XC Gaming fined for Swedish bonus and player protection violations
| By Robin Harrison
Swedish licensee XC Gaming has been fined SEK5m (£436,968/€489,424/$580,620) by the country’s gambling regulator Spelinspektionen for violating Sweden’s bonus regulations, and failing in its duty of care to a customer.
XC Gaming, which operates the Klirr and Frank Fred brands in Sweden, was found to have awarded a player bonuses on a number of occasions, despite regulations stating each customer can only be awarded one financial reward upon sign-up.
This was carried out prior to the business being acquired by The Mill Adventure, a gaming platform provider that took charge of XC Gaming in March this year.
The business described the payments as ‘gifts’ and suggested that they did not count as bonuses as they were not linked to gameplay. However Spelinspektionen said that as they were designed to ensure the individual’s continued play on the operator’s platform, they fell foul of the bonus regulations.
Furthermore while these financial sums were being paid to the player, the operator had also identified the individual as a vulnerable player, and had been in contact with them about their gambling. This, the regulator said, amounted to a breach of XC’s duty of care to the player.
It said that based on XC’s turnover of SEK707.3m in the year ended 31 December 2019, it could fine the operator up to 10% of that sum, at SEK70.7m.
However it decided that while such a high penalty was not justifiable, it felt that the serious nature of the breaches meant that an SEK5m fine and a warning was appropriate.
XC’s Swedish licence, which came into effect from 1 January 2019, is due to expire on 31 December this year.