Italian iPoker Market Grows 7.7% in MayJune 8, 2016 10:37 am
Italy’s online gambling industry has posted an impressive 30.3% increase in revenues to €34.7 million in May, according to the latest results released by Italian gaming news outlet Agimeg.it. As a result, the country’s overall iGaming revenues for the first five months of this year are currently up by 35.6% at €175 million, compared to the same period of time in 2015.
Leading Italy’s online casino market is Lottomatica with a 12.2% share of revenues, followed by Sisal (9.2%), William Hill (6.9%), and Gala Coral’s Eurobet (6.1%), while Pokerstars has managed to secure a 5.8% slice of the market after only adding online casino games to its gambling mix one year ago.
In the meantime, Italy’s online poker vertical saw its revenues grow by 7.7% to €44.4 million in May, with tournament earnings rising by 18.6% to €38.4 million year-over-year, but cash game revenues sliding by 9.6% to €5.9 million. Naturally, PokerStars still remains the main force to be reckoned with as far as online poker i Italy is concerned, and PokerStars.it currently commands a 72.8% share of the country’s tournament poker market, as well as a 47.6% share of its cash game offering.
Despite the encouraging poker figures, however, Italy’s ring-fenced market has resulted a less free and attractive playing environment than the more liberal open market of the U.K. Curiously, other countries like France and Spain have also chosen to pursue a similar closed market approach as Italy, although there are now signs that the situation may be about to change. Last month, it was reported that the French Senate was considering the possibility of sharing its poker player pools with those of other European countries, including Italy, which would certainly help to alleviate the strain put on each of the countries individual iPoker markets. Nevertheless, it is still likely to be a long, drawn out process before any such development is agrred upon, and put into practice.