Curacao Gaming Licenses: The Gold Standard Just Got Glittering!

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Written By iGaming

iGaming Express, a dedicated team of gambling experts proudly serving the Industry since 2014 

Curacao has been the gaming world’s glittering jewel, luring countless entrepreneurs with its sleek license procurement and tantalizing tax perks. Delving into its history, Curacao’s licensing blueprint was nothing short of distinctive: a dance between master and sub-licenses. The Ministry of Justice led the initiative, and the state introduced the coveted master licenses, which a select quartet of elite entities exclusively held. Moreover, these giants then had free rein to distribute sub-licenses to other operators, and, interestingly, no strings (or caps) were attached.

But hold onto your hats! As of September 1, 2023, Curacao has brilliantly reimagined its gaming playbook, introducing an exhilarating new chapter in licensing lore!

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Curacao Gambling License Update: Key Alterations as of September 1, 2023

Curacao, a renowned jurisdiction for online gaming licenses, has announced significant changes to its licensing regime. Here are the highlights:

Licensing and Application Process:

  1. The current legislation will process direct applications for new master licenses in online gaming.
  2. The Gaming Control Board (GCB) is launching a dedicated online portal for:
    • Fielding new license applications.
    • Facilitating registration for operators with extant sub-licenses.
  3. The design of this portal prioritizes user-friendliness, offering application forms and a detailed guide on application and registration prerequisites.

GCB’s Enhanced Regulatory Powers:

  1. The GCB can grant licenses to applicants who demonstrate a commitment to managing gaming activities safely, responsibly, transparently, and trustworthily, both within and outside Curacao’s borders.
  2. The GCB retains the authority to either suspend or revoke a license if there’s an indication that an operator’s activities might compromise the values of safety, responsibility, transparency, and trust in the gaming domain, both locally and internationally.
  3. In the interest of upholding these principles, the GCB can also introduce specific conditions or limitations on a given license.

A Note of Significance:

It’s pivotal for operators to understand that, under the new system, master license holders will no longer possess the capability to grant sub-licenses.

Securing a Master Curacao Gaming License

Under the newly instituted regulations, securing a master license in Curacao is a phased process, each requiring meticulous attention to detail and compliance with set standards:

1. Initial Licensing Phase:

  • Personal Verification: In-depth validation of the data of directors and authorized representatives.
  • Business Examination: Rigorous assessment of the business’s overall operations and model.
  • Compliance Verification: Ensuring the company’s adherence to pivotal policies and prescribed conditions.

2. Post-License Acquisition Phase:

  • Operator Surveillance: Continuous oversight of the entities granted the licenses.
  • Data Submission: Licensees must conduct requisite evaluations and submit pertinent data to the GCB within six months of license acquisition.
  • Reliability Assurance: Affirmation of the credibility of new license holders, directors, and other authorized entities.
  • Incident Reporting: Provision of detailed accounts of substantial occurrences or discrepancies.

Eligibility for a Curacao License:

Entities engaged in the following activities are eligible to apply:

  • Player Management: Overseeing player registration and performing necessary verification processes.
  • Financial Transactions Management: Direct involvement in handling player funds, encompassing deposits and withdrawals, and overseeing various financial transactions.

In this streamlined and efficient system, aspiring operators seeking legitimacy and credibility in the gaming industry can secure a Curacao license, ensuring their operations are compliant with international gaming standards and best practices.

Curacao License: What Applicants Need to Know

If you’re considering obtaining a Curacao gaming license, it’s essential to understand the detailed requirements set forth by the governing body. Here’s a breakdown:

Application Process:

  1. GCB Portal Registration: Begin by registering on the GCB’s dedicated portal.
  2. Legal Entity Criteria: Entities that register according to Curacao’s laws and maintain an official office in Curacao can apply.
  3. Online Submission: You must submit all application forms, relevant details, and supporting documents through the GCB portal.
  4. Detailed Disclosure: You should present comprehensive information about both the applicant and the company’s operations.
  5. Equipment & Software Scrutiny: Independent agencies, as endorsed by the GCB, must verify the equipment and software.
  6. Maintenance Commitment: Regular upkeep of both software and equipment is mandated.
  7. Readiness for Inspection: A current list of equipment, software, and proposed games should be available for examination at all times.
  8. Security Clearance: Applicants must pass a thorough security assessment.
  9. License Prerequisites: Ensure that all conditions set for acquiring the license are met.

