Third landmark CJEU ruling on Italian sports betting market again vindicates Stanleybet.
A new era of fairness for all operators begins in Italy
Brussels, 16 February 2012 - In the Costa and Cifone rulings (Joined Cases C-72/10 and C-77/10) the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU), following the Gambelli and Placanica rulings, recognizes for the third time that Stanleybet was discriminated against by the Italian licensing system. The CJEU held that the 2006 Bersani tenders, which supposedly opened the Italian sports betting market to operators, are not considered compatible with EU law as they present clear irregularities and unjustifiable distortions that contradict the principles of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU (TFEU). The criticism is not limited to the Bersani tenders but also applies to the discriminatory behavior of the Italian Authorities (the legislator and the regulatory authority AAMS) which has been repeated in all subsequent tenders, including those in 2011 for the allocation of the online and for the new VLT licenses.
David Purvis, CEO of Stanleybet, comments: “Stanleybet has received from the CJEU a definitive recognition of its right to enter the Italian market under conditions of equality and fairness vis-a-vis the other national operators. This ruling confirms once again that Stanleybet was discriminated against by the Italian Republic. After twelve years of legal battles, this third CJEU ruling must surely put an end to the unlawful distortions, the discrimination and the unjust limitations of the Italian licensing system.
The European Commission must also take heed from this following its 2010 decision to close the Italian infringement proceedings. The decision of the CJEU indicates that this closure was premature. I hope this is a lesson to be learned and from now on the Commission will not allow political considerations to overtake EU law in other jurisdictions such as France, Greece and Germany”, David Purvis concludes.