Thursday, April 27, 2006
Portuguese court prohibits sponsorship by online betting website

A Court in the northern town of Porto, Portugal, ruled as illegal the sponsorship contract between Austrian online betting operator Betandwin and the national soccer league. The Portuguese casino association is now suing both the soccer league and Betandwin for compensation.

The court ruled that Betanwin violated the exclusive right of casinos to offer games of chance. It confirmed that online gaming is illegal in Portugal. Betandwin and the soccer league had agreed a 4 year sponsorship deal worth 2 million euros per year.

The Portuguese situation seems to have more logic than in many other countries, where various forms of marketing by unauthorised online betting operators are tolerated. In Italy for example, where the government recently adopted a stringent law against unauthorised online gaming, the same Betandwin concluded a sponsorship agreement with soccer club AC Milan.