Finland’s Veikkaus to Eliminate Monopoly, Impacting Jobs
Finland is set to abolish the monopoly status currently held by gaming operator Veikkaus, leading to potential job losses for hundreds of employees. As the state-led gaming operator restructures itself in anticipation of the upcoming shift, it is expected that 200 employees could be out of work just weeks before Christmas.
The company, which celebrated its sixth anniversary earlier this year, is making significant changes as it prepares for the end of its monopoly in the country. One prominent development is the closure of Casino Tampere, a facility that opened less than two years ago. The decision to shut down the casino on December 9 will affect the livelihoods of 80 casino employees.
Additionally, Veikkaus has announced plans to cease operations at 19 out of its 65 gaming venues across Finland on December 22, including properties operating under the Playhouse and Turku brands.
The closure of these venues is part of a broader restructuring initiative that Veikkaus initiated months ago, with the company projecting that up to 215 individuals could lose their jobs just before the holiday season. A further 110-150 out of the 825 total employees at Veikkaus may also face unspecified changes in their employment status.
The company’s proactive approach to these adjustments reflects its recognition of the evolving gaming landscape in Finland as the end of its monopoly approaches. Veikkaus is taking necessary steps to adapt and navigate the changing dynamics within the gaming industry as it seeks to remain relevant in the face of emerging market shifts.
The end of Veikkaus’ long-held monopoly in the country’s gambling industry by 2026 is a result of legislative changes aimed at modernizing and opening up the Finnish gambling market. The move is also driven by the realization that the monopoly system has led to significant financial losses and lower consumer protections.
The government plans to introduce a new licensing system, allowing other operators to enter the market alongside Veikkaus, aiming to enhance consumer protection, promote responsible gambling practices, and address concerns related to gambling addiction.
By introducing a more competitive landscape, the government hopes to provide Finnish consumers with a better gaming experience and offer a broader range of gambling options while maintaining regulatory oversight to ensure a fair and secure environment.
These legislative amendments signify a significant departure from the previous monopoly model, aligning with broader trends in Europe as countries adjust their regulatory frameworks to adapt to evolving industry dynamics and embrace a more diverse and competitive gambling landscape.