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VONT


Isle of Man: a new era


In an ever-changing industry, creating legislation that stands the test of time is never easy. Vont Limited CEO Jon Sykes looks at the recent changes on the Isle of Man


L


and-based casino gaming legislation has without a doubt helped the Isle of Man become a Tier One jurisdiction in the licensing and regulation of online gambling. Having become the preferred home to many


of the industry’s biggest operators and gambling software developers, the Isle of Man can justifiably claim that it has been instrumental in the overall development of the online gambling industry we know today.


Although online gambling is now a very successful


sector and a strong contributor to the Island’s economy, it has come at a price. The long-established land-based casino gaming operator - constrained by the older gaming legislation - found itself having to unfairly compete with a type of competition that was never envisaged when the land-based legislation was being drafted many years ago.


Vont CEO Jon Sykes


However,


following a lengthy and in- depth review into this older casino gaming legislation by the Island’s Gambling Supervision Commission,


many of the historical land-based restrictions have now been removed, with the introduction of new regulations which came into force on the 1st August 2011. These new regulations provide the Island’s land-based casino industry with the opportunity to now compete and combine with the very diverse online gambling models that exist and continue to develop. Thought there is presently only one land- based casino licence holder, the legislation allows for two. This potential second casino licence is beginning to generate interest from a number of parties both on and off the Island. One of the most positive changes contained in the


48 SEPTEMBER 2011


new legislation will make it possible for an Isle of Man land-based casino to offer a live gaming electronic feed to as many online operators as wish to take it. This comes at a time when the online and terrestrial gambling worlds begin to converge, and is a welcome boost for the industry. Player protection and protection of player funds in the online sector is becoming more intently scrutinised throughout the world following recent events with certain ‘household name’ poker rooms that have not been in a position to repay players. The Isle of Man is in strong position over other licensing jurisdictions. Its comprehensive player protection regulations ensure all player funds are ‘ring fenced’ and protected. The ability for Isle of Man land-based casinos to provide a live feed from a real bricks and mortar casino located within this trusted and regulated jurisdiction in the British Isles should give a remote player the added certainty, security and confidence they are now starting to demand. Although the primary terrestrial legislation does still prevent play on Christmas Day and Good Friday it is now possible for a terrestrial casino on the Isle of Man to remain open and offer a live feed 24/7.


Anyone seeking further information on the


opportunities available under this new legislation can contact Vont Limited, a leading supplier of consultancy, multi-jurisdictional licensing and project management services to the e-Business and Gaming sector: www.vont.co.im


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