When it comes to online gambling, Sweden came late to the party. Although Swedes could enjoy casino games online before 2019, they could only do it at state-owned casinos.
In January 2019, this European Union member country reformed its online gambling market to allow foreign operators to offer their services in it. The Swedish Gambling Authority (SGA) oversees the market and issues licences.
If you want to learn more about the SGA and online casinos that hold a licence granted by it, you have come to the right place.
What Is the Swedish Gambling Authority?
The Swedish Gambling Authority, also known as the Swedish Gaming Inspectorate or Spelinspektionen in Swedish, is a gaming body that regulates real money gambling in Sweden. The SGA says that it is an expert authority that deals with gambling and lottery-related questions on its official website.
The body ensures that the Swedish gambling market is legal and safe by issuing licences to casino and lottery operators who have met requirements. It is controlled by the Swedish Ministry of Finance, with its Board being appointed by the Government.
Besides issuing licences, the SGA also oversees gambling and lottery operations in the country, ensuring that they comply with the regulations. It employs about 70 people who work on maintaining a safe and transparent gaming market and reducing the potentially harmful social effects of gambling.
Swedish Gambling Authority History
Founded initially as Lotteriinspektionen, which translates to the Lottery Inspectorate, the Swedish Gambling Authority rebranded in 2019, when the Swedish Gambling Act came into force.
The Lottery Inspectorate issued the first 16 licences to foreign casino operators in late November 2018. These licences authorised online casinos in the re-regulated market as of January 2019.
Since then, the SGA has been responsible for introducing measures to keep casino players safe and protected from harms associated with online gambling.
For instance, in June 2020, the authority restricted casino deposit and loss limits and a total login time as a response to the covid-19 pandemic. Since the beginning of 2022, Swedish gamblers can deposit up to 4,000 SEK on a weekly basis.
In June 2021, the Swedish Ministry of Finance proposed stricter gambling advertising. While the Swedish Gaming Act required the marketing of casino games and products to be moderate, the 2021 proposal insists on special moderation. It is set to come into effect in July 2022.
Committed to responsible gambling, the SGA is quite rigorous regarding the measures it introduces. One of them is limiting bonuses offered to Swedish players to 100 SEK and not allowing casinos to offer any bonuses than a welcome offer. Moreover, the operators who have violated the bonuses rules have been hit with large fines. In some cases, they exceed €2 million.
Obtaining SGA Licence
Operators who want to expand their businesses to the Swedish market must apply for an SGA licence and pay a fee of 400,000 SEK (ca. €38,500) for commercial online gambling or betting. If an operator wants to offer both forms of entertainment, they will have to pay a fee of 700,000 SEK.
The SGA website states that a licence will be awarded only to those companies that have the knowledge, experience, and organisation required to operate the business.
The regulatory body will check operators’ backgrounds and grant licences to those who can be assumed to run the business lawfully and considered suitable for operating the business.
One of the main tasks of the SGA is preventing underage gambling. But, at the same time, it will not grant a licence for operations that include betting on events where minors are involved.
While an operator does not need to have an office in Sweden, they must submit the relevant documentation for the application process in Swedish.
When it comes to the renewal of existing licences, in March 2022, the Government proposed a fee increase. Instead of 300,000 SEK, existing licence holders may be required to pay 600,000 SEK if they want to offer their services in Sweden in future.
At the same time, the government proposed mandatory licensing for B2B suppliers who want to offer their products to operators licensed in Sweden. A supplier licence fee of 120,000 SEK would apply in this case.
Operators and Providers Licensed by SGA
Since January 2019, more than 90 online casinos have obtained an SGA online gaming licence. These operators have met all the requirements set by the regulator in this Scandinavian country.
Besides offering games in a safe and fair gaming environment, these casinos must follow the guidelines regarding the advertising of their services. This particularly applies to bonuses and promotions.
SGA-licensed gambling sites can offer only welcome bonuses capped at 100 SEK. They must not make other promotions available to players from Sweden, though.
As for software providers, most of the leading gaming companies that offer casino solutions have entered the Swedish market through licensed gambling sites. However, if the Swedish Gambling Authority introduces mandatory licensing for B2B suppliers, they will be required to obtain a licence to offer their products in this market.
How to Find SGA-Licensed Online Casinos?
You can find SGA-licensed online casinos on this page. We have listed the best casinos operators that have been authorised by the Swedish regulator.
If you want to find other casinos, make sure to check whether they have the Spelinspektionen badge in their footer.
Why Play at SGA-Licensed Online Casinos?
Although SGA-licensed online casinos are not allowed to offer many bonuses and promotions to players, there are still advantages of playing at them.
First and foremost, if you choose such a casino, you can rest assured that you will have a safe and fair gaming experience. These casinos offer their content in Swedish, and some of them offer games hosted by native-speaking dealers.
Furthermore, you will be able to choose from various banking methods popular in the Swedish market. Withdrawal times are SGA-licensed online casinos are short, so you can easily cash out your winnings quickly.
Last but not least, winnings you obtain while playing at casinos licensed by the Swedish Gambling Authority are not taxable. It means that you can keep all that you win.