Gambling in Europe is a licensed industry. Some of the top gambling locations are London, Riga, Interlaken, St Julian’s, Venice, Prague, Monaco, Paris and Vienna.
Recently, the online gambling industry has picked up pace and is projected to witness sharp growth due to technological advancements and stay-at-home trends.
Let’s take a closer look at this virtual gambling market with our guest expert Maunu Seppinen.
Gambling in Europe
It is legal to gamble online in most countries in Europe. In general, the continent does not have common legislation in place for online gambling, but there are some country-specific laws.
Take Finland, for example. It is legal to gamble and bet online in Finland. However, foreign sites are not allowed to offer gambling services. You can visit Finnish sites, though, such as nettibingo.
The European Gaming and Betting Association represents the top online betting and gaming operators in the EU. It is registered in the European Parliament and Commission Transparency Registry.
It works with the local and EU authorities to regulate the industry and provide high standards of service, and it ensures a safe and secure environment for online gamblers. Some of its member companies are Betsson Group, bet365, Kindred Group, Entain, and William Hill.
Gambling Revenue by Country
In the past decade, the Gross Gambling Revenue (GGR) has increased all over Europe. However, land-based casino visits have seen a declining trend, while online visits have been growing in number. Part of the reason for these numbers is related to the travel restrictions brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, but these trends were beginning earlier, as well.
In 2018, the GGR was EUR 22.2 billion, and the estimated GGR for 2023 is EUR 33 billion. The most popular online activities include sports betting, casino games, and poker. Another thing to consider — about half of online gamers use mobile phones instead of desktop computers.
The UK is the leading market for online gambling so far in Europe. Online gambling in the UK is regulated by the Gambling Commission, formed under the Gambling Act 2005.
Some of the popular online gaming companies in the UK are Rizk Casino, Casumo Casino, 888 Holdings, LeoVegas and bet365. In the last four years, the number of online gamers in the United Kingdom has quadrupled.
Italy is another one of the leading players in online gambling. The Italian government has made earnings of 22% of revenues through its licensed operators. In 2019, the GGR for Italy was EUR 1.85 billion, and the most popular games were card games, sports betting, and fixed-odds games.
Some of the top operators are PokerStars, Sisal, Lottomatica, and Snai.
Germany is also witnessing an increase in online gaming trends. The GGR for 2019 was EUR 2.2 billion. Along with an increased interest in sports betting, other popular games are slots and table games.
It is estimated that in 2024, the GGR will rise to EUR 3.3 billion, making Germany one of the hottest markets in the world.
Some of the more popular operators in Germany are PokerStars, Unibet, Bwin, and Drueckglueck.
France has also seen a sharp increase in remote gaming. In 2019, the GGR was EU 1.42 billion, with sports betting being the primary area of interest, along with horse racing and online poker.
The French government made considerable amounts in taxes received from the operators.
Spain has also witnessed a boom in online gaming in 2020. This was mainly due to the popularity of online slots, which earned EUR 27 million.
Another game that has risen in popularity is live roulette. The future for the online casino industry looks good as per the estimates.
Due to the travel restrictions and pandemic uncertainties, the online gambling market in Europe is expected to see more increase in business. Another factor that is working in favour of this industry is increased government regulations by the individual nations.
With the help of technological innovations, you can expect more exciting online games to appear in the future.