he country is set to implement a new online gambling regulatory regime later this year.
The Curaçao-heaquartered operator has said in a short email sent to its local gambling customers that it was leaving the market for regulatory reasons. Pinnacle was not the first major company to depart Slovenia this year. Online poker brand 888poker packed and left in January.
As mentioned above, the new iGaming regulations are still to be implemented in Slovenia, which means that the provision of unlicensed operations is not explicitly illegal in the country yet. However, it seems that both Pinnacle and 888poker have decided to go by the book and potentially return to the market when there are official licenses up for grabs.
PokerStars – another major industry player – left Slovenia’s iGaming market in the summer of 2016. The poker room’s exit from the country did not come as a big surprise, particularly given its post-Black Friday tendency to avoid jurisdictions on the brink of regulation.
Slovenia has been working on its new iGaming regulatory regime for almost four years now. It was in 2016 when the country informed the European Commission that it had drafted new laws by which the local industry would be regulated. Said laws are expected to come into force anytime soon. Yet, it is still unknown when first licenses would be granted by local authorities.
The announcement about Pinnacle leaving Slovenia came a fortnight after the gambling company announced its departure from Poland. It cited similar reasons for the closure of its Polish operations – willingness to comply with local regulations.
Poland is to adopt new iGaming laws next month. However, according to industry experts the reorganized market may not be very appealing due to the way betting operations are to be taxed. Poland-facing betting operators will have to pay a 12% tax on betting turnover, in contrast to the greater part of European regulated jurisdictions where revenue is used for tax base.