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Exclusive Interview with Piotr Dynowski (Partner and Head of IP, Media, Tech & Comms practice at Bird & Bird’s Warsaw Office)

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The Polish gambling industry has been the subject of many major changes, however not all of them are clear for the operators and shareholders.

So, I took advantage of the opportunity to catch up with Piotr Dynowski (Partner and Head of IP, Media, Tech & Comms practice at Bird & Bird’s Warsaw Office), who is going to be among the speakers at Prague Gaming Summit 2018 (more details here...), to gain an inside perspective on the Polish gambling market.

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!

I would like to thank you for spending time to answer our questions. First I would kindly ask you to shortly introduce yourself.

Piotr: My name is Piotr Dynowski and I’m a partner and head of IP, Media, Tech & Comms practice at Bird & Bird’s Warsaw office. For over 10 years now, as part of my practice, I have advised clients on all aspects of gaming law, in particular online gambling and betting, social gaming and e-sports. I advise on licensing regimes, regulatory issues, as well as advertising and provision of B2B services to gambling operators.

What is your personal opinion about the European gambling industry and could you make a comparison with the market that you know better and the European situation in terms of gaming and gambling?

Piotr: Unfortunately, Poland is still one of the most restrictive markets in Europe with respect to gambling and doing business by gambling operators in Poland is still pretty difficult, but apparently the changes to the Polish gambling regulations introduced last year were quite beneficial to the licensed betting operators and helped them almost double their turnover in comparison to the previous years. In general running gambling business, even in the EU, is very difficult as legal regulations differ significantly from country to country, some are very restrictive, others pretty liberal, and it is one of probably very few industry sectors left in the EU that are still completely unharmonised and where it seems the fundamental freedoms on which the EU is based do not really apply. Gambling industry has also to struggle all the time with negative perception by many governments and sometimes also negative image in the society. Generally gambling is still often perceived as something a little doggy and causing a lot of harm to the society despite all the efforts of the industry towards fraud protection, fighting gambling addiction and other important initiatives to prove that it is not a different industry than  any other entertainment industries.

In several Eastern European countries there are significant regulatory changes concerning online gambling. What advise would you give for the operators; which are the most attractive markets?

Piotr: Yes, we have seen recently some major changes to the gambling regulations in several Eastern European countries, but unfortunately most of them did not have too much impact on the situation of the private operators. Either they aimed at expanding and strengthening of the state monopoly like in Poland or Hungary or in theory created new opportunities for private operators to apply for new licences, but in practice turned out to be impossible to complete as in the Czech Republic. It seems that only Romania with its relatively liberal regulation in the region sees a major growth of its gambling market. The next big thing in Europe will most probably be Sweden which after years of strict monopoly will open soon to private operators. Taking into account that already a big number of companies in gambling industry are in fact of Nordic origin, the opening of the Swedish market will create enormous opportunities.

I would like to ask you to speak about the recent updates of the Polish gambling market. What can be expected in 2018 in terms of regulations, changes in this particular industry in Poland?

Piotr: Unfortunately, I’m afraid, there no major changes with respect to gambling regulations in Poland that we can expect in 2018. In my view any major future changes will depend on how successful the new online casino operations of the state monopoly will be, but there are delays with the launch of it, so it will take still some time to see how they are doing. If it is successful, the Polish government will have no incentive to liberalise the regulations and to let the private operators compete with the monopoly. But if it is a failure, they may reconsider whether it is not better to allow private operators to operate more freely and generate revenue for the state from the taxes. The only area where there may potentially be some changes in the foreseeable future is lowering slightly the taxes on gambling in Poland as they are currently very steep and one of the reasons many operators do not even try to apply for a licence here. Such change would certainly be welcome by the industry and could generate some more action on the market.

To hear more about the subject and meet Piotr 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:

Piotr is one of the leading Intellectual Property, patent and IP litigation lawyers in Poland.

Piotr advises on all aspects of gaming law, in particular online gambling and social gaming. His expertise covers licensing regimes, regulatory issues as well as advertising and provision of services such as electronic payments in relation to gambling products.

