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Exclusive Interview with Jan Řehola (Partner at PS Legal) and speaker at Prague Gaming Summit 2018

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This week it’s all about the Czech Republic and my latest interviewee is a highly respected expert who shares his expertise at gaming events. Jan Řehola is a frequent speaker at our events and always bring quality information about the market’s updates. You can meet Jan in person by attending the second edition of Prague Gaming Summit which will be held on the 29th of March at Andel’s by Vienna House Prague. You can find more details here.

With this occasion, I would also like to thank you for following my interview series and for sharing these information with your colleagues and partners. If you would like to be featured in an upcoming interview, please send me an e-mail to reka.szalo@europeangaming.eu and I will happily get back to you!

Hello Jan, thank you accepting this interview, please tell us little bit about yourself, with now over 7 years of experience in the gaming industry, how did you continuously venture to the industry, I mean what was the main reason and what are your key activities, now within the niche?

Jan: As a gambling lawyer I found myself the most beneficial in helping operators, suppliers, testing labs and all other stakeholders involved in gambling industry to be still fully updated and fully complaint with constantly changing regulation. As gambling is highly controversial topic often in spotlight of politicians – regulation is changing very quickly so legal, and especially compliance, plays still more and more important role. What I really like the most on my work is helping my clients to develop and successfully introduce new products on market. By being part of client’s development team, I have priceless opportunity to learn new competences what helps me go every day to my office with joy and enthusiasm.

Working for 4 years for the Ministry of Finance – Czech Gambling regulator, firstly as a Head of the Legal Unit and later as a Director of Gambling Department, what do you consider you could share with us and with the readers as updates on the Czech Gaming Market?

Jan: Czech gambling market is currently undergoing the biggest restructuring from the velvet revolution in 1989. We have new Gambling Act fully in force from 2017. This Gambling Act for the first time in history introduces specific regulation for online gambling and opens whole Czech gambling market for companies established anywhere within EEA. With gambling tax based on GGR and reasonable license conditions, because new regulatory framework on paper looks very good. Unfortunately, in fact application of new Gambling Act caused some difficulties. Considering some recently issued secondary regulation (e.g. guidelines on Bonuses) and transposition of 4th AML Directive unfortunately it can be concluded that to some extent those things spoil idea of regulated, modern and highly competitive market. Currently it is very hard especially for foreign operators to meet specific requirements of Czech regulator and therefore we still have just one foreign operator with licence based on new Gambling Act (Pokerstars holds licence for sport betting, poker and so called “live game”). With new government in place some changes are expected to happen in near future. It can be presumed that some requirements which form obstacles could be potentially removed. Ministry is still working on pack of secondary regulations dealing with technical standards and also preparing big public tender for control monitoring system. Potential stakeholders on Czech market should therefore follow and supervise this preparatory works with due diligence.

Going further, You were responsible for all gambling policy issues, including drafting of new legislation, issuing of gambling licences and cooperation with other European regulators as a member of European Commission Expert Group on Online Gambling, what can you tell us about this year’s updates(in 2018), can we expect major changes on the Czech Gambling Market as we know were some tensions between governments, regulators and the gambling industry.

Jan: As mentioning before we can presume that with new, more business-oriented government in place, regulator can to some extent be more reasonable in licensing procedure. Those operators, suppliers and testing labs having experiences with licensing process in the Czech Republic can provide a testimony that hitherto regulator was more focus on formal requirements than on real substance of licenced product. Some requirements are Czech specific and therefore hardly understandable for foreign licence seekers. This could be changed. As regulator is expected to be more open, I see big room for suppliers and testing labs delivering products in many regulated market to open dialogue with regulator and help him to rebuilt licence process to be more substance oriented.

Due to your background and well versed in all aspects of gambling operations, please tell us more about how PS Legal works, as PS Legal has a rich experience in gambling field and provide professional and high quality legal and compliance consultancy to key players on Czech gambling market.

Jan: I am really enjoying our teamwork at PS Legal. This law firm has long history but when me and my colleagues joined its teams it becomes leading company in gambling field in the Czech Republic. We are focusing not only on gambling but trying to offer expertise in all new emerging industries and technologies where clients can suffer in finding professional legal help with knowledge of this specific industry. Currently we are for instance building division focusing on legal help in field of cryptocurrency or rather blockchain technology in general. We strongly believe that this rapidly developing market can play huge role in upcoming years. What I really like the most is that we are young but highly educated bunch of friends having fun in helping our clients to meet regulatory requirements in versatile areas. By doing this we are still learning and therefore our work is far from being routine.

