2022: Looking back at the highs and lows of the LatAm industry in Q4

SBC Americas Q42022 LatAm recap
Image: Shutterstock

Many people currently consider the Latin American industry to be the most relevant in all of gaming. The progress that many markets have made in 2022 supports these claims since different key markets decided to kick off the conversations to have a responsible and attractive regulatory framework.

From the south of Argentina to the north of Mexico, it’s safe to say that there have been multiple developments and setbacks.

The world will have to continue waiting for Brazil, Chile, and Uruguay, among others, but in 2023 everyone will be able to enjoy many other markets that are already on track to have a productive industry. In the last edition of the year-end special, SBC Americas reviews the most significant events of the last quarter of 2022.

Brazil, the giant that will start 2023 asleep

The expectations around the Brazilian industry are astronomical, as the market is estimated to be worth $3.4bn by 2027. However, the political landscape in the South American country, led by President Jair Bolsonaro, strongly disagrees. December 12 was the last possible day that the President could sign the bill into law, but as he had assured on multiple occasions, he completely ignored the deadline. If Brazil wants a sports betting regulation, it will have to start the process from scratch in 2023 and wait for incoming president Luiz Inacio Lula to bring an alarm clock to the Palácio do Planalto.

Chile hands out a red card to sponsorships

In a regulation that clearly separates Chile from its neighboring countries, it decided to take a step towards banning sponsorships between the sports betting industry and sports. What began as an absurd regulation when compared to other bills in the region, ended with a vote in the Chamber of Deputies that once again postponed the Chilean industry’s fight to 2023.

Apostala ends up as the sole sports betting operator in Paraguay

The Paraguayan regulator Conajzar ended the bidding process for a sports betting license last month. As a result, Daruma Sam’s Apostala will once again be the only company that will be able to legally operate in the country. Despite justifying the decision by saying that Apostala had the most attractive proposal, the consortium made up of B-Gaming Paraguay and Gambling S.A. assured that they will fight the decision to the very end.

Enjoy and Dreams fight for their merger

After many obstacles in their mission to merge, Enjoy and Dreams will continue waiting for a resolution from the National Economic Prosecutor’s Office, which at the end of November decided to extend the analysis period for the operation. The Chilean companies sent a note to the agency to rule out negative effects, but everything seems to indicate that the resolution will arrive in the first months of next year, close to the first anniversary of the initial announcement.

Mendoza postpones online tender to 2023

The Argentinian province of Mendoza decided to extend the online gambling bidding process until mid-January 2023, in response to a request from two of the firms interested in having licenses. Currently, the companies competing for a license are Codere, Nuevo Plaza Hotel Mendoza S.A., Mendoza KLP Emprendimientos, Desarrollos Maipú, and Iberargen S.A. Mendoza is the fourth province in terms of population in the country.

SBC Summit Latinoamérica 2022

Latin America’s go-to sports betting and gaming event, SBC Summit Latinoamérica, welcomed its second edition in November, bringing together over 1,000 industry executives on an exhibition floor four times bigger than the previous year. The event, which welcomed operators, sports clubs, regulators, and suppliers, among others, promises to add more space, conferences, attendees, and networking activities for 2023.