Gaming authority greenlights Malta licence for US fantasy sports giant

Fantasy sports provider Draftkings has been granted a controlled skill games license by the Malta Gaming Authority, paving the way for European expansion

yannick_pace
Yannick Pace
30 January 2017, 11:13am
Draftkings has been granted a controlled skill games license by the Malta Gaming Authority (Photo: DraftKings/Facebook)
Draftkings has been granted a controlled skill games license by the Malta Gaming Authority (Photo: DraftKings/Facebook)
Draftkings - a fantasy sports provider that allows users to win money through the game – has been granted a controlled skill games licence that will allow it to operate in Malta and a host of other European Union states.

The company, allows its users to place bets on fantasy sports related activities, with users winning money based on their ability to predict professional sports results. As such, the game is considered a game of skill, rather than chance.

Speaking to the Wall Street Journal (WSJ), Jeffrey Haas, the company’s chief international officer said that the company intends to expand to Germany by the end of March, adding that the country has a long tradition of fantasy sports activities.

“We looked at what allowed us to become successful in the U.S., and one of the key factors was that we came into a marketplace where there was already a strong culture of fantasy sports,” Mr. Haas told the WSJ.

There is some controversy in the US regarding whether the company’s activities constitute gambling, with the company arguing that the game is purely based on skill. Despite its assertion, that it is not a gambling operation, it was granted a gambling licence in order to be allowed to operate in the UK.

Last November, the company reached an agreement to merge with FanDuel making it the largest company in the daily fantasy sports industry, with a combined 5 million users.

yannick_pace
Yannick joined MaltaToday as a journalist in 2016. His main areas of interest are politics...