Party Gaming have gone and done it again. Eagerly shafted everyone in the name of profit. Back in the post UIGEA pre Black Friday days they and an owner paid huge fines, contributions or bribes – depending on what you want to call them – to the US Government.
Meaning that any other company also caught with their ship not SAFE in a Ports Act storm also had to pay through the nose. After all PartyGaming had set the precedent.
Now PartyPoker in their bwinparty disguise have gone and done it again, shafted any other online gambling company who was even thinking about making a stand against a greedy, desperate or just sensible Government. This time it is Spain.
Spain is trying to regulate their online gaming market to get in much needed taxes. The Spanish Regulation has gone as well as expected for a country that could not defend and then win back Gibraltar in over 300 years.
The Spanish Government is literally counting on the greed of poker and casino companies.
Back pain in Spain
Those interested in being granted a Spanish Licence are now being asked to pay back tax on monies earned in the last few years. This has arisen from old Spanish laws not related to online gambling. Below is the Reuters press release on Bwin.party to pay Spanish back-tax in licence bid
Bwin said it had completed a tax self-assessment in accordance with the Spanish Tax Authority’s requirements, and was making a payment of 25.6 million euros, plus surcharges and interest of up to 8 million euros.
“Having taken these steps, we believe we have now fulfilled all requirements and look forward to receiving our licence and entering the Spanish market,” the Gibraltar-based company said in a statement on Monday.
All online gaming companies who have previously been involved in the Spanish market will decide they want to pay these Spanish back taxes. 888poker have been preparing for this event for the last year by reducing Spanish player costs and expenditure.
Post UIGEA era Anurag Dikshit (non American and part owner of PartyGaming) paid $300 million in fines to the US. The other part owners and Americans Ruth Parasol and Russ De Leon have not paid their fines yet and not admitted guilt. PartyGaming paid $105 million. Not because of any guilty feelings but because they want a chance to go back into the US market when it re-opens.
With their history there is no surprise bwinparty have bent over forwards to pay the Spanish bribe. The Spanish authorities will now expect every company to assume the position while they get shafted.
ONCE bitten, twice shy
A little story to show you how Spain operates and why no one has a choice now but to take the back Pain in Spain and pay the bribe. There is a small UK company making ‘speaking’ equipment for blind people, like speaking clocks etc. They wanted to set up and do business in Spain and went over there to meet everyone. The last stop was the Government Agency that would grant whatever Licenses or permission they needed.
Everything was fine until the end of the conversation when it was mentioned the company would need to make a voluntary contribution to the Spanish Charity ONCE (National Organization of Spanish blind people). For all of us who have the joy, or what use to literally be, ‘the run’ from Gibraltar deep into La Linea (to avoid the muggers) know ONCE as the kiosks where you buy their Cupón which is their charity Lottery tickets.
The voluntary donation was millions of Euro. They sought advice from experienced people who said if they did not grease the palm then they had no chance of getting a license or doing business in Spain.