date 15 September 2021 update Upd: 11 April 2023 reading time 7 min views 369 views

Quick but informative video digest on poker news. We have covered the main news of the industry’s niche for the summer 2021. Check out the iGaming numbers, legislation and regulatory news, and market trends.

Click to watch the video or read the text version below. 

iGaming in Numbers

60% percent of players will use mobile devices for iGaming, predicts TVBET for CasinoBeats.

Do you pay enough attention to your mobile products development? If not, you should, says TVBET CMO Vlad Horianksyi, and we at EvenBet Gaming totally share this point of view. The share of mobile players in the iGaming industry has increased from about 10% in 2017 to 45% in 2020. Experts believe that next year this number will reach 50%, and will come close to 60% by 2025. 

At the same time, in many regions like South Asia or Latin America, this share can be even bigger already, as our own findings show. In some countries, up to 90% of users use mostly or exclusively their smartphones to play. Even in such a conservative niche as online poker.

The Spanish gaming regulator has revealed the data on annual online player spend.

Last year, the median player spent 533 euros on online gaming. 4.1 percent more than a year before. This corresponds to almost 45 euros per month, and the number of players at the same time grew 8.2 percent reaching 1.4 million. 

The most significant rise was observed in the group of players from 46 to 55 years old, 14.1 percent.  Online poker has shown fabulous results with a revenue increase of 35.8 percent year on year, so congratulations to everyone in our vertical! 

Curious fact: out of 5 users playing online in Spain, there’s only one woman. 

In addition to that, in the first quarter of 2021, the GGR in Spain has continued to grow. Gambling companies revenue increased 10.2% year on year and 3.8% in the previous quarter. Nine poker operators accounted for 25 million euro, up 3.1% from the previous year. The only verticals going down in the market are currently bingo and prize draws. 

In France, online poker continues to beat the records.

The data for Q1 show that online poker vertical revenue reached 120 million euros, 23% higher than in 2020, while the number of the active player accounts reached almost a million.

Country was very slowly moving out of the lockdown, yet the online gaming growth didn’t cease, although it has slowed down compared with 2020 final numbers of 64% year-on-year.

Along with some numbers of 2020 revenues, Malta Gaming Authority has shared some data that might represent the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on players’ behaviour.

The number of criminal probity screening checks conducted by MGA has increased by 13.5 percent when compared to 2019. The authority has also undertaken numerous online gaming licensees examinations and took action against 10 adverts and promotions inappropriately exploiting the pandemic issues. 

What’s most important, the number of requests for assistance received by the Player Support Unit has increased by 58% last year, to more than 5.5 thousand. The reason is obvious: people are playing online more, and their behavior gets more risky as the negative impact of the restrictions and self-isolation increases. Yet, the growth is still a bit shocking.

Trends and Launches

The first poker operator is licensed in Ukraine.

Vbet became the official pioneer in the regulated Ukrainian online poker market on the last day of May 2021. Operator is using BetConstruct software platform; the developer and vendor has also obtained an online casino licence in this rapidly growing market.

In July, the operator also announced a partnership with the Ukrainian Premier League for three upcoming football seasons and the Ukrainian Super Cup in September.

PokerStars returns to Switzerland.

Global poker giant signed a deal with Swiss StadtCasino Baden Group, operating online as Casino777. Two years ago, the company had to leave the market as a result of the new Federal Act on Money Games. Now casino users will be able to participate in the global poker tournaments organised by PokerStars. Transactions will be held by Casino777 in compliance with the Swiss regulation.

Legislation and Regulatory News

Connecticut is introducing online gaming and sports betting regulation.

Another US state has legalised the online gambling industry. New bill signed by the governor Ned Lamont allows two tribes – Mohegan and Mashantucket Pequot – and the Connecticut Lottery Corp. to offer online gaming and sports wagering.

Moving forward with regulation, yet limited, is undoubtedly good news. Welcome new legal online players and bettors!

UK Gambling Commission increases licensing fees for the operators.

From the 1st of October 2021, online operators will have to pay 55% more for an annual operating licence in the country, while land-based casinos will meet only 15% increase from 6th of April 2022 due to the impact of COVID-19 closures. Application fees will become 60% more expensive. The licencing fees were last revised in 2017.

In the Indian state Tamil Nadu, the online gambling ban is partially lifted.

In the beginning of August, Madras High court struck down the bill banning online games of skill such as rummy and poker in the state. Tamil Nadu was one of the few states in the country that restricted not only games of chance online, but also games of skill if played for money. Promoters breaking the law could get up to two years in prison. The High Court has decided that it is an excessive measure and proposed that the Tamil Nadu government create a new legislation framework.

Currently, games of skill are extremely popular in India. Top played games include daily fantasy sports, and several card games: rummy, poker and call break. In almost all states, playing games of skill for money isn’t considered gambling and is allowed.

Yes, the Tamil Nadu government is planning to pass a new law to ban online rummy and poker again, with some amendments to make it accord with the Indian Constitution. But at least for a while, online poker is legal again there.

If you’re interested in the online poker market in India, pay attention to a short video interview with EvenBet Gaming CEO Dmitry Starostenkov and Jay Sayta, online gaming expert and G2G news hub founder.

Released in the first days of August, this discussion covers the actual state of online poker in the country and predicts its future taking into account the current trends of the market development.

Victoria Sopko

Article by Victoria

Victoria Sopko

Head of PR at EvenBet Gaming