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European laws on fantasy sports

Legislation and regulations have truly helped to organize European market from the perspective of fantasy sports. Read how.

Europe is the reason why football (soccer) is so popular around the world. In fact, this sport enjoys the maximum number of leagues around the world, majority of which are European. European leagues host some of the biggest names in the game – Manchester United, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, Inter Milan, Barcelona, Paris St. Germain, FC Porto to name a few – with massive crowds cheering for them. European market, indeed, is ripe for fantasy sports business. This blog sheds light on the legality of fantasy sports business in Europe.

Overview of European laws

Sports betting in Europe is largely regulated. When it comes to fantasy sports, the market is largely fragmented. It is split between legal operators, grey and illegal or unlicensed operators. However, legislations and regulations have truly helped to organize European market from the perspective of fantasy sports. This is helpful because the legislation underlines standards within which to operate. This in turn gives confidence to both investors and users. It can definitely get time-consuming and expensive to manage in the beginning and that too in some countries.

How to cut through the time-consuming process of licensing?

For a non-European entity trying to make it big in European fantasy sports market, the process of acquiring license can be hard. For example, countries like Italy, Spain, France and Germany are quite tightly regulated. So what should entrepreneurs do? The key is to pick the target market very carefully in case of daily fantasy sports operators.

We have some suggestions –
/European entrepreneurs can get a UK Gambling license and partner with local players in other countries.
/Non-European entities can partner with European operators who already have licenses
/Brazil is easier to crack because if a fantasy sports business is not based in Brazil, businesses can run a fantasy sports website for cash.

Who can play fantasy sports in Europe legally?

Citizens aged over 18 years are eligible to play fantasy sports in most of European countries. However, the minimum age for playing fantasy sports is slightly different in these countries: Greece (23 years); Denmark, Estonia and Latvia (21 years).

Is it legal to operate fantasy sports in Europe?

Most European countries recognize fantasy sports as a legal business. Operating a fantasy sports business is legal and regulated in as many as 30 countries in Europe while in Croatia, Sweden and Norway, fantasy sports business is legal but unregulated. In four countries namely Switzerland, Ukraine, Macedonia, Belarus- fantasy sports business is considered illegal. Have a look at this detailed infographic to know all you need if you are planning a fantasy sports business in Europe.

How are fantasy sports seen by authorities?

Europe is a mature market when it comes to gambling and sports betting. This is precisely why they have standard licensing and regulations for this market. Most authorities see fantasy sports as sports betting and hence businesses become liable to acquire licenses. So even when a fantasy sports business acquires a gambling license, the activity of fantasy sports playing is not really gambling but a game of skill. However, one of the ways to get around this hurdle is to partner with local players who already have a gambling license and offer fantasy sports as one of the verticals along with your local partner.

Daily fantasy sports and gambling laws in the UK

Daily fantasy sports for money are regulated by the UK Gambling Commission. In order for fantasy sports operators to be legalized, they must obtain a gambling license.
The 2005 Gambling Act defines real money daily fantasy football as remote gambling. This means that the participation of users through the internet or smartphone in online gambling is considered remote gambling. Therefore, it is licensed and regulated much the same way as online and mobile casinos. It’s completely legal to play real money daily fantasy football at a licensed site which operates legally in the United Kingdom. Take a quick look at this infographic that details Daily fantasy sports laws in Europe.

Some of the DFS sites offering gameplay in United Kingdom:

/ Fan Duel
/ Fan Team
/ Play On
/ Yahoo DFS

Vinfotech has been creating fantasy sports website and mobile apps for demographics around the world. We have created successful fantasy football software and fantasy rugby software such as Sports Guru and Fantasy Rugby for the European demographic. We understand European laws and can help you create a profitable fantasy sports business within the legislation. We have an experience of almost eight years in fantasy sports website development. Give us a call.

IN A NUTSHELL
  • European laws have regulations for gambling
  • Many countries are good for operating fantasy sports business
  • You can partner with local operators who have license
  • It’s easier for a European business to get license

About Vinfotech

Vinfotech creates world’s best fantasy sports-based entertainment, marketing and rewards platforms for fantasy sports startups, sports leagues, casinos and media companies. We promise initial set of real engaged users to put turbo in your fantasy platform growth. Our award winning software vFantasy™ allows us to build stellar rewards platform faster and better. Our customers include Zee Digital, Picklive and Arabian Gulf League.

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