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British and Irish racing to enjoy increased exposure via Australia’s largest online bookmaker Sportsbet

Zoltan Tundik

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Australian TV audiences will be seeing more of Frankie Dettori and other British and Irish stars

Racecourse Media Group (RMG), in partnership with Sports Information Services (SIS), has agreed a multi-year streaming and marketing content deal with Sportsbet, Australia’s largest online betting operator and part of the Flutter Group. This agreement formalises an arrangement between the parties for Sportsbet to broadcast and take bets on British and Irish racing.

RMG is owned by 34 British racecourses, while SIS holds the rights to all 26 Irish racecourses and Chelmsford City.

The deal will see British and Irish thoroughbred racing – which is shown on Tabcorp’s (TAB) SKY Racing network in the TAB app, in venues and homes throughout Australia – also to be shown on the Sportsbet digital platforms. This arrangement means British and Irish racing will enjoy a significantly increased audience in the country and benefit through a new revenue stream from one of its largest export markets.

RMG’s Commercial Director Nick Mills said: “We are delighted to team up with Sportsbet and grateful to our long-standing partners, Tabcorp, for helping to facilitate the partnership through broader distribution of its SKY Racing channel. This is a very exciting opportunity to increase the shop window for our racecourses, as well as generate additional international revenue.”

SIS’s Commercial Director, Paul Witten, said: “UK and Irish horseracing content is an important contributor to Flutter’s revenues in jurisdictions around the world, and we are delighted to now be able to bring live pictures and additional content to Sportsbet’s Australian customers.”

Paul Bittar, GM of Sports Partnerships at Sportsbet, said: “We are really excited to be able to conclude this deal with RMG and SIS in order to bring live streaming of British and Irish racing to our huge Australian customer base. Sportsbet is always seeking to bring excitement to life for our customers and striking this deal on high-quality racing content supports this goal. We are also pleased to be able to support the sustainability of the British and Irish racing industries through new revenues.”

Australia

NSW Regulator: Crown Likely to Regain Sydney Licence This Year

Niji Narayan

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NSW Regulator: Crown Likely to Regain Sydney Licence This Year
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New South Wales chief gaming regulator Philip Crawford has said that the reinstatement of Crown Resorts’ license in New South Wales is a “realistic prospect.”

Since the ILGA officially declared Crown Resorts unsuitable to hold a state licence for its Crown Sydney casino, the casino operator has begun an attempt to put its ship in order to gain approval for the opening of the new casino.

Several board members have resigned, and Helen Coonan has stepped in as executive chairman on an interim basis replacing former CEO Ken Barton. It is now working to provide the ILGA with a written action plan.

The head of the New South Wales regulator, Philip Crawford, has said that Crown has made progress but needs to demonstrate complete rehabilitation to be found suitable to hold its licence.

Crawford stated: “Let’s be under no illusion, if I’m not satisfied, if the Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority’s not satisfied that they have rehabilitated themselves, they won’t be found suitable.”

However, he also noted that the reinstatement of the licence in the second half of this year is a “realistic prospect.”

Blackstone Group has made an unsolicited non-binding offer to acquire all remaining shares in Crown Resorts for AU$11.85 cash per share.

However, Blackstone Group’s proposal is subject to several conditions, including arranging debt finance.

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Australia

Victorian Govt Funds Six Research Projects Studying Gambling Behaviours During COVID-19

Niji Narayan

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Victorian Govt Funds Six Research Projects Studying Gambling Behaviours During COVID-19
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Australia’s Victorian state government will provide AU$600,000 in grants via the Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation to support research into how the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdowns impacted the gambling behaviours of residents.

With a theme of “Gambling in Victoria in 2020 – COVID-19 and beyond,” the funding round provides grants to six research projects covering topics such as “Economic insecurity and gambling behaviors in Victoria in the COVID-19 society” and “How Victorian venue gamblers kept busy during COVID-19 venue closures: can substituted leisure activities reduce gambling urges and the risk of gambling harm?”

The six projects will each receive between AU$50,000 and AU$150,000 over the next three years with the findings slated to help the Foundation shape future initiatives and activities to prevent and reduce gambling harm in the Victorian community.

“The most recent publicly available data shows online race and sports betting increased by 30% compared to the same period the year before. It’s critical we understand and learn from these changes in gambling behaviour,” Shane Lucas, CEO of Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation, said.

“We know that throughout the pandemic and the associated lockdown, some Victorians benefitted from an enforced break from in-venue gambling, while others found it incredibly challenging. To be able to plan and respond to gambling harm effectively, we need to know how COVID-19 affected gambling behaviors. This funding will be incredibly beneficial in understanding how those vulnerable to gambling were impacted by the pandemic,” Melissa Horne, Minister for Consumer Affairs, Gaming and Liquor Regulation, said.

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Australia

Macarthur FC and Sydney Swans set to reclaim the game from betting advertising

George Miller

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Macarthur FC and Sydney Swans set to reclaim the game from betting advertising
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Fans of two high-profile NSW sports teams will soon be able to enjoy games free of betting advertisements under a new partnership with the Office of Responsible Gambling.

Under the partnership, the Sydney Swans and A-League club Macarthur FC have pledged to partner with the Office of Responsible Gambling to raise awareness of gambling issues and turn down gambling sponsorships.

Natalie Wright, Director of the Office of Responsible Gambling, said it’s exciting to see other codes join the initiative.

“We now have four major agreements across three of the most popular codes after starting with cricket. That really speaks to clubs recognising their role in looking after their fans and their communities,” Ms Wright said.

Aside from not accepting any sports betting sponsorships, the clubs have committed to educating their staff, players, and fans about the risks associated with gambling.

“Sport is a big part of our Australian culture, and it should be enjoyed without having to experience gambling advertising as part of a match,” Ms Wright said.

Tom Harley, Chief Executive Officer of the Sydney Swans said the club was thrilled to be working in partnership with the NSW Government’s Reclaim the Game initiative to raise awareness of the risks associated with gambling.

“The focus of our partnership is on addressing the normalisation of sports betting and as part of this, Swans matches at the SCG will not feature gambling advertising or sponsorship,” Mr Harley said.

Gino Marra, Chairman of Macarthur FC, said that as a new club, they wanted to show their support for the Macarthur region and their passionate fanbase.

“As a club, we want to ensure we are looking after the wellbeing of our members, fans, and the wider community. This partnership does just that.” Mr Marra said.

“Our fans have got behind us in this first season, and we are excited to get behind them, too. The club, including our players, coaches, and staff, are passionate about raising awareness on this important topic.”

The Office of Responsible Gambling is in discussions with other sporting codes and clubs and hopes to announce more sign-ups to Reclaim the Game throughout the year.

If you or someone you care about needs support or advice, please call Gambling Help NSW on 1800 858 858 for free and confidential help and support 24/7.

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