Regulated online gambling in Sweden was a key topic for discussion across the EU for a number of years, with a considerable amount of challenges being level against the Swedish authorities over the years.

The Swedish so-called reregulation was the main item on the agenda of numerous conferences and expos across all the EU, until the new Swedish Gambling Act finally came into force on the 1st January, 2019.  From then onwards it has become amply clear that targeting Swedish customers without a licence issued by the Swedish Gambling Authority (SGA), (aka. Spelinspektionen) is considered illegal.  This also made it equally clear that Sweden could no longer be considered a grey market for operators planning to access the Swedish market.

Similar to other national regulators, the SGA is responsible for ensuring that the Swedish gaming and gambling market is legal, safe and reliable, and is responsible for issuing permits for lotteries and other forms of gambling. In addition, it is also tasked with the overall supervision and control of all forms of gambling and lottery activities in Sweden. The SGA is controlled by the Ministry of Finance and its Board is appointed by the Government.

The below verticals fall under the responsibility of the SGA:

  • Online Casino
  • Slots
  • Poker
  • Bingo
  • Betting
  • Sports Betting
  • Lotteries

The Spelinspektionen is also responsible for providing training and information on gambling and lottery legislation as well as act as an advisor to Government on gaming/gambling markets, at a local and international level.

In Sweden there are predominantly six types of licences, but two of them are mostly utilised by international gambling operators.

In addition, there are other activities which, although requiring an approval/permit from the Swedish Gambling Authority (SGA), such do not necessarily need to be covered by a licence.

The most relevant licences for online gambling operators are surely the licence which is needed to offer betting and the licence which is needed to offer commercial online gambling to players in Sweden.

  • Licence for Betting – In Sweden, a licence issued by the SGA is needed to offer any type of betting, be it through authorised land-based premises, and also if offered online. All types of betting need to be covered by this licence, otherwise they would be considered illegal.  Betting on any sports events, including horse racing, betting on virtual sports races/events and also what is known as betting on lotteries (betting on the outcome of lottery draws), is covered under this licence and thus cannot be offered without.  In Sweden, betting on events where most of the players are under 18 years of age or betting on the performance of financial markets (spread betting), is prohibited.
  • Licence for online gambling – This licence covers online casinos, hence includes all traditional casino games, slots, roulettes, blackjack and other online casino table games. It also covers bingo and online poker, the latter being extremely popular in Sweden, with some of the world’s brightest and most renowned players hailing from this country, having won a number of prestigious poker tournaments worldwide.
  • Licence for gambling on ships in international waters – This licence is somewhat similar to the licence issued by the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) and covers gambling activity which takes place onboard international ships, mainly Cruise Liners. Such licence covers casino type table games and slots.
  • Licence for land-based gambling – Such licence focuses more on the activity which takes place inside physical premises.  Such premises may or may not require additional approvals, but in terms of the licence per se, it covers some casino type games, and mainly slots (gambling machines). This licence doesn’t allow operators to run a brick and mortar casino but instead it covers forms of land-based gambling in hotels, restaurants or other approved premises.
  • Licence for state monopoly – In Sweden there are four land-based casinos called Casino Cosmopol, located in Sundsvall, Stockholm, Gothenburg, and Malmö respectively. Apart from covering the activity which takes place inside these four casinos, this licence also allows the state monopoly to offer lotteries.
  • Licences for good causes lotteries – This licence is predominantly used for lotteries organised by charities, bingo events and some forms of pool betting, which have the main objective of collecting funds for good causes.

In Sweden, only Business to Consumer (B2C) operators are required to be in possession of a licence issued by the SGA, but discussions on whether to require licensing for Business to Business (B2B) operators are currently underway. SGA would be the Authority issuing such licences, should the decision to proceed with a similar requirement be approved by the Swedish authorities.

A Swedish licence is valid for a period of five years, unless otherwise specified by the SGA.

SWEDEN Administrative & Licence Fees
In Sweden gaming tax is set at 18% of the Gross Gaming Revenue (GGR).  In practice GGR is worked out by deducting the winnings from the wagers, but different jurisdictions may at times adopt a slightly different model, allowing (or not) the deduction of other, mainly marketing expenses. Gaming tax is due on a monthly basis. Apart from the gaming tax, online gambling operators must pay an annual supervisory fee to the Swedish Gambling Authority (SGA), apart from the applicable licence fees. In the first year of operation, whether or not the above GGR thresholds are met, gambling operators need to pay a fixed supervisory fee of 450,000 SEK (€44,595) for every licence.
Supervisory Fees (Annual)
Annual GGRSupervisory Fee
Less than 10m SEK30,000 SEK – €2,973
10m SEK to 20m SEK60,000 SEK – €5,946
20m SEK to 50m SEK120,000 SEK – €11,892
50m SEK to 100m SEK240,000 SEK – €23,784
100m SEK to 200m SEK300,000 SEK – €29,730
200m SEK to 500m SEK400,000 SEK – €39,640
More than 500m SEK500,000 SEK – €49,550
Licence and other applicable fees:
Online Gambling Licence400,000 SEK – €39,640
Betting Licence400,000 SEK – €39,640
Online Gambling Licence & Betting Licence700,000 SEK – €69,370
Licence Renewal Fee300,000 SEK – €29,730
Amendment of Licence150,000 SEK – €14,865
Amendment of Key Person800 SEK – €79

At IGA Group, we are committed to providing the best possible service to our clients, by using our wealth of experience and knowledge to maximise the potential of their business. We have years of experience in the gaming sector, both through previous employment with gaming companies, but also through software companies providing technical solutions and also through various consultancy engagements both at a strategic, operational and regulatory level.

Our expertise covers the whole spectrum of operator activities: legal, finance, operations, online gaming regulation, compliance, AML, technical, licensing, corporate, SEO, support, company formation, mergers and acquisitions and more.

Having assisted companies in obtaining gaming licences in Malta, UK, Romania and Curaçao, we pride ourselves for being one of Malta’s most experienced iGaming service providers.