Having introduced virtual sports to the Belgian betting community six years ago, British-based operator Ladbrokes Coral will now be allowed to offer the bet again.
This month saw the publication of a royal decree which classifies these bets as games of automatic chance. The legal clarification comes despite the first bets on virtual sports being offered six years ago in Belgium by the Derby boutiques, operated by the Belgian subsidiary of Ladbrokes thanks to a provisional authorisation.
The operator was forced to stop offering virtual sports on April 3 this year following legal actions started by its competitors.
The new legislation states that the fact that virtual sports are entirely fictitious needs to be communicated on screen to the player throughout the duration of any virtual sporting event.
Only lisenced betting operators will be allowed to offer virtual sports with only two terminals offering virtual sports allowed in any venue. Software and terminals must be approved by the Gaming Commission. To avoid any confusion, the decree states: “The organiser of the game of chance on virtual sporting events is forbidden to send back or to have recourse to references on behalf of existing sports teams; references to the names of existing players and / or individual coaches, references to existing logos; references to existing competitions, events or competitions. The sports will be very real. Competitions organised as part of the e-sport are still prohibited and can not be placed in virtual bets.@
The maximum hourly loss for this type of betting is €12.5.
Without waiting for the publication of this protocol, Derby has already begun to offer best virtual sports, which had previously accounted a third of the turnover of its 300 shops.