France Online Gambling Report Shows Significant Growth in 2019

  • ARJEL's quarterly report indicates an overall revenue growth from Q2 2018
  • Sports betting, horse racing, and poker have seen increases across the board
  • Sports betting is the dominant segment with 62 percent of Q2 operator revenue
Online gambling revenue in France increased 13.6 percent from Q2 2018 to Q2 2019, according to the latest report from ARJEL.

Overall revenue up sharply from last year

The Autorité de régulation des jeux en ligne (ARJEL), France’s online gambling regulatory body, issued its quarterly online gaming data report on Monday.

Total online gambling revenue generated by the country’s operators was €343 million ($382.51m) for the second quarter (April to June), a 13.6 percent increase from the same quarter last year (€302 million, or $336.78m). Figures are down 3.9 percent from the first quarter of 2019.

Bettors flocked to online sportsbooks

Online sports betting led the way. Gross gaming turnover was €1.199 billion ($1.34b) for the second quarter, with revenue of €214 million ($238.65m). These show increases of 19.7 percent and 18.2 percent respectively over the same quarter a year ago.

ARJEL cites the rising number of bettors as a large reason for the corresponding increase in revenue.

The report notes this bump as particularly impressive because the 2018 FIFA World Cup spanned part of the 2018 second quarter, producing €218 million ($244.22m) in bets. The Women’s World Cup covered part of this year’s Q2 but generated just €49 million ($54.64m) in wagers.

ARJEL cites the rising number of bettors as a large reason for the corresponding increase in revenue. There were 608,000 weekly active player accounts in Q2 2019, versus 527,000 in Q2 2018.

Horse racing a distant second

Horse racing produced €269 million ($299.98m) in total wagers, up from €250 million ($278.79m) in the same quarter last year, a 7.6 percent increase. Revenue was €66 million ($73.6m), an 8.2 percent jump from the €61 million ($68.03m) of Q2 2018.

Interestingly, bonuses that operators gave to customers were down significantly from the same quarter last year – more than one third – but both wagers and revenue still went up.

As in sports betting, the number of weekly active customers can be used to explain the success. This past quarter, online horse racing operators in France had an average of 142,000 active customers per week. In the second quarter of 2018, that number was 136,000.

Poker smallest segment, but showed solid growth

Online poker numbers also trended upwards, although margins were slimmer. Total turnover for the quarter was €1.557 billion ($1.74b), a 7.4 percent increase from the €1.45 billion ($1.62b) of last year’s second quarter. Revenue was just €63 million ($70.26m), up from €60 million ($66.91m), indicating a 5 percent increase.

Both tournament and cash game numbers were encouraging for France online poker. Tournament entries totaled €546 million ($608.89m), a 4 percent increase from the same quarter last year. Cash game wagers were €1.011 billion ($1.13b), a 9.3 percent leap from Q2 2018. Both figures represent improvements over the first quarter’s movement.

Poker operators made these gains without tempting players with more bonuses. Bonuses were down by 25 percent from Q2 2018 to Q2 2019.

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