Sports betting in Denmark has taken a big hit due to the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, according to figures released this week.
The widespread postponement and cancellation of live sports has hit sports betting activity according to a report from the betting industry regulator in Denmark, Spillemyndigheden, which shows a significant fall in betting company revenue.
The statistics from the regulator relate to the second quarter of 2020, and show that the sector experienced a 41.22% fall in revenue for the quarter, dropping from DKK 653 million in the first quarter of the year, to DKK 373 million for the second three months. At the same time, there was an increase in activity at online casinos, with revenue rising from DKK 555 million to DKK 673 million, driven largely by the closure in land-based gambling facilities such as arcades and casinos.
Online slots were the main driver for revenue increases, accounting for nearly three quarters of revenue in the period, although roulette and blackjack also made contributions.
At the time when Denmark went into lockdown in March, Spillemyndigheden relaunched its national advertising push aimed at raising awareness of the ‘StopSpillet’ gambling helpline and the associated ‘ROFUS’ self-exclusion programmes. As of June 2020, the regulator recorded 23,469 Danes registered on their self-exclusion database, up from 19,255 in June 2019.
The majority of registrations received in June 2020 were permanent registrations, with around 68% opting for a permanent exclusion from gambling. A little over 18% of gamblers opted for self-exclusion on a six-month basis, while 8.8% went for a three-month self-exclusion and 4.73% for one month.
The regulator also revealed that there had been 86 calls made to the country’s StopSpillet gambling helpline during the second quarter of the year. Men aged 18-25 were the majority of the callers, most of which were made by gamblers themselves, with 40.7% made by relatives.
Spillemyndigheden have also updated some of the technical requirements on game reporting for the Danish sector, creating a new category for virtual sports games. These requirements have been added with customer protection enforcements, which require all operators to promote the ROFUS self-exclusion scheme and ensure all customers set deposit limits.