Betsson’s Betsafe to Pull Out of Danish Market
by Glenn Baird - January 8, 2020
An 8% tax hike that will come into effect next January has seen one of Scandinavia’s biggest brands withdraw from the Danish market.
Yesterday, a message was left on the Betsafe.dk homepage:
“Unfortunately we have to announce that Betsafe.dk is closed and that you will therefore no longer be able to play on our site. This came into effect from 6/1/2020 , and it is therefore no longer possible to log in to Betsafe.dk.”
The message goes on to say:
“Please note that you can continue to play on our other sites which also offer a large selection of Casino and Sport respectively at casino.dk or nordicbet.dk.”
Pontus Lindwall, CEO of Betsafe’s mother company, Betsson, had this to say on the matter:
“We have operated several brands in Denmark but with the announced tax increase we have decided to withdraw a brand,”
Lindwall makes it clear that it is just one of the Betsson brands that will be leaving Denmark and goes on to say that anyone with funds in a Betsafe account will be able remove them but that a transfer of funds to their other companies will not happen automatically.
A link remains on the Betsafe.dk homepage to both a phone number, an email address and a live chat option for anyone who wishes to discuss their account.
Danish Tax Reforms
The move by the Danish government to increase taxes by a hefty 8% has been met with criticism. Lindwall had this to say on the matter:
“They obviously raise taxes to increase revenue to the Treasury, but at the same time accept that turnover will be adversely affected by the increased charges.” She went on to state that the rise in taxes were an “offensive act” in respect to gaming policy.
One of the fears is that these changes could lead to higher charges for customers, less competitive games and ultimately a steady decline in the number of Danish punters accessing online gambling within their own country.
It is hoped that the tax hike will bring in, up to 23 million dollars’ worth of revenue. It is also likely that amount spent on advertising will decrease in the country, with reports last year that TV and radio gambling advertising in Denmark had it record highs in 2019. This reduction in turnover could mean that companies can quite simply no longer afford to spend the money they have been on advertising.
Self Exclusion and Advertising
Tackling this apparent swell in advertising is a growing concern in the country as is the need to address issues such as self-exclusion, something that was made evident a few days ago with the publication of the responsible gambling guide that the Danish Gaming Authority launched a few days ago.
It states that all licence holder’s website or user interface and land-based property’s point of sale must:
State that it is not allowed for persons under the age of 18 to participate in the games.
Inform about responsible gambling and the potential harmful effects of gambling, and the information must be prepared in collaboration with a treatment centre for compulsive gambling.
Provide information about and contact addresses of Danish treatment centres for compulsive gambling.