Appeals Court Squashes Global Gaming’s Dream about Swedish Return

Online casino operator Global Gaming is putting an end to its effort to return to Sweden after the Jönköping Court of Appeal this week backed Spelinspektionen’s decision to revoke the company’s license.

The Swedish Gambling Authority revoked Global Gaming’s license last summer, citing serious shortcomings in the gambling operator’s anti-money laundering and know-your-customer practices. The regulator also ordered the company to suspend its operations in Sweden.

Global Gaming operated its flagship Ninja Casino brand in Sweden through its SafeEnt Limited subsidiary.

The casino operator appealed Spelinspektionen’s decision in several courts, but judges ruled against it every time. Most recently the company turned to the Court of Appeal in Jönköping. That court upheld a previous Administrative Court ruling and rejected Global Gaming’s appeal.

The Appeals Court ruled that the operator has violated several regulations relating to liability for providing gambling services and duty of care and that the company has not complied with rules regarding responsible gambling and consumer protection.

This latest ruling basically means that Global Gaming cannot return to Sweden, which had been its core market prior the license revocation last summer.

Commenting on the latest court ruling, Spelinspektionen said in a statement published on its official website that it welcomes the decision of the Appeals Court and that it is of great importance as it demonstrates how serious violations are punished in the reorganized Swedish market.

Global Gaming Will Not Appeal Latest Court Decision

Global Gaming said Monday that it would not appeal the Court of Appeal’s decision and that it would no longer pursue opportunities to resume operations in Sweden.

The company’s Board of Directors said that Global Gaming has done extensive work for along time to be an operator with “the highest focus on regulatory compliance in all aspects” and that the latest court ruling would not have impact on its current or planned operations as the operator has made significant adjustments to its operations.

Global Gaming is in the process of reviewing a takeover offer from fellow iGaming operator Enlabs that it received last month.

Enlabs tabled a formal offer to acquire all the remaining shares in Global Gaming that it does not own already in a deal that values the latter at SEK450 million (approx. $50 million). Enlabs, a Baltics-focused online gambling operator, made the offer after it increased in August its stake in Global Gaming to 54.06%.

That recent purchase triggered the threshold at which the company was required to make a mandatory takeover offer. Enlabs said that it would pay SEK150 million for the remaining 13.6 million Global Gaming shares.

Global Gaming shareholders now have until November 2 to accept or reject the offer. Enlabs recently secured approval from the Estonian Competition Authority to proceed with the proposed acquisition of Global Gaming.

If Global Gaming’s shareholders give the nod to the transaction, Enlabs will have until November 6 to complete it.

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