The total amount of online betting on the European Football Championship could exceed one billion euros in France.
All sports enthusiasts are confronted with it, and sometimes to the point of suffocation. These are the online betting sites and applications whose advertisements flood viewers’ screens at half-time of each match, in the light of each program reminiscent of sport. If the advertising pressure of Winamax, Parions Sport, Betclic and others is so strong, it is because the sector is doing wonderfully, with record figures in the first quarter of 2021 and ever fiercer competition. As the Euro begins this Friday evening, the main players are engaged in a fierce battle to share the billion euros in bets expected for the event.
How far are the days of Loto Foot filled on a zinc wedge! Until 2010, however, sports betting was prohibited in France, with the exception of the good old ticket of the French games penciled in the bistro. Since this opening up to competition, and despite the risk of addiction especially among the youngest, sports betting has exploded on the internet. Thus, in 2020, the turnover of online sports, horse racing and poker betting had jumped by 22% to reach 1.74 billion euros. And according to the latest figures from the National Gaming Authority (ANJ), the number of sports bettors in the first quarter of 2021 has further increased by 29% compared to 2020, for a total of nearly 2.5 million accounts. active players. The start of the Euro, this Friday evening, should give a new boost to the ecosystem: in 2018, the World Cup alone had generated 690 million euros in bets in France. Some observers believe that if France arrives in the final, the Euro could exceed one billion.
However, the sports betting platforms remain very cautious about the financial gains directly linked to the Euro, while they have spent a lot on advertising around the event. On the Zebet site, punters have only started to really flock in the last two days for the European Championship, and should especially tumble en masse on Tuesday, the day of the French team’s first match against Germany. “The Euro is not a financially profitable moment for us, because we spend a lot of money on advertising, the market is completely saturated and France is also the favorite, so if it wins we will all lose a lot of money, explains Emmanuel de Rohan Chabot, the founder of Zebet, an online betting site. Economically, it will not pay off immediately, the interest is not there. But people are going to talk about soccer, get excited about soccer, buy shirts, buy televisions, and register on sports betting sites. It’s a great recruiting moment for us. ”
A moment of “recruitment”, therefore, which passes through advertising, omnipresent, even if it means disgusting the greatest football fans. “I find it strange that we allow such enthusiastic ads, which praise so much a practice still banned ten years ago and which we know can be dangerous”, explains for example Jean, a young author of 29 years passionate about sport.
The king’s son
In this regard, a recent overhaul of the regulation on gambling advertising forces companies in the sector not to stage minors or practices suggesting that betting makes it possible to progress on the social ladder or to earn a living. . For example, the famous Winamax advertisement “The King’s Son”, which uses the codes of Disney’s Lion King to publicize a young gambler in front of his entire city, was recently banned by the ANJ, which has the right to demand the removal of advertising that does not comply with the rules. “There are a lot of mistaken beliefs conveyed by this type of advertising, including believing that you can make a living by betting, explains Elsa Trochet-Macé, ANJ’s communications director. However, in sports betting, only 0.02% of players earn more than 10,000 euros per year. ” This is not what risks “to shelter the mother», As Winamax promises in its latest advertising campaign.