Italy iGaming Dashboard: April 2020

9 April 2020

While Italy’s sports betting market struggled after novel coronavirus (Covid-19) resulted in a nationwide lockdown and the suspension sporting events, the market grew year-on-year in March, thanks to online casino and poker.

Revenue across all online verticals was up 24.3% year-on-year at €174.6m, though this represented a 3.2% decline compared to February.

This sequential decline was down to the lack of major sporting events, with all high-profile leagues suspended as of 13 March. Across online and retail channels, betting revenue was down 59.3% at €75.3m.

The decline in retail was especially pronounced, after all non-essential shops and establishments were closed from 10 March. Over-the-counter revenue was down 73.7% month-over-month at €25.9m.

Across both channels, Playtech's Snaitech led the vertical, with 15.2% market share, ahead of Goldbet - the retail market leader - on 12.8%. Bet365, meanwhile, led the way online, with 17.2% market share.

“The lack of betting events and the lockdown in Italy with majority of the population being at home, have lead in the past month to a growth in the Italian online gaming market and decrease in betting,” said Ficom Leisure’s Christian Tirabassi.

This is evidenced by the fact online casino was up 20.3% at €94.0m, with the leading online operators shoring up their positions in the market. PokerStars, the long-time market leader, grew its share of revenue to 12.6%, increasing its lead over second-placed Sisal, which also saw its share grow to 8.3%.

However, the most eye-catching growth was seen in the poker vertical. Tournament revenue more than doubled to €16.1m, while cash game revenue grew 97.3% to €10.0m.

Tirabassi pointed out that after three years of poker decline, the market was enjoying something of a renaissance. Earlier this month GVC Holdings’ partypoker brand secured a licence to return to Italy after a four year absence, suggesting operators are eager to take advantage of the uptick in activity.

PokerStars is once again the main beneficiary, accounting for 63.7% of tournament revenue, and 48.5% of cash game revenue. Snaitech was a distant second for tournaments, with a 6.0% market share, and Lottomatica came second in cash games, on 5.3%.

All data and figures from the regulator are processed by leading European corporate advisory firm Ficom Leisure, a specialist in all segments of the betting and gaming sector.

Ficom Leisure also provides monthly figures on the New Jersey online market in the New Jersey iGaming Dashboard, Pennsylvania in the Pennsylvania iGaming Dashboard, Indiana in the Indiana iGaming Dashboard and Iowa in the Iowa iGaming Dashboard, all of which are available on iGB North America.

It also provides quarterly figures on the Spanish online market in the Spain iGaming Dashboard, and on the Portuguese market in the Portugal iGaming Dashboard.