Malta Lotteries and Gambling Commission (LGA) was founded in 2001 after the Malta Lotteries and Gambling Act came into force. This is the country's single regulatory body responsible for controlling any gambling activity, with the exception of land-based casinos. In 2015, rebranding was made for the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA). The license of the Maltese regulator is widespread among well-known bookmakers and casinos in many respects due to precise standards, serious control and principles.
Malta is one of the few countries in the world where you can get a license for an online game (casino, lottery, etc.). A Maltese company requires a license in cases where there are the following indications:
- A Maltese company owns the website,
- Reception, payment and protection of funds is carried out by a Maltese company,
- Player funds are held by a Maltese company and / or
- The company mentioned on the website under the terms of the gambling is a company registered in Malta.
Any of the conditions listed above, with a high probability, entails the need to obtain a gambling license in Malta. An application for obtaining licenses for online gambling is submitted to the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA). At the initial stage, the applicant meets with specialists from a law firm in Malta, which specializes in licensing and servicing Maltese legal entities. At this stage, the business plan and business concept of the client are discussed in detail, which is necessary to determine the class of the required license. If the business project proposed by the client does not fit clearly into any category, then at the initial stage, a client's meeting with MGA officials can be arranged.
There are four classes of licenses for an online game in Malta
A Class 1 license is usually required for risk managers in repeated games such as online casinos.
A Class 2 license is usually required for risk managers in the betting business. For this class, operators can offer fixed rates.
A Class 3 license is usually required in cases where players play against each other, and the operator charges a percentage for organizing and promoting the Game.
A Class 4 license is required in order to provide hosting and management for gambling operators, excluding the license holder itself. Software vendors and platforms for the Game typically fall under this class.
Benefits of registering an online gambling company and obtaining a license for online gambling business in Malta:
- Malta is a member of the EU: a politically and financially stable country Malta will give prestige to your business since Malta is not an offshore zone;
- The ability to open accounts in a Maltese bank, no restrictions on the part of the bank when opening an account;
- Malta - the jurisdiction of the choice of European betting shops and online casinos;
- Guaranteed trust from potential customers - casino players;
- The ability to connect to a direct merchant account for processing credit cards on the Internet;
- Tax incentives and benefits for licensed gambling companies are the same as for trading Maltese companies (in the list at the bottom of the article, you can follow the links provided to go to blog articles and get information on Malta trading companies);
- The tax rate is 5-6%;
- The possibility of obtaining a residence permit in Malta.
Malta gaming license and company registration
The main steps in obtaining a gambling license are filing an application for review and verification by the MGA regulatory authority.
Basic requirements for obtaining a license for an online casino are registering a legal address (or buying it) in Malta and having at least two shareholders in your company.
To register a company in Malta, you need to pay a registration fee, get a VAT number and fill out a legal address in this country. Then financial and executive directors, other employees, are appointed.
An essential point in any jurisdiction is the submission of the company's business plan to the commission.
What data should be indicated in the business plan?
- Name of the company and name of its founders;
- goals and objectives of the company;
- list of employees, their positions, duties and functions;
- characteristics of each of the games of online casinos (name, principles of action, etc.);
- types of software for working online casinos;
- planned sales tasks for the next three years, approximate deadlines for their implementation and revenue generation;
- financial and marketing plans;
- sources of financing.
Documents to be sent to the jurisdiction of Malta:
- copies of birth certificates and passports of company shareholders;
- copies of the Charter of the company and the memorandum of association;
- photos of shareholders;
- certificates that there was no criminal record;
- balance sheet and financial reports on the current activity;
- documents from banks confirming the existence of accounts with a certain amount;
- recommendations from financiers and business representatives;
- documents certifying the presence of a valid office - payments for housing services or rent (for those who will conduct business from abroad);
- company business plan;
- information about partners and sample contracts with them;
- application for a license for a casino.
Also, you need to prepare an operating manual, which will contain all the information about games, payment systems, security measures, guarantees of payment of winnings, about methods of data recovery and so on.
A notary must certify copies of all documents submitted.
Consideration of the package of documents will be carried out by the MGA commission within three to four weeks after their submission. Licensing of gambling in Malta takes place in several stages. At each stage, you may need to send some additional documents.
The first license for an online casino is temporary (for six months), and only after a thorough check, the business owner will receive a permanent license for five years.
An activity permit can be extended, which must be notified to the commission no later than two months before the expiration of the first Malta gaming license.
Typically, the MGA is friendly to gambling companies and extends the permit without setting any conditions; however, if violations have been recorded over the past five years, the issue is resolved individually.
Malta Gambling Taxation
The amount of taxes depends on the class of the license and its duration. So, the first six months of activity under a Class I license will cost the operator € 4,660, and in each subsequent year, this license will be valued at € 7,000. The cost of documents for the work of the betting company is 0.5% of the income, and for permits of III and IV classes, you should pay 5% of the profit.
MGA license is one of the most respected licenses on the European market due to high standards of safety, privacy and payment systems. If you're planning to launch the gambling business, this would be one of the best options for you.