Social responsibility

Svenska Spel must work actively to minimise the negative social consequences of gaming operations. This endeavour has high priority in all operational decisions and leads to specific measures for a strong sense of responsible gaming.

Svenska Spel’s social responsibility is to provide gaming in a responsible and secure manner and minimise the negative consequences of the company’s operations and products. Svenska Spel’s mandate includes:

  • prioritising social welfare in the development of gaming forms and in the business as a whole.
  • adopting a precautionary approach to new games and markets, and
  • having a responsible focus in the company’s marketing that also reflects social commitment to ensure it is not perceived as overly assertive.

Svenska Spel’s responsible gaming policy describes the guidelines for responsible gaming. The policy states how the company shall act to meet the above requirements. Svenska Spel’s aim is to pursue responsible gaming programmes through effective, responsible gaming efforts and thus distinguish itself from other gaming companies on the Swedish market.

Responsible gaming strategy

  • The player’s first choice – Svenska Spel aims to meet customer demand for products and gaming experiences using well-integrated responsible gaming. Svenska Spel shall offer customers better opportunities to control their gaming than other alternatives in the market.
  • Develop the customer dialogue – by means of continuous dialogue with the customers, responsible gaming will be perceived as positive, a feature that creates security. The dialogue shall also communicate that the company is attentive to customer requirements and opinions.
  • International exchange of know-how is prioritised – this is a prerequisite for offering customers the best solutions.
  • Stakeholder dialogue – communicating and creating dialogue, internally and externally, about responsible gaming efforts is decisive in communicating how Svenska Spel works with its mandate.
  • Responsibility measures on the basis of gaming risk factors – Svenska Spel shall promote minimum gaming risks using new and existing responsible gaming programmes. The point of departure for responsible gaming shall be the risk level of the various games.
  • Responsible gaming shall be integrated throughout Svenska Spel’s operations and be a core feature in the company’s key processes and be valued as a crucial factor in the company’s results.

Objectives of responsible gaming

  • Svenska Spel shall offer commercially attractive gaming and a positive gaming experience, integrated with responsibility. This will result in long-term customer relations and profitable business.
  • Svenska Spel shall seek to be world class in terms of responsible gaming. The public perception shall be that Svenska Spel accepts its responsibility for counteracting gambling addiction.
  • Responsible gaming shall be a self-evident feature of work for all Svenska Spel’s employees.

Responsibility in developing games

The precautionary principle is applied in the development of new games and in the compilation of the overall gaming offer

ing. The principle entails, for example, that Svenska Spel will not conduct the development of games that are considered risky if such games are not already available in the market.

Svenska Spel uses the GAM-GaRD tool, which was developed by researchers and that is mandatory in the product development process. This tool is used to identify risk components in a game and to classify and document each product. Games with higher risk are changed or provided with enhanced consumer protection and/or preventative tools.

Responsible gaming – Internet

March 2010 saw the acquisition of Playscan AB, which develops and maintains Svenska Spel’s responsibility tool at svenskaspel.se called PlayscanTM. The purpose is to strengthen Svenska Spel’s responsible gaming and provide more potential to develop the tool’s functionality.

Playscan™ draws the attention of the players to potentially risky behavioural changes in their gaming. It offers recommendations and tools, such as a gaming budget and gaming pause, which can assist players to change their behaviour and continue to maintain healthy gaming behaviour. Overall, some 47,000 customers have voluntarily activated Playscan™, representing an increase of about 7,000 people compared with 2009.

Responsible gaming – Casino Cosmopol

If they experience their gaming as a problem, Casino Cosmopol’s guests can sign a voluntary agreement to limit their casino visits to a maximum of eight per month, or request to be banned completely for six months. These banning agreements can be signed remotely or on the casino premises.

During 2010, 2,282 players (2,098) chose to sign voluntary agreements or be banned from playing at any of Casino Cosmopol’s casinos. At year-end 2010, 3,938 people had active agreements.

During 2010, 3,923 dialogues (3,546) were held with guests who showed signs of unhealthy gaming behaviour. During 2010, Casino Cosmopol focused on dialogues with young people in the 20–24 age group, a group in which the number of men with gaming problems is increasing according to the National Institute of Public Health.

During the year, Casino Cosmopol arranged a responsible gaming week at each casino with information campaigns on the risks of gaming and how they can be limited. Seminars were also arranged for invited guests.

Responsible gaming – Vegas

Svenska Spel is working towards strengthening responsibility for Vegas and has conducted a preliminary study of how the gaming responsibility tool can be integrated when playing Vegas. Tests of a new central system continued during 2010. The new system is a prerequisite for the introduction of the responsible gaming tool. Thereby players will be offered the opportunity to set their own limits in terms of time and money.

By means of test purchases, Svenska Spel continually ensures that the minimum age limit is observed. The number of test purchases much increased during 2009 and 2010 compared with preceding years (see the key indicators table on page 114). During 2011, a new, improved training programme in responsible gaming will be launched for personnel in restaurants and bingo halls.

Responsible Gaming – Retailers

On 1 October, Svenska Spel’s decision to set a minimum age of 18 for the purchase of lotteries at retailers came into effect. The purpose is to minimise gaming among minors. The decision means that there is now an age limit for all Svenska Spel’s products in all sales channels. The decision is in line with the industry’s request for a uniform minimum age limit.

Svenska Spel ensures that the age limits are respected at the retailers by using test purchases. The results at the retailers have improved significantly (as is presented in the key data table on page 114).

Training in gaming responsibility

Svenska Spel works continuously on the training of employees, retailers and business partners in responsible gaming. All new retailers undergo responsible gaming training that, among other aspects, includes information on the risks of gaming, availability of responsible gaming tools and the importance of minimum age checks.

As a result of the new minimum age limit of 18 for purchasing lottery tickets, Svenska Spel in 2010 developed a new responsible gaming training course aimed at retailers selling lotteries only. If a retailer or a business partner is not approved following the test purchase, he or she must undergo responsible gaming training.

Activities and results in 2010

  • Svenska Spel was certified at the highest level in accordance with the gaming standards set by the World Lottery Association (WLA). This entails that the company has an established and integrated responsible gaming programme and an advanced dialogue with stakeholders.
  • A new version of the non-excessive gaming site spelalagom.se was launched during the year. This features a new self-test and Svenska Spel’s gaming tool for customers, all at a single site to simplify responsible gaming.
  • The gaming industry’s ethical council, SPER, developed new guidelines for responsible marketing during 2010.

Focus for 2011

  • Implement new responsible gaming training for Svenska Spel’s managers.
  • Develop responsibility communications at spelalagom.se.
  • Continue to develop the follow-up of gaming behaviour using the Playscan™ responsibility tool.
  • Reinforce responsible gaming through such measures as the pilot installation of responsible gaming tools that will be available via the Spelkort customer card.
  • Stimulate increased use of the Spelkort customer cards in stores.
  • Stimulate more usage of Playscan™ at svenskaspel.se.
  • Test purchases at lottery retailers.

The precautionary principle

– a guiding star

Svenska Spel always takes the precautionary principle into consideration when developing new games and distribution channels. Among other things, this implies that the Company does not conduct development of presumably high-risk games and for which there is no known market demand. Marketing of this kind of game is also extremely limited.