LeoVegas is launching a new campaign concept and introducing “Leo” as the company’s Chief Entertainment Officer.

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For the first time, LeoVegas is launching a global marketing campaign with a new commercial concept. With this new concept, the company will create unified communication, consistent across all markets. The new concept will take place at LeoVegas’ fictitious headquarters in the LeoUniverse. This will be rolled out with localised adaptations during the first quarter of 2021.

This spring, the gaming company LeoVegas is launching a global marketing campaign. In connection with this, the company will introduce a completely new commercial concept; LeoUniverse, where the company’s fictitious Chief Entertainment Officer, Leo, works at the company’s headquarters. With the help of humour and recognition of everyday life, LeoVegas creates a commercial series that combines laughter and entertainment in high-quality production.

”Offering the best customer experience starts with our marketing. With this new concept, we invite our customers to a completely new ’LeoUniverse’, a world filled with entertainment, excitement, and humour. We will get to know several new characters but also meet familiar faces from our most popular games”, explained Sarah Krusell, Marketing Production Director at LeoVegas.

Working to develop the new global creative concept for LeoVegas it became clear that the heart of their offering is highly aligned with the entertainment industry. And obviously, their brand universe should be an extension of that feeling”, states Lars Samuelsen, Creative Chairman at the advertising agency Uncle Grey.

With this new concept, the company’s marketing communications will be unified across all markets whilst also being adapted to fit the local needs and regulations of each market.

”Our industry has historically not maintained a high enough level when it comes to advertising and marketing. Instead of being the loudest, we hope to now be able to introduce a concept that people actually appreciate and find entertaining. With more relevant content, we can responsibly build an entertaining brand”, added Sarah Krusell.

The concept will be used across all markets, channels and all media formats and will continue to position LeoVegas as a responsible brand that offers entertainment and excitement in a safe environment.

The LeoUniverse concept has been developed and produced together with the award-winning Copenhagen based advertising agency; Uncle Grey. The campaign will initially be broadcast on TV in Denmark and Sweden and will be followed up by digital campaigns across a variety of channels.


Swedish Gambling Regulator Finds Many Licensee Websites Still Lacks RG Information

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Swedish gambling regulator Spelinspektionen has found that many licensee websites still lacks RG information.

The regulator said some improvements had taken place since the last survey, which took place in 2019 and whose results were published in April 2020, but further work was still required from operators to prevent regulatory intervention.

It pointed out that it is the licensees’ responsibility to ensure they keep up to date with the relevant regulatory requirements, and that the shortcomings noted in the survey may lead to intervention from the regulator.

Most of the sites reviewed showed responsible gambling logos in both logged-out and logged-in mode, and had a sufficient reference to an independent gambling helpline, unlike in previous reports, the regulator said.

It emphasised that such features are of great importance for consumer protection and that all websites licensed for online gaming must meet these requirements.

However, it said that many of the websites lacked sufficient information about the licensee, for example, several did not have a telephone number and email address listed. Many of the websites also lacked information on licence durations, and failed to state that Spelinspektionen is both a licensing and supervisory authority.


ATG Sues Svenska Spel for Trade Mark Infringement

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AB Trav och Galopp (ATG) has launched a lawsuit against Swedish operator Svenska Spel over alleged trademark infringement in relation to betting on horseracing.

“Protecting our brands is part of our duty to our owners Svensk Travsport and Svensk Galopp, as well as all tens of thousands in the country whose industry is equestrian. ATG is the only gambling company that contributes to the welfare of equestrian sport. So it is about ensuring the future supply of the Swedish equestrian sport,” Hasse Lord Skarplöth, CEO of ATG, said.

“The lawsuit concerns, among other things, the revocation of a trademark due to a violation of ATG’s company name and was filed with the Patent and Market Court of the Stockholm District Court,” writes the gaming company.

ATG asks the court to prohibit Svenska Spel from using “Trotting & Gallop” for a fine of one million kroner.

