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$1.5 MILLION IN GAMBLING HARM PREVENTION GRANTS AWARDED

George Miller

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$1.5 MILLION IN GAMBLING HARM PREVENTION GRANTS AWARDED
Reading Time: 8 minutes

 

Community organisations across NSW have been awarded more than $1.5 million for local gambling prevention and harm minimisation projects under the NSW Office of Responsible Gambling’s Local Prevention Grants Program.

These projects will support the community to make informed decisions about gambling, break down stigma and encourage people to seek advice and support.

Director of the Office of Responsible Gambling, Natalie Wright, said the projects being funded are instrumental in the work of the Office to prevent gambling harm.

“By funding local responses, we are enabling community organisations to meet the unique needs of their communities and of priority populations,” Ms Wright said.

“We know each community has unique challenges, which is why it was encouraging to see the diverse nature of these projects that address the different issues faced in at-risk communities.

“Through the grants, we aim to raise awareness about gambling harm by encouraging people to get involved, understand the risks and make informed decisions about gambling – something that is paramount in communities most vulnerable to gambling harm.”

A total of 14 projects have been funded, targeting a diverse population including projects with a focus on Aboriginal communities, culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities, youth, and regional NSW.

Projects include a mix of educational programs for parents and teens, gambling and financial literacy workshops, advertising campaigns aimed at breaking down the stigma of gambling and barriers to help-seeking, and CALD-specific responsible gambling programs.

The grant recipients include:

– CatholicCare Social Services for the Blue Mountains

– Fairfield City Council

– Granville Multicultural Community Centre

– Lifeline Broken Hill Country to Coast

– Lifeline Harbour to Hawkesbury

– Lifeline North Coast (NSW)

– Macedonian Australian Welfare Association NSW

– Mudyala Aboriginal Corporation

– Northern United Rugby League Club

– Uniting (Victoria and Tasmania)

– University of Sydney

– University of Technology Sydney

– Walgett Aboriginal Medical Service

– Wesley Community Services

The Office recognises that a whole-of-community response involving partnerships with a wide range of stakeholders is integral in preventing and reducing gambling harm.

For more information about the projects, please visit the NSW Office of Responsible Gambling website.

The full list of funded projects is here:

CatholicCare Social Services for the Blue Mountains: Off-Screen & Smart Play

CatholicCare Social Services for the Blue Mountains provides services in low-income and vulnerable communities. The project Off-Screen & Smart Play will target parents and school-aged children from these communities, to increase awareness and provide strategies for families on dealing with screen time and cyber safety. The project will highlight risks associated with gambling harm in these communities and educate families about the risks of gambling for young people online.

Working with local schools, the project will be run as workshops during school holidays and after-hours programs.

Grant amount: $20,376

Fairfield City Council: Responsible Gambling Community of Practice Facilitation

Fairfield City Council will build capacity of local organisations and community workers through the establishment of a responsible gambling Community of Practice focused on education, innovation and collaboration.

The aim of the project is to educate, facilitate, promote, train and build capacity of local community organisations, community workers and practitioners to deliver best practice prevention and gambling harm reduction programs in the Fairfield LGA. In addition, the project will leave a legacy of culturally and locally appropriate training resources and community awareness collateral

Fairfield Local Government Area is one of the most diverse communities in NSW with 54% of the population overseas born. It also has one of the highest rates of gambling in NSW.

Grant amount: $191,000

Granville Multicultural Community Centre: My Money, My Way

With a focus in the Cumberland Local Government Area, the My Money, My Way project by Granville Multicultural Community Centre will raise awareness of gambling harm and build capacity for the community to address moderate and problem gambling. The project will empower young people to make informed choices, and better understand the potential impact of gambling on them and their future.

Participants will be involved in workshops covering topics such as gambling advertising, the risks associated with certain types of gambling, cyber safety, self-regulation and strategies to minimise gambling risk.

