There’s some potentially big gambling news leaking out of the North West of Europe, as rumors persist that Playtech and Euro Partners could be about to pull out of the Dutch and Finnish markets. Playtech, the casino software company, and their subsidiary Euro Partners, an affiliate system, have not confirmed or denied these rumors.
Speculation as to the cause of this move has centered on the fact Playtech had an excellent Q3, with total revenue for the quarter up 13% on last year at EUR 90.6 million. As such, many are blaming intolerant Dutch gambling laws for the move, with “grey market” casinos thriving in the bubble between legal and illegal.
Euro Partners would be the first of the two to pull out of the two countries, however, but that would inevitably lead to the unavailability of any Playtech online or mobile casinos operating under the Euro Partners affiliate program. Rumors persist that should Euro Partners go ahead with the pull out, then Playtech would shortly follow them, leaving gamblers stranded.
As such, any Finnish and Dutch gamblers with funds within Playtech casinos are being urged to withdraw their money in the coming months to avoid it becoming frozen within the casinos.
There have been a number of worrying developments in Dutch gambling recently, starting when the government handed out the first fine for an illegally operating online casino to Global Stars, while there are even more problems in the region, as 4 have been arrested after a probe into money laundering using casinos, including Sheriff Gaming head Stijn Flapper.
With the EU starting to crack down on countries whose gambling laws do not correspond to union wide policy, both the Netherlands and Finland could see their regulations coming under further scrutiny in the coming months. Whether any action is taken against them is harder to predict.