The online gambling sector has witnessed extraordinary growth over the last few years. It’s been on an almost constant upwards trajectory. While other areas of the global economy have faltered and stumbled, iGaming has stormed ahead. This has provided ample opportunities for investment, tech startups, developers, and other stakeholders. But at the front of it all is the European market. When it comes to iGaming development, it’s leagues ahead.
According to the EGBA, the European gambling market was worth EUR 98.6 billion in 2019. EUR 25 billion of this is from online gambling. Land-based gambling dropped in 2020, but the online sector grew. This was due to conditions imposed by the pandemic. By 2024, some 33.6% of Europe’s gross gaming revenue is likely to be from online gambling.
Other statistics show that mobile gambling and, in particular, sports betting is leading the way. Close behind are casino games, eSports and fantasy sports, demonstrating a shift towards new kinds of entertainment.
Money, preferences and attitudes
The European gambling sector accounts for almost half of the world’s online gambling revenue. This market segment occupied by Europe is facilitated by economic, cultural, regulatory, and technological factors.
As mentioned, we know that European gamblers prefer to gamble on their mobiles, tablets, laptops and PCs. They are also likely to talk to friends about their online gambling activities and even post on social media. This all points to a society that is open and welcoming to online gambling.
The UK and Ireland have a long history with gambling. You can find casinos, betting shops, amusement arcades, and bingo halls in every town and city. This familiarity with gambling along with its liberalisation through regulation means that most countries in Europe allow some forms of online gambling. Combined with Europe’s wealth and development, the region has become a key hub for the gambling sector.
High levels of expertise
It’s no surprise that Europe has become a great place for gambling sector operators to be based. This has resulted in more investment in gambling tech and ancillary industries. Most of the world’s leading game developers are located in the region, notably in Malta and countries like Norway and Sweden.
This has created an ecosystem where Europe-based gaming brands can offer great products built by the world’s best sites developers. As a consequence, iGaming contributes 12% of the GDP and employs around 10,000 people directly.
Many gambling developers are drawn to the business-friendly environment, supportive regulatory approach, and enticing corporate tax rates in Malta. Furthermore, the country is home to thousands of experienced employees. They are fluent in English and usually another European language as well. A robust infrastructure, convenient location, high-speed internet, and a plethora of service providers has turned Europe into a premier destination.
A good reputation
EU Member States carry a sort of prestige. Being a member of the EU suggests a state is reputable. It also means it’s easy to do business on a cross-border basis. Even those that aren’t EU members but are in Europe enjoy this reputation and many of its benefits. This combined with the ease of doing business in the region means that the gambling sector has flourished there.
Some European countries make a suitable location for a gambling development company. These include Malta, Cyprus, Liechtenstein, and Gibraltar. Each offers favourable start-up conditions, maintenance requirements, and fiscal benefits. This has attracted many iGaming companies to the region, particularly affiliate companies, software, game designers, and more.
While regulations, licensing, and incorporation laws are strict in Europe, they are flexible enough to not put people off. The level of expertise acquired locally and the rules businesses must adhere to make the EU gambling sector the most secure in the world.
For almost a quarter of a century, Fast Offshore has been working in the gambling sector. With a speciality in offshore jurisdictions and licensing, we’ve assisted hundreds of clients on their journey. From company incorporation to applying for an online gambling license, we can help. Our devoted team are professionals in tax, compliance, corporate services, banking, and more. Fast Offshore can offer you a full service, whether you need tailor-made or turnkey. Contact us to find out more!
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