France’s regulated online gambling market was all positives in the first quarter of 2019, with the notable exception of (what else) poker cash games.
Figures released this week by France’s gambling regulatory body ARJEL show locally licensed online operators generated combined revenue of €357m in the three months ending March 31, a 27% improvement over the same period last year. Active player accounts rose by one-fifth to 2.2m, while deposits were up one-quarter to €658m.
The numbers were driven by sports betting, which reported total wagers of €1.27b, up 51% year-on-year, 20% higher than in Q4 2018 and a new quarterly record since the market’s liberalization in 2010. In fact, Q1’s handle was more than the market generated in all of 2014. Wagering revenue was up 51% to €222m, another all-time record, as the number of weekly active bettors spiked 42% to 655k.
Football remains the dominant wagering sport, capturing nearly €717m of Q1’s online handle, which is 54% higher than Q1 2018’s total. Interestingly, while France’s Ligue 1 remains the most popular football betting product at €119.6m (+48%), Premier League wagers shot up 111% to €73.3m, good enough for second place. Tennis ranked second on the overall handle chart with €250m (+53%), while basketball ranked third with €177m (+42%).