Fines Imposed on Kindred Paused by Norwegian Regulator

The Kindred Group has had two pieces of good news in the past few days. One will help their finances, the other their reputation.

A temporary reprieve has been granted to them in Norway. The Norwegian gambling regulator Lotteritilsynet have announced they will “pause” a NOK 1.2m (just over £1m) daily fine imposed against Kindred.

This goes back three years when Kindred’s Maltese subsidiary Trannel ran into problems in Norway. They were accused of breaking the strict monopoly in Norway and allowing Norwegians to gamble on their site.

This led to the threat of a daily fine until Trannel stopped. The fines would continue until reaching a maximum NOK 437m (approximately £370m).

Not surprisingly, Kindred decided to appeal against the decision. However, an Oslo district judge turned down that appeal. The site continued to operate in Norway despite the possible financial implications. Another appeal was launched last month. That was needed as the daily fines were due to start on October 5 but again they have now been delayed.

The Norwegian gambling regulator says that Trannel is “working to introduce changes.” Henrik Nordal is the Director of Lotteritilsynet and says that Trannel have stated they will comply with Norwegian law.

For the fines to be postponed, Tranne must remove their Norway-specific domains, including no,unibet,com. In addition to this they must also bring to an end marketing activities that have Norwegian customers as their target.

Mr Nordal says that the regulatory body will “check carefully” how Trannel complies with the conditions they have laid down. The fine will begin if “we uncover a breach of these.”

Kindred have said that Trannel will still aim to “passively accept customers residing in Norway.” A change to their international offer will be made.Their views remain unchanged though stating that the company “strongly believes that a locally licensed gambling market where responsible operators can operate under the supervision of competent authorities is the best solution for local societies, for players and for operators.”

While Kindred are having problems in Norway, that’s not the case in Sweden. The Kindred Group (who originated in Sweden) has been included in the best ‘Career Companies’ list that is compiled by the employment agency Karriärföretagen.

A 2022 Career Opportunities Survey had seen Kindred commended for their unique talent development capabilities and career progression opportunities. This year has also seen Kindred recognised as an employer of distinction. They finished fifth in a list of 173 companies in a survey carried out with young professionals.