As the Dutch gaming market continues to evolve, Gaming in Holland hosted industry experts to discuss how they believe the region will grow and licenses will increase. 

Titled ‘The Dutch online market opening & beyond’, the panel was hosted by Willem Van Oort and featured insights from: Geraldine Huijssoon, Head of the Supervision and Operator Department at the Netherlands Gambling Authority, Netherlands’ leading gaming lawyer Justin Franssen, Head of the Gaming & Gaming Practice Group at Kalff Katz & Franssen and Frank Tolboom, Partner at Kalff Katz & Franssen.

The panel mapped out the belief that an increase in licenses for the Dutch market is likely in the future, although the barrier to entry is relatively high for the market.

Franssen maintained that the transition has been challenging for operators, with the unique starting position of the market, leading to a large number of players being drawn to a small number of operators. 

He also underlined that there had been challenging start in terms of advertising, with the abundance of marketing content in the region leading to backlash and drawing criticism from certain quarters. 

Moving forward, unlike the first round of license announcements, new licensees will not be announced in tranches, but rather as soon as the individual licensing processes are complete. 

Geraldine Huijssoon, Head of the Supervision and Operator Department at the Netherlands Gambling Authority, added: “We ended up, for now, with eleven licenses having been granted. This is, however, in no way the final number. We expect to announce several new licensees within the next few weeks and to have a more complete picture by this summer. 

“I would not be surprised if the final number of licensees would reach 20-30 in total. In this regard, it should also be noted that license applications in perfect order can be processed in less than six months.”

Frank Tolboom also discussed the regulatory climate within Holland, as he analysed where applicants are potentially falling short – taking a closer look at the liability assessment and what steps need to be taken to ensure entry into the market.

Acquisitions are also an increased obstacle, which sometimes hinder market entry for operators, with firms required to be entirely sure of the compliance capabilities of the brand they’re entering into business with.

Gaming in Holland: Assessing the country’s regulatory climate