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NEWS 24 December 2018

Playtech predicts €20m drop in EBITDA following new Italian gambling tax

By Matthew Enderby

Playtech expects its 2019 adjusted EBITDA to fall by approximately €20m ($22.7m) to €25m following the implementation of a new gambling tax.

The Italian Senate passed the government’s 2019 budget, which includes legislation to increase tax on various types of gambling activities, on Sunday.

This legislation is scheduled to take effect on 1 January 2019.

Among the major changes to gambling taxation in the country is a hike in online casino tax from its current rate of 20% to 25%; the government says this will generate an additional €50m in annual revenue for the state.

Online sports betting revenue will be taxed at a rate of 24%, up 2% from the previous levy. Meanwhile, land-based operators will see the same percentage increase to a tax of 20%, excluding horseracing.

The new tax rates are predicted to cost operators €30m per year.

Italian-licensed operators are already facing absolute bans on advertising and sponsorships that also take effect on 1 January 2019, although existing sponsorship deals will can run until 30 June.

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