Swedish Gambling Authority Posts License Application Forms ahead of Market Re-Regulation

The Swedish Gambling Authority, Lotteriinspektionen, published Tuesday a confirmation that the application process for gaming and betting licenses under Sweden’s new gambling law would begin on August 1, 2018. The regulator also uploaded the application form for operators interested to enter the country’s gambling market.

Lotteriinspektionen said Tuesday that a final vote on Sweden’s new gambling law, titled Re-Regulation of the Gambling Market (En omreglerad spelmarknad), took place on July 5. The legislative piece is expected to be published on July 12.

Following that final vote, the regulatory body published important information for interested operators as well as the application forms they will have to fill in. Lotteriinspektionen advised companies that the sooner they submit their application, the sooner a decision on whether they would be granted a license would be made. The regulator also informed interested operators that an application will be considered completed once the required application fee is paid.

The application fee for the operation of one type of service (betting or gaming) stands at SEK400,000. If operator want to apply for both betting and gaming, they will have to pay SEK700,000 when they submit their application.

Important Details about the New Law

Under Sweden’s new regulatory regime, set to take effect from January 1, 2019, international companies will be able to operate online betting and gaming services in the country with a license from Lotteriinspektionen. Operators that conduct unlicensed gambling services will be violating the new law.

The country’s gambling regulations also stipulate that licensed companies will be able to advertise their services across media, but it should be said that gambling companies have been advertising their services across different local media outlets very successfully and somewhat aggressively, despite the fact that they are currently operating in a gray market.

According to a recent report by measurement firm Kantar Sifo, two unlicensed gambling operators were among the 20 biggest advertisers in Sweden in 2017, with those two being Kindred Group and LeoVegas. Both companies hail from and are listed in Sweden, but are currently headquartered in Malta.

However, with the new regulations in place, licensed gambling entities will be monitored closely by regulators whether their promotional content is compliant with the law and could face penalties for any violations detected.

In its Tuesday statement, Lotteriinspektionen reminded interested operators that they will only be allowed to target customers aged 18 or over and that gambling services must not be actively promoted to underage members of Sweden’s population. Under the Scandinavian nation’s new gambling law, bonus offers will only be restricted to first-time deposits with a new operator.

As Sweden is preparing to open up its market, operators have already began their preparations to enter what is expected to become one of Europe’s largest regulated online gambling hubs. Most recently, Kindred Group penned a deal worth SEK1.8 billion for its flagship brand Unibet to become the main sponsor of Sweden’s main football leagues – Allsvenskan, known to be the country’s top flight club football league, and Superettan, which is the second highest flight.

The six-year sponsorship agreement will see Unibet annually contribute SEK150 million to Svensk Elitfotboll, the organization representing the two leagues, over the duration of the contract, which is set to take effect from January 1, 2020. Unibet is set to replace Sweden’s state-run gambling operator Svenska Spel as sponsor of the country’s top-tier football leagues.

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