Good & Bad of Sweden iGaming Licenses
Sweden has been in the grey area for years when it comes to gambling activities. While it has been keeping its governmental monopoly, a few attempts to change this have happened during the last few decades. Yet all of those were unsuccessful, until now.
A few months ago Sweden has announced that it will start issuing licenses to both local and foreign iGaming operators. This means that Sweden will open its doors to various online betting websites and poker rooms, casino and bingo games. Besides that, land-based bookies will be open towards the newcomers too. However, other sectors of the offline gambling will remain a part of the monopoly.
Is it good or bad?
This is certainly a debatable topic as the result of this decision depends on the party’s business. If we speak about the Swedish population, it is certainly an advantage. The people will become the customer in a more competitive market, this means that various casino bonuses will go up, the number of available games will increase, and essentially people will be receiving better services from regulated companies. Previously, Swedish players could only get favourable conditions from unregulated operators.
As for the Swedish government, it is certainly a disadvantage. Previously, all of the income from the regulated gambling activities were going directly to the state-owned monopoly, and obviously, soon the government will have to share with the outside world.
Many Swedish companies will be able to indirectly benefit from this gambling regulation too. Advertising ban on gambling products will be waived as of January 2019, this means that the local marketing and advertising agencies, TV channels, newspapers and other media companies will be able to generate additional profits from these new businesses.
During the recent Affiliate Gaming Conference in Copenhagen this topic was discussed too, and the general conclusion of the attendees was that the change in the Swedish gambling regulator behavior will have a negative impact on the affiliate side of the business. Local website owners will now have to compete with the traditional media as well as the regulated operators will no longer sustain the same margins. Hence, the affiliates are expected to make less once the regulation kicks in.
The final thought
Nordics have been one of the most profitable regions for the iGaming companies throughout the years and seeing the changes introduced in a single country within the region certainly gives us a clue that more changes are about to happen. Within the next three to five years we may surely witness other countries like Norway, Denmark and Finland to open their gambling markets for the private sector companies.