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Growth in the Dutch online gambling market has slowed down, indicating a possible plateau, the KSA has reported.

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According to the regulator’s latest monitoring report on online gambling, operators in the Dutch market generated GGR of €1.33bn between August 2022 and July 2023.

The regulator pointed out that this growth is less robust than in previous periods. While GGR increased by 33% from August 2022 to January 2023, it only grew by 8% from January 2023 to August 2023.

In 2022, GGR in the Netherlands’ online gambling market reached €1.08bn.

KSA chairman René Jansen said: “This fifth monitoring report shows that the gaming market continues to grow, even if it is levelling off.

“This means that the market is developing as expected. The continued growth ensures increasing responsibility among providers. 

“The KSA continues to strictly monitor that Dutch players can gamble in a safe market, with sufficient attention to addiction prevention and insight into possible problematic gaming behaviour. Duty of care and addiction prevention are a crucial part of our supervision.”

Fewer active accounts

Fewer active accounts were observed as a key indicator of the market’s status, with 826,000 active accounts in July 2023, down from 859,000 in January 2023.

However, since players can have multiple accounts, the number of accounts doesn’t directly correlate with the number of players.

The KSA estimated that 676,000 Dutch individuals gambled online in the past six months (from February to July 2023), constituting 4.7% of the adult population, with an average of 417,000 Dutch people gambling per month.

Player losses

The report introduced a new method for calculating player losses.

Instead of relying solely on monthly losses during active play, the KSA now calculates the total loss over a more extended period, such as six months, taking into account that players do not play each month. 

This method resulted in an average loss of €170 per month per player between January 2023 and July 2023, compared to €164 per month between August 2022 and January 2023. 

According to the old calculation method, the average monthly loss would have been €320 per player. 

Channelisation rate stable

One of the primary objectives of the Dutch online gambling market’s regulation was to channel players towards legal providers.

The KSA highlighted that 93% of players exclusively used legal websites in July 2023, marking a 1% increase from the previous six months. 

Among new players who entered the market after regulation, 98% exclusively used legal providers.

Young adults

The report noted the participation of young adults in online gambling, with 21% of total accounts in July 2023, down from 184,000 in January. 

Despite the decline, young adults, who make up 9.4% of the total adult population, still had a relatively high number of accounts per player, with average monthly losses per account amounting to €59.

The Central Register for the Exclusion of Gambling (Cruks) saw an increase in registrations, with over 48,000 individuals registered in August and over 50,000 in September. 

Registered players voluntarily exclude themselves from participating in high-risk games of chance with all legal providers in the Netherlands for at least six months.

The report noted a significant shift from television to online promotion due to the ban on untargeted advertising for online gambling introduced on 1 July. 

Television advertisements have been reduced to zero, with only programme sponsorship allowed until 1 July 2024.

Licence update

As of 1 September, the KSA had granted 25 permits, with no restrictions on the number of online gambling licences available.

The latest operator to re-enter the Dutch market is the LeoVegas Group, which recently launched LeoVegas.nl after being granted a five-year gaming licence for casino, live casino, and sports betting. 

LeoVegas Group CEO Gustaf Hagman expressed enthusiasm about the company’s return to the Dutch market.

He said: “I am delighted that we are taking steps into the Dutch market. The combination of a well known brand, our platform, and cutting-edge content will make LeoVegas.nl a contender for the leader’s jersey in the Dutch iGaming market.” 

LeoVegas had previously operated in the Netherlands before market regulation in October 2021 but exited the market due to the lack of a licence, leading to financial challenges for the company in 2022 as it could no longer generate revenue from the country.

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