Following the cancellation of a deal between multiple time Major champions Astralis and betting/crypto gaming company Roobet, Counter Strike’s premier news outlet HLTV has entered into a deal with the firm. The news has caused some consternation among CSGO fans, with Roobet having also been the subject of a YouTube exposé last year.
The problems for Astralis were largely centered around Roobet’s failure to comply with Danish law on the gambling issue, and it remains to be seen if HLTV will face similar difficulties. The company headquarters are listed as being in Denmark, but their deal with Roobet may be different enough to Astralis’ to avoid falling foul of the authorities.
It was YouTuber Philip Rusnack, better known as Philion, who made a video titled ‘The Rabbit Hole of Roobet’ some nine months ago, detailing the issues around the company and the gray areas that needed to be explained. While the video did ok, it apparently didn’t reach the CSGO world, as Astralis entered into a partnership with Roobet in May of this year.
However, within 24 hours of that deal being signed, as the ink was still drying on the e-signature page, Astralis were forced to walk back the decision and end their deal. This, in their words, was down to a lack of due diligence, with concerns around Roobet’s licenses brought up in reporting by outlets like EsportsInsider.
At the time, Astralis CEO Anders Hørsholt had this to say on the matter: “We have today advised Roobet that with immediate effect, we wish to terminate the contract we presented on Thursday. In this incident, we did not perform our due diligence well enough around local legal matters, and when you make a mistake, you must correct it. This is what we do now.”
The Astralis deal may have fallen apart due to Denmark’s gambling laws, and specifically the sections that require companies to have European licences to operate in the Danish space. Robot, like many companies in the esports space, is licensed and authorized through and by the Government of Curaçao, a Dutch Caribbean island, and operates under its jurisdiction.
The reason Roobet and some other gambling sites choose to operate in Curaçao is mainly due to the lax licensing laws in that part of the world. Unlike many European areas where companies are required to do their due diligence, Curaçao only requires a single license to run any kind of gambling operation, be that casino, sportsbook, online service or anything else, which is not exactly that tough to obtain.