france-sportsSportsbetting up

Surprising numbers indicate French gamblers hooked on sportsbetting, bored by online poker.

French igaming figures moved in a see-saw pattern during the fourth quarter of 2014. The country’s gaming regulator ARJEL reported that online poker gross win fell 12 percent in the quarter, while the gross win from online sportsbetting spiked by an impressive 38 percent.

While the numbers for other casino games like online blackjack were not released, the declining popularity of online poker is puzzling to many observers. Considering the universal appeal of poker among gamblers, one wouldn’t predict disappointing numbers. One possible explanation is the emergence of new interactive gaming options such as video slots and mobile casino games.

Sportsbetting increasingly popular

The most popular outlet for sportsbettors remains the French national past time of soccer. Total stakes (the amount betted) in soccer betting rose by 38 percent in 2013. The gross win from soccer betting is augmented by that of basketball, tennis and horseracing, among others. Basketball stakes rose by 36 percent over the year.

While sportsbetting is popular in most of the world, the numbers indicate that it is especially popular in France, showing that sportsbooks must be employing some smart strategies. While land-based casinos still account for roughly one-third of global gambling gross win, igaming platforms like online casinos and sportsbetting are capturing increasingly large shares.