On November 30, 2015, the draft law on gambling legalization appeared on the official website of the Ministry of Finance. Although the industry representatives expected for this event, it was a great and pleasant surprise. Finally, hopes turned into reality. The bill has been materialized; it is possible to read, discuss, evaluate, criticize or vice versa praise it.
Slotegrator has decided to dream a little and imagine that a law on gambling legalization has already been adopted. What opportunities will be provided to Ukrainian entrepreneurs? After all, the gambling industry, which has been in the shadows for a long time, will surely attract the attention of many investors and businessmen as being a promising field of activity. Which way should an organizer of gambling business choose based on the new law on gambling in Ukraine?
Imagine that you want to open a land casino in Ukraine. What do you need for this purpose?
First of all, you must be a legal entity, that is a company founded and operating on the territory of Ukraine. The authorized fund of your company should be at least 2 million euros, but it should not include budget or credit funds. In addition, you as an organizer and leader of a gambling establishment must have impeccable business reputation; it means no criminal records or involvement in the fraud.
You can open a casino of your dreams only in special gaming zones, according to the law on gambling.
As indicated in the document on gambling legalization, these territories are considered to be premises of four or five star hotels. If you are thinking of the capital of Ukraine, then the hotel where you want to open your gambling establishment must have at least 200 rooms. If you want to illuminate the province with your casino's lights, the hotel must have at least 120 rooms. In addition, there is an opportunity to open a casino in the lounges of international airports. You are not allowed to open a casino in such premises as education and healthcare institutions, public transport stops, subway stations, museums, parks, etc.
Your casino should be located inside a hotel building and occupy an area including the office accommodations of at least 300 sq. m. Only one gambling establishment can be registered at the same address. The halls must contain at least six gaming tables including roulette. A separate license, the cost of which is fixed in the draft law, should be purchased for each piece of gaming equipment.
In order that your casino operates without interruption, you must purchase a license every year. For a casino in Kiev, such license will cost 1 million euros annually.
In cities with a population of 500 thousand residents, the license will cost 600 thousand euros. In case of smaller settlements with the number of residents less than 500 thousand, a license will cost 300 thousand euros.
Restrictions on casino visiting
After the opening of a casino and the appearance of the first clients, you must follow the rules of your establishment visiting. The casino players cannot be incapacitated or partially capable persons. You have the right to demand proof of identity from each client, whose age is in doubt, as persons under 18 years old are not permitted to visit casinos.
In addition, you are obliged to ask visitors who are in a state alcoholic or narcotic intoxication to leave.
You may decide to open a hall with slot machines. Then you should know the basic requirements for this type of gaming activity.
Requirements to the organization of the operation of establishments with slot machines are very similar to requirements for the organization of the casino operation. An organizer must be a legal entity registered in Ukraine with a registered fund of not less than 2 million euros excluding credit or budget funds.
The hall with slot machines can be located only on the territory of special gaming zones specified in the draft law. The total area of such hall, including an area of office accommodations, should be at least 100 sq. m. The hall must house not less than 40 gaming machines placed in service commences. Technologically determined winning percentage of players on a slot machine must be at least 80% of the amount of accepted bets on such machine, according to the draft law on gambling in Ukraine.
In case of gaming halls with slot machines, there is also a strict system of annual license purchase depending on the settlement where the establishment is located.
Capital - 1 million euros.
A town with a population of 500 thousand residents and more - 600 thousand euros.
A town with a population of less than 500 thousand residents or outside the settlement - 300 thousand euros.
In addition, you will have to pay fixed fee for each slot machine.
It is not a problem for an entrepreneur to open a betting shop
The advantage of betting shop operation is that law permits its activity both online and in land offices.
If you have decided to open a betting shop, you are allowed to do it only in non-residential buildings with a separate entrance. Thus, 4 and 5 star hotels, as in the previous cases, are not suitable. You are not allowed to open a betting shop in residential buildings or unfinished facilities, in buildings where educational or children's institutions are located, in premises of enterprises, medical institutions or pharmacies, cultural or religious institutions.
To open a betting shop you will need to purchase a general license for organization and holding of sports betting in betting shops, which will cost 1.5 million euros annually. In addition, you should make a payment for each license for a betting shop amounting to 3 thousand euros or 1.5 thousand euros depending on the settlement, where such betting shop is situated.
Organization and holding of lotteries
The situation with the organization and conduct of lottery draws is different from the one with other types of gambling activities.
The authors of the law have proposed to hold a competition to determine a single for the whole Ukraine lottery operator. Thus, the lottery market will be monopolized.
Therefore, at this stage, you cannot self-organize lottery draws, but you will be able to take part in competition if you meet its basic requirements .
You must be a legal entity and have the experience of conducting lottery draws at least for five years, including three foreign countries. In addition, you must have a turnover of 3 billion euros in the normal course of doing business. If you do not want to participate in the tender, you can simply wait for the determination of a single operator and then it will issue you a license for holding separate lottery draws in Ukraine. The cost of the license has been unknown so far and will be determined after the competition.
Online casino with UA domain
The draft law on gambling in Ukraine stipulates the permission for the organization of gaming activities and online casino operation. The price of a license for this type of gambling activity is one of the highest and amounts to 1.5 million euros. The law lists a number of requirements relating to the organization of online casinos. They are requirements to technical support and casino web page, which must compulsorily have the UA domain and provide the player with an interface option in Ukrainian.
If you have decide to be engaged in gambling business, and have chosen such type of activity as an online casino, Slotegrator advise you to cooperate only with professional companies providing software for online gaming establishments.
The choice of the content provider for online casinos influence the continued success of your project, its promotion and obtaining greatest possible profit.
These are the possibilities being open to entrepreneurs who want to start their activities in the gaming industry. Slotegrator is confident that in spite of some shortcomings of the draft law and its unfinished form, it will be the first and fundamental stone in the renewal and rebirth of the gambling industry in Ukraine.