The Dutch regulator, Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), isn’t messing around with the implementation of gambling laws in the Netherlands and imposed a €350,000 fine to ElectraWorks Limited. The Gibraltar-based subsidiary of GVC Holdings which owns Bwin, got a taste of the strict regulator for targeting Dutch customers without having the authorization by KSA. The operator of bwin.com was found using the Dutch language and the .nl website extension and his guiltiness became even more apparent because of the use of iDeal payment method, one of the most popular in the Netherlands. It’s not the first time the last year that KSA had to intervene and impose heavy fines on foreign operators as Casino.com, ONISAC and 1xBet, have all been paid penalties a few months earlier.
The current Dutch laws about gambling practically ban any international operator who wants to start its services in the country, as obtaining a license from KSA is considered almost impossible. Until now the online gambling landscape that was formed in the country was shady as foreign operators could run their businesses in the Netherlands as long as they didn’t target Dutch customers. If you are uncertain of what criteria operators have to comply with, you can take a look on our dedicated Dutch-accepting online casinos page.
Reportedly, the Senate of the Netherlands passed the Remote Gambling Act the previous February which will finally allow foreign operators to address Dutch players. The new Remote Gambling Act is going to take into effect on July 1, 2021, with the goal of reorganizing the national online gambling market by starting a bidding process which will define which operators will receive licenses. The bidding process will come to an end by January 1, 2021, when KSA expects to have ordered approximately 90 official licenses and hopes that the local market will be fully regulated.
For ElectraWorks, having to pay a big fine like this wasn’t received as an unprecedented situation because the company had been slapped by the United Kingdom Gambling Commission (UKGC) as well back in 2018. UKGC imposed the same amount of money ( €350,000 ) for misleading advertisement that was encouraging customers to claim “free” bonus offers. Moreover, UKGC had sent a formal letter to the company warning that the Head Director of ElectraWorks Marketing hadn’t received the mandatory personal license by UKGC in order to run marketing campaigns. It seems that ElectraWorks has to do a bit of work regarding gambling compliance.