VIGE 2017 – RECAP FROM E-GAME SPECTRUM | Conversation 1: Austria, Croatia and Slovenia

VIGE 2017 – RECAP FROM E-GAME SPECTRUM | Conversation 1: Austria, Croatia and Slovenia

The first ever gaming exhibition in Vienna took place last week – the Vienna International Gaming Expo (VIGE 2017) organized by EEGEvents - Part of EEG. Our media team attended the event and we have prepared short recaps about the seminars from the first two days of the expo. We also had the chance to talk to some of the speakers, all of them experienced professionals and visionaries  from the gaming industry.


Day 1 from VIGE started off with discussions about gaming in Central Europe, recent regulatory changes and updates. Conversation 1 was dedicated to Austria, Croatia and Slovenia. 

Jaka Repansek from RePublis d.o.o talked about the land-based industry in Slovenia and the regulatory practices in the country. He stated that lotteries and betshops are so far the most popular solutions in Slovenia. According to Mr. Repansek Nova Gorica is the place where most casinos are located. 

Casinos in Slovenia are 51% state-owned, whereas gaming halls are 100% private. Things get more complicated with online licenses, because they can be granted only to big casino operators. As far as taxation is concerned the land-based operators there pay 18% tax on game profit plus a concession fee, which is usually around 20-30%. The taxes are even higher for online gambling. 

Mr. Repansek shared that the smoking ban and the recession in 2007 have seriously affected the gambling industry in Slovenia and has brought revenues down. 

A quick update on the Croatian market made Hroje Vincetic from Casino Adriatic. According to his report, there are about 8000 slot machines and over 11000 betting terminals there. He emphasized on the discrimination in taxation as one of the main problems in his country. 

In Croatia casinos with live games pay 15% tax of GGR, whereas slot clubs pay 25% tax. Taxation on betting is way more attractive – 5% on turn-over and the same applies for both online and offline platforms. Lottery games pay 10% tax of the total collected money from the monthly sold tickets.  

So far there are only three licensed online operators in Croatia. However, the booming tourism in the country has predisposed the opening of many large luxury casinos in Dubrovnik, Zagreb and Split. An interesting fact is that most of them are owned by foreign operators from Cyprus and Ukraine. 

Mag. Claus Retschitzegger from the Austrian Association for Betting and Gambling (OVWG) talked about the association and it's main role as a representative and interest group of the sector. It aims to create awareness towards opinion leaders in the area of betting and gambling. The members of the Association are leading Austrian and European operators offering online betting and gambling services in Austria. It's main ambition is to imply conditions which lead to modern and competitive market. 

Mag. Retschitzegger also presented the current state of gambling in Austria. Currently there are 9 different legal regimes for betting in the different states of the country. However, online betting is regulated only in 2 states. Online gambling is monopolized as there is only 1 license granted to the Austrian Lotteries.  

Author: Hristiana Petkova

Associate Editor