Supreme Administrative Court of Appeal approves with Betsson
Betsson’s betting shop on Götgatan could be reopened
The Administrative Court rules that forced the store to close December 22, 2009 after 1.5 years of operation, with the threat of a fine of 2.5 million, may be reviewed in the Supreme Administrative Court. The Supreme Administrative Court has suspended the Administrative Court ruling of December 7.
Betsson started the shop as a principle of action because they believe that the Swedish gaming law violates EU law. The Court has previously ruled that a Member State which actively encourages participation in state games can not shut out the private gaming company with reference to public health.
The last word is not to been said
The last word has not been said in Betsson’s showdown against the Swedish gaming monopoly. In anticipation of the government’s conduct, they can, if they want to, open up the shop again.
Now the gaming monopoly is already eroded, as nations such as Malta, Gibraltar and the UK allows private companies to conduct gaming and wagering online. With a license from one of those nations Betsson has the right, under the competition laws in the EU, to engage in gambling and casinos on the web.
Betsson’s challenge is thus the right to promote organized games abroad, in this case, Betsson’s online games that are arranged in Malta.
The store will propably be reopened
Betsson CEO (Betsson Malta Ltd.) Magnus Silfverberg is happy about the decision, saying that Betsson is likely to open the shop in anticipation of the government’s position. Ultimately, he believes that private operators will become country based in Sweden. He thinks that a company like Betsson that has recently been elected as the world’s most responsible gaming site, in competition with many well-known gambling establishments, are as entitled to conduct gaming as others.
He does not believe that states ultimately will be able to refer to public health as a reason to put a monopoly on the entire operation.
– We have shown that self-regulation works. The fact that we ultimately have to account for our business to our shareholders does not automatically mean that we would be less able to conduct our business in a serious and responsible manner.
Customers are primarily from the Nordic countries and Europe. Betsson AB is listed on OMX Nordic Exchange in Stockholm, Mid Cap (BETS).