Key Reasons Why European Sports Betting Companies Reside in Malta

Want to find out why sports betting companies are moving most of their operations to Malta? What does this mean for Europe’s gambling industry? Find answers in this article!


Malta is one of the top destinations for tourists all around the world and this small European country is famous for its golden beaches, great cuisine, and stunning architecture. However, tourism is not the first association for Malta. It has been recognized as one of the most attractive gambling destinations in Europe. Quite a few well-known sports betting companies obtained the license of the Maltese Gaming Authority, and you can find some of them by dipping into the list of MGA approved bookmakers.

Gambling is one of the most blossoming sectors of this Mediterranean island. To understand why Maltese Gaming Authority license is so popular among Europe’s biggest names in the sports betting industry, we need to take into consideration several different aspects. In this article, we will try to answer the question of why large sports betting companies have already made the leap and set up their offices in Malta.

The Impact of Brexit on the European Gambling Industry

Brexit as a big geopolitical event has affected many industries, and sports betting is no different. Since gambling has a long tradition in the UK, many high-reputable European sports betting companies have regulated their activities either with the UK gambling license or Gibraltar gambling license. Gibraltar invested heavily in this industry, but since it is under the UK jurisdiction, it is in the same kind of trouble. This means that free travel between Gibraltar and Spain may be eliminated, and that would be a big issue for employees that have set up their businesses in Gibraltar that live in Spain.

The UK bettors that are gambling with a non-UK company will notice a big difference since it is very likely that those companies are going to pull out of the UK market. Bookies now need to decide about where they want to set up their online operations. The biggest problem that betting companies have is that, unlike many European Union industries, gambling is not centrally regulated. In other words, each member state of the EU regulates its gambling legislation. Sports betting companies that already have relevant licenses in the EU will continue to operate without any major changes. However, if companies who operate under the UK or Gibraltar license want to offer their services on the EU gambling market unrestricted, they need to set up offices in the EU.

Why Companies Are Choosing Malta?

Through its history, Malta has been an important strategic territory in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. Its location made it the biggest crossroad on the international trade routes. This small country had been a colony of the United Kingdom for more than 150 years, which had a very big impact on its development.

When we are talking about the country’s modern era, it is important to mention that Malta has been a member of the European Union since 2004, adopting the Euro as the official currency. Besides the above-mentioned tourism, gambling is considered as a “jet fuel” of its industry, and Malta tends to become the world’s gambling capital. As the popularity of online gambling started to grow, this was recognized by the authorities right on time and they greeted it with wide-open arms.

The financial reasons play a big part in making decisions for choosing Malta as it offers very attractive tax conditions for the sports betting industry. Perhaps one of the most crucial factors in understanding the financial appeal of settling in this country is that if an offshore company decides to re-domicile to Malta it will have no tax liability for income outside of Malta.

Last but not the least, English is an official language in Malta, therefore it has a diverse and multilingual workforce. Zero-tolerance to bureaucracy and a proven track record in the gambling industry pushed this country to become a top destination for the leading sports betting companies in Europe.

Malta Gaming Authority

Malta Gaming Authority has been founded in 2001 with a purpose to regulate the gambling industry. Before granting a gambling license, sportsbooks and casinos need to pass rigorous checks. MGA is involved in promoting responsible gambling, protecting the rights of players, and ensuring that any suspicious activities are timely sanctioned. Should a sportsbook go bankrupt, this authority will ensure that players won’t lose money from their accounts. This is a high-reputable organization that builds trust in every company which is looking forward to setting up their offices in Malta.

Some companies have already done so, while several other well-known sportsbooks are in the process of obtaining an MGA license and transferring their business to this country. With the latest trends, it will be very interesting to see how all of this will affect Europe’s, and especially the UK’s gambling industry. Only time will tell.

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