Svenska Spel is also required to pay ATG for “the use of the company name” Aktiebolaget Trav och Galopp “in business operations and compensation for further damage caused by the violation of ATG.”


BonusFinder report: Swedish government throwing away tax money

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The latest research from BonusFinder.com on Sweden’s iGaming crisis has revealed an acceleration in Swedes playing off-shore and a huge tax loss for the government – and all thanks to an overly burdensome regulatory structure that may yet be extended. The tax loss – at a conservative estimate around €46m for 2020 – would pay for a further 1,000 ICU nurses, 1,400 extra police, or in times of direst need pay for the salaries of a further 588 politicians.

Back in May 2020 the Swedish government reviewed its iGaming regulations, amid worries of an upsurge in gaming during the pandemic. The result was a weekly spend cap for gamblers, plus exceptionally tight rules on bonusing for new players.

Since then, Sweden’s gamblers have been exploring the temptations offered by unlicensed gambling sites with unregulated bonusing and no spend cap – and the trend is growing, with a domestic market unable to compete with their unrestrained rivals.

Even in the short term, this has led to tens of millions of Euros in tax revenue lost by the Swedish state – and BonusFinder.com’s report contains some recommendations for the government to stop this loss and turn the industry around.

BonusFinder.com Managing Director Fintan Costello said of developments: “Over-regulation is not working, which ultimately exposes the most vulnerable players to danger.”

Gustaf Hoffstedt, Secretary General of Sweden’s gaming trade association Branschföreningen för Onlinespel (BOS), added: “BonusFinder’s new data show us an alarming development on search words on Google aimed for unlicensed gambling in Sweden. This is something the regulator together with the industry should pay much more attention to.”

You can read the BonusFinder report here.


Swedish Gambling Market Commission Proposes More Restrictions on iGaming

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The Swedish Gambling Market Commission (Spelmarknadsutredningen) has delivered a report on the country’s igaming regulations. Led by special investigator and former MP, Anna-Lena Sörenson, the report has recommended several stricter controls on the market including a proposal that the national regulator Spelinspektionen should implement a risk classification for gambling products.

The report suggests that games classified as the highest risk should be banned from advertising between 6 am and 9 pm. It also proposes that Sweden should make permanent the SEK5000 deposit limit that has been temporarily imposed for online casino games during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Other proposals include the introduction of a law laying out reporting requirements for operators and a relaxation of bonus restrictions for gaming operators that generate funds for charity, such as lotteries, to enable them to better compete against private operators. It also suggests greater controls on unlicensed gaming, which is now subject to a separate enquiry.

The report rejected proposals for statutory levels on horseracing and other sports betting. It also concluded that the Gambling Act was not the correct tool to include controls on loot boxes in video games, which it said should be studied at the European Union level.

“This has been a complex assignment that has touched on a large number of different issues linked to gaming regulation, which in some cases have required difficult trade-offs. I believe that the proposals we come up with today can both contribute to strengthening consumer protection and make regulation more appropriate,” Sörenson said.

“Spelmarknadsutredningen’s report will form an important basis for the Government’s forthcoming measures,” Ardalan Shekarabi, Minister for Social Security, said.

However, the operator association Branscheforenigen för Onlienspel (BOS) expressed alarm at the report’s recommendations.

Gustaf Hoffstedt, secretary-general of BOS, said: “Sweden has invested in a licensing system with 102 operators that offer a high level of consumer protection.

“They pay around SEK4bn annually in gaming tax, invest in workplaces and staff, sponsor Swedish sports and contribute to Swedish technology know-how.

“Banning licensed gaming companies from marketing their services to Swedish consumers while leaving unlicensed companies free to offer their services to Swedish consumers is a bad proposal.

“This only leads to reduced consumer protection and to erode the Swedish gaming market.”


Stefan Lundborg leaves the Board of Directors at Kindred Group

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Stefan Lundborg has informed Kindred Group that he will resign from his role as non-executive Director at Kindred Group with immediate effect.

