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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

BREXIT(British Exit From European Union) Impact On European Online Gambling Business

The news that  Britain voted  to leave  the EU (BREXIT) certainly has many people, businesses  and organizations scrambling to determine the impact of the vote  on themselves, organizations and their businesses. One of the business sectors  that is especially interested in the impact is the online "gambling" industry. Great Britain is somewhat unique on a worldwide scale because they have embraced online gambling as a legal activity under the  UK Gambling Act of 2005.  In 2015 The online gambling industry generated 3 billion pounds for the UK(including Scotland and Ireland)! Clearly this amount is non-trivial?

 Great Britain's online gambling business sector  is  somewhat complicated as many online gambling business have moved their business to British ("protectorate") jurisdiction such as Alderney, GibraltarMalta and Island Of Man to avoid the standard UK business taxation regime.  These "protectorates"  are subject to British law and protection. However, their tax structures differ and their unique political status provides business in these jurisdictions to access markets they may not be able to access if they where domiciled in the UK itself.

There is currently much chatter about what happens to these "offshore" gambling business under BREXIT  and are they better off then their English counterparts(especially the sportsbook operators)?  One of the overriding points of interest is the unique status of these "Protectorates" in relationship to European EU law as opposed to UK law.   The protectorates are considered part of the EU and therefore can access Euro markets proving they adhere to EU gaming  laws of a specific country. 

Another interesting situation has been created as Northern Ireland and Scotland are actually independent countries under and part of "Great Britain". It appears they want to stay in the EU. This could also create a situation where these countries in-fact chose to host online gambling for themselves for the purpose of raising tax revenue. If they side with the EU there may be an opportunity for them to behave is a way similar to Alderney, Malta, Gibraltar and Isle Of Man. 

It is clear that the British protectorates(Alderney, Gibraltar, Malta and Isle of Man ) may come out of BREXIT as the ultimate winners in the battle for the hearts minds and wallets of European citizens if the EU clearly acknowledges these principalities as "member" states.

Kevin Flood is the CEO of Gameinlane, Inc. Gameinlane  has developed, launched and operated Internet gambling sites in Europe,  social casino,   freemium and subscription gaming in the US.   The company engages with land based casino  operators, online gambling operators, social casino operator and game developers to assist them in determining their strategy and implementation  of game content in an online context.   Kevin has worked for and with US land based casino operators helping them evaluate social casino and iGaming platforms for the purpose of joint ventures and acquisitions in addition to launching online gambling operations in Europe. Gameinlane is also startup "friendly" understanding the unique value new gaming companies bring to the marketplace.  Kevin frequently speaks at gaming conferences around the world providing him with a unique perspective on this very interesting business sector. Kevin can be reached at kflood@gameinlane.com  and or twitter  at @kflow1776.


Kevin Flood said...

The follow on commentary from The Euro Zone and the UK has been that the recent vote has spawned a bit of political chaos in the UK. Apparently, Gibraltar is the crown jewel in the pantheon of British "protectorate" territories that my in-fact be gobbled up by the EU.

Kevin Flood said...

Giulio Coraggio has summarized the impact of BREXIT in a concise manager indicting precisely what European countries and "territories" will have to do to adopt to BREXIT.


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