Sportech Racing, a London-based gaming and sportsbook operator, has become the first and currently the only provider to be granted a licence to operate tote betting on horse racing in the Netherlands.

Dutch gaming authorities reportedly awarded the tote betting licence to the company after pre-approved criteria were met and having passed a comprehensive selection process and award phase designed specifically to determine its suitability to conduct tote betting in the northwestern European country, according to Gambling Insider.

Parties interested in obtaining licensure were required to submit their application to officials by December 30, 2016, in order that they might be considered for licence approval. A sixth-month extension of the temporary licence was reportedly granted to Sportech in December 2016 during which time the company’s new licensing application was under consideration by authorities.

Horseracing sportsbook operation is illegal in the Netherlands under the current legislation without first having received prior approval and licensure by the Kansspelautoriteit, the Dutch Gaming Authority.

The new licence granted to Sportech Racing is reportedly valid for a five-year period effective July 1st through June 30th, 2022.

Early in 2015, Sportech Racing, LLC a subsidiary of the London-listed Sportech PLC (SPO:LSE), was awarded a Casino Service Industry Enterprise Licence by the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement, making it at the time among the first, if not the first, full gaming-related licence to be issued in New Jersey to a European-owned company.