ANJ - French sports betting thrives following Q3 bounceback

ANJ: French sports betting thrives with Q3 bounceback

L’Autorité Nationale des Jeux (ANJ) has celebrated a ‘spectacular’ performance during Q3 trading, as the French gambling market begins its bounceback from global disruptions brought about by the pandemic.

Praising its recovery from Q2 trading, which resulted in a loss of activity due to the cancellation of sports across the world, ANJ reported that turnover had grown by 25% compared to the previous quarter.

In its statement, the ANJ noted that ‘the market even recovered to a level significantly higher than the one before the health crisis’, with revenue boosted 17% from 2019’s third quarter. Meanwhile, active player accounts also surged 29%.

Sports betting was identified as a key performance driver, with the volume of stakes amounting to €1.6 billion, a jump of 49% compared to Q3 2019 – a ‘record’ which the regulator noted was ‘the highest amount recorded in a quarter for 10 years’.

ANJ stated that sports betting recorded a turnover of €228 million in Q3 2020, however the average spending per player level decreased by 22% to €104.

The Champions League final between Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich saw more than €31 million wagered, becoming the second largest single event following the 2018 FIFA World Cup final between France and Croatia. The nation’s horse racing scene also enjoyed a strong quarter, with customers staking €363 million.

During Q3, the FDJ recorded a 27% increase in sports betting stakes by 27% across both online and retail channels. This performance over the summer period, according to ANJ, ‘made it possible to almost cushion the drop in stakes recorded on this gaming segment in the first half of the year’.

However, Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin, ANJ President, warned of an expectation that operators will increase player protection measures: “This online gambling market recovery must be accompanied by greater accountability from operators,” she said.

“Indeed, unlike the first lockdown, the sports and horse betting gambling offer is widely available and this situation can constitute a breeding ground for the development of excessive or risky practices for people weakened by this unprecedented context.”

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