The secret to Malta’s magnetic effect on online gaming leaders
Malta was once a peaceful Mediterranean island with beautiful beaches, breathtaking sunsets, and a rich history. It remains so, but it is now a highly respected iGaming hub that has seen a phenomenal rise in the last two decades, attracting an increasing number of iGaming leaders to set up their company or engage in the event. But we should all be asking how and why Malta became the industry’s iGaming hub and why it continues to grow and shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon.
The rise and dominance of the iGaming industry
Everything changed for Malta two decades ago when the MGA (Malta Gaming Authority) was established in 2001. Then in 2004, Malta became the first EU member state to implement regulations governing remote gambling. An MGA-accredited license is considered the “gold standard” for any existing iGaming business and those seeking to enter the international market. Start-ups frequently view Malta as the ideal home base, which continues to motivate and instill a feeling of “newness” in the local industry.
To that end, the iGaming sector generated EUR 712 million for the local economy in the first half of 2022, an increase of nearly EUR 90 million over the same period in 2021.
Malta’s Prime Minister, Hon. Robert Abela stated that the country’s iGaming industry is overtaking the rest of Europe and has grown threefold since the pandemic.
“This is an industry that we are extremely proud of. Malta is the preferred location for over 300 gaming companies, which provide over 10,000 gaming-related job opportunities. Many of the companies are listed on major stock exchanges and have a high level of governance,” says Abela.
Another significant aspect of Malta’s appeal to iGaming companies is its low taxation. Tax rates are set at 5%, which is easily the lowest rate available anywhere in Europe. Furthermore, tax credits are granted to companies dedicated to iGaming research and development as an additional incentive to (re)locate their operations there.
iGaming event hotspot
The iGaming market is highly competitive, and companies that want to stand out must strive for excellence. Companies in this sector are well-positioned to do so, thanks to the extensive lineup of networking exhibitions scheduled for Malta.
Several high-profile events, such as SiGMA Europe, CasinoBeats Summit, and iGaming Next, are held annually, helping to put Malta and the iGaming industry in the spotlight.
Take, for example, the 2022 SiGMA Malta, which hosted over 25 000 delegates. The November event was reported to generate enough revenue to sustain 950 jobs for a year. The jobs are available in various industries, ranging from gaming to retail, manufacturing, and leisure.
So it’s no surprise that over 230 companies exhibited at the event, which brought together the industry’s giants. Visitors enjoyed activities such as the wheel of fortunes, the hamster wheel, where they could compete for prizes, the Plinko game, stunning pin-up models, the buzz-wire game at Uplatform’s stand, and a variety of cocktails everywhere. At the event, there were numerous discussions on how to launch or expand sports betting and online casino businesses in any market worldwide, Uplatform knew the exact answers to those questions because their award-winning sportsbook, displayed at their stand, could help resolve those issues. Results for the year
Malta is the ideal spot for sun-loving iGaming professionals since it boasts a beautiful climate with 300 days of sunshine annually, a coastal footpath, a breathtaking landscape, and access to Europe’s cleanest oceans. Furthermore, the region’s healthy economy and government support for the industry provide excellent long-term prospects for established and start-up iGaming brands. As time goes on and new technologies are introduced, the iGaming industry is expected to expand further. Experts in the sector anticipate that by 2030, the market could be worth €254 billion. Exploring Malta’s iGaming sector is a great idea right now. The unprecedented rise in popularity isn’t slowing down; it appears to be picking up speed as new technologies emerge. There’s a good reason it’s considered the leading market.