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Legal & Regulatory

Greece to cut down OPAP’s monopoly in video lottery terminals

The

greecevlts
government of Greece proposed last Friday a reduction in the number of video lottery machines (VLTs) that Greek operator OPAP should be allowed to manage. According to Reuters, the company would have to reduce to a total of 25,000, down from the 35,000 machines the country’s current legislation stipulates.

The Ministry of Finance submitted this new bill in Parliament with the aim to reduce exposure of customers to gambling and to make it easier for authorities to monitor and supervise gambling-related activities.

Despite this amendment, OPAP said that it will conclude the roll-out of 16,500 VLTs by May 2018. Further, the company plans to subcontract an additional 18,000 machines. The operator has already signed multiple partnership agreements with Scientific Games, Inspired Gaming, IGT, and Synot Group for the completion of its plan.

Europe’s fourth biggest betting firm offers sports betting and lottery services in more than 5,700 shops around Greece and Cyprus via revenue-sharing agents. Back in 2012, OPAP was running as a public company and the government extended its monopoly by granting the right to manage the current 35,000 video lottery terminals until 2022. This plan was later approved by the European Commission. Later in 2013, due to regulatory challenges, the company was fully privatised.

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