After affiliate marketing ban, Italy looks to reduce operator numbers

Italy online gambling

Italy has laid out plans to restrict online gambling licences from 85 to 50 by 2023. This leads on from advertising bans made earlier this year, which included a halt on affiliate marketing.

The desired changes were outlined in the country’s Five Star/ Democratic coalition’s first Budget Law Decree. This was published by Agenzia delle dogane e dei Monopoli (ADM), which oversees regulation within the Italian gambling industry.

Rising costs

The new proposed permits will cost €2 million, running for nine years from 2023 onwards. Comparatively, a number of operators already existent here – such as The Stars Group and William Hill – obtained licences for €200,000. However, these expire at the end of 2022.

Applications for new licences will begin to be processed from either 2021 or 2022. Companies can pay in two instalments. The initial one needs to be at least half of the overall cost, and within 30 days of a permit being granted. Payment number two also has to be within 30 days, but after the agreement is signed.

Stricter gambling regulations in Italy 

In addition to the number of operators and licensing costs, the number of slot machines across Italy will be limited to 250,000. Video lottery terminals will be capped at 58,000, with no more gaming points of sale being allowed. Moreover, there’ll be 2,800 gaming halls.

These changes are a continuation of numerous advertising bans that have come into effect in 2019. To start with, operators were banned from traditional gambling advertising forms. The distribution of branded items or advertorials, along promoting products through influencer marketing, have been prohibited as well.

Since then, AGCOM – which enforces regulation within advertising and communications in Italy – has also banned promotional gambling content on advertising hoardings and and strips.