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Betsson Secures an iGaming License in Serbia as European Growth Continues

One of the most renowned online casino and sports betting operators on the European continent, Betsson, has recently announced its arrival in the Serbian gambling market. The Swedish iGaming company received its online casino license from the Games of Chance Administration of Serbia. Betsson will commence operations in the new regulated jurisdiction via its brand Rizk. Serbia is the 14th new European jurisdiction Betsson has entered as the company plans to enter more jurisdictions to become the global leader of iGaming.

Two flags with red, blue, and white stripes.

Betsson has entered the Serbian gambling market with online casino brand Rizk.
©Stefan Kostić/Unsplash

This year has been quite fruitful for Betsson as the operator has recorded positive revenue results in the first two quarters of the year. Amidst the rampant growth, the Sweden-based company has also focused on player safety by consistently highlighting the importance of safer and responsible gambling in its marketing plans. These campaigns are expected to run across the European and South American jurisdictions where Betsson is present. There are 22 regulated gambling markets that the Swedish iGaming operator is present in. Betsson’s journey commenced almost 20 years ago when it secured its first gambling license in Malta. The Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) granted its prestigious iGaming license to Betsson in 2004. It took seven years for the Swedish operator to gain its second license. In 2011, Betsson entered the Italian market. A year later, operations expanded to the Baltics and Nordics as the operator secured licenses in Estonia and Denmark. In 2015, the United Kingdom Gambling Commission (UKGC) granted Betsson a license to enter the strict UK market.

That same year, Georgia also welcomed the iGaming operator into its market. The European growth picked up pace in 2016 when Betsson entered four regulated jurisdictions – Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, and Germany. The company received a Spanish gambling permit in 2017 before finally securing a B2C license in its own home country of Sweden two years later. In the pandemic-inflicted year of 2020, Betsson shifted to a different continent as it arrived in Colombia, Argentina (Buenos Aires), and gained a permit in Colorado, United States. Meanwhile, the European expansion continued with a new license secured in Croatia. In the same year, Betsson also entered the African continent with a Kenyan gambling permit. The competitive market of Greece became Betsson’s new destination in 2021, while another African market in Nigeria welcomed the Swedish operator last year. This year, Betsson has made its way into the Canadian market via Ontario and also entered Belgium in July. Serbia has become the latest addition to the long list of jurisdictions.

This year, there have been developments on several fronts. In revenue, the charts are green as positive results have been recorded in the first and second quarters of the year. Regarding sponsorship, the operator struck a deal with Sweden’s A1 Padel Tournament, Swedish Master, becoming the title sponsor for the competition. A similar deal was struck with the Peruvian first-division football league, Liga 1. Finally, under the operational expansion segment, Betsson has received a green light from the Serbian gambling regulator and has entered the Serbian gambling market with its online casino brand Rizk. This move is expected to boost the group’s revenue from the Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia (CEECA) region. Out of the total Q2 2023 revenue, 43 percent came from the CEECA region, signifying its importance to the Swedish operator. Serbia legalized online gambling in 2011 and the segment came under regulation ten years ago. Since then, it has flourished. There are about 21 licensed online gambling operators in Serbia and the Rizk will join them with its mobile app and website.

The President and CEO of Betsson, Pontus Lindwall, was pleased after the Swedish operator received the new Serbian gambling permit.

“I am proud to welcome Serbia as yet another locally regulated market for Betsson. Our vision is to offer the best customer experience possible and through the brand Rizk we are now ready to deliver a best-in-class online casino offering in Serbia.”

Betsson’s impressive performance in the first two quarters

Betsson started 2023 on the front foot and was able to publish a superb financial result in the first quarter of the year. The Swedish online casino and sports gambling operator collected a total revenue of €221.9 million in the first three months of this year. The revenue increase confirmed a massive 30 percent year-on-year (YoY) spike. Another impressive statistic in the quarterly report was that the revenue went up despite a fall in the number of active customers. The costumes decreased by 11 percent, however, the performance of the company did not face rough consequences.

The fine performance of the operator continued in the second quarter of the year. Another significant YoY spike drove revenue in the right direction. After roping in €221.9 million in the first quarter, Betsson reeled in a total quarterly revenue of €236.8 million in Q2 2023. The YoY spike of 27 percent indicated how activity had increased across different continents. Since the total revenue of the second quarter was higher than the first, it set a second successive high quarter record for Betsson. A majority of the revenue came from the European and CEECA jurisdictions.

Betsson’s brand extends its partnership with Italian football club

After acquiring a gambling license in Italy in 2011, Betsson entered another European jurisdiction. An online casino called StarCasino was deployed for customers looking for a unique digital casino. Since then, the brand has pulled in a lot of users. Recently, StarCasino launched its own sportsbook called StarCasino Bet in Italy. After establishing itself properly in the country, the brand signed a partnership deal with Serie A giants, AS Roma.

In a recent announcement, the Sweden-based company has confirmed that the partnership has been renewed for the current season. Categorized as an infotainment site, StarCasino will help Roma gain more visibility on their own channels and inside their home stadium. The brand is expected to produce more special and exclusive content that can be enjoyable for fans to see. After a successful first stint, the contract between the two entities has been renewed.

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Author: James Richardson