- Legal States
Simon Deloit May 16, 2019 3 min read
Sweden Drops a Fine on Betway for Bonus Practices
- Sweden’s bonus regulations cost operators nearly $1.5 million
- Betway and Mandalorian technologies cited as the fined parties
- Spelinspektionen to continue uphold the best consumer protection practices
The Swedish gambling watchdog has issued $520,000 fine to UK operator Betway. Mandalorian Technologies has been slapped with a separate fine worth $940,000 for breaching bonus rules.
Sweden Inflicts Fines Over Bonuses
Swedish regulators mean business. The gambling watchdog, Spelinspektionen, is really no exception. After Sweden introduced a regulated iGaming market at the turn of 2019, brands have been eying the new market with high hopes. Regulations in the UK have been tightening and as it turns out – Sweden is no exception.
Some companies, such as LeoVegas and Betway, have made sure to be among the first to enter the Swedish market. Others, such as William Hill, have been holding back until recently. Sweden is not without its challenges insofar as gambling regulation is concerned as Betway has found out first-hand.
The Spelinspektionen has fined the online casino for using bonus offers that breached the regulations that mandate the use of promotional language in the country. Unlike most other countries, Sweden doesn’t allow operators to extend bonuses after the sing-up offers. Betway has been found to offer such goodies on several occasions, leading to a $520,000 fine.
Betway has been warned about its conduct and beaching the rules that allow it to operate legally in the country. In an official statement, Spelinspektionen reiterated its position on protecting consumers:
“The main purpose of the new gambling regulation, which came into force on January 1, 2019, is to strengthen consumer protection and reduce the negative effects of gambling.”
Sweden has been enforcing restrictions insofar bonuses are concerned as the country’s lawmakers and competent authorities believe that there is a direct link between gambling addiction and subsequent promotional offers. In February, the watchdog issued an official warning arguing that it was aware of breaches in the original agreement.
Spelinspektionen has also defined bonuses well enough to avoid any ambiguity. In Sweden, a bonus is any form of “discount” which comes in the form of additional money for the customer. The recent developments will be reason enough for less prominent operators to make sure they compete within what Sweden legally allows.
Customer Protection Is Strong in the North
A $500,000 fine is not to be sneezed at, especially when operators are competing against many brands in the market. Mandalorian Technologies was another operator to have been found in abusing bonus practices. Scandinavian countries are far more disinclined to let breaches of their regulation slide.
Denmark has just introduced a whistle blower scheme that would allow insiders to report practices that are designed to intentionally harm customers. Denmark is also the only market in Europe that abides with the European Union rules on customer safety insofar as gambling is concerned.
Simon is a freelance writer who specializes in gambling news and has been an author in the poker/casino scene for 10+ years. He brings valuable knowledge to the team and a different perspective, especially as a casual casino player.
Casino May 16, 2019
Casino May 16, 2019