Through personal pathway plans, participants will be able to set their own goals, create links for referral to support pathways and monitor their personal progress. Participants will have the opportunity to design a peer-focused support program orientated to their specific needs.

Grant amount: $98,952

Lifeline Broken Hill Country to Coast: Broken Hill Gambling Harm Awareness Program

This project aims to prevent and reduce gambling harm in Broken Hill, a small and isolated community in Far West NSW. It will support the community to make informed decisions about gambling, reduce stigma, encourage help-seeking, and connect people who need help with support services.

The project will deliver a targeted local awareness campaign, including radio and cinema advertising, seminars and three special educational events with guest speakers.

The project will develop creative and informative resources for ongoing distribution throughout Broken Hill’s pubs and clubs and further afield to other communities in Far West NSW.

Grant amount: $194,000

Lifeline Harbour to Hawkesbury: Financial Life-Skills – Don’t get ripped off

The project will develop and present a Financial Literacy Workshop to be offered to young people aged 16 to 24 in the Northern Sydney area. The workshop will address the fundamentals of how young people can manage their finances to reach their financial goals and will focus on the risks and potential harms of gambling. Lifeline’s financial counsellors, with many years of experience, will present the workshop, which has been developed with young men, particularly young tradespersons, as they are at risk of becoming problem gamblers.

Grant amount: $10,575

Lifeline North Coast (NSW): Reduce the stigma radio campaign

The project is a focused radio campaign aimed at educating and creating community awareness of gambling problems. It will reduce stigma and overcome barriers to help-seeking. It will target young men in with an additional focus on Aboriginal and CALD communities. It will be rolled out over six-months using radio stations listened to by the target demographic.

The Reduce the stigma radio campaign aims to address the major barrier to help-seeking behaviours by providing clear and simple messaging and avenues for help. Many people within the community listen to popular radio programs during work and study, and by providing key messages and creating awareness, this project aims to educate and strengthen the motivation to seek help over a six-month period.

Grant amount: $25,000

Macedonian Australian Welfare Association NSW: Preventing Gambling Harm in Multicultural Communities

This project aims to prevent and reduce gambling harm and promote responsible gambling within culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities (in particular Macedonian, Serbian, Bosnian and Croatian communities) in South-East and South-West Sydney, to improve community health and safety related to gambling.

The project will include an educational campaign, delivered in Macedonian and in other former Yugoslav languages, to raise awareness of gambling and gambling harm, including two large educational events and forums and a monthly outreach group of education workshops. A production of a culturally appropriate marketing tools about gambling harm will be developed and distributed.

A whole-of-community education approach will be used, where community members who are at risk of gambling harm and their families are involved. The project will work collaboratively with local ethnic businesses and cultural and religious groups, local council, police, NSW Health and local clubs.

Grant amount: $58,125

Mudyala Aboriginal Corporation: Women’s Gambling Awareness Rugby League Knockout

Mudyala Aboriginal Corporation will provide gambling awareness in a new innovative way to Aboriginal communities, in particular Aboriginal women in high risk communities in Northern NSW, through the Women in League Knockout, a wellbeing camp and through film.

Aboriginal communities will be encouraged to enter teams into a Women in League knockout. These teams will attend a presentation on gambling risks, have gambling awareness promotion on their playing gear, attend a wellbeing camp and nominate a team member to be filmed and interviewed about gambling issues.

Throughout the journey of the project the aim is to see sustainable change and link those who need it to service providers.

Grant amount: $100,000

Northern United Rugby League Club: Dirrawong Responsible Gambling Program

Northern United Rugby League (NU) will conduct a multi-levelled gambling prevention program, the Dirrawong Responsible Gambling Program, targeted at the Aboriginal population of the North Coast and specifically targeting the population around Lismore. The program will involve an education program involving partnerships with The Buttery and individuals from Gamblers Anonymous as well as involving Beyond Empathy (an Aboriginal focused organisation who deliver innovative programs to help reduce mental health problems), the Aboriginal Medical Services and the Local Area Health Service.

