French Regulator Warns Of Marketing Risks Ahead Of Busy Sports Year

January 10, 2024
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France’s national gambling regulator has partially rejected the advertising strategy of online poker firm Winamax and attached “demanding” requirements to several other operator’s plans.
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France’s national gambling regulator has partially rejected the advertising strategy of online poker firm Winamax and attached “demanding” requirements to several other operator’s plans.

The National Gaming Authority (ANJ) issued decisions to all 16 licenced online operators and two exclusive rights holders after the annual examination of their promotional strategies.

France-licensed online gambling companies are required to gain annual approval from the regulator for their advertising plans for the coming year.

Winimax’s promotional strategy was partially rejected regarding its approach to bonuses and the “considerable volume” of financial rewards for players was deemed to pose a significant risk of intensifying gambling and exacerbating risk for vulnerable players.

The poker operator must submit a new request for approval dedicated to its promotional offers involving financial compensation by February 15, 2024.

More broadly, gambling stakeholders were warned by the ANJ to be vigilant when it comes to high levels of investment in advertising, concentrating campaigns between May and July, putting large amounts of money aside in the form of financial incentives to gain and retain players, and the use of sports sponsorships. 

An analysis of the strategies by the ANJ revealed that most operators intend to continue with the same strategy as the previous year, with a focus on retaining players during the upcoming UEFA European Football Championship and Olympic games in Paris. 

Overall spending on promotional activity will increase by 14 percent to €670m in 2024, with 30 percent of investment targeted between May and July. Bonuses and other financial rewards constitute 59 percent of this spend. Five of the operators account for 82 percent of the investment. 

Around half of the investment (46 percent) will be spent on digital channels, with the other major spending occurring on TV (26 percent) and sports sponsorship (15 percent).

Operators are aiming to attract 4.9m new players in 2024, an increase of 9 percent compared with 2023.

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