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Statement of the Chairman of the UGC on the pressure on the legal gambling business

SPACEIKS LLC, the owner of the Cosmolot brand, became another victim of a mistake by law enforcement agencies.

This company is a legal gambling organizer in Ukraine and has been paying for a license for three years in a row. That is, it operates completely within the limits of the effective legislation. The company is also a good faith taxpayer. Cosmolot paid more than UAH 1 billion to the state budget for six month of 2023 alone.

The company has been actively helping the Armed Forces of Ukraine and the state in general since the first days of the second wave of ruscist aggression against Ukraine. More than UAH 130 million was transferred directly to the programs of assistance for the Armed Forces of Ukraine and citizens of Ukraine. In addition to that, the Cosmolot team transferred to the front 31 Punisher drones out of 50 planned, created Brave Inventors platform of modern inventions and wartime products. Moreover, many specialized marketing programs and technologies were created that helped increase financial income and financial support for the front.

Despite the absolutely transparent and legal economic activity for the benefit of the state, a so called "masquerade" (search by law enforcement officers) was held in the Cosmolot office. They stated avoiding payment of taxes as reason for the search, but I would like to note that Cosmolot provided more than UAH 1 billion from the budget in the first half of 2023 alone and is one of the largest taxpayers in the gaming industry. Therefore, it is necessary to conduct a dialogue with all law enforcement agencies, which the Ukrainian Gambling Council will do within the framework of the implementation of its own Charter. Namely, it will protect the interests of its members, which are legal gambling organizers. And it's not just about business, but about the philosophy of life. It is worth recalling that British investor Arnulf Damerau, the founder of the London-based EuroAtlantic Group, bought a large stake in Cosmolot as a developing business at the end of the summer. Therefore, this situation significantly undermines the confidence of foreign investors in Ukrainian market.

Unfortunately, I have to state that we have more than 1,200 illegal web-sites operating in Ukraine, and nobody wants to find them, close them, or limit their work. However, it is easier to find legal web-sites, while there are only 14 of them, because all company details are indicated on the web-sites: legal addresses, full names of general directors, contact telephone numbers, etc. That is, it is clear where to look and whom to "visit". And, unfortunately, they come to these companies.

Therefore, my main message as the chairman of the relevant association is to direct all the efforts and inspiration of law enforcement agencies to the fight against illegal businesses. By the way, we recently shared a list of more than 100 illegal offline gambling establishments. And I will say that the results could be better.

Therefore, despite all mistakes, misunderstandings, etc., as the chairman of the Gambling Council, I responsibly declare that I am ready to communicate with any government agencies on the topic of helping the legal gambling business in countering the real illegal segment, instead of fighting those companies that provide revenue to the state budget by buying licenses and paying taxes.


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