The Boot Fits: New Data Indicates Italy is Ready to Embrace the Future of iGamingPublished March 13, 2017 by Lee R
A strong 2016 has demonstrated the benefits of equitable regulation to the Italian government.
Italy’s iGaming market is growing rapidly, as indicated by recently released official data published by the country’s Ministry of Finance.
Italy's Gross Gaming Revenue GGR for 2016 topped out at €19.16 bn, constituting an increase of € 11.4% over 2015.
The highest generator among contributing individual gaming sectors was video lotteries and AWP’s, at 54.7% of total take, with a total contribution for the sector of €10.4 bn, representing a year-on-year increase of 12.7%. AWPs generated € 7.4 bn with an increase of 12.7%, while video lotteries generated € 2.7 bn with an increase of 3.9%.
Interesting Sportsbetting Results
The sportsbetting sector contributed across two verticals: online and land-based channels contributed €925.7 million for a year-on-year increase of 20.6%, with bets on virtual events reaching €191.4 million for an increase of 6.27%.
Casino and Poker
Online casino and poker games contributed total GGR of € 579.7 million for a year-on-year increase of 20.8%.
On the Horizon
As for 2017, the Italian market appears to be gaining momentum.
Monthly figures from Italy’s gaming news agency Agimeg.it show online sports betting turnover as top performer with €432m taken in February, while land-based wagers were second at €394m for a combined total of €828m that was 30% higher than February 2016 and 7% higher than January’s €775m.
Meanwhile, the government’s take share of 2016 GGR turned out to be €10.1b, a jump of almost 25% year-on-year.
Certain unappealing taxes proposed for individual sectors such as VLT and AWP are considered increasingly less likely to pass as the Italian government comes to recognize the importance, of mid- and long-term benefits that operator-friendly regulation provides.
Falling in Line
The fact is that conditions that encourage operator entry create the most robust markets, and a system of sustainable benefits for the governments that legislate and regulate them, as evinced by regulation models across national jurisdictions to date.
Implementation Timeline Next
In Italy, the next order of business for implementation appears to be specifying the timing for the application procedure for operators and the awarding of individual gaming licenses.
Long considered one of the most constricted iGaming markets in Europe, Italy looks poised to enter a new era welcoming operators and stabilising the continuity of government benefits from iGaming regulation. The next goal is ensuring that those benefits effectively convert to productive social programming.