When the news first broke in European iGaming circles that Cherry AB-owned Yggdrasil Gaming had concluded a content provision agreement with Swedish State-owned operator Svenska Spel well ahead of the re-regulation of the Swedish gambling industry in January 2019, it seemed like a perfectly reasonable move in order to secure the proverbial foot in the door, especially considering the fact that it’s becoming increasingly more apparent that not all operator-applicants would ultimately be granted licences by the time the new market opens its doors to the public.
The true genius behind the deal extends even further than the developer wanting to partner with an operator assured of a slot in Sweden’s market, and we’re about to tell you why.
A recent survey conducted by Mediavision shows that 60% of Swedes are in possession of an active, online gambling account. According to the survey, these players are between the ages of 18 and 74. Of these, around 58% of the accounts are registered with State-owned operators Svenska Spel (online casino games), ATG (horseracing), and Postkodlotterit (lottery games).
With the market now on the fast track towards liberation, meaning that private operators will soon be in the position of being able to play a bigger role in the industry, Svenska Spel, especially, has started to beef up its game. Also to be kept in mind is the fact that Sweden is slamming down on advertisements containing gambling-related material. It’s going to become increasingly more difficult to raise awareness around one’s product in the near future, making it tougher to convince players to make a switch from what they are already familiar with and using.
When considering all of the above, it’s quite obvious that anyone in camp Svenska Spel may be much better off when the new market opens in January, that what was initially obvious. The state-owned operator already has the lion’s share of bettors and players in the country, and what is true in general, applies also in the online gaming industry: people tend to stick with what they know. Especially when no one is permitted to entice them to do otherwise.
Whether this has been a part of Yggdrasil Gaming’s long-term strategy all along, or whether luck is just the name of the game for the developer, we have no way of knowing. But one thing is for sure: very well played.
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