Norway’s gambling regulator Lotteri-og stiftelsestilsynet has completed the first stage of its process to award the country’s five new lottery licences, although it still has more applicants than available concessions.
The regulator received a total of eight applications for a license by the September 2015 deadline, with the companies fighting for one of five nine-year licenses. The certification is being awarded following amendments to lottery regulations to expand the Norwegian market by allowing charitable organisations to offer draw-based games.
Each licensee is limited to a turnover of NOK300m (€31.84m) with at least half of all money raised to be distributed to charitable causes. The operators can only offer maximum prize money of NOK2m, and only 15 per cent of turnover can be used for marketing.
Of the eight applicants, only two were originally approved to progress through the first round - Norges Røde Kors (Norwegian Red Cross) and UNICEF Komiteen i Norge.
Three applicants - Stiftelsen WWF Verdens Naturfond/SOS-Barnebyer Norge Stiftelsen, Plan Norge/Care Norge, and Strømmestiftelsen - were subsequently passed through phase one following an appeal to the Gaming Board.
A further two applicants were returned to the regulator for further scrutiny following an appeal - Right to Play (Fotolotto AS) and Regnskogfondet Caritas Norge Utviklingsfondet (Donira AS). The final applicant, Norsk Folkehjelp/Stiftelsen Flyktningehjelpen/Stiftelsen Atlas-Alliansen, had its appeal rejected and is now out of the running.
The regulator will only award five licences, meaning a further two companies will be cut from the current list. Should more than five companies meet the conditions for a licence, the final licensees will be chosen by drawing lots.