How Finland has one of the biggest sports betting cultures in the world

Online Sports Betting in Finland

Over the years, many countries have gotten associated with certain sports, like Brazil and Football or India and Cricket. Finland is a country with a strong history of sports, producing world-class players in Ice Hockey, Formula One drivers, and once in a while, Football. The citizens also love some other local sports, like Pesäpallo, Ringette, and Mölkky, that are not known around the world. However, what most people appreciate about these competitions, is the sports bettings that they allow.

The culture of online sports betting in Finland

Finland is famous for being the happiest country in the world, with one of the best educational systems and the cleanest environment. However, one of the lesser-known facts about Finland is that it ranks among the world's biggest gamblers per capita.

How much is spent on betting in Finland?

The country alone spends about €2 billion per year on different sports betting, according to a report from the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) back in 2015. This laces Finland as the country with the highest wager in the whole of Europe, and there is a good chance that that number has skyrocketed between then and 2021. Up to 80% of the population is involved in some form of gambling yearly.

How did it all start?

This deep sports betting in Finland culture began back in the early years of the nation. In the time past, gambling wasn't an accepted practice in the country, and was rather viewed as a taboo as it was illegal in the 1800s. However, ideologies started to shift as the newly independent state recognized a rare opportunity for national growth through betting on sports.

Fast forward to 1970, a citizen who gambled was regarded as a good citizen as gambling grew in relevance and virtue. Today, online gambling is widespread, with numerous sports betting sites in Finland making it easier for citizens.

What are Finland's favorite sports?

Betting on sports games is one of the most popular forms of gambling in Finland. Although an average Finnish sports betting site provides several options to choose from, both local and foreign, some sports are more appreciated than others. Favorite competitions in Finland include:

  • Ice Hockey
  • Formula One
  • Football
  • Pesäpallo
  • Mölkky
  • Ringette
  • Cross country skiing

Asides from the top sports listed above, some sports are also very popular in Finland, though they are not recognized in other parts of the world. These include: sauna bathing, berry picking, hobby horsing, and wife carrying. On an indigenous level, Pesäpallo is considered a national sport and called the "Finnish baseball".

What sports do Finland players like to bet on?

Even though Finland is a Nordic country with numerous types of sports, the sports betting industry is still dominated by soccer. Although you can bet on football, a majority of this betting isn't centered around the Finland Veikkausliiga, but rather, international leagues and competitions. However, a sport like Hockey also has a good share of the market.

There are also betting options for other indigenous and foreign sports, which you can find on top online betting sites like veikkaus.fi.

For more information on online betting in Finland, suomiveikkaus.com.

How much money is made from betting in Finland?

The gambling industry in Finland has been a government monopoly for decades. The government has, indeed, used gambling as a source of national growth, channeling proceeds from gambling companies back into society. At the moment, the state-owned agency, Veikkaus generates a mouth-watering €1 billion in profit for the government, along with over €200 million in taxes.

How much are Finland players paid for sponsorship?

According to data by Statista, sports sponsorship in Finland remains the highest across all industries in the country. As of 2020, this figure stood at €129 million, although it took a deep from 2019 due to the Covid pandemic, where it was €162 million. The exact figures earned by players for sponsorship vary depending on the player profile, team, and popularity.

The impact of Euros 2020 on Football in Finland

The importance and interest in football have been on a constant rise since Finland managed to qualify for their first major tournament with their win against Liechtenstein back in December 2019. Star striker, Joel Pohjanpalo putting Denmark to the sword in the country's opening game, has even further the cause, with the country just a win away from their first-ever major knockout stages.

This has built a lot of hype and interest in soccer, both in viewership and betting in general, with hopes as high as ever on how far the team can go.

Menu