Industry Needs 'Adult' To Step In, Says Danske Spil Boss

November 3, 2022
Back
The gambling industry needs tough, clear regulations to keep it in check, as it cannot seem to agree on how to regulate itself, says the CEO of Denmark’s largest operator.

Body

The gambling industry needs tough, clear regulations to keep it in check, as it cannot seem to agree on how to regulate itself, says the CEO of Denmark’s largest operator.

The boss of Danske Spil, the formerly monopoly state-owned operator in Denmark, said that the online gambling market needed a firm hand from the regulator to try and restore its reputation with politicians and the public.

“We need an adult to step in and help do this,” said Karsten Fogh Holanng, speaking at the Scandinavian Gaming Show in Copenhagen on Wednesday (November 2).

“We’ve proven as an industry we’re not able to [agree], so that’s why we need sensible regulation.”

TV gambling advertising remains particularly controversial in Denmark and government officials have suggested they are preparing tough measures.

In August, Jeppe Bruus, the tax minister, said plans were being drawn up for a whistle-to-whistle sports ban, while in September he said he would ban the use of celebrities in gambling ads.

However, the industry hopes that this was mostly tough talk to appease voters. Denmark held a widely anticipated snap election this week that saw the incumbent centre-left coalition narrowly retain power.

“It’s difficult to say” how wedded the Danish government is to these promises, said Morten Ronde, chief executive of local trade association Spillebranchen.

But Holanng still wants tougher rules, although he petitioned regulators to make sure that any new requirements are clear for licence holders.

Specifically he backed the idea of operators being required to share data on their players, in comments that echoed plans for a “single customer view” in the UK or the planned use of the LUGAS database in Germany.

“I think we should push for central controls across the industry,” he said.

Holanng also challenged suppliers to raise standards, which he argued would have a resonating impact across the world.

“I don’t see any partners (suppliers) that I’m working with say: ‘I’m doing things a new way’,” he said.

“Instead [of just making an impact] in my small corner of the market, those that operate on a global scale will have better insights than we do.”

“We all have a responsibility, but suppliers have a huge responsibility” to go beyond regulations, he said.

“Rather than seeing them as compliance requirements, see them as business opportunities,” added Ronde, who nevertheless said he wanted to see much more research on the effectiveness of various industry responsible gambling initiatives.

“I don’t see responsible gambling tools being peer reviewed by scientists. It’s very difficult to find facts and that’s the only thing that works with politicians.”

Taking up this line, Holanng agreed, but said “if the industry pays for a study it will be ignored”, suggesting that Denmark could consider a new levy for research to be paid by gambling operators to an independent body.

Our premium content is available to users of our services.

To view articles, please Log-in to your account, or sign up today for full access:

Opt in to hear about webinars, events, industry and product news

To find out more about Vixio, contact us today
No items found.