Brazil’s VP Gives Nod to Sports Betting Regulations During Playtech Talks

Posted on: July 12, 2023, 06:49h. 

Last updated on: July 12, 2023, 01:28h.

It’s been over a year since Brazil’s Chamber of Deputies approved the Gaming Regulatory Framework established by Bill No. 2234, and the legislation is still pending debate in the Senate. However, it might be close to resuming its legislative trek, as the initiative reportedly received the approval of Brazilian Vice President Geraldo Alckmin.

Brazil's VP Geraldo Alckmin
Brazil’s VP Geraldo Alckmin in a political address. He has reportedly acknowledged his support of regulated sports betting in the country. (Image: Agência Brasil)

News about the treatment of the provisional measure on the regulation of betting in Parliament is elusive, but continues to trickle in. Brazilian media outlets report that Alckmin held a meeting in his office with the CEO of Playtech, Mor Weizer, to analyze the development of the market.

No specific details of the meeting between the two have been made public. But it did surface in the Brazilian press that Alckmin acknowledged his support of the regulation of gambling and betting. Perhaps this will be the jolt the Senate needs to push the issue along.

Brazil Sports Betting Bill Languishes

Playtech is seeking to position itself in the emerging markets of Latin America. The publicly-traded company provides technology for casinos in Las Vegas and Macau, and holds licenses in Argentina, Peru, Mexico, and elsewhere.

Local media reported that the meeting took place on Tuesday, July 4, and was organized by federal representative Felipe Carreras. He’s one of the promoters of the bill, and told CNN after the meeting that Alckmin was “in favor” of the legislation.

[Playtech believes] that Brazil has everything to be the second (largest) market in the world. The investments in each complex of casinos in integrated resorts is more than US$1 billion,” asserted Brazilian federal deputy Carreras.

Playtech’s reach extends across all facets of gambling, from casino games to social games, and from lotteries to sports betting. It’s likely the meeting wasn’t convened to talk only about the sports betting bill.

In addition to being Brazil’s VP, Alckmin also serves as the Minister of Development, Industry, and Foreign Trade. As such, he has significant influence over the participation of foreign companies in the country. With discussions about possibly expanding the casino and lotteries markets, Playtech’s agenda is clear.

Counting Down the Days

Brazil’s delay in approving sports betting legislation can be partially blamed on former President Jair Bolsonaro, who intentionally stalled discussions and convinced certain Senators to align themselves with him.

Bolsonaro, who recently received an eight-year ban from politics for illegal meddling, lost the presidential elections. But this didn’t stop him from standing in the way. As one of his last measures before leaving office, he tried once again to block the bill’s progress.

As a new administration took over Brazil, it facilitated the revival of the legislation, and the government has been trying to move it quicker. The Minister of Finance, José Manssur, has been heavily involved in establishing the framework, and reportedly sees a regulated market coming soon.

In speaking during a recent soccer conference, Manssur shared his plans. In his estimation, Brazil’s sports betting market could have its regulations in place by July 17.