The largest land-based casino operator in Portugal, Estoril Sol, has been granted a license by the nation’s online gambling regulator to add sports wagering services to its domain at Esconline.pt.

The license represents the eighth issued by the Servico de Regulaccao e Inspeao de Jogos authority since Portugal ratified legislation early last year legalizing and regulating online gambling and sportsbetting.

Estoril Sol is responsible for a trio of casinos in Portugal encompassing the Casino Lisboa, Casino Estoril and Casino da Povoa and was the recipient of the nation’s first online casino license in May of 2016. It now intends to utilize a platform from Belgian firm Gaming1 to offer a range of sportsbetting markets at Esconline.pt alongside the developer’s innovative Opti-Odds feature to boost the odds on any multiple bet slips.

“Since moving online, we’ve enjoyed great success and the next logical step for us was to bolster our offering with sportsbetting,” read a statement from Rui Magalhaes, Chief Executive Officer for the Estoril Sol Digital subsidiary. “By combining our knowledge of the Portuguese market with Gaming1’s state-of-the-art technology and online sportsbook expertise, we were more than confident to offer sportsbetting to our players.”

Due to high turnover taxes that reach as high as 30% for the largest operators, the online casino and sportsbetting market in Portugal has experienced slow growth. There are also fears that the industry could have already hit its zenith after aggregated turnover for the three months to the end of June declined by 19% quarter-on-quarter to reach just over $30 million.

“Following the success of launching Portugal’s first ever licensed online casino last year, we’re thrilled to have boosted Estoril Sol’s online offering with the addition of sportsbetting for the first time,” read a statement from Sylvain Boniver, Chief Executive Officer for Gaming1. “The launch of our sportsbook underlines the position of Gaming1 as an all-round partner and not just a provider. Our joint venture provides a win-win situation for both parties as we share the investment, risks and profits as well as bringing the two companies closer together to achieve the same goal. Our innovative Opti-Odds feature will provide Esconline.pt with a competitive edge, offering the best odds in the Portuguese market.”

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