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UPDATE 1-Bwin.party pushes for clarity on German gambling rules
January 10, 2013 / 7:58 AM / 5 years ago

UPDATE 1-Bwin.party pushes for clarity on German gambling rules

* Bwin.party says trading meets expectations

* Pushes for liberalisation of German betting rules

LONDON, Jan 10 (Reuters) - Bwin.party digital entertainment said Germany should allow online gambling companies to compete on a level playing field with locally based operators.

The company, the world’s largest listed online gaming group, also said trading since the end of September had been in line with management expectations.

“Gross win margins in sports betting returned to more normalised levels in November after a very strong run of results in October,” the company said.

Formed by the 2011 merger of Bwin and PartyGaming, the company forecast EBITDA margins of between 19.5 and 20.5 percent for the full-year 2012 and 65 million euros ($84.8 million)of synergies in 2013.

Bwin.party was one of 12 operators given six-year licences in December to operate online casino and poker games in the northern German state of Schleswig-Holstein.

It pressed its case for more liberal betting rules across Germany, its largest market.

“There is now a question over how the existing regime in Schleswig-Holstein can co-exist with the alternative system proposed by the other 15 Laender (German states) that seeks to allow sports betting only and with significant additional restrictions for the online offer, restrictions that do not apply to land-based operators,” the company said.

The company is also concerned that Schleswig-Holstein is considering reversing course to fall back into line with the rest of Germany.

“Whilst we welcome the move to regulate the online gaming market in Germany, this must be in a consistent and coherent manner in-line with EU law,” the company said.

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