|Population July 2013:||5.6 Million|
|GDP 2012:||174.3 Billion EUR|
|GDP per capita:||28,800 EUR|
|Taxation for Lotteries:||15% on cash winnings exceeding 200DK (25 Euro) and
17.5% on other winnings exceeding 200DK (25 Euro)
|Online Taxation:||20% on GGR|
The most important acts of the Danish legal framework in the field of gambling are the Act on Lottery Prohibition, the Act on Certain Games, Lotteries and Betting and the State Lottery Act. According to the first, lotteries are prohibited unless authorisation is granted by the Ministry of Justice, which can only be granted to lotteries for good causes or when the lottery is restricted to a city.
When the revenue is less than DKK 20,000 (€ 2,500) a charity lottery only has to notify the Danish Gambling Authority (DGA), but a license is not required. For every license, it is only possible to organize two charity lotteries a year. When applying for a license the non-profit organisation has to register with the Danish Tax Administration (SKAT), which handles registration of licence holders, the settlement, control and duty collection. Winners have to pay a tax of 15% on cash winnings over DKK 200 (€ 25) and 17.5% on winnings exceeding DKK 200 (€ 25).
According to the Act on Certain Games, Lotteries and Betting, only one company is allowed to organise the lotto at a national level. This company must be 80% state-owned. Danske Spil is the current operator, operating under a one-year license. This limited liability company is strictly monitored and regulated by the Danish Gaming Authority (Spillemyndigheden), a department of the Ministry of Taxation.
The Danish Cancer Society (Kræftens Bekæmpelse) is aimed at preventing the development of cancer, improving patients’ chances of successful recovery, and limiting the physical, psychological and social side-effects of cancer. Ten times a year they organise a lottery which accounts for about 10% of the income for the Danish Cancer Society. In 2012 the turnover was DKK 112 million (€ 15 million) and proceeds were DKK 67.5 million (€ 9 million; 60%). For more information visit: www.cancer.dk
As far as we know, no other lotteries exist in Denmark that meet the criteria of a charity lottery. The lotteries mentioned below do, however, distribute part of the sales to good causes.
Danske Spil was founded in 1948 and is the only provider of the national lotto in Denmark. The largest part of the shares of the company (80%) belongs to the state, while 10% belongs to the Danish Sports Federation (DIF) and the Olympic Committee, and the remaining 10% to the Danish Gymnastics and Sports Association (DGI). Some board members are appointed by ministries.
In the first four decades of its existence, Danske Spil only offered football pools. Today, pool games represent less than 4% of total turnover. In 1989, the Danish Lotto was introduced and became the largest game. Therefore, the name of the company was changed from Dansk Tipstjeneste (Danish pool services) into Danske Spil (Danish game(s)) in 2006.
Number games (including the Lotto) are the largest business area, representing some 70% of total revenues. In addition, Danske Spil offers sports games, instant lotteries and slot machines. Since 1990, it also offers online betting, and since the liberalisation of online gambling in 2012, also online gambling. Danske Spil has around 3,700 retailers (including online retailers) in Denmark, the Faroe Islands and Greenland to sell its products. About 76% of the Danish gambling market is in the hands of Danske Spil, though this share is declining.
Total revenues in 2012 were DKK 9,421 million (around € 1,263 million). According to the Act on Certain Games, Lotteries and Betting prize money must represent at least 45% of turnover. DKK 1,854 million (€ 249 million; 15% of turnover) was distributed to benefit society. All proceeds are destined for several Ministries that allocate the funds. 1
These funds are distributed according to rules laid down by the Danish Parliament for sporting, cultural and other non-profit purposes. Among the beneficiaries are the National Federation of Danish Organisations for Disabled Persons, Denmark’s Olympic Committee and several other national charity organisations. For more information visit: www.danskespil.dk
1 Ministry of Culture: 66,44%, Ministry of Education: 12,67%, Ministry of Social Affairs: 10,42%, Ministry of Environment: 3,39%, Ministry of the Interior and Health: 2,95%, Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation: 0,39%, Ministry of Finance 3,74%.
LANDBRUGSLOTTERIETThe Landbrugslotteriet was established in 1907 as a federal institution. The current license expires in 2019. The profits of this lottery are distributed as follows: 10% goes to the Ministry of Justice (which distributes the money to charitable and humanitarian projects), 25% is for the Ministry for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries, 40% is destined for Dansk Landbrugs Familiebrugssektion, and 25% goes to Dansk Landbrug (Danish Agriculture). The objective of the latter is to handle the interests of Danish farmers, i.e. professional, political, social or cultural interests. These ministries and organisations are also part of the board of the lottery. For more information see: www.landbrugslotteriet.dk
VARELOTTERIETThe Varelotteriet (or Commodity Lottery) was established in 1887. The first 100 years only groceries were granted as prizes. Today, about 65% is paid out as prize money. Part of the profits goes to charitable, social and humanitarian purposes. For more information go to: www.varelotteriet.dk
AELDRESAGENAeldresagen (or DaneAge Association) is a Danish elderly organisation, founded in 1986, that wants to promote a society without age barriers and ageism. Around 4% (7 million DKK; € 940,000) of its income in 2012 came from the lottery that is organised especially for this NGO. For more information visit: www.aeldresagen.dk
DET DANSKE KLASSELOTTERIETThe Danish Class Lottery was established in 1753, making it Denmark’s oldest still running lottery. Nowadays it is a public limited company, owned by the state. The class lottery extends over a six month period with scheduled monthly drawings. The value of the prizes increase over the over the six classes, culminating in the last class in which the greatest number of prizes are drawn. Participants pay their stakes by monthly instalments or the total lottery amount. The prize payout rate is 65%. Sales in 2011/2012 amounted to 705 million DKK (€ 95 million, ↑ 1,5%). Profits go to the state treasury. For more information see: www.klasselotteriet.dk
Because Denmark is the first larger European country to completely liberalize their online gambling market (Malta and Gibraltar were among the first to liberalize online gambling), their regulatory model functions as a test case for other European countries. The positive and/or negative experiences with the Danish model can add to the discussion on legalising the online gambling market, and its influence on the existing gambling market. Meanwhile, for Denmark, the main issue will be how to tackle the problem of illegal online operators who continue to provide their services to the Danish people. When this issue is not dealt with effectively, there is always a chance legal operators will withdraw from the Danish online gambling market. Such online operators can take their customers with them, but will no longer have to pay taxes.