Netherlands: A power play from the Dutch Gaming Authority

The Dutch Gaming Authority claims success in its curbing the offshore gaming market.This is a translation of yesterday’s press release from The Dutch Gaming Authority.

“The Dutch Gaming Authority (‘GCA’) is successful in its fight against illegal online gambling.

More than half of the online gaming providers which were notified by the GCA is no longer specific targeting the Dutch gambling market or has discontinued their offering. They do not use the .nl- extension anymore, do no longer use the Dutch language and make no more advertisements on radio, television and / or print media.

These companies show that they want to take account of the interests of society.

In June of this year, around 40 companies received a warning to cease their illegal gambling offers directed at the Dutch consumers or to adapt to the prioritization criteria of the Gaming Authority. These criteria – a .nl website, or offering the site in Dutch or advertising on radio, television and print media – are part of a broader policy to safeguard public interests such as the prevention of gambling addiction, combating of criminal activities and the protection of consumer. As a result of the requested adjustments, these companies show that they are aware of their social responsibility and that they are willing to be regulated.

More than half of the addressed companies already complies with the request by the GCA or has indicated that on very short notice it will do so. The providers that now (are going to) comply have a market share of around 60-80% in the Netherlands. (See also Report of Boston Consulting Group (BCG) on the extent and trends of the market for online gambling, September 2011).

The remaining companies, that have not yet ceased their illegal activities, are now actively pursued by the GCA. This can lead to a cease and desist order subject to a penalty and/or a fine € 780,000 euro or higher (10% of the estimated revenue). “They will certainly not escape our attention,” said Paul Tang, Executive Board member GCA. “We will follow every path in order make it the illegal providers as difficult as possible.”