Kindred Group’s non-executive Director Stefan Lundborg has informed the company that he will resign from his role as non-executive Director at Kindred Group with immediate effect. The resignation is related to Stefan Lundborg being investigated for insider crime by the Swedish Economic Crime Authority (SECA). Kindred does not have further information at this time and is fully cooperating with the Public Prosecutor and the SECA in their investigations.

“The resignation of Stefan Lundborg was unavoidable considering the investigation against him by the Swedish Economic Crime Authority. The Board would like to emphasize that no other representatives of the company have been served any suspicion of misconduct and neither is the company itself under any suspicion”, comments Anders Ström, Chairman of the Board at Kindred Group.

Additional information will be provided to the market when required, however no further comments will be given as long as the investigation is ongoing.


Sweden’s Spelinspektionen Clarifies New Sports Betting Restrictions

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The Swedish gambling authority Spelinspektionen has sought to clarify the scope of new restrictions on the markets that licensed operators can offer for betting.

New rules on sports betting that enter force on January 1 prohibit betting on football leagues below Sweden’s top four tiers. They also prohibit betting on violations of rules, such as bookings and red cards in football, and on the individual performance of players aged under 18.

Spelinspektionen said that the new rules against betting on under 18s’ “individual performance” cover bets on scoring or shots on goal in team games like football, performance in individual sports such as athletics, skiing, or shooting, and performance in singles matches in sports such as tennis, badminton or table tennis.

However, the rules do not prohibit betting on doubles matches in sports such as tennis if the other participant in the doubles team is over 18, provided that the bet is on the pair’s overall performance or on the adult’s performance but not specifically on the under 18’s performance. But, if the majority of players (three out of four) in a doubles match are under 18, then all betting will be forbidden.

The new regulations apply to events in Sweden only. For competitions that have more than one leg, with one leg held in Sweden and one or more held abroad, both the event held in Sweden and the overall result of the competition will be subject to the regulations, but not the individual event or events held outside of Sweden.

As for betting on violations, operators had queried whether the restrictions prohibited taking bets on penalties or free kicks. Spelinspektionen has clarified that betting on a penalty or free kick being awarded will be prohibited, but betting on the result of the penalty of free kick once it has already been awarded will not.

The regulator also clarified that all of the regulations also apply to esports, but again only to competitions that take place in Sweden.


Betsson Sweden Launches “Supporter Auction” Initiative to Provide Financial Support to Hockey Clubs

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Betsson, together with SHL, has launched a “Supporter Auction” initiative to provide financial support to the hockey clubs in Sweden.

Several unique collectibles are available on the online auction site Tradera and all the money will go to the clubs. Approx. 100 items will be auctioned on Tradera as a way to enable supporters to back their team in this special way. The initiative also encourages supporters and former players to join and look for any old treasures they may have that can be put up for the auction.

“We have been the head sponsor of SHL since 2018 and even though we continue as usual in many ways, it is impossible to ignore the fact that perhaps the most important ingredient is missing. In the wake of covid-19 and the fact that the clubs in the SHL now play with greatly reduced audiences, we feel that our role as a sponsor is more important than ever. That is why we, together with SHL, have created the Supporter Auction initiative. Partly to raise money for each club, partly to enable supporters to get their hands on unique hockey gems, but also to increase the engagement in Swedish ice hockey during these challenging times,” Robin Olenius, PR manager at Betsson, said.


Svenska Spel to Join Lotteries Entertainment Innovation Alliance

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Swedish state-owned gaming operator Svenska Spel has signed an agreement to join Lotteries Entertainment Innovation Alliance AS (LEIA).

LEIA is a Joint Venture Company between Danske Lotteri Spil, Française des Jeux, Norsk Tipping and Veikkaus, which was established in the year 2018. The lotteries are working together to share resources in order to build a wider and efficient digital gaming offer, allowing these lotteries to address some of the common main challenges in the digital space, and foster open innovation. The aim is to develop liquidity games and to offer an enhanced range of games to the consumers.

