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Second TSUPIS launched; first Sochi casino opens Jan

Russia’s second TSUPIS has become fully operational, according to a payment service provider headquartered in Cyprus.

Established by the Russian government, TSUPIS is the centralized payment processing system to handle all online gambling transactions.

The first TSUPIS in Russia was officially launched by bookmakers association First SRO in February 2016 and currently has 540,000 identified users working with four major bookmakers. The second TSUPIS, previously in testing, became operational this month.

It currently involves two Russian bookmakers, Fonbet and Leon - members of the Bookmakers Self-Regulatory Organization, with a few more bookmaking companies preparing to join.

"Qiwi has notified the Federal Tax Service of the launch of TSUPIS powered by Kiwi-Bank in November 2016. TSUPIS is now functioning in the full mode. It currently has over 30,000 identified users in addition to Qiwi's current database," a QIWI spokesperson told Russian betting publication Betting Business Russia on December 20.

In related news, Russian sports website Championat.com has reported that yet another bookmaker - Olimp - will soon get connected the new TSUPIS.

According to the head of the Bookmakers Self-Regulatory Organisation (SRO), Darina Denisova, Olimp will start taking online bets "at most, within a week."

Olimp, which is a member of the Bookmakers SRO, has gambling licenses to operate in Kazakhstan, South Africa, Montenegro, and Russia, where it has about 50 betting shops.

Olimp will be followed by another bookmaker Baltbet, which intends to start processing online bets via the second TSUPIS by 29 December. It has about 800 betting shops in Russia.

Sochi Gambling Zone

More financial figures have emerged regarding the Sochi gambling zone, scheduled to open in January.

A first casino will be officially opened in the Krasnaya Polyana gambling zone in Sochi on January 5, 2017, according to Russian Interfax news agency, citing its management and local authorities.

“‘Sochi Casino and Resort' is a five-star complex based on the territory of Gorki Gorod mountain resort. It has no analogues in Russia and involves a casino, two restaurants, a bar, a banquet hall, a cabaret theater, a conference room and boutiques, " deputy general manager of the complex Paul Edwards said at a presentation in Moscow.

The place has capacities to accommodate up to 2,000 visitors at the same time. It has 569 slot machines and 70 gaming tables. Its creators expect it to receive over 43,000 guests a month and pay RUB 433.6 million (US$7 million) in taxes in 2017.

According to Russian business daily RBC, investments in the project amounted to RUB 4 billion, which Domain plans to pay off in a three-year time.

Domain also expects the turnover from the casino to reach RUB 4.6 billion in 2017, followed by "a significant growth" in the next two years.

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