The first year of regulation in Portugal has ended with promising results.
The country's gambling watchdog, Serviço Regulaçao e Inspeçao de Jogos do Turismo de Portugal (SRIJ), has published its full-year report, revealing more than satisfying performance during 2017.
Strong Performance And High Taxes
According to the report, during the twelve months of 2017, the Portuguese gambling industry grossed €122.6 million. However, €54.2 million of this sum was taken by the government, mainly due to the country's tax regime of 12% on sports betting turnover.
Many believe such a strict tax policy will have to be changed since it's regarded as the biggest obstacle to the further expansion of Portugal's market.
The last quarter of the year saw a record-breaking performance, with €36.5 million in revenue being an all-time high. Seven locally-licensed operators took home recorded a year-on-year revenue increase of around €10 million, and a neat improvement of €7 when compared to the previous quarter.
Further Growth Expected This Year
During the three-month period ending on December 31, 2017, sports betting recorded a 26% rise in revenue over Q3, taking home €20.5 million. Since May 2016, and the launch of the Portuguese online gambling market, sports betting has been the leading source of income for the country's operators, with the vertical reaching €68.1 million in revenue during this year.
Online casino, including poker, grossed €54.4 million, with slots accounting for 45% of the entire revenue. Poker cash games were the second largest contributor at 19.7%, closely followed by French roulette at 19.2%, blackjack at 9.2% and poker tournaments at 6.7%.
However, there's more to come in 2018.
Further growth is expected thanks to the online poker market after the SRIJ recently greenlighted the shared liquidity model of poker pools. France and Spain are already a part of that pool, while Italy is getting ready to join in the coming period.
The shared liquidity has a lot of potential for growth, and could significantly impact the entire Portuguese market. We're pretty sure this will reflect on the results in the year's first quarter.