In 2011, as the Polish expert he participated in the research conducted by Cambridge Health Alliance together with Harvard Medical School and Harvard Law School, investigating associations between European gambling regulations and the actual gambling behavior of players.

In 2011, he represented the two largest European online gambling industry organisations in complaint proceedings against Poland to the European Commission for violation of the EU law by Polish gambling regulations, which resulted in the European Commission launching proceedings concerning violation of the EU law by Poland at the end of 2013 which terminated only in January 2016 after a number changes to the Polish gambling regulations were introduced.

He is a legal expert of the Polish Chamber of Commerce


Source: European Gaming Media and Events

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SLS Las Vegas to launch sports betting tournament during football season

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SLS Las Vegas to launch sports betting tournament during football seasonReading Time: 1 minute

SLS Las Vegas Hotel & Casino will launch a special sports betting tournament during the upcoming football season. The resort will offer fantasy drafts, food and beverage specials, viewing parties and more during the matches. Starting Thursday, 6th September, whether watching pro football Thursdays, Sundays and Mondays or college football Fridays and Saturdays, Umami patrons can enjoy a variety of game day specials.  The Sayers Club will also host viewing parties Saturdays and Sundays throughout the season on six big-screen televisions.

Guests aged 21 and up are invited to stop by the state-of-the-art William Hill Sports Book to place bets on their favourite teams. Sports book patrons have access to innovative wagering technology, including William Hill’s market-leading mobile betting platform available on iPhone, iPad and Android devices. Additionally, the sports book features an expansive HD video wall for viewing of sporting events and betting odds, as well as fully automated InPlay wagering.

 

Source: focusgn.com


Source: European Gaming Media Latest News

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Authentic Games obtains UK gambling license

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Authentic Games obtains UK gambling licenseReading Time: 1 minute

Authentic Games, the Malta-based Live casino specialist has obtained a service provider license from UK Gambling Commission. The license will allow it to provide its whole range of games and products to UK operators and players.

The company’s product range includes the flagship Authentic Roulette product, which live streams from roulette tables located on the floors of premium casino resorts in Malta, USA, Romania, Georgia, Italy and Denmark.

Authentic Gaming recently opened a new Arena studio in Malta, and has a client list that includes Leo Vegas, Mr Green, and all Kindred Group brands including Unibet.

The studio contains six Live Auto Roulette tables with four different game formats: Classic Roulette, Speed Roulette, VIP Roulette and a never-seen-before variant, Blaze Roulette.

Blaze Roulette is set against a game show backdrop. The game table is lit with LED lights, and a giant video wall that completes the showbiz theme. Blaze is the only “game show” style Live Roulette game dedicated to roulette players.

Jonas Delin, CEO of Authentic Gaming, said in a statement Monday: “The UK is a key market for us as we continue to expand into regulated jurisdictions around the world. With nearly half of our client base holding a UKGC licence, we are eager to bring our games to market.”

 

Source: reviewed-casinos.com


Source: European Gaming Media Latest News

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Crown Resorts’ profits suffer massive dip

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Crown Resorts’ profits suffer massive dipReading Time: 1 minute

The company has reported its full-year results, which fell to US$558.9 million.

Crown Resorts, one of the biggest gaming and entertainment groups in Australia, reported a steep fall in its profits. According to the latest financial results, the company’s profits have decreased by 70 per cent to US$558.9 million. This is significant because the company sold its facilities and business ventures in Macau last year.

This has been a problem year for Crown Resorts. Its board member James Packer left the company and 19 of its executives were arrested in China. However, not everything is lost. Despite the 70 per cent dip in net profit, there is a 12.7 per cent increase in normalised profit to US$385.6 million. It also registered a 5.4 per cent increase in operating revenue to US$3.4 billion.

John Alexander, Executive Chairman of Crown: “Crown’s full-year result reflects a solid performance from our Melbourne operation and continued subdued trading in Perth. VIP program play turnover in Australia of US$51.5 billion (up 54.5 per cent) was a pleasing outcome, particularly at Crown Melbourne (up 73.9 per cent), given the difficult trading conditions.”


Source: European Gaming Media Latest News

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