Equinox offers a comprehensive one-stop-shop service to remote gaming operators by providing them with everything they may need from inception all the way through to liquidation / resettlement in another jurisdiction, if this ever becomes necessary or desirable. Indeed, we offer:
The application for an iGaming licence generally starts by getting the right advice from a service provider. At this stage, the client’s set-up is discussed in detail, and the required class of licence is discussed. Often, the initial stages may also include meetings with MGA officials where the client’s proposals do not fit squarely into a category.
There are four classes of Maltese Remote Gaming Licences. These are as follows:
- A Class 1 Licence is generally required for operators managing their own risk on repetitive games, such as casino-type games.
- A Class 2 Licence is required for operators managing their own risk on events based on a matchbook. Under this class operators can offer fixed odds betting.
- A Class 3 Licence is generally required where players on the network play against each other, and the operator takes a percentage of the rake for organising and promoting the game.
- A Class 4 Licence is the licence required in order to host and manage remote gaming operators, excluding the licensee himself. Gaming software and platform providers normally fall within this class.
Since June 2011, prospective licensees are required to submit all the information pertaining to the application document at one go as the MGA pledges to evaluate all the information provided through simultaneous internal processes that are transparent to the client, hence making the evaluation process shorter.
An applicant is therefore required to complete the Application Form and to submit it to the MGA together with all the documentation requested in the System Documentation Review Form. The information required can be summarised as follows:
- Know Your Customer (“KYC”) Documentation;
- If a non-resident company is a shareholder in the applicant entity, the following documents would also be required:
- Certificate of Incorporation;
- Articles of Incorporation (indicating the ultimate beneficial owners, shareholders and director/s of the company);
- Certificate of Good Standing;
- Share Register to be signed by the Company Secretary confirming the shareholders of the Company and the share certificates in respect of each shareholder;
- Credit and/or financial references including a professional recommendation on the Company.
- Business Plan;
- Systems Documentation;
- System Audit.
If the MGA’s evaluation is completed successfully, the applicant must execute the documented system onto a closed system within sixty days. In this period of time, the applicant must request an external systems audit to be performed by an independent third party contracted by the MGA. A fee for the external systems audit applies. If the audit is also completed successfully, the MGA will issue a five year license in favour of the applicant.
A remote gaming licensee in Malta must appoint at least one key official who must be approved by the MGA. The key official personally supervises the operations of the licensee to ensure compliance with all legislation, directives and conditions to which it is subject. The key official must be resident in Malta, must be a director of the company, and must be a “fit and proper person” in accordance with the MGA’s evaluation. Equinox Advisory is able to provide key official services to remote gaming licensees.
Equinox Advisory has expertise in probability and odds compilations as well as in behavioural modelling on the basis of observed data patterns. There are a number of uses for probabilistic and behavioural modelling in gaming, but good and focused data analytics always underlies such exercises. We are not tied-in to any specific software platforms to carry out our data mining activities, but can advise you on how to do it or do it for you altogether whatever data warehousing and business intelligence platform you are using.
We normally adopt clustering and parameter individualisation as well as psychological inferencing to be able to enhance customer experience through right framing, which in turn results in increases revenues for given games.
Our affiliated law firm Equinox Legal offers legal services specialised in gaming law, data protection law, company law, the drafting of SLAs and complex software agreements, mergers and acquisitions and contract law.
As the gaming industry consolidates, Mergers and Acquisitions are becoming more commonplace as a way for gaming operators to be able to consolidate their position in an increasingly competitive market. We are able to provide advice in relation to the conglomeration of activities as well as to whether the competition authorities need to be notified in case the thresholds of market concentration established in the law are exceeded. We are also able to provide all the economic justifications and computations that need to be made in order for the notification to take place.
The maximum gaming tax payable annually by one licensee in respect of any one licence is capped at EUR 466,000.
A Class 4 platform providing services from Malta to operators licensed elsewhere in the European Economic Area, pays a monthly gaming tax of EUR 1,165 for each such operator.
Malta also offers a very favourable tax regime for foreign companies setting up subsidiaries in Malta where the effective tax rate could be as low as 5%.
Equinox Advisory offers a complete suite of HR outsourcing services for companies that would like to keep their activity lean. Our HR outsourcing services cover recruitment and psychometric testing for recruitment, payroll services, employee satisfaction surveys, training, the provision of employment law advice, as well as employee termination and exit surveys.
Equinox Academy, our training services provision arm provides sterling training services for the gaming industry. Our training offer comprises both courses that are generally available to the public and bespoke training provided on request. We also provide ancillary services such as innovation audits, training needs analyses and teambuilding activities.
Equinox Advisory also offers registered office address services, as well as managed office space. Please contact us to let us know what your requirements are so that we can recommend the better way of handling them.
Equinox Advisory offers postal management services. This is a service that is ancillary to the provision of a registered office address. Mail may be redirected to another address of choice or scanned and forwarded to an email address of choice.
Equinox Advisory can also open and manage bank accounts on behalf of its clients in accordance with their needs. Please contact us to let us know what your requirements are so that we can give you our proposal.
Finding a reliable payment gateway for your gaming platform can be a tricky issue. Once we understand your needs we would be able to advise you on which payment gateways might be able to suit your needs best.
Dealing with Internet Service Providers can also be a tricky issue. The number of hops and the latency to certain jurisdictions that a gaming operator might want to target are important deciding factors when a gaming operator is procuring bandwidth and connectivity. The typical connections profile also needs to be taken into account the variance in bandwidth usage in relation to the cost of burst bandwidth and committed bandwidth, together with resiliency and uptime requirements. Our experience in telecoms, data analysis, statistics, pricing and gaming can come in handy when you are trying to optimise your bandwidth cost for given traffic patterns and growth rates.
Equinox Advisory’s experience in project management, particularly for technically-complex projects has allowed us to put together a gaming-specific project management service package encompassing software development, innovation management, gaming compliance requirements and efficient business process engineering with a view to deliver your project on time and within the estimated cost parameters. We can hand-hold our clients in managing their projects to make sure that the deliverables are delivered in time and to the desired quality levels, and can even take the project management function of a project ourselves.
Equinox has been involved in the i-Gaming industry since having set up shop and its members of staff were pioneers in the gaming industry in their previous incumbencies. Equinox has assisted with (and taken care of) licence application submissions to the LGA (the precursor of the MGA) and their follow ups, with competition office notifications where these were necessary, as well as in negotiations with – and the drafting of contracts for – agreements with other service providers such as data centres, telecoms companies and gaming platforms. Equinox is aware of the fact that its clients’ requirements are unique and based on the particular circumstances of the individual client and it is accordingly its policy to provide bespoke services that take into account each individual client’s circumstances, needs and operating environment.
Since setting up shop in 2008, Equinox has provided services to a number of clients in relation to their application for Maltese i-Gaming Licences, company formation, service procurement and competition office notifications whenever this was required.