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Sweden in Discussions for B2B Licencing Agreements

While a deal is yet to be finalised, Sweden’s online gambling regulator, Spelinspektionen, is in negotiations to agree a B2B deal for its market.

The proposed licencing agreement is earmarked to go ahead from March 2023, with the country’s government earlier this year submitting a number of bids, though this is as yet to be fully approved.

It would see the country’s online gambling industry welcome outside software providers to seal deals with firms which already operate in the country so that it can offer more choices to customers of their native brands.

Documentation is still being prepared, though there is optimism that a conclusion can be reached that satisfies all parties.

The purpose of the licence requirement for gaming software is to discourage illegal gambling.
Unlicensed game operators must not be able to use suppliers who manufacture, provide, install and/or change game software for game operators who have a licence in Sweden.
The requirement for permission affects both the actors who manufacture, provide, install and/or change game software as well as the operators who provide online games.
However, the technical requirements for the game as well as the requirements for game consumers will still lie with the operator that provides the game.

Spelinspektionen official statement

Discussions around an initial fee for a B2B application have been ballparked at SEK 120,000 - roughly EUR 11,000, though this is yet to be fully set in stone. It is estimated that there will be 70 principal applications from software providers globally, all seeking to enter the ambitious and fast-growing online gambling market in Sweden.

A government statement reveals: “Because there is already an established land game software development, and taking into account the proposed levels of fees, the proposals are judged to have only a marginal impact on conditions of competition.”

Swedish Market One to Watch?

Sweden has a burgeoning reputation in the wider online gambling industry, with heavyweight operator group Kindred and its brands Unibet and 32 Red prominent in the European iGaming landscape.

In addition to this, it also plays home to the headquarters of premium software suppliers NetEnt and Evolution Gaming, both of which now fall under one umbrella - Evolution, following the latter’s EUR 2.18 billion acquisition of the former in December 2020.

The country itself has long been at the forefront of online gambling innovation for over two decades and continues to make an impact in the iGaming industry.

Internally, official providers in the country over the last few years, at least the smaller ones, have been exposed to fierce competition from unlicenced suppliers, which can be argued has prompted talks of this new bill.

As well as a proposed fee for software providers, it was also pitched that an increase for operators in the country for annual renewal should be doubled from SEK 300,000 to SEK 600,000 (EUR 27500 - EUR 55000).

There can be no doubt that the Swedish market is one to watch over the next few years, certainly so if the new B2B bill comes to fruition.

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