Finland’s National Police Board has reported that on April 7, it prohibited BML Group from marketing its services in the country, after the operator was found guilty of breaching the Finnish Lotteries Act. As a result, the operator was slapped with a $2.6 million conditional fine to reinforce the prohibition.
BML Group, which is owned by Betsson, had advertised to Finnish customers on multiple channels and, according to the board, for an extensive period. The company was warned to cease its promotional activity on multiple occasions and, although it did introduce certain changes, continued to advertise.
As a result, the National Police Board concluded that BML Group has a significant financial interest in continuing its operations in the region. The board concluded that the operator’s breaches are severe but it did undertake measures to reduce marketing – a fact that was taken into account when determining the size of the conditional fine.
If the company continues to misbehave, the National Police Board warned, steps will be taken to impose the conditional fine.
BML Group Can No Longer Promote in Mainland Finland
Under the prohibition handed to BML Group, the operator cannot promote its products in the country and target customers in Mainland Finland. The prohibition covers all marketing communications, partnerships with Finnish celebrities, podcasts and video podcasts targeting Finnish customers and articles in Finnish promoting BML Group’s gambling services to local audiences.
In addition, BML Group is prohibited from marketing its gambling products on sites other than its own in a manner that has the group pay to the marketer.
Furthermore, BML Group must not publish any sales promotion material targeting Finland even on its gambling websites. All previously posted materials must be removed, the National Police Board added.
The board noted that it will add the operator to its list of administered payment blocks once the prohibition comes into force. The decision will enter into force on June 3 this year. The National Police Board noted that the operator can try to appeal the fine by that date.
Last year, Finland discussed the idea of eliminating the state monopoly, currently held by the Veikkaus. The latter entity’s deputy CEO, Velipekka Nummikoski, questioned the current system and told a local news outlet that the market may be in need of a change.
This discussion came amid concerning offshore gambling rates in the country that suggested the monopoly system might not be working as intended.