Chairman BetClic Criticizes French Gambling Laws
Chairman and 50% shareholder in BetClic Everest Group, Stéphane Courbit has expressed his utter disappointment toward the French government. He criticized them for implementing the “nastiest” internet gambling legislation in Europe. He also said that the French government’s current tax bracket does not encourage fair business practises and that operators will try and find “loop holes” within the current French gaming system.
In his recent statement made toward the French national newspaper Le Figaro, he commented: “Initially it was an excellent choice by the president and his government to legalize and regulate internet gambling in France, however, current French law is not gambling conducive and could be regarded as the most awful in Europe. It’s difficult for us to function as a cohesive unit; since the taxation is sky high. Operators have very little autonomy and player conversions are very low.”
BetClic Everest Group’s foray into the French market started out very good, primarily as a result of the FIFA World Cup in South Africa. The months of June and July were the operator’s best months and on average it signed up ten thousand players per day. This figure has dropped significantly since then and it seems there are no indications of revival.
“The cap rate imposed by French legislation per player seems to be the main problem. Of late we can’t even deal out more than 85% of money to our current players. Elsewhere in Europe, as well as France if an internet casino is not licensed the redistribute rate is 96%. We can’t even begin to imagine how unsatisfactory this would be for French players, who are aware that unlicensed operators pay higher tax rates.
“The current French legislation pertaining to internet gambling encourages “deception” Stéphane Courbit said. “Players are acutely aware that they can wager at sites that are not accredited and continue to wager at these sites. The French gambling commission for internet games ARJEL stated that legislation has impacted severely on the amount of players wagering at illicit internet casinos by two thirds. Present investigation indicated that sanctioned sites in France do not signify for more than 30% of market value of wagering online. We understand that ARJEL is trying to do its level best, but with 20 employees it’s impractical to clamp down on internet casinos that have not been licensed by the French government.
“In line with the above, China stopped 2,500 illegal gambling sites from operating within a space of 4 months. They are successful in this because they have at least 40,000 staff members scrutinizing the Internet at all times. We all know illegal online betting is thriving in France and some of these operators have generated some outstanding revenues for the third quarter.
“In essence internet gambling legislation in France must learn to adapt or otherwise it will be at the mercy of overseas operators. The French version of the BetClic Everest Group generates only a quarter of its revenue in France. Unfortunately its home market is not financially conducive to it. To be honest to grow ones business overseas is not easy. As it stands French legislation prohibits French operators from excelling. On the other side of the coin it favours overseas gambling vendors and to us this is unacceptable,” he concluded.[addtoany]