Application Components:

When filling out the application, it’s segmented into stages, and each might require supplementary documents for validation. The data requested typically encompasses:

  • Applicant’s personal details.
  • Brand specifications.
  • Domain information.
  • Business structure.
  • Gaming activity type.
  • Player account specifics.
  • Fund management insights.
  • Currencies in operation.
  • Transaction methods, direct or via intermediaries.
  • Server geography.
  • Gaming access points (like PC or mobile).
  • Details about gaming providers.
  • Applicant’s criminal background, if any.
  • Address and nationality of the applicant.
  • Positions the applicant has held.
  • Comprehensive details of local representatives.
  • Organizational details, including name, local address, registration, establishment date, etc.
  • Company’s timeline and activities, especially those within Curacao.
  • Financial sourcing insights.

Post-License Mandate:

It’s pivotal to realize that, once licensed, within a span of six months, the licensee must engage in verification of various aspects like player data, game integrity, and information security, and submit this consolidated data to the GCB. This ensures continued compliance and establishes the licensee’s credibility in the industry.

Curacao Gaming License: Essential Documentation & Insights

Documentation Checklist for Application Submission:

  1. Either the original or a certified copy of the birth certificate.
  2. An original or certified duplicate of the passport and/or ID card.
  3. An original or certified rendition of recent police clearance or pertinent protocol regarding the applicant, encompassing every jurisdiction where the applicant has resided for over six months within the last two years.
  4. Authenticated copies of gaming licenses from other jurisdictions, if applicable.
  5. An original or certified version of a recent banking statement or a letter from a financial institution (must be within the last 6 months).
  6. Original or certified proof of the applicant’s current residence, which could be a utility bill, bank statement, or any valid residential confirmation document.
  7. A declaration detailing the source of income and funds for shareholders.

Timelines & License Duration:

Once you’ve submitted a complete application, expect a decision within two months. The Curacao gaming license, upon issuance, remains valid for a span of one year.

Key Considerations for License Holders:

Being a Curacao license holder comes with responsibilities. They must ensure accessibility to the following details:

  • General information about the license holder.
  • License’s issuance and expiration dates.
  • License holder’s address, contact points, and a customer support channel.
  • Transparent links to their terms and conditions.
  • Tools and mechanisms to verify age restrictions.
  • Information on gambling activities they host, including game rules, odds, payout percentages, and how these odds are determined.
  • Resources about gambling addiction and guidance on seeking assistance.
  • Clear grievance redressal processes.
  • Clear disclosure on the duration post-game conclusion when winnings become accessible.
  • Options for players to restrict their betting amounts and overall participation.
  • Features enabling players to self-exclude from both participation and marketing communications.

Curacao Gaming License: Financial Aspects:

License holders are subject to an annual fee of EUR 60,000. This is billed as monthly installments, with each installment being about EUR 5,000.

For new entrants, an additional domain fee applies for every new domain at EUR 750 annually.

Lastly, a fee of EUR 500 is charged for every new registration, be it an ultimate beneficial owner (10%), a significant shareholder (10%), or key staff within the licensee’s framework.

Final Thoughts

Historically, Curacao has been a beacon for entrepreneurs in the gaming world, well before these new developments came into play. The nation’s economy is dynamic, constantly evolving to meet the needs of investors and aiming to offer even more attractive conditions. Today, the Curacao government fully leverages its advantageous position, emerging as a formidable rival to other renowned gambling jurisdictions. The revamped licensing procedures pave the way for diverse opportunities for entrepreneurs, infusing renewed vigor into the gaming industry’s growth.

Should you have any queries or seek expert guidance, the team at Szilaghi Consulting is here to assist. Don’t hesitate to reach out via email or through any of the communication channels provided at this page’s footer.

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