iGaming has yet again proven its resilience in the face of this year’s pandemic, with Spain the latest market to reveal soaring online gambling figures.
New data from the Spanish regulator, Dirección General del Ordenación del Juego (DGOJ), reports the country’s igaming revenues rose by 17.7% year-on-year in Q2 of 2020.
This came despite the covid-19 lockdown causing sports betting revenues to slump by 20% compared to the same period last year.
Headline figures show that Spain’s casino vertical stepped up considerably as sports fell away, suggesting that regular sports punters simply switched vertical.
Casino revenue grew by 36.5% to €93.5m, compared to the previous quarter with customer stakes rising by 25.3% to €2.86bn.
Slot play can be thanked for the bulk of that rise, accounting for €51.9m of casino GGR, which equated to a 30.4% rise year-on-year, as well as more than 19.9% quarter-on-quarter.
The burgeoning live roulette scene also showed marked growth compared to the same quarter in 2019, rising by 75.7% to contribute €27.0m of revenue.
Meanwhile, Poker revenue almost doubled, rising 97.4% to €38.2m, while bingo revenue grew 66.9% to €5m and real-money contests grew by an eye-watering 700%, to €3.9m.
All of this amounted to €208.9m of gross igaming revenue for the three months to 30 June. However, that was a 4.2% decline compared to the first quarter of the year.
Sports revenues, it will come as no surprise, were markedly down, totalling €68.1m in Q2, which represented a 20.8% year-on-year decline, and a 38.4% decrease from Q1.
General sports wagering fell by a painful 49% over the period, with in-play betting down 35% compared to the previous quarter.
While covid-19 has been the cause of the most overt changes to gambling trends this year, moves by the Spanish authorities to limit marketing and advertising will also have a knock-on effect.
Spain, like many European countries, introduced measures to prevent operators from profiteering during national lockdowns.
As such, strict controls were imposed on online gambling companies, including banning advertising outside the hours of 1AM and 5AM and prohibiting direct marketing or bonusing for the sake of acquisition or retention of players.
As such, total spend across all channels and formats fell by 50.6% year-on-year to €40.6m. This was a 65.7% reduction from Q1.
Advertising spend fell by 57.6% to €17.2m, while bonusing was down 57.3% to €12.5m and affiliate marketing spend fell 23.4% to €6.7m during Q2.
The only marketing segment to grow was sponsorship which added 16.2% to reach €4.3m, despite the decline in live sports during lockdown.
However, sponsorship’s days may be numbered as a viable marketing segment with the Spanish government pursuing plans to ban gambling companies from sponsoring sports clubs.
In the long-term acquisition and retention figures may be Spain’s most telling dataset, as curbed marketing activity takes hold.
The latest numbers show that monthly average active customer numbers and new account sign-ups declined over the quarter.
The average number of active players over the three months to 30 June was 642,938, a not insignificant 25.4% drop from 2019. New sign-ups per month averaged 137,930 in Q2, again down by 41.0%.