In this role, Lycka will be responsible for expanding GVC's licensing and regulatory structure in the U.S. and underscoring the company's commitments to responsible gambling, sports integrity and regulatory compliance.
Lycka will also lead regulatory affairs in Canada and support GVC's Latin America regulatory strategy as the company looks to establish state-regulated offerings in these regions. He will continue his role as trustee of the GVC Foundation and the GVC Foundation US and will relocate to the United States early next year.
Based in the United Kingdom, with licenses in more than 20 countries, GVC Holdings PLC is one of the world's largest sports-betting and gaming groups, operating both online and in the retail sector. The Group employs more than 24,000 people in 20 offices across five continents. In the U.S. the Group operates BetMGM, a joint venture with MGM Resorts, created to capitalize on the opportunities presented by the regulation of sports betting and gaming.
GVC Foundation US is a first-of-its-kind nonprofit dedicated to promoting responsible gambling, sports integrity and corporate compliance in the U.S. The GVC Foundation US coordinates GVC's global corporate social responsibility initiatives with a specific approach to American issues and donates to non-profit organizations with comparable causes.
"The United States presents a tremendous opportunity for GVC Holdings as more states embrace sports gaming in robust and transparent regulatory structures," Lycka explained. "GVC and the GVC Foundation US are at the forefront of this development, demonstrating our commitment to regulatory compliance, sports integrity and responsible gambling. I look forward to leading these programs in the U.S. and Canada."
Rob Hoskin, GVC Holdings' chief governance officer, said, "Martin has already made great strides in his regulatory duties, bringing responsibility, sporting integrity and effective regulation to life in the U.S. Martin's new role is further evidence of our commitment to the strong and growing U.S. market and our ambition to lead this growth."
Lycka, 38, has served as director of regulatory affairs at GVC Holdings since 2018, responsible for licensing and regulatory compliance across GVC's operations in 20 countries. He is also a trustee of the GVC Foundation and the GVC Foundation US. Lycka has been an in-house legal and regulatory counsel to global online gambling operators for more than 11 years.
He serves as a member of the Advisory Board to the National Council on Problem Gambling, the Responsible Gaming Committee of iDEA Growth, and the Gaming Law Advisory Board for the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV) William S. Boyd School of Law. He is also a board member of the European Gaming and Betting Association.
Lycka's US achievements were recently recognized by The Innovation Group, organizers of the Emerging Leaders of Gaming program, and Global Gaming Business Magazine when they announced the winners of the Emerging Leaders of Gaming "40 Under 40," a program that recognizes young professionals making significant impacts in the US gaming industry.
Prior to starting his career in the gambling industry, Lycka worked with inter alia Salans Europe LLP and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic. He graduated from the Prague Law Faculty and earned a LLM degree from the College of Europe in Bruges, Belgium, as well as a LLB degree from the University of Law London. He has authored or co-authored more than 80 academic articles and three books.
In addition to its joint venture with MGM Resorts in the U.S., GVC Holdings also owns a comprehensive portfolio of established brands. Its sports brands include bwin, Coral, Crystalbet, Eurobet, Ladbrokes, Neds International and Sportingbet. Its games brands include CasinoClub, Foxy Bingo, Gala, Gioco Digitale, partypoker and PartyCasino. The Group also owns proprietary technology across all of its core product verticals and, in addition to its B2C operations, provides services to third-party customers on a B2B basis.