Italy’s Online Casino Market Lost Ground in February

Posted on: April 1, 2022, 09:31h. 

Last updated on: April 1, 2022, 01:05h.

Italy’s online casino market continues to show strength this year, even as it slips. February’s gross gaming revenue dropped from its January level, but was still better than where it was a year ago.

Traveling to and around Italy is easier than it was months ago. This could be part of the reason online gaming revenue dropped in February, with more people spending time outdoors (Image: Travel + Leisure)

In January, overall online gaming activity in Italy recorded gross gaming revenue (GGR) of €324.9 million (US$358.8 million). In eight months, this was its highest level and joined several record-breaking months seen in the past year.

Ficom Leisure has put together the figures for February, reporting a 22.3% drop from the previous month. The final tally was €147.7 million (US$163.03 million). While a decline from January, it was still better than February of last year.

The online gaming race tightened significantly in February. Flutter Entertainment-owned PokerStars was the definitive leader in January but only controlled 8.67% of the market last month. However, this was just slightly ahead of Sisal, which grabbed 8.57%. Coming in third was Playtech’s Snai at 8.54%.

Italian Online Competition Increases

Rounding out the top five were Lottomatica, with its 7.41%, and 888 at 6.84%. Others that made the top-10 list include Eurobet (6.34%), Goldbet (5.09%), and Betsson’s StarCasino (4.37%).

Poker interest continued to wane. In January, it had already dropped, and tournament revenue fell 28.1% in February. It closed at €8.2 million (US$9.05 million) but followed a tough month. January’s total was the highest recorded in the past 12 months. However, this was also 12.8% lower than a year earlier.

Poker cash game action fell even more. Overall, the segment recorded €5.6 million (US$6.18 million), a month-over-month plummet of 25.3%. That was also a 16.5% drop from February of last year.

PokerStars ruled both the tournament and cash game segments. It only controlled a little less than half of the tournament segment, but this was 400% greater than Sisal, which ended in second place. In addition, PokerStars had control of 42.51% of the cash games, considerably outpacing Goldbet and its second-place finish of 7.4%.

Sports Betting Activity Down in February

Italians couldn’t find many interesting sports betting options either in February. Land-based and online sportsbooks recorded total revenue of €204.7 million (US$226.03 million), 3% less than in January.

On the bright side, the figure was an improvement over a year ago. In February of last year, the combined sports betting revenue was around €170 million (US$187.71 million).

Snai has command of the online sports betting segment and once had control over the entire segment. Its market share for online sports betting was 13.8%, barely beating Sisal at 13.4%. Based on total revenue, though, Sisal was in second, with 15.6%, edged out by Goldbet’s 15.7%.

Overall, online sports betting was less popular than its land-based counterpart. The segment was responsible for generating €122.1 million (US$134.8 million), a 5.2% drop from January. It is also the lowest figure for the segment since October of last year.

Online operator Microgaming hopes it can move up on the list. It signed a distribution agreement with Oryx Gaming last week. It will add content from the Bragg Gaming Group-owned company’s Atomic Slot Lab studio, which the company promises delivers “Las Vegas energy” to the online segment.