The Czech Republic based Fortuna Entertainment Group is one of the largest sports betting operations in Central Europe. While the majority of their business comes from Czech Republic, they are also present in Poland and Slovakia. In a recent announcement, the group said they will soon be listed on the major exchanges in Prague, Warsaw, and Bratislava.
The group has not revealed how many shares they are offering, only that the current owner Penta will maintain a majority hold.
Fortuna currently offers internet betting in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Both countries are quite new to online sports betting and online gambling in general. Czech gambling laws made internet betting legal in 2009, while internet gambling in Slovakia became legal a few years earlier, in 2007.
Fortuna does not run an online sportsbook in Poland at the moment, due to the country’s restrictive gambling laws. There are signs, however, that these laws are beginning to slacken, and Fortuna stands poised to enter the Polish sports betting market should it liberalize.
While online gambling in the Czech Republic is fully legal, strict regulations require new registrants at Fortuna’s online sportsbook to visit one of their high street betting shops in person to present identification and undergo an age check. Once a new player’s account is active, however, they can do all their betting online.
Foreign competition is strong. Fortuna’s chief financial officer Michal Vepřek estimates that local Czech operators control only half of the country’s internet sports betting industry. Despite this, the group saw 12 percent growth over last year, and they expect this momentum to carry them far into the future.