Published on May 25, 2015 in Industry News

Flag of GreeceIt has been more than five years since Greece found itself in the midst of one of the most devastating economic crises in the world currently. But that hasn't put a stop to the growth currently being experienced by the Greek gambling market.

In 2014 alone, it has been shown by the Greek Gaming Oversight and Control Commission, that the people of Greece wagered more than €5.9 billion. This has also meant a boost for the Greek government as they collected a tidy €525 million in gambling tax.

While the 2014 numbers are an immense drop from the €8.7 billion that punters spent on gambling in 2009 (before the economic crisis), it does show that the Greek population is starting to see a change in their country. The rise in these numbers possibly display a sense of optimism as Greeks start to feel confident enough to start spending money once again.

Who controls Greek gambling?

One of the biggest gambling operators in Greece is the Greek Organisation of Football Prognostics (OPAP). While the casinos in Greece generated more than €1.6 billion, the OPAP raked in a much larger sum in profits. With just over €3.8 billion in revenue, the Greek Organisation of Football Prognostics holds a tight grip on the country's sports betting and lotteries.

The total acquired by the OPAP, including the Hellenic Lotteries subsidiary which brought in €500 million, represented 72% of the Greek gambling market. 

Possible regulations coming soon

The party recently elected in the Greek National Elections is planning to draft new regulations around gambling in Greece. The sudden interest in new regulations is thanks to the recent renewed gambling regulations across Europe. The lack of regulations has not stopped Greek gamblers as it is estimated that almost €5 billion in illegal bets is placed each year.