“Svenska Spel is really happy to be a part of LEIA and look forward to a long-term strategic cooperation which will benefit both Svenska Spel and LEIA,” Patrik Hofbauer, President and CEO of Svenska Spel, said.

“We are really pleased to have Svenska Spel onboard as it will strengthen the Alliance to achieve its targets,” Olli Sarekoski, Chairman of LEIA and CEO of Veikkaus, said.

“We have worked hard the last two years establishing the venture, connecting the lotteries to a common marketplace for provision of games and we are well on track with our business plans. Svenska Spel accession into the venture will contribute with a broader portfolio of games, increased innovation power and further economies of scale effects,” Morten Eriksen, CEO of LEIA, said.


Sweden has failed to protect the vulnerable players

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The Ministry of Finance has proposed that the temporary restrictions on the online gambling market, that were introduced on July 2 this year, should be extended to June 30, 2021. The proposed restrictions are a weekly deposit limit of a maximum of SEK 5,000 and that bonus offers are limited to a maximum of 100 SEK.

The Ministry of Finance claimed during the spring that the gaming on online casino was strongly increasing during the pandemic and that the government needed to protect the Swedish consumers.

The minister stated that there where an increase in problem gaming during the spring, but that statement was not based on facts. Neither The Swedish Gambling Authority nor other authorities did see that as a fact.


Scientific studies

This is also something that later on was proofed by scientific studies conducted.  https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpubh.2020.554542/full

“Results:  Total gambling activity decreased by 13.29% during the first phase of the outbreak compared to forecast. Analyses of online gambling data revealed that although betting decreased substantially in synchrony with a slight increase in online casino gambling, there was no increase in likely problematic, high-intensity gambling and neither did total online gambling increase.

Conclusions: This first, preliminary study revealed no increase in Swedish gambling activity, total or specifically online, in the first phase of the covid-19 outbreak. Future research should examine whether pandemic-induced transitioning between gambling modalities and/or increased participation in gambling, leads to long-term effects on prevalence of problem gambling.”


Moving to the unlicensed market

Setting a deposit limit of 5,000 SEK per week does not solve the need to help people who have a gambling problem as it is always possible to gamble at different companies. Alternatively, you can play at the unlicensed companies. The effects will instead be that the individual gaming companies cannot follow the individual players’ behaviour and, if necessary, support it.


7 out of 10

It is an extremely worrying development in Sweden that 7 out of 10 of those who seek help for gambling problems have banned themselves from playing breaks and still continue to play. The idea of a game break is good, but there is a lack of power against the unlicensed gaming companies that target Swedish players and then the problems remain. A first step in resolving this is to prevent the possibility of paying with a number of well-known Swedish payment services at the unlicensed gaming companies. We have to close the holes! (https://www.spelfriheten.se/ Pelretin, organization for gambling addiction.)

This means that the blocking service Spelpaus (Spelpaus enables Swedish gamblers to paus them from all gambling on licensed operators https://www.spelpaus.se/ ) does not fulfil any major function as long as a number of different gaming companies without a Swedish gaming license are allowed to flourish freely. Several help seekers have also told us that these gaming companies provide the opportunity to pay with a number of well-known Swedish payment services


Lack of tax revenue

In 2019, the licensed companies in Sweden paid SEK 3.6 billion to the Treasury. An amount that is now steadily declining in step with the shift to the unlicensed companies.


Focusing on those who try to behave

No unlicensed company or person linked to unlicensed gaming activities has been fined or prosecuted since 1 January 2019, at the same time 26 fines have been issued for a total of 236.4 MSEK against the licensed gaming market.

The government’s mission should be to protect consumers and that should be their priority. On the contrary, the effects have been that they have shifted vulnerable players to the unlicensed companies. Sweden has failed to protect the vulnerable players and the extended regulations will not protect them.