Nordic Affiliates has joined the Norwegian Online Gambling Trade Organisation (NBO) as the first affiliate to become a member, and said it hopes the move will encourage other parts of the gambling industry to join.
Nordic Affiliates, which joins the NBO at the sponsor level, is an established Norway-facing affiliate with its site Norskeautomater.com.
NBO was founded in 2019 by Betsson, Comeon Group, Kindred and Gaming Innovation Group.
The organisation pushes for Norway to end its gambling monopoly and set up a system more in keeping with standards found in other markets.
Its work also includes creating a greater understanding of the unregulated online gambling market in Norway. The country currently has a state gambling monopoly, with Norsk Tipping operating online casino gaming and Norsk Rikstoto covering horse racing.
“Being Norwegian myself, and having spent over a decade in the industry, I strongly believe that Norway must regulate its internal gambling markets,” said Havard Lehn, co-founder of Nordic Affiliates.
“Politicians talk a lot, but there is no real change for people who are struggling with gambling problems.
“Going forward, we all must unite behind NBO for the benefit of both the Norwegian society and the industry.”
Carl Fredrik Stenstrom, secretary-general of NBO, said he believes a regulated market open to private operators is inevitable.
“It’s not a matter of if the Norwegian gambling market will be de-monopolised, but when,” he said.
“However, the change is slow, and a successful regulation depends on continuous public affairs work. The more power we can assemble behind this task, the faster we will reach our goals.
“We have achieved more progress in the last three years than the previous 20. That’s a testament to the industry’s determination, but we want more companies to engage.”
Norway’s gambling monopoly
Norway’s gambling monopoly belongs to two companies. Lottery Norsk Tipping is the only body permitted to offer online casino gambling, while Norsk Rikstoto has the exclusive rights to take bets on horse racing.
Norsk Rikstoto recently had its exclusive licence extended until at least the end of 2032.
Last week, Norwegian regulator Lotteritilsynet also decided to pause the daily fines it handed to Unibet operator Kindred, which it alleged was actively targeting players within the country.
This was the latest step in a long dispute between the company and the Norwegian regulator.