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Paraguay – Conajzar awards sports betting license to Daruma Sam

By - 29 November 2022

The National Gaming Commission (Conajzar) announced the winner of the sports betting tender and awarded the licence to the current license holder Daruma SAM S.A. The licence was issued through resolution 48/2022, after the board analysed the documentation presented by the bidders. The licence is valid for five years.

The three companies that officially submitted bids were Daruma Sam S.A. (Apostala); the consortium B-Gaming Sucursal Paraguay and Gambling S.A. and a company owned by Luis Carlos Alder Benítez (under the name Playtech), whose legal representative is former Foreign Minister Rubén Melgarejo Lanzoni.

Conajzar clarified that six companies analyzed participating in the tender, but that only three presented offers formally as international operators were not allowed to take part.

When it came to the companies that did not comply Conajzar specified on a point point by point basis why they were not awarded the contract. B-Gaming Sucursal Paraguay and Gambling S.A were disqualified due to lack of  “legal, financial and experience,” the board said.

The score of Daruma SAM S.A. meanwhile met 100% of the requirements: 34 points for the canon fee, 33 for its financial capacity and another 33 points, for its background and experience according to the board.

“Daruma conforms to all the requirements demanded by the Bidding Terms and Conditions. The data presented is viable, both for the bidder and for the Paraguayan State”, Conajzar said.

Daruma SAM, through its Apostala brand, presented the lowest percentage of the canon fee (22%) in the tender; while Luis Carlos Alder Benítez had presented 23% and the consortium B-Gaming S.A. and Gambling S.A., 27%.

Given this, Conajzar said that that Daruma SAM will not be able to pay in any case, as a fee, an amount less than G$ 1,000 million per month and it will be readjusted every twelve months, starting on the thirteenth month, and until the end of the concession period.

In September the president of the Paraguayan Chamber of Games of Chance Aníbal Salomón, questioned the call for tenders, the short time given for the presentation of offers, and the excessive cost to receive a copy of the Bidding Terms and Conditions.

Salomón stated that alliances with foreign companies are needed to meet all the requirements, and 60 days is a short time to specify and present offers to Conajzar”.

One of the criticisms aimed at the tender was that the process had within it a “catch 22” type clause whereby only a national company with experience in the field would be allowed to operate. Since there is only one the current licence holder this would disqualify other companies from competing.

Daruma Sam was granted the exclusive right to offer sports betting ahead of the last FIFA World Cup for five years. In September Conajzar opened the call for Public Tender No. 01/2022 opening up the process for the next five.

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