The Alderney Gambling Control Commission (AGCC) has suspended the B2B license of Netherlands-based 3D slots developer Sheriff Gaming. In May, the AGCC announced it had “commenced a special investigation” of spectacular allegations that individuals connected to Sheriff’s parent company Bubble Group NV were involved in a continent-wide drug dealing, money laundering and illegal gambling operation. This spring’s investigation led to Dutch authorities confiscating bank accounts, properties and vehicles across Europe.
On Tuesday, the AGCC announced it had issued a notice for a regulatory hearing on the brouhaha surrounding Bubble/Sheriff, which will be held in London on October 29. In the meantime, the AGCC has suspended Sheriff’s Category 2 Associate certificate, which allowed Sheriff to serve in a B2B capacity with companies including Bet365, BetClic, Betsson, Gala Coral, Microgaming, Unibet and many others. These activities must now cease pending the results of October’s hearing. At the time the allegations surfaced, Sheriff/Bubble issued a statement questioning whether any links could be made between the companies and the individuals’ alleged activities, while offering up the hope that Sheriff’s “strong reputation” would allow customers to give them the benefit of the doubt.
Seems like it’s been a harsh day for all things Dutch, so let’s end on a positive note. Austria’s Novomatic Group has announced that its Dutch subsidiary Novo Gaming Netherlands has acquired Eurocoin Gaming, Holland’s sole supplier of Bell-Fruit video- and reel-based gaming machines (and a Sheriff Gaming client, for what it’s worth). Novomatic CTO Thomas Graf touted Eurocoin’s “up to 80%” share of the nation’s pub market and the “huge historical library of successful games” that can be launched in the Netherlands’ future regulated online gambling market.