The online gaming market in Portugal generated €82.2m in the first 10 months of it being in regulation according to the report published by the regulatory body Serviço de Regulação e Inspeção de Jogos (SRIJ).
A total of €57m was generated by sports betting between May 2016 and the end of March 2017. According to the SRIJ in 2016 sports betting operators obtained close to €40.2m in gross revenue but revenues decreased by 18.6 per cent between the third and the fourth quarter from €22.2m to €18m. In the first quarter of 2017, gross income stood at €17.4m, a decrease of 3.3 per cent compared to the last quarter of 2016.
The first licence to run online casino games was granted in July 2016. From July until March 2017 gross revenues reached €25.1m. Online slots accounted for 34 per cent. Cash game poker made up 23 per cent. Tournament poker made up 9 per cent. Roulette accounted for 22 per cent and Blackjack 11 per cent.
There are currently 523,000 registered players in Portugal. According to the latest data more than 60 per cent of players are aged between the ages of 25 and 44, with the predominant group being made up of those in the 25 to 34 year old bracket (about 40 per cent). Younger players, on the other hand, make up almost 30 per cent of the total registered players. Players resident in the districts of Aveiro and Setúbal make up more than 15 per cent of the total. The lowest number of players are registered in Portalegre (less than one per cent). When it came to sports betting football reported the highest volume of bets (75 per cent). This was followed by tennis (15.2 per cent) and basketball (seven per cent).
Back in 2012 it was revealed that a government committee was looking into legalising online gambling in order to raise cash for state pension funds and to aid debt-ridden soccer clubs. This was after a Portuguese court ruled that the sponsorship of sports by online gambling companies was illegal. Under previous rules only the state-run charity Santa Casa de Misericordia de Lisboa could offer sports betting and lotteries. The Government approved rules for online gambling and betting on April 29, 2015. Since then, the SRIJ has received 19 applications from operators who wish to operate in the Portuguese online betting market and awarded six licenses.