What are your main responsibilities at PS Legal, as it is a Prague based law firm specialized in providing legal services to all sectors of the gaming industry?

Jan: In PS Legal I am heading its gambling department. This takes currently more than 70 % of my work capacity. As mentioned before we are currently building also department dealing with cryptocurrency and data protections issues. For this I am helping with head hunting process as our team is growing at a fast pace. This type of work I found very fulfilling. I am trying to use experience I got from Ministry of Finance where I was responsible for team of 35 people. I really like see how young people grow in front of your eyes as you gave them room and responsibility.

Do you have a personal opinion regarding the Gambling Market focusing on Czech Republic and the Czech Gambling-related Market? What are the PS Legal company’s future plans  in the gaming sector and what are your personal next steps and projects regarding your professional life and achieving your personal goals?

Jan:I am sure that Czech market would become more competitive in year 2018. With many applicants seeking to get licence and with licensees seeking to get new product on market we can see rapidly evolving market. Currently we see huge restructuring and M&A in land-based market that undergoing huge changes and some M&A could be expected in online world too. I believe, PS legal would play still important role in this process. Whit our expertise and experience I also hope we can help to establish dialog among all stakeholders and regulator to work together on common goal – functioning regulated market where player is protected, and operators can offer them attractive product.

To meet Jan in person, make sure you register and attend Prague Gaming Summit 2018, held on the 29th of March at Andel’s by Vienna House Prague.

Interviewee profile:

Jan Řehola has over 7 years of experiences in gambling field, both from the public and private sector. He is a master of Law from the Charles University in Prague.

Jan has been working for 4 years for the Ministry of Finance – Czech Gambling regulator, firstly as a Head of the Legal Unit and later as a Director of Gambling Department. In his work for the Czech Gambling regulator Jan was responsible for all gambling policy issues, including drafting of new legislation, issuing of gambling licences and cooperation with other European regulators as a member of European Commission Expert Group on Online Gambling.

Due to his background, he is well versed in all aspects of gambling operations.

PS Legal is Prague based law firm specialized in providing legal services to all sectors of the gaming industry. PS Legal has rich experience in gambling field and provide professional and high quality legal and compliance consultancy to key players on Czech gambling market.


Source: European Gaming Media and Events

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Ieva Andersone (Sorainen Latvia) will add her insights about the Latvian gambling industry at MARE BALTICUM Gaming Summit 2019

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The online and land-based gambling industry is well connected in the Baltics and it has been just lately that region has been quoted in several industry media outlets. Especially given the fact that the City Council of Riga, Latvia’s capital, is going to close down all gaming venues in the city, including the downtown and neighborhoods.

A decree had been ordered by Nils Usakovs from the municipality’s Legal Affairs Department and Urban Development Department and the plan is to revoke all gaming venues’ licenses in Riga, except for those given to four- and five-star hotels.

According to the Law on Gambling in Latvia, if the operation of gambling on the particular premises creates a substantial impairment to the interests of the State and the residents of the respective administrative area, the city or the local government council is entitled to terminate the permit to establish a casino, a gambling hall, a bingo hall, a betting or a wagering shop and to operate the respective type of gambling on the particular premises, by means of a reasoned decision.

During the second edition of MARE BALTICUM Gaming Summit, which will take place on the 9th of May at Radisson Blu Royal Astorija Hotel, experts of the industry and regulators will debate the recent actions and will also brief the attending delegates about the regulations in Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Sweden, Denmark and the DACH region.

Register here or View the Agenda!

Ieva Andersone, Commercial & Regulatory Practice Group partner at Sorainen Latvia, will join the “Focus on the Latvian and Estonian gambling industry” compliance panel discussion, which is consisted by 2 regulators (Signe Birne – Lotteries and Gambling Supervisory Inspection of the Republic of Latvia, Taivo Põrk – Ministry of Finance, Estonia) and industry representatives from the region.

About Ieva Andersone

Ieva Andersone is a partner at Sorainen, responsible for Commercial & Regulatory practice group in Latvia, including trade regulation, intellectual property & IT law, privacy and data protection, consumer law, competition law, and energy. During her practice, Ieva has made a special focus to clients from Pharmaceutical & Life sciences, and well as Technology & Media sectors, including the gaming industry.

Ieva is a frequent speaker on data protection, privacy, regulatory and compliance matters, and she also regularly provides pro bono assistance for companies in creative industries and for creative personalities.

