After a TV report exposed Betent, a brand under Entain’s BetCity, the Dutch gambling regulator Kansspelautoriteit (KSA) has launched an investigation and subsequently issued a fine of €400,000. The regulator found that Betent had violated the Netherlands’ gambling legislation by targeting advertisements towards young adults aged 18 to 24.
Following claims made in the investigative TV program Kassa, the KSA initiated an investigation into Betent. The TV report alleged that Betent had sent advertisements to players between the ages of 18 and 24 from October 2021 to March 2022. The KSA’s findings revealed that Betent had indeed sent messages about its games on Betcity.nl without implementing measures to prevent them from reaching individuals under the age of 24, resulting in the regulatory action.
According to Dutch law, operators are prohibited from advertising to individuals in the age group of 18 to 24 due to the belief that they are “more susceptible to gambling addiction” as their “brains are still developing.” The Kansspelautoriteit (KSA), the Dutch gambling regulator, took action against Betent, as it was found to have violated this regulation by sending advertisements to this age group without implementing appropriate measures to prevent such targeting.
The Kansspelautoriteit (KSA) has been consistently imposing fines for advertising breaches in recent months. Operators such as bet365’s Hillside New Media Malta, JOI Gaming, and Toto Online have all received similar penalties for violating advertising regulations. Notably, the Netherlands is also gearing up for the implementation of a comprehensive ban on untargeted gambling advertisements starting from July 1, which coincides with Belgium’s introduction of a similar ban in its neighboring country. These regulatory measures reflect a growing trend towards stricter regulations on gambling advertisements across the region.
KSA Chairman René Jansen emphasized the significance of adhering to the regulations that prohibit games of chance providers from targeting young adults with advertising. He stated that the KSA closely monitors compliance with these rules, and highlight the importance of respecting these regulations designed to protect vulnerable target groups. This underscores the KSA’s commitment to upholding responsible gambling practices and ensuring that operators comply with the law to safeguard the interests of vulnerable individuals.
“The law prohibits games of chance providers from targeting young adults with advertising. The KSA monitors this closely and with these four sanctions it once again underlines how important it is that providers of games of chance respect the rules that are intended to protect vulnerable target groups.”
Betent’s advertising breaches occurred prior to Entain’s acquisition of Bet City, which was announced in June 2022 and completed in January, as part of its re-entry into the Dutch market. Bet City has accepted the KSA’s ruling, but has expressed that it believed the language of the regulations was ambiguous and unclear. However, Bet City also stated that it welcomed the ruling as it provided clarity on the matter. It is evident that Bet City acknowledges the regulatory requirements and is committed to complying with the regulations in order to operate responsibly in the Dutch gambling market.