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German whitelist shows no online casino licensees

| By Daniel O'Boyle
The German state of Sachsen-Anhalt has published its “whitelist” of licensed operators under the country’s Fourth State Treaty on Gambling: featuring no licensees whatsoever for online slots, table games or poker.

The list includes a number of approved online sports betting licensees, after the vertical was approved by the country’s Third State Treaty. These 35 licensees include Entain’s Bwin brand, four subsidiaries of Tipico, Gauselmann Group’s Cashpoint brand, Bet365 and Tipwin.

It also includes new names such as Chilling Cheetah – which operates the Chillybet brand – and Ruleo – which operates Mybet.de.

However, the list of approved operators for online slots, online poker and online table games are all blank.

Online casino games in the market were permitted when the state treaty (GlüNeuRStv) came into effect on 1 July this year, though online table games may only be operated by lotteries and land-based casinos.

However, the new treaty came with a number of restrictions. This includes a €1,000 per month spending cap and a €1 per spin stake cap on slot games, as well as a 5.3% tax on turnover.

Operators have been highly critical of many of these rules. Germany’s sports betting association, the Deutsche Sportwettenverband (DSWV), argued that the tax rate would “jeopardise the success of the new gambling regulation in Germany.”

Both the DSWV and the European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) filed formal state aid complaints with the European Commission about the tax, arguing it should be considered illegal state aid as it favoured the land-based sector over online.

The state did not reveal how many – if any – operators had applied for licences.

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