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Schleswig-Holstein details application process for online table game licences

| By Daniel O'Boyle
The German state of Schleswig-Holstein has announced details of the application process for its four online table game licences.
Schleswig-Holstein details application process for online table game licences

Operators will be able to submit applications from 23 May until 15 August. During this time, operators may submit applications via email, paying a €2,500 application fee to do so.

The state will examine the “reliability, expertise and ability” of prospective licensees, as well as how their selection would align with the goals of Germany’s Fourth State Treaty on Gambling. The licences will each last 15 years.

Schleswig-Holstein is the only German state that permitted online casino before the new treaty was implemented. Under the previous model, it allowed an unlimited number of licensees, with operators taxed at a 20% GGR rate.

This follows a decision by the state legislature (Landtag) in January to allow for multiple licences for online table games.

As part of the Fourth State Treaty, which came into effect last year, state governments were given a choice in how they wished to regulate online casino table games. They may either select a sole provider (effectively creating a monopoly) or issue as many licences as the state has land-based casinos.

Schleswig-Holstein, which hosts five casinos, opted for the latter approach. With one licence to be issued to state-run Spielbank Schleswig-Holstein, there are four licences up for grabs.

These table game licensees will face steep taxes, however. Revenue up to €300,000 per month will be taxed at 34%, revenue between €300,000 and €750,000 will be taxed at 39%  and higher revenue will be taxed at 44%.

Elsewhere in Germany, the country’s most populous state, Nordrhein-Westfalen, also chose to hand out five online table game licences, while Thüringia has opted for the monopoly model.

The State Treaty also allows online slots and poker to be offered nationwide for the first time in Germany. However, the new regulator has not yet approved any online gaming licensees, as it gradually takes control of the market.

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