Sweden issues more online gambling licenses, new AML rules

Sweden’s gambling regulator DewaPoker continues to dole out new licenses as the calendar counts down to the launch of its liberalized online gambling market.

On Monday, Sweden’s gaming regulatory agency Lotteriinspektionen – soon to be known as Spelinspektionen – announced that four more companies had been granted new online gambling licenses, bringing the total number of new licensees to 31 ahead of the January 1 launch of the new liberalized market.

The latest crop of licensees includes Bayton Ltd,

which has received online gaming approval for its JackpotCity, Ruby Fortune and Spin Casino brands. Dumarca Gaming, a subsidiary of UK operator Jackpotjoy Group, received online gaming approval for its Vera&John and Intercasino brands.

Genesis Global Ltd received online gaming approval for nine of its casino brands, while Enlabs AB received both online gaming and sports betting nods for six of its domains. Late last week, Lotteriinspektionen announced that L&L Europe Ltd had won online gaming approval for a host of affiliated brands.

INT’L SITES BETTER AT TRACKING CUSTOMER ACTIVITY THAN DOMESTIC FIRMS


Sweden’s motivation in liberalizing its online gambling market was at least partially driven by the desire to ensure better consumer protections, including mitigating problem gambling behavior. But a new study claims that international operators who have been serving Swedish punters without local permission are already doing a better job on that score than domestic operators.

Stockholm University researchers conducted interviews with representatives of both foreign and domestic gambling operators to determine how prepared they were for the liberalized market’s requirements for responsible gambling and problem gambling mitigation.

The researchers ultimately concluded that both international sites and domestic firms “lack a critical perspective when discussing responsible gambling,” and relied on “informed choice in preventing gamblers from developing problems, seemingly arguing that offering responsible gambling measures on their website is enough.”

However, the researchers determined that international gambling operators had “implemented behavior tracking and monitoring of gamblers in a more extensive way than licensed companies.”

SVENSKA SPEL APPEALS CASINO COSMOPOL AML FINE


In other Swedish news, Monday saw Lotteriinspektionen issue two new regulatory guidance documents, dictating how it expects its licensees to conduct their operations in regards to anti-money laundering (AML) protocols and supervision fees.

The new regs were issued the same day that Sweden’s current betting monopoly provider Svenska Spel filed an appeal of the SEK8m penalty that Lotteriinspektionen imposed last month on the company’s land-based Casino Cosmopol division for AML failures.

Svenska Spel president Per Jaldung said Monday that the regulator had erred in imposing the fine “in the absence of clear regulations and guidance.” Jaldung claims the regulator “has neither issued clear rules nor provided guidance on how to deal with the issues raised as a basis for the sanction decision.”

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Scientific Games appoints new digital chief as Matt Davey exits

US gambling technology provider Scientific Games Corporation (SGC) Poker88 continues to shuffle its senior management, as SG Digital boss Matt Davey will leave the company at the end of the year.

On Monday, SGC announced a series of executive appointments, including promoting current Exec VP Lottery Jim Kennedy as its new Chairman, Lottery. Pat McHugh, currently SVP Global Lottery Systems, is now the Lottery division’s Executive Vice President and Group Chief Executive.

SGC also named Jordan Levin as its new Executive Vice President and Group Chief Executive, Digital. Levin (pictured), who currently serves as SVP for Corporate Development, will take over from current SG Digital boss Davey, who will leave the SGC fold at the end of 2018.

Davey, who was appointed SG Digital boss in February,

joined SGC following the company’s acquisition of NYX Gaming and its valuable OpenBet sports betting platform. SGC said Davey was leaving “with the integration of NYX now fully complete.”

Levin’s new role makes him responsible for “defining [SG Digital]’s overall strategic direction and overseeing all functions of the business.” Levin, an SGC vet since 2006, is said to have been “a driving force” behind the company’s digital and interactive strategies, and will utilize his “in-depth knowledge of digital gaming and sports betting” to further the divison’s prospects.

SGC president/CEO Barry Cottle said the new appointments

“are the best people to continue our growth trajectory, deliver operational excellence and inspire our employees.”

Just last week, SGC bid adieu to vice-chairman Gavin Isaacs after two years in that role. Isaacs was named SGC’s CEO in 2014 following SGC’s acquisition of gaming technology supplier SHFL Entertainment, where Isaacs was also CEO.