A series of education programs will be held at weekly community training nights that regularly attract over 120 Aboriginal people of all ages. Program signage and information stalls will also be in place at all home games in 2020 and 2021, The program will culminate with branding and signage delivering a strong sponsorship message at the 2020/21 Koori Knockout.

Grant amount: $30,000

Uniting (Victoria and Tasmania) (Project in Southern NSW): Recoded – changing the way we game

The ‘Recoded’ prevention program will provide education and capacity building on gaming and gambling for young people and their support networks including teachers, wellbeing staff, youth workers, and sporting clubs.

Uniting will employ a project officer and youth worker in Southern NSW to co-design a framework that can be delivered across a range of services and spaces accessed by young people to reduce the potential harms of excessive gaming and gambling. The framework will also develop a train-the-trainer module for key services to ensure the work is embedded within the local community.

The project will bring together best-practice and emerging evidence within the gaming and gambling space to design a responsive and adaptable program that improves community awareness and is able to identify risk factors for young people who are developing unhealthy behaviours. By providing this education to children and young people the program will create healthy and pro-social behaviours around gaming and reduce the risk of these behaviours becoming addictive and escalating to unhealthy gambling behaviours.

Grant amount: $200,000

University of Sydney: Bridging the gap through Aboriginal peer support

The University of Sydney Gambling Treatment and Research Clinic (GTRC) will implement a harm prevention program in indigenous communities in Western/South-Western Sydney. The project will increase awareness of problem gambling and enhance referral pathways by collaborating with community elders to co-design and co-deliver public awareness programs.

The project will build upon existing relationships with Aboriginal services to engage elders as peer-support workers, to provide ongoing support throughout the referral and treatment process. The project will increase the number of peer-support workers who can provide community education, enhance referrals and attend therapy groups to offer support. Educational initiatives will include workshops and resource sharing at community events and local media aimed at increasing awareness and promoting gambling support services.

Grant amount: $198,978

University of Technology Sydney: Aboriginal Animation Training & Resource Program

The Aboriginal Animation Training & Promotion Program will produce a resource about promoting safe gambling targeting Indigenous communities in NSW. Four, 30 second animation clips will be produced by young, indigenous filmmakers.

The clips will be screened throughout the annual Winda Film Festival in November 2020. There will also be opportunities to screen the clips on social media platforms and broadcast networks such as NITV/SBS.

Grant amount: $117,800

Walgett Aboriginal Medical Service: Walgett Community Garden: Yarning About Gambling

This project recognises gambling as a public health issue affecting the social determinants of health for individuals and community.

A reinvigorated Community Garden will provide a safe space unrelated to alcohol or gambling, a source of information, pathways to support, development of pride and contribution to community. Yarning is recognised as an appropriate strategy to engage about the impacts of gambling. Safe spaces, family-friendly activities and a source of fresh produce will be provided.

The project has a capacity building focus, including training Aboriginal Health Workers in Walgett and Brewarrina to equip them to respond to gambling harm and provide community with soft entry points, awareness and support regarding gambling and its impacts. The project targets its outcomes at connections to information and support for individuals, families and community.

Grant amount: $94,000

Wesley Community Services: Gambling awareness and money management program

Wesley Community Services will deliver In Charge of My Money Gambling Awareness to at-risk communities in the Penrith and Sydney-city. The service’s gambling counsellors work with 10 Alcohol and Other Drug Centres, two Community Housing Support Organisations and two Multicultural Community Centres in these regions, providing access and ongoing support to key, at-risk clients.

Wesley will deliver 50, three-hour workshops for 750 people who are at risk or are impacted by problem gambling. The program will provide a soft entry to access further targeted support. Clients will be engaged in an existing program with current partners and receive wraparound ongoing support in a therapeutic environment. The program content will address pathways into gambling and identification of risks and outcomes.

