An updated survey has revealed that the online gambling market in Spain has risen by a whopping 274% in the last five years.
Profit from online gambling and betting services rose from a total of €117.2 million (or $128.97 million) during the first quarter of 2014 to €439.1 million (or $483.67 million) during the first quarter of 2019. Figures gathered from across the rest of the Eurozone as a whole have normally been much lower because of regulatory concerns continuing to wreak havoc in the industry.
With the Spanish economy rising by around 0.5% each quarter throughout the last two years, the survey intimates that online gambling revenue could rise over €500 million (or $550 million) in the next few years.
The largest increase in revenue happened between Q3 and Q4 in 2017 moving from €274.5 million (or $302.36 million) to €364.4 million (or $401.39 million). This emphasizes growth of 32% in a single quarter.
What’s interesting is that this growth is identical to that of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies during the same period. With some online casinos already accepting Bitcoin, the two could be related although cryptocurrencies have seen a steep decline in usage since December 2017.
While income may be on the upswing, research has indicated that only around 1% of Spain’s adult population gamble on a consistent basis. The topic was raised in the June publication of Gambling and Society 2019 after the report was released by CEJUEGO, the industry association representing Spain’s private gambling operators, and the Institute of Policy and Governance of the Carlos III University of Madrid.
However, despite bigger online competition, it seems that local casinos are the ones cashing in. In Madrid alone, another 40 gambling houses have risen up since 2013, which is an increase of 300%.
Spain has also gained the spotlight of late for having Europe’s highest proportion of teenage gamblers. One in five teens told the Federation of Rehabilitated Gamblers and Madrid’s Association of Psychologists that they gambled. The study took into consideration the attitudes toward gambling of people aged between 14 and 21 years old.
In order to battle the potential for harm, the Spanish government announced that it wants to prohibit gambling advertisements, identical to the blanket ban that is being enforced in Italy. Spain has already banned tobacco and alcohol ads on television.
However, there is currently no limit as to what time of day gambling can be advertised, or which celebrities can promote it.