France’s online gamblers aren’t a particular curious bunch, according to a study conducted by ARJEL, the country’s gambling regulator. Using data compiled between Jan. 1 and May 31 of this year, ARJEL found that nearly three-quarters of bettors stuck to a single form of gambling when they ventured online.
Poker was the most popular vertical, with 37.68% of the survey’s respondents reporting the card game as the only wagering they engaged in over the interwebz. The runner-up in the exclusive gambling activity sweepstakes was sports betting, which was enjoyed by 19.61% of respondents. Horserace bettors weren’t far behind with 17.15%.
Of those who dared to attempt more than one form of online betting activity, the sports and horserace betting combo attracted 10.28% of respondents, followed by sports betting and poker at 7.71%, while horse wagering and poker was significantly back at 1.56%. A mere 6% of respondents reported having participated in three or more forms of online gambling. Nearly 85% of French online gamblers reported having just one account with a .fr site, 11% reported using two separate accounts and an adventurous 4% owned up to enjoying a ménage à trios with their accounts.
While the French online market has enjoyed its fair share of criticism from operators and players alike, ARJEL has chosen to take a ‘but other jurisdictions are worse’ attitude. The regulator recently trumpeted the fact that French-licensed operators reported €798m in gross gaming revenue in 2012, a 4% improvement over 2011. That beat out Italy’s €749m (+2%) and Spain’s €117m, although the latter country’s regulated market was only open for business for the second half of the year.
Horserace wagering accounted for 33% of the French gambling market’s GGR in 2012, followed in importance by poker cash games (24%), sports betting (17%) poker tournaments (14%) and the catch-all category of lotteries/scratch-cards/bingo (12%). In Italy, poker cash games earned top billing with 28% of GGR, followed by sports betting (22%) a tie between tournament poker and casino products (20% apiece), lotteries et al (8%) and horseracing (2%). In Spain, sports betting ate up nearly half (49%) of GGR, followed by poker cash games (23%), casino (13%), tournament poker (10%), bingo (4%) and horseracing (1%).