Date: 24.04.2024

by Kajetan Sawicz

Last update: 08.05.2024 12:17

French Gambling Sector Hits Record Revenues

The French gambling sector witnessed significant growth in 2023, achieving a gross gaming revenue (GGR) of €13.4 billion. This growth represents a solid recovery and expansion beyond the previous stabilization in 2022, marking the highest activity level ever recorded in the French gambling industry.

Record-Breaking Revenues Amid Regulatory Frameworks

Despite a growth rate slightly below the European average of 5.5%, France’s 3.5% increase is consistent with major European markets such as Germany, the UK, and Spain.

The Autorité Nationale des Jeux (ANJ), the French regulatory body, regards this growth as proof that stringent regulations can coexist with industry expansion. Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin, President of ANJ, has emphasized that the growth aligns with efforts to mitigate excessive gambling, a key focus of the regulator’s future strategy.

Leading Contributors: FDJ and PMU

Francaise des Jeux (FDJ) and Pari Mutuel Urbain (PMU) remain the dominant players in the French market, contributing 62.7% to the total GGR. FDJ reported a remarkable 10.4% growth in its sports betting sectors, both land-based and online, totaling €1 billion. This sector now represents 16.2% of FDJ’s total revenue. The integration of online horse racing tote operator ZEturf has bolstered FDJ’s online presence.

PMU also showed growth, albeit modest, with a 1% increase in GGR, reaching pre-pandemic levels at €1.7 billion. Strategic product enhancements and racing calendar optimizations were key to this growth.

Casino and Online Segments Show Strong Performance

French casino operators also saw significant gains, with an 8% increase in GGR reaching €2.7 billion. Slot machines were particularly lucrative, accounting for more than 80% of the revenue. In Paris, gaming clubs experienced an 11% increase in GGR, totaling €119 million.

The online segment also flourished, marking a 7.2% increase and accumulating a total GGR of €2.3 billion. Sports betting continues to dominate the online landscape, making up 63.3% of the segment’s revenue. Notably, online poker surged by 14%, achieving a record GGR of €504 million, with active players increasing by 7.7% to 1.9 million.

Challenges Ahead: Monitoring Intensive Gambling Practices

Despite these positive trends, ANJ has raised concerns about potential increases in intensive gambling practices, especially with upcoming major events like Euro 2024 and the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

The regulator has urged operators to be vigilant about the gambling habits of the 18-34 age demographic, which represents nearly 30% of online players.

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