Overall Swedish GGR Drops While Online GGR RisesPublished June 7, 2020 by Brett C
In the first quarter of 2020, licensed gambling operators in Sweden reported GGR of 5.90 billion Swedish kronor, the equivalent of $613.3 million/€559/£496.7 million. This figure is 1.4% lower than the equivalent period in 2019.
Notable Decline in Quarterly Gambling Revenue in Sweden
News from the Swedish gambling industry indicates that GGR (Gross Gambling Revenue) for Q1 2020 is 1.4% lower than Q1 2019. The data was collated by the regulatory authorities, including the Swedish Tax Agency (STA), and the official gambling regulator Spelinspektionen. The revenues generated by Swedish gambling companies represent the lowest figures for any quarter since opening the regulated market in Sweden on January 1, 2019.
What is notable about the GGR in Sweden is that online gambling revenues actually increased, but GGR from land-based operators across Sweden, including those relying on retail sales performance dropped markedly as a result of the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2). The pandemic curtailed footfall traffic at land-based casinos across the country, as people implemented social distancing, and avoided mass gatherings of people at public venues.
5.2% Rise in Online Gaming Revenues in First Quarter
Swedish gambling revenues were largely comprised of online gaming and online betting activity, with these channels contributing 3.66 billion Swedish kronor, for a 5.2% y-o-y increase in revenue generation. Land-based casino revenues operated through Svenska Spel (Casino Cosmopol brand) plunged 16.2% to SEK196 million. There was also a 20.6% drop in revenues from National Lottery Games, largely made up of Svenksa Spel’s Tur division. Other contributors include the gaming machine halls which fall under the purview of Svenksa Spel’s iconic Vegas Brand of products.
A 2.5% decline in non-profit lotteries was reported, with revenues of 817 million Swedish kronor. Figures of 817 million Swedish kronor were generated by non-profit bingo rooms, down 10.3%. Restaurant casinos managed to improve their performance, boosting sales by 8.3% up to 52 million Swedish kronor. Unlicensed gambling operators are estimated to have generated figures of 606 million – 715 million Swedish kronor during Q1 2020, according to the official regulatory body.
More Players Self-Excluding from Gambling Activity
A 5% uptick in self exclusion (y-o-y) was reported with 50,500 people opting for this through March 31, 2020. Beginning in May 2020, some 51,700 people had taken advantage of self-exclusion options. Temporary restrictions on gambling activity have been put in place by the Minister for Social Security, Mr Ardalan Shekarabi. There will be exemptions for the 5,000 Swedish kronor deposit limits on sports betting and horse racing. Protestations to the contrary were issued from Branscheförenigen för Onlinespel (BOS) which believes that partially government-owned betting companies would benefit at the expense of private enterprise.