Patrik Hofbauer, the President and CEO of Svenska Spel, will end his five-year leadership tenure at the company in January 2024, returning to telecommunications.
He first took the duo leadership position at the state-owned lottery and betting company in 2018 after a career in media and communications, and has overseen its operations during a transformative period for Swedish betting and gaming.
Hofbauer’s tenure saw Svenska Spel end all casino advertising in 2019, navigate a changing Swedish political landscape which posed numerous implications for gambling and kept pace with the company’s support for and connection with the sporting scene.
The outgoing executive remarked: “In recent years, I have had the privilege of leading Svenska Spel. It has been a fantastic journey together with our customers, partners and, not least, employees. It is not an easy decision to change roles or leave a company that I value so deeply.
“With a strong culture, a clear values compass and enormously committed employees and leaders, Svenska Spel is in a position to continue delivering value for our customers, Sweden and the Swedish sports movement.”
Svenska Spel’s operations in the latter area have seen the company sign a range of deals and make several sporting commitments. This has included partnerships with the Swedish Sports Federation, funding for grassroots sports and the recently announced continuation of its Elite Sports Scholarship.
Financially, the company has remained stable under Hofbauer’s oversight, having seen net gaming revenue (NGR) increase slightly to SEK 1,967bn (€172m) in its Q2 2023 trading update, compared to results of SEK 1,963bn (€170.7m) the previous year.
The political and regulatory backdrop for Svenska Spel continues to shift however, with the latest raft of government decisions seeing the Finance Minister standardise AML fines and penalties across high-risk industries – including gambling – whilst also recommending a ban on credit card payments for betting back in June.
Upon departing Svenska Spel on 31 January, Hofbauer will return to the telecommunications field when he assumes the CEO position at theTelia Company on 1 February. In the meantime, Svenska Spel will conduct recruitment activities for his replacement.
Erik Strand, Chairman of the Board Svenska Spel, said: “Through his solid knowledge, great commitment and brilliant leadership qualities, Patrik Hofbauer has successfully led Svenska Spel during a time of major changes for the company.
“Svenska Spel is today a modern company that delivers sustainable gaming experiences. Patrik’s personal leadership has navigated Svenska Spel through the reregulation of the gaming market in 2019 and he, together with the board and his team, has set a clear future agenda and strategy.
“Patrik is a person and company leader who makes a real difference and on behalf of the board I would like to extend a warm and big thank you to him for his valuable contribution to Svenska Spel.”