Italy is known to be a tough sports betting country for any online betting site, even the biggest of them that had no issues operating in other European states. Up until 2010 only the Italian National Olympic Committee or the National Horse Breaders Enhancement Society were the only authorized sports betting Italy government-approved operators.
Things took a change for the best when the European Commission decided to investigate the situation and decided that the Italian practices were going against the EEC Treaty about the freedom of providing cross-border services and freedom of establishment.
Starting 2010, the new Italian Gambling law came into power with many amendments to be compliant with the EC demands. They have established that the AAMS, short for Amministrazione Autonoma del Monopoli di Stato, will have to provide a license for any operator prior to entering the Italian market. And, as it was expected, after the legislation was modified, online sports betting Italy started to generate more and more revenue as the years passed.
Online sports betting in Italy – How does it look?
It’s not a secret for anyone that Italians are big on football and, for most of the country, it is considered to be more than just a sport. Football takes almost religious ranks among certain Italians and this tradition is passed from one generation to another. Given their love for football it was expected that this is the most popular sport in terms of online sports betting. Italy is so big on online gambling altogether that they occupy the second position in Europe in terms of revenue. Only the betting market in the UK was stronger, according to the latest reports from the Polytechnic University in Milan, France occupying the third place and Spain taking the fourth spot.
A total of €9.9billion total revenue was registered in 2017 from all gambling activities across Italy in 2017, a mind-blowing increase compared to the €7.5 billion in 2016 or the €5.5 billion in 2015. Similar to the UK model, online casino games are accountable for the biggest part of the total revenue, representing over 40% out of the total gambling activities.
However, online sports betting Italy wasn’t far behind, delivering 35% of the total revenue and registering a massive 60% increase compared to 2016. Since we mentioned that sports is very popular in Italy and consists the main subject for sports betting, it is time to back up that affirmation with some data. No less than 75% out of the entire sports betting revenue was made on football and 40% out of that represented bets on Serie A. Compared to 2016, the month of December 2017 registered an unbelievable 287% increase due to a new approach from Serie A to stage matches during the holiday season. There were many voices that said the sports betting websites are behind this and they could be right considering that this was the first time in history when matches were played in December, delaying the holiday break until January for players. Apart from the huge 287% increase in sports betting Italy revenue compared to 2016, December 2017 was also the month with the lowest payout rate towards players – only 75.5%.
Bet365 dominates the sports betting landscape in Italy
If you were curious to find out which online betting site was the most profitable in what was the best year for online sports betting and gambling in Italy, now you can have a definitive answer. It is the UK-based Bet365 that managed, through its Italian website, to get the first position in sports turnover with no less than 31.6%. In terms of revenue, the figure is almost half of that but it’s still huge considering the high number of online operators that are active in Italy right now. Bet365 got 17.4% of the total sports betting revenue for 2017 in Italy. The runner-up, with only 7.5% turnover and 12% revenue was SKS365, better known as Planetwin365 and the bronze medal went to Snaitech with a total of 6.9% of the turnover and 9.5% of revenue.
Stats Updated July 2018
After checking out these numbers, it becomes quite clear why the Italian government was so strict in allowing remote gambling on their market. However, the vast majority of players agree that the quality they find at bookmakers such as Bet365 cannot be matched by any Italian-based sportsbook and they are happy that these big names are allowed to offer their services in Italy. In addition, compared to the years before 2010 when the market was reserved only for Italian-based operators, the revenue that the Italian government gets from online sports betting and gambling has tripled. So, it’s safely to conclude that it is a win-win situation for the big operators as well as the state that gets a lot more income compared to what they were getting when the online sports betting Italy market was nationalized.
Best bookmakers in Italy
Even though it’s clear from the above-mentioned figures that Bet365 dominates the online sports betting market in Italy, it’s worth having a more in-depth look at the best places Italian players can head to for placing their bets.
Also an UK-based bookmaker, William Hill is a great example of how tradition and consistence combine to create a solid sports betting site that is trusted all over the world. William Hill offers a great welcome bonus, awesome ongoing promotions for existing players as well as a multitude of betting options – over 150 for any football match. The Italian players prefer William Hill for their fast withdrawal policy as well as sharp support that can handle any inquiry in a matter of minutes.
Another big name in the sports betting Italy industry, Betway is also a preferred destination for Italian players thanks to their very competitive odds on Serie A and other football competitions as well as the attractive bonuses offered to new players as well as existing ones. With special, country-specific promotions, Betway managed to become a favorite among young Italian players and they get a big plus by buying sponsors of AS Roma.