Maltese online casino and sportsbook operator, Kindred Group, has announced that it has been hit with a fine of €470,000 ($520,872) after one of its subordinates was found to have unlawfully accepted wagers from players based in the Netherlands.
The Valletta-headquartered firm used an official Monday press release to detail that the penalty from the Netherlands Gambling Authority was issued after its Trannel International Limited subsidiary was adjudged to have illicitly taken bets from Dutch players via the domain at Unibet.eu between August and December of last year.
Kindred, which was known as Unibet Group until a 2016 name-change, additionally declared that it will be appealing the judgment as it awaits the publication of ‘secondary legislation’ alongside ‘policy rules on license application and requirements’ as part of the Netherlands’ deregulating Remote Gambling Bill. It stated that this piece of legislation was ratified in February and is due to offer online casino and sportsbetting operators the chance to obtain local iGaming licenses from ‘the first quarter of 2021.’
Moreover responsible for iGaming sites such as 32Red.com, StanJames.com and MariaCasino.co.uk, Kindred proclaimed that it is ‘committed to obtaining a license on online sportsbetting and gaming as soon as the Dutch market opens’ and has been ‘fully compliant’ with a range of new regulations laid out earlier this year by the nation’s Ministry of Justice and Security.
Read a statement from Kindred…
“Kindred Group emphasizes its ambition to reach zero percent revenue from harmful gambling by 2023. Kindred Group remains committed to having a constructive dialogue with the regulator and other stakeholders. Learnings from previously re-regulated markets in Europe, most recently in Sweden, show that obtaining a high level of channelization from the outset is imperative to ensure a successful and functioning market with strong consumer protections.”
For its part, the Netherlands Gambling Authority, which is also known as the Kansspelautoriteit, used its own press release to clarify that it remains illegal to offer ‘online games of chance’ to players based in the Netherlands and that it has not yet issued any licenses ‘because the law does not provide for effective instruments for supervision.’
Read a statement from the Kansspelautoriteit…
“This situation is going to change. It will probably be possible to offer legal online gambling from January 1, 2021. A condition for this is that a permit has been granted by the Kansspelautoriteit. Permits are only issued under strict conditions.”