French betting firms have been cautioned to ensure marketing activity is moderated during what is set to be an active sporting year by the national regulator, the Autorité Nationale des Jeux (ANJ).

At the start of each year, the ANJ issues an update on French bookmaker marketing activities, reviewing operators’ advertising plans for the coming year. In the 2024 assessment, the ANJ noted that many sportsbooks plan to ‘continue the strategy implemented in 2023’.

This approach is characterised by a ‘desire to retain players, in a context of strong sporting activity around the Euro and the Olympics’ – this latter element was the main area of focus for the ANJ.

Paris is set to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games this year and the UEFA Euro 2024 due to take place in neighbouring Germany. The tournaments will occur within months of each other, the former in July and August and the latter in June.

As with other high-profile international sporting events, this will likely contribute to increased viewership and betting engagement, as was witnessed during the FIFA men’s 2022 World Cup 2022 and women’s 2023 World Cup, for example. 

With the exception of one operator – WINAMAX, which saw its advertising strategy partially rejected for reasons unrelated to sports – the ANJ has approved all bookmaker marketing plans for 2024.

However, the Euros and Paris 2024 have prompted the ANJ to caution firms to “significantly moderate their promotional strategy in order not to exert excessive advertising pressure on all the different existing media supports, particularly during the period of Euro 2024 and that of the Paris Olympic Games”.

As with other European countries and their respective gambling regulators, the ANJ has been paying more attention to operator marketing of late. Last summer, the authority enhanced the advertising standards operators must adhere to with the goals of safeguarding minors, protecting sports integrity  and ‘preventing pathological gambling’.

The regulator’s call for moderation during the upcoming tournaments mirrors similar announcements in previous tournaments, notably the ahead of the 2020 Euros when it stated that it would ‘draw a yellow card on marketing communications’.

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