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Main features of the online gaming industry operating in the EU

In 2008, the annual revenues generated by the gambling service sector, measured on the basis of Gross Gaming Revenues (GGR) (i.e. stakes less prizes but including bonuses), were estimated to be € 75,9 bn (EU 2712), showing the economic significance of the sector. On-line gambling services accounted for annual revenues in excess of € 6.16 bn, 7.5% of the overall gambling market. This on-line market is the fastest growing segment and in 2008 it was expected to double in size in five years13.

The transmission channels for on-line gambling services can be divided into three main categories, namely internet, mobile applications and IPTV:

 transmission_channels

Figure 1. Projected increase in three main categories of remote gambling15

National levels of demand for these on-line services vary across the Union depending on a number of factors. In that respect it is not surprising to see that the UK is the largest market at the current time given that its e-commerce market is twice as large as the average for the Member States16 It is however interesting to note that some of the largest markets in 2008 were Member States characterised by the restrictive regulatory model, i.e. France, Germany, Italy and Sweden.

 markets-EU

Figure 2. Five largest national on-line gambling markets in the EU in 2008 (GGR in bn €)17

Currently internet is the most significant channel but very high rates of growth are expected through the roll out of new mobile applications. Five major categories of on-line gambling services are offered (see Figure 3).

 GGR

Figure 3. Breakdown of the Gross Gambling Revenues by type of on-line gambling service (EU-27)18

A wide range of stakeholders have an interest in, or are affected by, the provision or promotion of on-line gambling services. These include citizens, operators, media, intermediaries, sport events organisers, clubs and associations, good causes and other beneficiaries.

As regards citizens, the market for gambling (online and offline) is one of the 50 markets covered in the annual Consumer Market Monitoring Survey. The market is rated 29th out of 50 included markets. The consumer ranking for “comparability” is relatively high, the rating for “trust” is average and the rating for “experienced problems” is much lower than the average. The overall rating for whether the product lived up to what the consumer expected is relatively low but this is perhaps to be expected given the nature of the product.

12 H2 Gambling Capital (2008 figures).

13 EGBA and H2 Gambling Capital, 2009

14 Internet Protocol Television.

15 SICL study, page 1407

16 See Report on retail Market monitoring, 5 July 2010 – COM(2010) 355.

17 H2 Gambling Capital.

18 H2 Gambling Capital.

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