The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has hit online operators 32Red Limited and Platinum Gaming Limited, both part of Kindred Group plc, with a £7.1m penalty due to social responsibility and anti-money laundering failures.
32Red Limited, which runs 32red.com, will pay £4,195,655 whilst Platinum Gaming Limited, which runs unibet.co.uk, will pay £2,937,599.
Both have also received an official warning following the Commission investigation.
Kay Roberts, Executive Director of the Gambling Commission, said: “These failures highlight clearly that both operators failed to interact with customers in a way which minimises the risk of them experiencing harms associated with gambling.
“Our investigations also showed that policies and procedures were overlooked, both around customer accounts and anti-money laundering practices.
“Ultimately, it is an example which all gambling operators should take notice of to ensure they protect their customers at all times.”
32Red failed to enforce responsible gambling measures and so did not identify and protect problem gamblers.
This includes one customer who deposited £43,000 and lost £36,000 within a week.
32Red would often take the customer’s word that they could afford their level of gambling without any further checks.
In regards to anti-money laundering, 32Red also failed to implement the necessary measures required by the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer Regulations 2017).
The investigation found that Platinum Games allowed self-excluded or blocked customers to evade the ban by making a separate account.
The operator also failed to interact with customers who were struggling with problem gambling.
WorldMatch Secures its Gaming License in Romania
WorldMatch announced that it has obtained its gaming license in Romania. This significant milestone marks a substantial step in the company’s global expansion strategy and further solidifies its position as a leader in the online gambling industry.
The license granted by the Romanian National Gambling Office (ONJN) authorises WorldMatch to provide its innovative products and services in the regulated Romanian market. This includes a wide range of online slots, table games, video poker and more, all rigorously tested and certified to ensure a safe, fair and high-quality gaming experience for Romanian players.
“We are thrilled to secure our gaming license in Romania. This success underscores our commitment to global expansion and strengthens our position as a preferred partner for online casino operators worldwide. We look forward to collaborating with local regulated partners to deliver an extraordinary gaming experience to Romanian players,” Andrea Boratto, CEO at WorldMatch, said.
WorldMatch’s entry into the Romanian market will offer local operators access to its extensive portfolio of high-quality gaming content.
3 Oaks Gaming granted UKGC licence
iGaming supplier advances growth strategy with key regulatory approval
3 Oaks Gaming, an established distributor of iGaming content, has announced that it has been granted its remote operating licence from the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC).
This prestigious achievement is a monumental landmark for the company who will now be able to distribute its games to licenced operators within the United Kingdom. This milestone not only expands the company’s reach, but also solidifies its position as a provider of choice within the industry.
Operators can anticipate access to a diverse selection of the supplier’s top-performing games, such as 3 Hot Chillies, Coin Volcano, and Sun of Egypt 3 which are currently undergoing certification, ensuring compliance and seamless integration for future partners.
Securing a UK licence represents a pivotal moment in the trajectory of 3 Oaks Gaming, as the provider prepares to announce significant commercial agreements in the coming months. This strategic business development achievement is set to complement the company’s current operations, bolstered by its existing Isle of Man licence.
Sebastian Damian, Managing Director of 3 Oaks Gaming, said: “We are thrilled to have obtained our UKGC licence, an esteemed accreditation within one of the world’s most recognised gambling markets. With this milestone achieved, we are dedicated to delivering high-quality, engaging content to UK-licenced operators.
“Our focus remains on progressing our market position and achieving ambitious growth goals, all while upholding our commitment to promoting responsible gaming.”
DSWV Calls for Changes as Black Market Betting Rises in 2023
The German Sports Betting Association (DSWV) has analysed the development of the German sports betting market for 2023 at its annual press conference. The main focus was on tax revenues, the black market and player protection.
Decline in Tax Revenue
In 2023, legal sports betting providers in Germany recorded stakes of €7.72 billion, a decrease of 5.4% compared to the previous year.
“Instead, the money flows into the coffers of the black market providers,” DSWV President Mathias Dahms said.
This development illustrates the challenges facing the legal market. One important reason for the decline is the migration of many players to illegal offerings. For example, since the State Treaty on Gambling came into force in 2021, regulated providers have not been able to keep up with the extensive betting offers of the black market due to a limited betting programme. The association is, therefore, calling for attractive framework conditions for regulated providers so that they remain competitive.
Combating the Black Market
Despite regulation, the black market has a significant market share in Germany. Studies, such as the Schnabl study by DSWV and DOCV, show that around half of the time spent by German online gambling users is spent on illegal sites. This alarming development requires urgent action on the part of the Joint Gambling Authority of the federal states (GGL). The DSWV is, therefore, calling for a reorientation of the current regulatory policy in order to strengthen the legal market and curb the black market.
Promotion of Player Protection
Many interested parties will open betting accounts during the European Football Championship. It is, therefore, all the more important that gamblers are directed to the legal market. Advertising helps to make the brands of legal providers stand out from the illegal offers on the black market. Only companies permitted by the GGL protect players. In the debate on sports betting advertising, the DSWV is, therefore, expressly opposed to a ban on advertising.
“No company can survive if it is not allowed to advertise, and this must remain the case for sports betting providers. Otherwise, players are left with the black market, where there are no protective measures and controls,” Dahms said during the conference.
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