LeoVegas soon to apply for a license in the Netherlands
LeoVegas will soon apply for a license in the Netherlands. The Swedish company said at the presentation of its annual results that the license application should actually have gone out the door last week, but has been slightly delayed. LeoVegas had few positive words for the course of events in the Netherlands, calling it an example of how not to implement the regulation in a country.
On September 29, 2021, online casinos LeoVegas and Royal Panda were among the first group of providers to indicate they were leaving the Dutch market. Both brands of the LeoVegas Group went black in the Netherlands following the letter from outgoing minister Sander Dekker informing the room that all unlicensed casinos had to go offline. Many casinos have already been licensed not only in this country, but many players have also been able to appreciate, for example, Jeetwin casino. So I suggest you look through the Jeetwin casino review and find out more about it. The Kansspelautoriteit imposed a 350,000 euro fine on LeoVegas in October 2019 for violating the Dutch Gaming Act until at least March 2019. The violations of sister brand Royal Panda were from before March 2019. LeoVegas challenged the fines from the Kansspelautoriteit, but on December 8, 2021, it was announced that the company did not appeal when the judge ruled in favor of the Ksa.
LeoVegas is on the verge of applying for a license
During the presentation of the 2021 annual figures, LeoVegas CEO Gustav Hagman and CFO Stefan Nelson frequently addressed the departure from the Netherlands and the negative impact it had on its figures. When dealing with various statistics, the Netherlands (and Germany) were left out because otherwise, the figures would be too distorted, according to LeoVegas' management.
The company indicated in several slides that it would apply for a license in the Netherlands in the first quarter of 2022. During the question-and-answer session following the presentation, the duo went into a little more detail about the license application in the Netherlands.
Following questions about the Dutch market posed by CasinoNews and others, Hagman indicated that LeoVegas' license application should and could have been submitted last week:
"We are on the verge of filing. I think we were supposed to do it last week or so, but some little things prevented that. We are very close to submitting our permit application. I don't really know what else to say about it. [The Netherlands] is an example of how not to regulate a market. Then if you look at Canada, that's an example of how to do it."
Gustav Hagman, LeoVegas CEO
Asked for a little more context on that last part, Hagman indicated that the state of affairs in the Netherlands is not something to be cited as an example:
"It more or less comes down to the fact that they have [suddenly] closed the market and it becomes very terminal for all market participants. That's not really the best way to regulate a market. Anyway, they are regulating and we are happy about that. That's a good thing. All in all, we look forward to regulated markets [like the Netherlands]." LeoVegas hopes to be live in the Netherlands by August 2022 LeoVegas indicated that it expects the Kansspelautoriteit to need six months to approve the application for the license. If LeoVegas submits its license application this month and it indeed needs six months to be granted, this would mean that LeoVegas could live again in the Netherlands in August 2022.
Earlier this week, LeoVegas competitor Unibet announced that it had already applied for a license with the Dutch Gaming Authority in November. If that license application is approved without delay, Unibet will be able to go live in the Netherlands again by the end of May.
At the moment 12 licenses have been issued in the Netherlands. Ten online casinos actually live in the Netherlands. Casino777 and LiveScoreBet are licensed but do not yet offer live in the Netherlands.