NOGA warns of KOA advertising irregularities harming conduct  duties 

Peter-Paul de Goeij, Managing Director of NOGA – The Netherlands Online Gambling Association – has criticised the advertising framework of the KOA Act regime that will be launched on 1 October, regulating a new Dutch online gambling marketplace.

Issuing a response to final advertising/marketing guidance outlined by Dutch gambling regulator Kansspelautoriteit (KSA) – de Goeij warned of irregularities in the make-up of KOA advertising rules.

Of significance, NOGA noted TV broadcast restrictions, limiting KOA licensed online gambling operators to three adverts per commercial slot – a rule that will not be observed by Dutch-licensed lottery and land-based operators.

NOGA cited that the irregular rules on remote operators for TV advertising were in conflict with the level-playing field provisions that KSA had stipulated when developing the mandate of the KOA Regime.

“This code does not go far enough. The limit of three gambling advertisements per block applies only to internet gambling advertisements. So, in addition to three advertisements for online gambling, Holland Casino, Gaston and Koning TOTO will be allowed to advertise their offline offerings without any restrictions,” de Goeij remarked.

In its response, NOGA has called for KOA remote operators and traditional land-based incumbents to agree on a workable solution to avoid the saturation of gambling advertising infringing on Dutch audiences.

KSA chairman René Jansen had previously warned KOA operators of their duties in respecting the Dutch advertising code, in which KSA will carry out its assessment of advertising conduct as part of its first-stage evaluation of the KOA regime’s adoption, implementation and proceedings. 

The launch of the KOA regime will see land-based and remote operators observe a Games of Chance watershed advertising restriction on TV broadcasts between 6 am and 7 pm.

KSA has placed several restrictions on incentivising customers, in which bonuses cannot be used as promotional offers and campaign content cannot feature endorsements by athletes or celebrities.    

The KOA regime will implement the highest standards on database management, where incumbents are expected to track all player advertising engagements and cannot use data to re-target or incentivise players to wager more on platforms and products. 

“We support the code, but with the important addition that that cross-sector agreement of advertising volume control, is absolutely necessary and I would like to invite all colleagues, the media parties and the broadcasters – to get around the table in a coalition of willing, to jointly prevent a gambling advertising avalanche.” de Goeij commented on KOA duties and expectations.

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