UK Government Moves to Close Bet-on-Lotteries Loophole …and More!

UK Government Moves to Close Bet-on-Lotteries Loophole …and More!

Lotteries Participate in IOC Forum on Sports Integrity

Last month, both the World Lottery Association (WLA) and European Lotteries (EL) participated in the 2nd IOC International Forum on Sports Integrity (IFSI). Lotteries joined a wide range of stakeholders from the sports movement, governments, the Council of Europe, the EU and the UN to discuss issues related to match-fixing and good governance in sports.

“Integrity has always been a core lottery value and has been enabling EL members not only to set an example in terms of the responsibility of their sports betting operations, but also to fight against match-fixing with concrete actions, including education and capacity building of a wide range of stakeholders around Europe,” EL President Hansjörg Höltkemeier said.

WLA President Jean-Luc Moner-Banet commented: “I would like to underline the importance and added value of the recently created Global Lottery Monitoring System (GLMS), which ensures monitoring of betting patterns 24/7, with active participation of lottery members from all over the world.”

 

Dutch State Lottery Had €121m in Assets Frozen

Last week, Dutch class action claimant Loterijverlies unexpectedly succeeded in obtaining an account preservation order from the District Court in The Hague against the Dutch State Lottery (now part of Nederlandse Loterij). No less than €121m in assets of the State Lottery were frozen ahead of its end-of-the week draw.

On Friday, however, a Dutch court ended the account preservation order, prohibited Loterijverlies from seeking additional account preservation orders, and also ordered Loterijverlies to pay Staatsloterij’s legal costs.

Loterijverlies is claiming to seek compensation on behalf of thousands of lottery players for misleading advertising practices by the Dutch lottery operator.

 

Is Novomatic Planning to Go Public?

The private owners of Austrian gaming and lottery technology group Novomatic are reportedly working with Australian investment banking group Macquarie to prepare an initial public offering that could value the company at more than 6 billion euros.

The listing would likely take place in the second half of the year in London, although Frankfurt remains an option, one of the sources said.

The company is apparently looking to list roughly 20-30% of its stock, according to unidentified sources; at a valuation of more than Euro 6 billion, that would make it one of the biggest ever IPOs of an Austrian company.

Macquarie and Novomatic declined to comment.

 

NMi Gains Approval from World Lottery Association (WLA)

Compliance testing and auditing laboratory NMi has gained accreditation from the World Lottery Association (WLA) to carry out certification audits for WLA members. In addition, numerous senior employees have gained formal recognition from the WLA as Certified Auditors.

Andrew Rosewarne, NMi Gaming Director commented: “This important step for NMi demonstrates to customers our commitment to the lottery market. We expect online lottery services to be a major growth area this year and with our experience in the regulated online gaming sector and with electronic draw equipment, NMi is ready to provide the needed assurance to existing customers and those moving online.”

 

UK Government Moves to Close Bet-on-Lotteries Loophole

Although UK gambling law prohibits betting on the outcome of the National Lotteries, a loophole remains that allows Britons to bet on EuroMillions draws in other countries – even though they are all drawn centrally in Paris.

One such secondary lottery operator, Lottoland, even charges a lower price (£2) for placing such a bet than the official ticket price of £2.50 a line. According to critics, this takes money away from good causes.

“We want to act to ensure that money going to good causes is protected and that there is no confusion around the EuroMillions draw, providing the same levels of clarity as there is with the National Lottery,” UK Lotteries Minister Tracey Crouch said, as she announced a consultation on closing the loophole.

In its response, Nigel Birrell, chief executive at Lottoland, accused the government of acting at the behest of UK National Lottery operator Camelot.

“We believe this agenda is clearly being driven by Camelot lobbying to protect their monopoly and bully any competition out of the market, a precedent we have seen with society lotteries and most notably the Health Lottery,” he said in a statement.

Meanwhile, the Malta Gaming Authority issued its very first B2B lottery betting license to Lotto Warehouse, last week, as well as a new B2C lottery betting license to Multilotto.com, indicating that traditional lotteries will continue to be challenged, unfairly or not, by secondary lottery operators for the foreseeable future.

 

Other News

Of all non-state controlled gambling products, the Swedish Postcode Lottery (Postkodlotteriet) was the biggest seller in the country in 2016.

 

The European Commission has judged the proposed reforms in German online casino legislation as “non-viable.”

 

New research reveals that the British Columbia government’s online gambling site earns 46% of its online casino revenue from just 619 (5%) of its players.

 

Novamedia, owner of three major Dutch lottery brands, is actively lobbying for lower charitable contributions.

 

Charity lotteries have now been designated Dutch “intangible cultural heritage.”

 

Zeal Investments has announced that it has invested £1 million in free-to-play online lottery platform the Free Postcode Lottery in return for a 10% stake. ZEAL Network also selected Peter Steiner as its new chairman.

 

In a secondary lottery held by MyLotto24 Limited a player has won a prize of approximately €15m, which will have a commensurate impact on the expected results of parent company ZEAL Network SE in FY 2017.

 

Canadian online gambling operator Amaya Gaming has announced plans to sell off its stake in its former lottery subsidiary business Innova Gaming Group.

 

Intralot signs a new 10-year contract with the Idaho Lottery.

 

Winners of a California Lottery scratch card prize above $600, will now have to wait 12 to 14 weeks to collect their winnings. “It’s not that we don’t have the money,” said Russell Lopez, California Lottery Deputy Director of Communication. “With all the recent winners, we’re just playing catch up.”