Make sure you take advantage of this unique opportunity of learning and networking with the gambling industry in the Baltic and Scandinavian region via the MARE BALTICUM Gaming platform which has been launched in 2018 and is committed to bringing together industry shareholders and government officials from the Baltic and Scandinavian region on a yearly base.

Register here or View the Agenda!


Source: European Gaming Media
This is a Syndicated News piece. Photo credits or photo sources can be found on the source article: Ieva Andersone (Sorainen Latvia) will add her insights about the Latvian gambling industry at MARE BALTICUM Gaming Summit 2019

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Red Tiger signs SuprNation deal

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Games portfolio now available across operator’s brands

 

Award-winning supplier Red Tiger has signed a deal with SuprNation to integrate its games with the Nordic operator’s casino brands, including Duelz.

Red Tiger’s portfolio, including hit titles Thor’s Lightning and Pirates’ Plenty, will be made available to players of the gamification-focused website.

Gavin Hamilton, CEO of Red Tiger, said: “We are delighted to be partnering with SuprNation, which operate a number of stellar casino brands.

“Their commitment to innovative features and gamification in particular is something that is very close to our own ethos, and we are looking forward to working with them.”

Henric Andersson, COO and Co-founder of SuprNation, said “Red Tiger offers some of the best products available, and we are delighted to be able to add them to our burgeoning offering.

“We are super excited to be welcoming them across our brands and to roll out their exciting games over a long and fruitful partnership.”

 

 

About Red Tiger:

Red Tiger is a young and dynamic casino games supplier that creates top-performing HTML5 slots and table games. It also offers a bespoke progressive jackpot system, a Smart Spins bonus management application, and its own Tournaments gamification feature to enhance the user experience. Founded in late 2014 by a group of industry veterans from major B2B and B2C gaming brands, the company is growing fast and is now served by over 200 full time staff including mathematicians, graphic designers, software developers, audio engineers, gambling experts, QAs, account managers and secret magicians; all entirely dedicated to continuously improving the slots player experience. Learn more at: www.redtiger.com


Source: European Gaming Media
This is a Syndicated News piece. Photo credits or photo sources can be found on the source article: Red Tiger signs SuprNation deal

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Patagonia Entertainment and Iforium sign content partnership

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Patagonia Entertainment has signed a content agreement with Iforium, a leading eGaming software development company focused on providing the next generation of flexible gaming solutions.

The deal will see Patagonia Entertainment integrate its library of proprietary casino content which has been recently certified by international game-testing laboratory, BMM Testlabs. Among the games being added to Iforium’s platform are the hugely popular Super Pachinko and Super Flex Bingo. Patagonia is currently certified for Colombia, Mexico and the Philippines market and is currently working on certifying its games portfolio for the regulated Spanish, Portuguese& UK e-Gaming markets between others.

Patagonia’s content will join Iforium’s innovative Gameflex™ casino aggregation platform, which combines over 8,000+ desktop and mobile gaming titles from all the leading content providers

Patagonia Entertainment’s Global Business Development Manager Victor Arias said: “Iforium is an award-winning eGaming company with cracking casino content. We’re proud to call them a partner and we’re excited about working together as we continue to grow our businesses.”

Phil Parry, Iforium CEO, said: “I am delighted to confirm Iforium’s partnership with Patagonia Entertainment. The addition of Patagonia is another important content differentiator for our Gameflex platform and one which will support our expansion into new markets. I look forward to building our partnership with the excellent team at Patagonia and exploring new opportunities together.”

 

About Patagonia Entertainment:

Patagonia Entertainment is an innovative technology developing company with an Omni-Channel platform and a rich history in producing outstanding Video Bingo games for the e-gaming industry. Video Bingo is a hybrid between Bingo and Slot games. The company has managed to become one of the most popular game developers in the Latin American market and are rapidly growing into other markets. More information about Patagonia Entertainment can be found at www.patagonia-e.com.

About Iforium:

Founded in 2006 and based in the Isle of Man, Iforium is a multi-award winning B2B software development company focused on providing next generation gaming solutions.

Gameflex™ is Iforium’s innovative casino aggregation and seamless bonusing platform. It combines over 8,000 games from 100+ gaming vendors and is available to multi-channel operators via a single and seamless API integration. Iforium are the proud recipient of the EGR B2B IT Supplier of the Year Award and CEEGC Awards 2017 & 2018. Iforium are licenced and regulated by the UK Gambling Commission and by ONJN in Romania. For more information please visit www.iforium.com


Source: European Gaming Media
This is a Syndicated News piece. Photo credits or photo sources can be found on the source article: Patagonia Entertainment and Iforium sign content partnership

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