Eye on Europe - 21 May 2007

21 May 2007

Partial Blocking In Germany Not Allowed -- The Bavarian administrative court (BayVGH) decided in a provisional procedure that, in the federal state of Bavaria, Internet sports betting may be offered. Martin Arendts, a lawyer specializing in gambling, told IGN that the case was "not brought by bwin Interactive Entertainment AGM, as some journalists mentioned," but by bwin e.K. (formerly Pfenningwerth Odds Sportsdata). The decision was only a preliminary proceeding; the main proceeding could take years to iron out. Today's preliminary decision does not deal with Community Law; rather, it addresses the question of whether it is technically possible to block customers from Bavaria. Looking ahead, the court said that the state has to establish that blocking Bavarian players, exclusively, is technically possible.

Growing Fast -- Under the terms of new agreement--overseen by Asteria Merchant and Banca Italease Group's products and special initiatives office--Italeasing will support Matchpoint in the development of its distribution network. Via the agreement, the two companies will be able to further develop their respective businesses: Italeasing can increase its penetration into the world of small and medium-sized enterprises; Matchpoint can support its own distribution network by the use of financial solutions that will enable investments in new corners of betting games and betting management. The deal covers a network of over 20,000 betting offices and more than 100 sales points managed by Matchpoint, covering 97 percent of Italian local districts and around 20,000 terminals connected online.

Rob van der Gaast has a background in sports journalism. He worked for over seven years as the head of sports for Dutch National Radio and has developed new concepts for the TV and the gambling industry. Now he operates from Istanbul as an independent gambling research analyst. He specializes in European gambling matters and in privatizations of gambling operators. Rob has contributed to IGN since Jul 09, 2001.