Italy plan 100+ new licenses

Business News

After a number of delays and holdups, Italy has finally released an invitation for interested operators to apply for online gambling licenses, which would allow them to offer their services to players residing in the country. The call was released on the Official Journal of the European Union, outlining all relevant details for those wanting to apply.

The Italian government plans on issuing 120 new gambling licenses, which should significantly boost the country’s budget right off the bat. Namely, operators applying for the license will need to pay a one-time fee of €200,000, so if the target is hit, there will be extra €24 million rolling in by March 19, which is the final day for the submission of requests.

Interested applicants are able to submit requests for licenses covering all types of gambling covered by the Italian law, from slots and card games to sports betting, bingo, and several other gaming activities.

Once the application process is completed, there will be a one-month gap before licenses are actually issued to winning applicants. This will happen on April 19, when all bids will be opened and reviewed, awarding winners with concessions that will be valid for the duration of almost five years, until December 31, 2018.

It is expected that operators already present in the Italian market will be among the first ones to submit for licenses to establish their position in the country. However, several big companies that kept themselves outside so far have expressed their interest as well.

French Winamax is one of the most likely prospects in this category, as the company has already announced its plans to enter Italy back in 2017, hiring Italian-speaking personnel. The company, which kept to its native France in the past, will probably be looking to expand to other regulated markets in Europe in the near future as well.

The other two likely prospects that will look to gain entry are Pinnacle and Marathonbet, two well-established names in the sports betting niche.