Sports betting in Italy is in decline while online casinos set records

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Italian bookmakers didn’t have the greatest beginnings to 2019 as they saw their revenue for January drop by almost 17% compared to last year’s numbers.

Revenues for sports gambling drop

According to statistics by Agenzia della Dogane e del Monopoli, which is a regulatory body in Italy, the revenue gained from sports betting in the country during January is 124M Euro – one sixth lower than the 150M euro made during January 2018.

One of the probable causes for this setback is the fact that Serie A (Italy’s first football division) had a winter break during January when it usually took place in December. If we compare the figures to these from December 2018, then we can see that January wins by more than 55%.

The numbers from January are just 4.4% down to 58.1M Euro. Bet365’s Italian branch still has the most revenue consisting of almost 18% share of the online gambling market. The second place is held by SKS365 which has a market share of 12.8%. The third name on the list is Playtech’s company Snaitech with 11%.

If we take a look at the retail betting revenue, it’s 26% less than the 66.5M Euro in January. The top three here consists of market leaders Intralot/Goldbet with 20.4% of the share, followed by Snaitech with 17%.

Online casinos continue to grow

Things look bright for online casinos where the revenues are once again record-breaking. January brought in 20.5% more than last year, with the sum amounting to 72M Euro. PokerStars places second with 10.6%. Lottomatica rounds up the top three with 8.3% of the revenue share.

Poker was one of the most improved games revenue-wise, reaching 23.6% higher figures than last year. Cash games also gained 5.2% which amounted to 6M Euro. PokerStars was the king of these games, having achieved shares of 63.4% in both and 39.5% in cash games. It’s important to know that no other gambling operator reached double-digit numbers here.

Virtual gambling is also on the rise, reaching 25.8M Euro in January, which is 19% more than what it did the same month last year.

Italy recently banned gambling advertising, and this is still beneficial for those gambling operators who aren’t licensed locally. According to Agipro, when people search for ‘online casino’ in Google, the top three results are bookmakers from Germany, Israel, and Curacao. None of them has a license to operate in Italy.

The results were the same last year when Google didn’t allow Italian bookies to appear in the search results. This means that even though the online casino market continues its rise, the Italian government can’t benefit from this by collecting taxes.

Thomas O'Brien

A historian by profession and all-round sports nut, Thomas is the person behind our blog keeping you up to date on the latest in world sports. Make sure you also check out his weekly tips and Premier League predictions!

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