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Baltics

Latvian Delegation Hails MGA Workshop as “Useful Exchange of Experiences”

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The Malta Gaming Authority recently welcomed a delegation from the Lotteries and Gambling Supervisory Inspection of Latvia at its premises at SmartCity.

The Latvian delegation was provided with an overview of the MGA’s organisational structure, the role and responsibilities of the various functions, and how they work together to contribute to the Authority’s overall strategy.

Heading the Latvian delegation, Jānis Ungurs, Director of Legal, described the visit as being a “very useful exchange of experiences”.

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He went on to hail the MGA team as being very professional, and lauded the Authority’s openness to cooperation and training.

“The workshop exposed us to many initiatives that can be undertaken in Latvia,” he said.

The Latvian delegation was given an appreciation of the importance of data and analytics in decision-making and in policy-making, and of how the Authority collated data from its licensees and made use of it.

The MGA underscored the importance of monitoring the sector’s performance and how regulators should remain abreast of any developments and trends within the gaming industry.

The workshop went on to explore the MGA’s licensing process, criminal probity screening, the different types of approvals and the regulatory supervision function.

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The Authority’s Finance Department provided a snapshot of the processes related to the collection of compliance contribution, as well as the revenue assurance function.

The Authority’s Anti-Money Laundering Unit, meanwhile, expounded upon the AML/CFT obligations at law, the examination process and post-examinations procedures.

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Baltics

Lithuania Mulls Cracking Down on Gambling Ads

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Lithuanian MPs have registered amendments to the Gambling Law proposing to further tighten gambling advertising in the country as of 2025.

Around 50 MPs, mostly from the ruling majority, have signed the amendments proposing to prohibit the dissemination of information of the gambling companies sponsoring any public events, activities, natural or legal persons.

If adopted, the amendments would eliminate the advertising of betting, wagers, and casinos on television, in newspapers, magazines, or news websites and on street billboards. Neither the names nor the logos of gambling operators could appear on the jerseys of athletes and in arenas during the sporting events.

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Companies would only be able to publish information on the types of gambling at the gambling venue or on the company’s website, the address of which is specified in the Gambling Regulation.

It is proposed to allow gambling companies to publish information on gambling only in publications aimed at professionals in the business. They could advertise their name and brand on their head office building or gambling venue.

Lithuanian MPs have started considering tightening the requirements for gambling advertising amid allegations that Šarūnas Stepukonis, a former BaltCap Infrastructure Fund partner, has embezzled and gambled away millions of euros of the fund’s money.

The initiator of the amendments, Mindaugas Lingė of the ruling conservative Homeland Union, has previously said that last year the total revenue of gambling operators amounted to 222 million euros, up from 103 million euros in 2020.

The amount spent on advertising in the gambling business doubled from 6.36 million euros in 2020 to 12.73 million euros in 2023. Gambling operators’ profits increased from 20 million euros in 2020 to more than 53 million euros in 2022.

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Baltics

IGT Signs 12-Year Contract Extension with UAB Perlas Network in Lithuania to Deploy Upgraded Central System Software

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International Game Technology PLC announced that its subsidiary, IGT Global Solutions Corporation, has extended its contract with UAB Perlas Network (“Perlas”) for an additional 12 years until 2035. As part of the agreement, IGT will provide upgrades to the Lottery’s central retail system including advanced software and user interfaces.

“Upgrading Perlas’ central system with IGT technology will help us optimize and elevate the country’s most popular and exciting lottery games,” said Mindaugas Marcinkevičius, UAB Perlas Network CEO. “We look forward to implementing IGT’s upgrades and are pleased to continue this successful relationship for another 12 years.”

“The technology enhancements being provided to Perlas are backed by IGT’s decades of lottery industry leadership and experience,” said Jay Gendron, IGT Chief Operating Officer Global Lottery. “This upgraded technology will introduce an administration portal that will enable the Lottery to view and manage all applications and back-office functions, helping to improve efficiencies and maximize profitability.”

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The Lottery has been a customer of IGT’s since 1994. In 2023, IGT announced that it signed a contract with Euloto UAB (Perlas’ dependent company) to deploy its advanced cloud-based remote game server and at least 12 eInstant games per year.

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Baltics

Spinomenal goes live in Lithuania with Optibet partnership

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Leading iGaming content provider, Spinomenal has extended its successful partnership with Optibet to take its games into the regulated Lithuanian market. Spinomenal first started working with Optibet a while ago when it launched its games with the operator in Estonia and Latvia.

The library of slot content for Lithuania is being integrated via Light & Wonder’s OpenGaming™ platform. Optibet’s Lithuanian players will be able to engage with Spinomenal’s extensive collection of exciting games that stars Majestic King, Poseidon’s Rising, Times of Egypt, Book of Rampage and Lucky Jack – Lost Jungle.

Lior Shvartz, CEO for Spinomenal commented: “Optibet is a huge player in the Baltic region where we have already had significant success within the Estonian and Latvian markets. We’re thrilled to go live in Lithuania with such a strong partner.”

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Davit Khatiashvili, CPO for Optibet commented: “After a very successful launch in Latvia & Estonia, we are pleased to offer Spinomenal games to our Lithuanian customers.”

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