Grant amount: $194,000

Australia

Tabcorp to Sell its 11.6% Stake in Jumbo Interactive

Niji Narayan

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Tabcorp to Sell its 11.6% Stake in Jumbo Interactive
Reading Time: < 1 minute

 

Tabcorp Holdings Limited has entered into an agreement with Stockbroker UBS to sell its 11.6% stake in lottery company Jumbo Interactive.

Tabcorp will sell 7,234,178 shares in Jumbo at a price of AU$13.52 (US$9.69) per share for gross proceeds of approximately AU$98m (US$70.24m). Profits after taxes are expected to reach AU$69m (US$49.46m).

“Following the recent extension of our long-standing commercial distribution relationship with Jumbo for a ten-year term to August 2030, there is no longer a strategic rationale for Tabcorp’s shareholding in Jumbo,” David Attenborough, MD and CEO of Tabcorp, said in a release to the Australian Securities Exchange.

She said the company had decided to monetise its participation in the online lottery operator and use the profits to boost financial results in the first half of 2021 and strengthen its balance sheet.

Proceeds will also support Tabcorp’s move towards a “recently revised target gearing range.”

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Australia

Inspired Announces Virtual Lexus Melbourne Cup

George Miller

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Inspired Announces Virtual Lexus Melbourne Cup
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

Inspired to create the inaugural Lexus Melbourne Cup The Race of Dreams to be Televised across Australia Tuesday, November 3, 2020 

Commemorating 160 years of Australia’s greatest race, Inspired Entertainment, Inc. (“Inspired”) (NASDAQ: INSE) announced today that it has created ‘Lexus Melbourne Cup The Race of Dreams’, a thrilling virtual race pitting 24 past champions of the Cup against each other, for the Victoria Racing Club (“VRC”).  Lexus Melbourne Cup The Race of Dreams will be shown live across Australia on Network 10 on Lexus Melbourne Cup Day, Tuesday, November 3, 2020.  Viewers will get to experience the magic with a computer-simulated version of the Lexus Melbourne Cup incorporating a stunning, fully accurate re-creation of the Flemington Racecourse and the atmosphere of the Melbourne Cup Carnival.

During the broadcast, Lexus Melbourne Cup fans will witness Inspired’s ultra-realistic 3D CGI representation of the Cup featuring 24 past champions as selected by a panel of experts from more than 100 past Cup stars.  Historical information about these horses and their racing records has been built into the software, which helps to determine the probability of their potential finishing positions.  This probability is based on their past form and performance in other races. With the outcome already known in advance by a select few creating the race, punters will not be able to place a bet on the great race.

VRC Chairman Amanda Elliott said the virtual race will unite and excite Australians in the lead-up to the 2020 Lexus Melbourne Cup. “Lexus Melbourne Cup The Race of Dreams will reignite time-old debates about Australia’s greatest stayer. We want everyone to embrace the concept, whether that be running a traditional Cup Day sweep with family and friends for the virtual race, or posting who you think will win on social media tagging @FlemingtonVRC, which will ensure bragging rights are yours should your tip take out Lexus Melbourne Cup The Race of Dreams.”

As the pioneer of Virtual Sports, Inspired has re-created the action of the world’s most popular sports for more than a decade.  Inspired has famously created virtual versions of the Kentucky Derby in the U.S. and the Grand National in the UK.  Both of these were broadcast on national television with millions of viewers, proving Virtual Sports are realistic enough to take center stage.

“We could not be more excited about working with the VRC and its media partners to create this celebration of Australian racing history,” said Steve Rogers, Inspired Chief Commercial Officer for Virtual Sports.  “The Lexus Melbourne Cup is one of the world’s greatest horse races, and its winners include a roll call of some of the sport’s biggest icons.  Bringing 24 of those icons back to the turf is every racing fan’s dream come true. It’s an honor to have this role in Lexus Melbourne Cup Day, and we can’t wait to show Australia the quality of our state-of-art virtual sports.”

