Betsson Subsidiary to Appeal €300,000 Fine from Dutch Gambling Regulator

Corona Ltd., a subsidiary of Malta-based online gambling operator Betsson, announced yesterday that it has decided to appeal the fine it has been issued by the Dutch gambling regulator, Kansspelautoriteit, for serving Dutch gaming customers.

Corona operates the Oranje Casino and Kroon Casino gaming websites that specifically target Dutch players. Betsson purchased the company back in 2014 for €100 million. Last month, Corona announced that it has been slapped a €300,000 fine by the Dutch Gaming Authority for serving local players without being authorized to do so.

The gaming company said that it was considering the possibility to appeal the fine and confirmed yesterday that it would do that. In a press release on Betsson’s official website, the operator provided details about it next actions. It pointed out that its operations are compliant with applicable laws and rules for the provision of services in the absence of an EU-compliant regulatory framework in the Netherlands.

It went on to say that if its appeal with the regulator is unsuccessful, it would refer the matter to a court to “defend its rights”. According to yesterday’s press release, the fine will “not become irrevocable”, pending the appeal procedures.

It became known last month that several Betsson-owned online gaming operations had, too, been subject to investigation by the Netherlands Gaming Authority, but had not been found to have violated existing regulations in the country.

Fears over Future License

The Netherlands is currently undergoing a very slow process of re-regulation of its gambling market. The conclusion of this process is expected to result in international gambling companies being allowed to operate in the country with licenses from Kansspelautoriteit. However, local lawmakers are yet to approve the necessary legislation that would re-regulate the Dutch gambling market.

A piece of legislation dealing with that matter, the so-called Remote Gambling Bill, was approved in the Lower House of the Dutch Parliament in the summer of 2016, but the Senate is yet to vote on that piece. However, there have been no indications that lawmakers would begin discussions on the re-regulation of the local market after the Parliament reconvened after the summer recess.

Betsson has long been criticizing heavily the Netherlands’ slow progress toward re-regulation and liberalization of its gambling market. Last year, the major online gambling operator pressed for interference from EU regulators as the Dutch Gaming Authority announced that it would ramp up its penalizing actions.

Betsson and its subsidiary Corona have not been the only foreign gambling entities to have received a heavy fine from Kansspelautoriteit. Earlier in 2018, Germany’s bet-at-home was slapped a €400,000 fine by the regulator after drawing its ire for targeting Dutch players.

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