Regulation: Sorare will not be reclassified as gambling
French start-up Sorare and the National Gaming Authority have buried the hatchet. A provisional solution has been found between the two parties, with the blessing of the government.
Sorare is taking a breather. One of the biggest fundraisers in French tech ($680 million in 2021) will not be aligned with the same regime as online betting sites such as Betclic or Winamax. "We have found a provisional solution with the French National Gaming Authority (ANJ) that satisfies both parties," says Nicolas Julia, co-founder of Sorare. The emphasis will be on strengthening the free offer, which already accounts for 90% of the game's usage. A mini-game dedicated to the World Cup has just been launched and is entirely free.
In order to avoid being likened to a gambling game (and therefore to the financial sacrifice that it implies), Sorare justifies itself by explaining that its game does not constitute a gamble because players will never lose their cards, i.e. their NFTs. For the ANJ, this response is a "transitional but essential stage" before the adoption of "a permanent solution". During this transitional period, the ANJ will put in place an ad hoc control mechanism for Sorare's activity and will verify the proper implementation of the solution around "free access" and, secondly, compliance with the objectives of preventing excessive gambling and protecting minors, the integrity and transparency of gambling operations and the fight against fraud and money laundering.
"All the stakeholders, i.e. the ANJ, Sorare, the dozens of companies undertaking Web3 gaming and the government all agree that there is a need to build a long-term, sustainable framework," Nicolas Julia points out. "We note that the regulator knows how to support innovation and recognises that texts need to evolve, some of which are decades old, and which are not necessarily adapted to the uses of new technologies", he points out.
Despite the warning sent to Sorare at the end of July by the ANJ, the start-up had immediately received the government's support in its fight. In an interview with The Big Whale, Digital Minister Jean-Noël Barrot had said that "when it comes to certain uses like Sorare's, we need to know how to be agile". He also said that "this is fundamental if we don't want to stifle innovation. So we need to find ways for innovation to develop while protecting users against certain risks, in particular addiction and money laundering".