The online gaming market within the EU territories has enjoyed an 11% growth according to figures released by the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA). Of this figure, 32.4% has been made up by gaming in the United Kingdom.
The numbers have been provided in conjunction with data published by H2 Gambling Capital and also highlight a gross gaming revenue rise from 2017’s €20m to €22.2m. EGBA represent bet365, Betsson Group, GVC Holdings PLC, Kindred Group PLC, MRG, and ZEAL Network and combined 121 online gambling licenses across 20 EU countries to accrue the data.
The general secretary of the EGBA Maarten Haijer said;
“Europe’s online gambling market continues to show a strong demand-driven growth and a switch to mobile devices.
But its increased popularity reinforces the need for more consistent and strong consumer protections and industry standards across all EU countries. The current situation of diverging and sometimes conflicting regulations in EU countries is detrimental to consumers, authorities and operators alike.”
Record High Online Gambling Share
These latest figures indicate a record high online gambling share across Europe while online gambling activity bought in €22.2 billion, some 23.2% of the total EU gambling market which equates to an increase from the 21.2% market share enjoyed in 2017.
There was also a noted swing towards mobile device usage for online gaming, with phones and tablets making up 43% of the gaming total. A percentage that stood at 39% just two years ago. 57% of online bets were placed using a desktop or laptop.
Of the money wagered, sports betting raked in the most, scooping up 42.5% of the total EU market share, worth €9.4 billion. Casino gaming enjoyed 32.4%, lottery 12.6%, poker 5% and bingo 4.3% of the overall market share.
Bet365 Also On The Rise
There was also good news for bet365 this week as they reported a 9.7% year-on-year rise in betting and gaming revenue. These profits were enjoyed in spite of the responsible gaming controls that firms have enforced on themselves in 2019.
Overall, Bet365 customers staked £64.49 billion on sports betting over a year, marking a 22.7% improvement on the previous year. Keeping the online casino and poker performances closer to their chest but admitting that significant investment played a key role in the firm’s growth, bet365 CEO Denise Coates said the firm was committed to finding a solution for gambling harms;
“In addition, the number of unique new games available to customers increased in the period. As a result, the group’s gaming operations experienced improved player retention and, ultimately, an increase in the number of active customers over the period.
The group recognises that player protection is not a competitive exercise. To that end, the impact of its systems and the positive results it identifies through internal research are routinely shared across the industry. In the coming year, the group will continue in this vein, and is willing to work with other operators and regulators on raising standards across the industry, in a shared endeavour to make gambling safe for all.”
This year, bet365 have pioneered some game changing elements to their site including a cash out feature within its Bet Builder product which works for both for in-play and pre-match wagering, while the Edit My Bet feature has also been launched to innovate each way betting.
Wales And Lions Coach Banned For 18 Months
In other news, former Wales and British Lions attack coach Rob Howley has been handed a retrospective 18 month ban for breaching betting rules. At least nine of these months have already been served due to the suspended nature of the sentence meaning he will be free to take a up new role in September of 2020.
Howley, who was sent home from the 2019 Rugby Union World Cup in Japan earlier this year, was found guilty of placing 363 bets covering more than 1,000 matches – including some that involved his own Wales team – over a period of 45 months from November 2015 according to an independent disciplinary panel.
The three member panel, who received letters arguing the coach’s case from the likes of Sir Ian McGeechan, Warren Gatland and Jonathan Davies, all agreed that Howley had been honest about his activities and was completely sincere in his remorse. The fact that his bets were all made for personal gain and not for more sinister purposes such as passing on inside information, is also said to have helped his case.
Howley was found to have held accounts with three bookmakers placing 200 bets with William Hill, 150 with Betway and 13 with Ladbrokes.