The Legal Gaming in Europe Summit is always a must-attend event when you’re doing the entire conference-hopping circuit. If you’re looking for a place to understand the current legal climate in the European gaming industry, this is the place to be. The only place to be.
Recently, the 7th Legal Gaming in Europe Summit was held and true to its reputation, it covered a bunch of issues regarding the current legal standing of the industry in Europe and future prognostications on where the industry is going to be in the future.
Some important topics were broached during the conference dealt with the European market in general and how things have plateaued and that a lot of operators are looking into other markets, particularly Asia and Latin America.
George Mangion of GMM Business Solutions told CalvinAyre.com’s Becky Liggero that the issue for a lot of companies isn’t so much about waiting for a eureka moment in Europe but in being cognizant of the growing potential of the Asian market and taking advantage of it.
“In Europe, we are in a plateau,” Mangion told Becky. “This is the time where one is counting their fortunes and looking for opportunities. This is the time where pioneers get off their seats and go younger and Asia could very well be the place for pioneers.”
Talks of a harmonization in the EU was also broached during the conference; yet while they have gone on for a while now, nothing has been happening. It seems that the more people talk about it, the less something actually happens. Rhetoric only goes as far as people have something to discuss, but once the talking stops, actions have come few and far in between.
Germany, though, appears to be a different subject considering that it’s still a relatively neophyte market. Whereas the current gambling climate in the country reigns of confusion – two types of license are being issued by two separate entities – the hope is that the more constricting Race Betting and Lotteries Act and the friendlier Schleswig-Holstein licenses can be merged to not only end the conflict between the two but also serve as a measure for which one regulatory body is created that provides rules that allow more freedom for prospective operators to conduct their respective business in the country. That’s the hope, but it doesn’t mean that’s what you’re going to expect to come out of the political discussions dealing with this issue. As Wulf Hambach of Hambach & Hambach told Becky, “It’s hard to stay,” referring to any potential resolution on the issue. “There are a lot of talks with politicians behind close doors; what’s the outcome? As always in Germany, it’s a big surprise.”
And then there was discussions about the Latin American market, a place that some speakers believe the industry, as a whole, is sleeping on. With so much focus being placed on the burgeoning Asian market, Antonio Lazcano of Lazcano Samano believes that operators should also take a closer look at the potential of the Latin American market. “I understand the logic that says the Asian market will be the most mature in terms of commercial [success] because Asian people are used to playing,” he told Becky. “It’s a similar case with the Latin American [market], but it’s a different culture I think it is important to start making some plans because it’s going to be a totally different business.”