 employees, had offered its players a special “Betsson MasterCard”. Those who requested and used the credit card were able to enjoy further bonus offers and discounts. This procedure was also not allowed. In total, the Swedish authorities have fined the gambling giant SEK 20 million. That is the equivalent of around 1.96 million euros.
Betsson AB is an international gaming group with over 2,000 employees. Founded in 1963, the company is now listed on the Swedish stock exchange. In addition to Betsson, the gaming brands Winner Casino, Betsafe, RaceBets, Nordic Bet and Star Casino also belong to the group of companies. Most recently the company had a turnover of about 5.42 billion SEK.
Betsson appeals – with success
The well-known gaming group appealed against the record fine of just under two million euros. As it became known a few days ago, the administrative court in Linköping has now lifted the sentence. The reason given by the court was that the sale of the vouchers did not violate the current gaming law in Sweden.
The court also did not follow the argument of the Swedish supervisory authority that the privileges with the “Betsson MasterCard” are bonuses. For this reason, the gaming company’s appeal was ultimately upheld and the fine was not upheld. The gaming supervisory authority currently still has the option to appeal against the decision.
Just some time ago, in a similar case, the gaming supervisory authority imposed an even higher fine of just under ten million euros on the gaming group Spooniker AB. Spooniker AB did not want to accept the fine either and went to the administrative court in Linköping. Here, however, the judges actually saw violations of the current gaming law. Only the amount of the fine was criticized by the court and halved to 50 million SEK, i.e. around five million euros.
In Sweden, especially in the area of bonus offers, comparatively strict rules apply. The gaming providers are only allowed to make a bonus available to new customers and this must be limited to an amount of 100 SEK, i.e. just under ten euros, since July 2020.
The judgment of the Linköping Administrative Court is of course extremely positive for the gambling giant Betsson. This means that the group is avoiding a fine of SEK 20 million or just under two million euros. Most recently, Betsson generated an annual turnover of 5.42 billion euros, which corresponds to an amount of around 540 million euros. It will be interesting to see whether there will be further objections to the fines imposed by the Swedish gaming authority Spelinspätze in the coming months and years.