Speaker profile: Nadya Hambach – Focus on Bulgaria – Updated regulation, results and what makes the Bulgarian market unique

Nadya Hambach is a specialized gaming lawyer in Bulgaria and advises for more than a decade gaming companies doing business in Bulgaria and Eastern Europe. Her expertise covers also Corporate and Commercial Law, Administrative Law, Contract Law, IP Law, Competition Law, which helps her using an in-depth knowledge of many relevant legal aspects of the gaming business and combines it with commercial understanding of its specifics.

As a Member of the Management Board of the Bulgarian Association of the manufacturers and operators in the gaming industry (BTAMOGI) (position she holds until 2012), she participates actively in the consultation process for adopting the new gaming regulation in Bulgaria and represents the Bulgarian gaming industry in the EXCOM and Legal Committee of EUROMAT (European Gaming and Amusement Federation). Since June 2012 she is Head of Gaming and Entertainment Law practice Group at Velchev&Co Law Offices, boutique law firm specialized in new technology law (telecommunications, banking, media, IT, Entertainment Law). Since October 2012 she is a General member of IMGL. Nadya Hambach is a recognised speaker at the most prominent international gaming forums and publishes regularly in key industry editions worldwide.

Nadya Hambach holds two L.LM degrees – one from Sofia University (2004) and one from the University of London UCL (2011), specialising in Corporate and Commercial Law with a focus on IP on the Internet, European Competition Law and International Trade law.

She is registered with Sofia BAR and Munich BAR as an European Lawyer.

She is fluent in Bulgarian, English, Russian and German.

Nadya will be among the key speaker of “Focus on recent developments in Eastern Europe” panel which will give start of the full day seminar type conference, from 10:00 AM on the 20th of September in Budapest.

We have recently interviewed her in our EEGReport Magazine, to get a fresh overview of the Eastern European markets. Below you will find a short preview of the interview, which you can read in full by accessing the online version of the magazine here.

EEGaming(Zoltan Tundik): I think you are the right person to address these question, since you have experience in both judicial systems. We know Eastern European countries follow a different system in terms of common law and civil law. Do you think that among the norms, some of the human rights have been lost with all the blacklisting and banning of operators that are not licensed?

Nadya Hambach: Well, Eastern Europe like the rest of the western European countries (except UK) has definitely other judicial system than the common law judicial system. Nevertheless the differences between the judicial systems, does not per se mean that one of them protects rights better than the other. When we talk about blacklisting and banning unlicensed gambling activities,  we could not stay apart from the fact that gambling is a sensible business activity. Exactly for that reason it has been excluded from the common internal market principals in the EU and its individual regulation by each of the member states has been tolerated. Hence blacklisting and restrictions for unlicensed in each particular jurisdiction operators are justifiable measures in Europe. How long this will be the status quo and whether and when there will be a gambling regulation on the European level is looking into the crystal ball question.

EEGaming(Zoltan Tundik): According to the European Union’s directive on electronic communications, member states cannot abusively block or limit Internet access. The fundamental problem is that blocking websites through the Internet provider is a measure of censorship of online content. Do you feel that countries that are blacklisting the un-licensed operators are doing the right thing?

Nadya Hambach: When it comes to the e-commerce Directive (2000/31/EU), it excludes explicitly gambling from its application scope (Preamble, point 16 and Art. 1, Para. 5, lit. d). Again, the legal situation in Europe concerning gambling is far away from being harmonised. Just the opposite – member states are aiming its non-harmonisation and are not ready to give up their sovereign in the name of a common European gambling regulation. Not only there is no dedicated European directive regulating gambling, but there are just few Directives applicable to gambling –Information in the field of technical standards Directive (Notification directive), Fourth AML Directive , two Data protection Directives, Directive about unfair terms in consumer contracts and Directive about granting concession.

Getting aside from the pure legal situation, a very important question remains whether blacklist is in reality an effective measure to stop unlicensed operations? I think we all know the answer of that question.

EEGaming(Zoltan Tundik): In regards to the recent changes to Bulgaria’s online gambling laws have made the market increasingly attractive to both foreign and local operators. But how is the competitive landscape shaping up?

Nadya Hambach: As the liberalization of the Romanian market is still not completed and based on temporarily decisions, Bulgaria remains the best regulated and most attractive eastern European gambling market. Increasing number of the licensed operators (especially international ones) is reducing the market share of the illegal operations and makes the market more transparent, reliable and naturally – more attractive.

Be sure to save the date and secure your ticket to the CEEGC 2016 Budapest, which will be held on the 20th of September 2016 at the Hilton Westend City Budapest Hotel in order to hear the fresh and recent information Nadya Hambach is going to discuss.

The conference provides an efficient way of meeting new and prospect clients in the special networking session and sit down lunch.

Special reports and exclusive updates will be given by the top 20 speakers of the industry and the event is limited to 150 delegates to maximize the engagement among the peers.

The tickets can be purchased at an Early Bird rate of €200 by the end of July.

Should you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us on +40 735 559 234 of by mail on organizers@ceegc.eu.



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