Dutch Kansspelautoriteit Announces that 2019 was a Record Year in Terms of Issued Fines

Dutch Kansspelautoriteit Announces that 2019 was a Record Year in Terms of Issued Fines

As the Netherlands is getting ready to open up their regulated online market, the national gambling regulator has been working hard on cleaning house.

Kansspelautoriteit has been issuing fines to operators found in breach of the national gambling regulations.

Laying the Foundation for the Regulated Market:

The Netherlands will soon become the latest regulated market to open its doors in the European region. This country has been working on…

…laying down the legal framework for over a year. While the lawmakers were occupied with writing new regulations, Kansspelautoriteit has been busy fining offenders.

Namely, this body has been issuing penalties and fines to operators found offering services to Dutch players without KSA’s license or approval. This regulator has announced that they have…

…issued more than twice the amount of in fines compared to 2018. Namely, that year has seen some €1.7m issued in fines while 2019 brought that number all the way to €3.5m.

Some of the names that have found themselves on the receiving end of KSA’s wrath were 1xBetLeoVegas, Casino.com, Unibet and several other big-name operators.

Questions from the Public:

Just like in Sweden last year, many are questioning how much of these fines are actually going to be paid by the offenders. In Sweden, where Spelinspektionen issued massive fines in 2019, only a small fraction of the penalties was actually paid.

The Dutch have employed a rather simple mechanism to ensure that whatever fines were issued are most likely going to be covered by the time the market opens.

Unlike in the years leading up to now, KSA has been targeting some of the largest online casino operators they caught offering services to Dutch players. This is where the majority…

…of the 2019 fines revenue is expected to come from. The main point of leverage will become apparent when the market finally opens within a year. Namely, only the brands that haven’t been hit with fines and brands that have covered their fines will be able to…

…apply for a gaming license. Those who were fined but failed to pay will be barred from even applying. Considering that the Netherlands have been the prime target for…

…most big name brands in the iGaming business ever since the country hinted at regulating their markets, chances are larger players will pay their dues for a piece of the new market.

KSA has even pushed back the launch date of the market to July 1 of 2021. This was done for a number of reasons, but such a delay will…

…give all of the affected operators the much needed time to recuperate and cover their fines.

As it turns out, this wave of penalties wasn’t only focused on the online realm. KSA has taken a closer look at the land-based operations within the country as well. After a brief investigation, some 41 slot machine licenses were revoked by the end of 2019.

Source: Steven Stradbrooke “Netherlands issued gambling penalties worth €3.5m in 2019” https://calvinayre.com/2019/12/30/business/netherlands-doubles-gambling-fines-2019/Calvin Ayre. December 30, 2019.

Author: Dusan Trifunovic

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