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Finland’s Veikkaus Supports Licensing Model Plans but Layoffs May Be Necessary

Finland might be on the way to introducing a licensing model for online gaming. The country, which is the only EU member to still maintain a monopoly over iGaming, just broke ground by introducing a legislative plan to transition to a licensing system.



Finland’s online gaming monopoly, Veikkaus , commented on the matter, expressing its support for the move. According to CEO Velipekka Nummikoski , the company believes that regulation can benefit the whole Finish gaming market.



Nummikoski praised the Ministry of the Interior for what he called the most significant reforms in Finnish gaming yet . He hailed the government’s clear plan of action and said that he hopes that it would be able to channel players toward the legal market.



Under the new legislative plan, Finland will abolish Veikkaus’ exclusivity when it comes to online gambling. Still, the company will retain its monopoly over retail slots and the lottery.



Despite its apparent support of the measure, Veikkaus warned that the transition to a licensing model will likely lead to redundancies, forcing the company to restructure its business, close properties and lay off workers. According to the company’s estimates, as many as 240 employees may lose their jobs .



A New Age for Finnish iGaming



If Finland introduces a regulated gambling model, Veikkaus will split into two companies within the same group. One of the newly-formed entities will be Veikkaus’ arm which will retain its monopoly over retail slot machines and the lottery, while the other joins the competitive online market.



The Finnish government’s plans to introduce a licensing model come amid strong support for the introduction of regulated gambling. However, the transition process is set to take a few years at the very least. Under the current plans, the Ministry of the Interior will take two years to draft a legislative proposal for regulated iGaming.



The proposal will cover important matters, such as what games should be legalized, what the licensing and tax fees for online operators should be and how Finland would protect consumers from harm.



Finland’s decision to explore the possibility of introducing licensed online gaming marks a historic turning point for the country and will align it with other EU member states that use similar models.



The move was praised by the European Betting and Gaming Association, which highlighted that a licensing model will bring many benefits to Finland, including improved channelization rates and better player protections.

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