Inspired’s award-winning Virtual Sports are popular worldwide, appealing to a wide variety of players through more than 40,000 retail channels and 100+ websites in 35 countries.  Trailers and demos of the latest Virtual Sports offerings are available at www.inseinc.com/virtuals/.

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Australia

Jumbo Interactive Announces FY2020 Results

Niji Narayan

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Reading Time: 3 minutes

Australian online lottery retailer Jumbo Interactive has announced its FY2020 results. The company has reported an 8.7% year-on-year growth in revenue and is now targeting growth in markets such as the UK, US and Canada as it aims to increase sales to AU$1bn. Total sales for the 12 months to 30 June amounted to AU$348.6m ($251.0m), with revenue rising from $65.2m to $71.2m.

Its core Australia Lotteries saw revenue increase 6.9% year-on-year to $68.7m, aided by a $260,000 contribution from its burgeoning software-as-a-service business, as well as large jackpots driving customer activity.

In terms of spending for the year, costs of sales were up 5.1% to $5.3m, while administrative expenses also increased 46.5% to $23.6m. However, Jumbo was able to reduce marketing costs by 19.9% to $5.6m, while occupancy expenses were cut by 86.0% to $104,000 for the year.

After taking into account $222,000 in finance costs and $176,000 in fair value movement on financial liabilities, this left Jumbo with a $37.4m profit before tax, down slightly from $38.2m at the end of its 2019 financial year.

Jumbo paid $11.5m in tax during the year, and after also including a $676,000 negative impact from foreign currency translation, this meant comprehensive profit for the year amounted to $25.2m, down 4.6% from $26.4m in 2019. However, in terms of underlying earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation, this increased by 7.7% to $43.2m.

“The online lottery industry has experienced further growth and this is expected to continue, especially as we broaden the charity lottery tickets we are now selling through our Powered by Jumbo software, which we feel will not only assist our profitability but also the deserving charities we are focusing on. We have often been asked if the Covid-19 pandemic has had an effect on our operation. With the experience of our major shareholder and CEO Mike Veverka and his very skilled staff, we have been able to continue to work both within the office and from the staffs’ respective homes,” David Barwick, chairman of Jumbo Interactive, said.

Veverka said that with online sales of lottery tickets accounting for 28% of Australian sales, the industry “clearly has a lot of growth ahead.”

“Lotteries are perfect for the internet and customers enjoy a top quality experience whether they play on OzLottries.com or another lottery using the Jumbo platform. Continual innovation is driving the customer experience even higher and is ensuring lotteries continue to remain popular into the future.”

Veverka also highlighted Jumbo signing a long-term extension to its reseller agreement with Australian lotteries and gaming operator Tabcorp, saying this will help to support its growth plans moving forward.

“The recent 10-year agreement with Tabcorp is an important milestone as it gives Jumbo certainty and the ability to plan long term. The next 10 years will be exciting as the internet share of ticket sales race up as players, young and old, enjoy the experience of playing online,” he said.

“From humble beginnings with a single computer in 1995, Jumbo has navigated many challenges and is ready for the growth that lies ahead. Our staff and partners over the years deserve enormous credit for this growth due to their efforts and trust in the vision to grow through technology,” he added.

Jumbo’s international lottery advisor Richard Bateson said that the retailer has identified opportunities for its iLottery and iRetailer solutions in the US, as more states move lotteries online.

“The iLottery proposition provides lotteries with an integrated digital lottery channel that is more efficient and effective than its industry competitors. The iRetailer proposition provides lotteries with a standalone digital channel that is self-sufficient and does not require operating cost or marketing budget to be diverted from the lottery’s main operations,” Bateson said.

“Once there is an established foothold in Canada, management believes the model can be exported to other parts of the North American region, using the expertise of the local market in adjacent markets. The international ambition is to drive sustainable businesses in the UK, the US and Canada that will be used as a beachhead in each region to grow into other markets and sectors,” Bateson added.

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