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Danske Spil partners DBU to stamp out underage gambling

| By iGB Editorial Team

Denmark’s former gambling monopoly Danske Spil will collaborate with the country’s football association (DBU) on a new campaign to highlight the operator’s efforts to put an end to underage gambling.

The partnership comes ahead of Danske Spil’s Sikkert Spil (Safe Play) campaign, which precedes with the introduction of a new player card from October.

First announced in November last year, the Spil-ID card must be shown by all players before they can purchase gambling products at retail locations such as kiosks or supermarkets. Once it comes into force, it must be shown by all players, regardless of age, before they may gamble.

“Gambling is for adults, and not for children,” said Niels Erik Folmann, director of the operator’s betting and gaming arm Danske Licens Spil. “For many years we have been working to ensure that no children or young people play products such as Oddset or place bets in shops.

“But despite the fact that we, together with our retailers, have put a lot of effort into this, we must unfortunately admit that we have not been able to fully prevent minors from gambling,” Folmann continued. “As a consequence we are now requiring everyone to obtain a personal Spil-ID [card] if they want to pay with us.”

The need for this additional age verification requirement was evidenced by a study from Denmark’s National Centre for Welfare Research and Analysis (VIVE), Danske Spil continued. The study discovered that 40% of 12-17 year-olds claimed to have attempted to gamble in some form, and that 27% of 15-17 year-olds gamble regularly each month. Those whose responses suggested they were gambling unsustainably tended to bet on sports, the study revealed.

Ahead of Spil-ID’s launch, from September, Danske Spil will run TV, newspaper and in-store advertising campaigns to promote responsible gambling and the solution. 1 September also marks the date from which players can sign up for a Spil-ID card, for which there will be in-app and physical versions available.

The DBU will support this campaign through its existing sponsorship agreement with Danske Spil, with Sikkert Spil branding to be displayed on the men’s national football team’s training gear for its Uefa Nations League games against Belgium and England. The campaign will also be promoted through in-stadium branding, and via other channels and platforms.

“Preventing children and young people from gambling is an appropriate and responsible measure. We are pleased that Danske Spil is taking the lead [for this] and introducing Spil-ID as part of its responsible gaming efforts,” DBU chief executive Jakob Jensen said.

“Therefore, we are pleased that [Denmark’s] national team can help to make the campaign even better known, so that together we fight gambling addiction and other shadowy aspects of betting as a whole,” he added.

News of the expanded partnership comes after the DBU last week spoke out against new advertising regulations potentially affecting its ongoing partnerships with Danske Spil and Arbejdernes Landsbank.

Amendments to Danish marketing laws, that came into effect from 1 July, state that loans and credit cards must not be promoted alongside gambling products. Following a request for clarification from the DBU, Danish consumer ombudsman (Forbrugerombudsmanden) said that logos for Arbejdernes Landsbank and Oddset can no longer appear next to one another surfaces such as players’ and coaches’ clothes and interview backdrops.

Jensen said he was particularly surprised that the legislation would apply in this case, considering both Danske Spil and the bank are part-owned by the Danish state.

“We are surprised that the legislation is formulated so broadly that it must affect the close cooperation we have, both for the Danish national football teams and for the clubs,” Jensen said. “At the same time, we note that several political commentators this summer have stated that this is not the intention of the legislation.”

The legislation will also affect football clubs, many of which are partnered with Danske Spil and banking groups. 

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