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The DSWV has called on the German authorities to rethink its regulatory regime with the market currently failing on its channelisation goals.

The German online sports betting market saw a 5.4% decline in recorded revenue to €7.72bn in 2023, according to figures quoted by the country’s sports betting association DSWV.

The body argued this is being driven by a migration of players to the illegal market. It said many legal operators have been limited by the current regulation, meaning they are unable to effectively compete with the unlicensed segment.

DSWV statistics show a decline in the licensed segment

Black market operators have attained a “significant market share in Germany” argued the association.

As proof, it highlighted reports such as the November Schnabl study by the DSWV and its iGaming equivalent the DOCV.

These show approximately half of the time spent gambling by German players is spent on illegal sites.

Therefore, the DSWV called for a “reorientation of the current regulatory policy” to strengthen the legal market at the expense of the unlicensed segment.

DSWV calls for end of advertising ban

The main measure advocated for by the body was for a rolling back on the advertising ban, which was included in the original 2021 Interstate Treaty on Gambling that created the legal market.

“No company can survive if it is not allowed to advertise, and this must remain the case for sports betting providers,” said DSWV president Mathias Dahms.

“Otherwise, players are left with the black market, where there are no protective measures and controls.”

The DSWV said the upcoming UEFA European Football Championship will mean a rise in customer acquisition for both licensed and unlicensed operators.

As such, an advertising ban will make it difficult for consumers to tell the difference between them, leading to many players betting on illegal sites.

The association also called for a new study into problem gambling, carried out by either the GGL or the Federal Ministry of Health, in addition to the regular survey.

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