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Operators pledge strong support for Responsible Gambling Week with eye-catching new initatives

Zoltan Tundik

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Responsible Gambling Week, Nov 1- 7, 2018 - Aspers Casino Westfield Stratford. Photography Sam Pearce / www.square-image.co.uk Press contact details: timJ@thephagroup.com or alyssao@thephagroup.com. 24.08.2018
Reading Time: 3 minutes

 

Responsible Gambling Week 2018 will be bigger and bolder than last year’s inaugural campaign, with operators announcing strong support for the event in the first week of November.

More than 127,000 staff at more than 11,000 gambling venues and online sites in the UK and Ireland will take part in Responsible Gambling Week, sparking a national conversation with customers and their friends and families about what it means to gamble responsibly.

All gambling operators have committed to the campaign, taking place from November 1-7, which is organised by the Industry Group For Responsible Gambling, and will promote consistent messages and branding in venues, online and on their social channels.

Several operators, suppliers and publishers have announced significant initiatives to ensure the campaign reaches the widest possible audience:

  • JPJ Group is donating advertising space at key London Underground stations throughout Responsible Gambling Week
  • Clarion Gaming is funding a targeted influencer engagement campaign to run on Instagram before and during the week
  • Aspers, Mecca, William Hill and Cashino provided staff and venues for campaign imagery
  • Virgin Games mocked up its site for a Responsible Gambling Week ‘takeover’
  • Genting staff are organising a wide range of charity fundraising events at their venues throughout Responsible Gambling Week
  • Leading trade publications and online platforms are donating advertising space

Other operators will announce their own initiatives in the coming weeks and the event is supported by gambling charities, GambleAware, GamCare, and YGam (Young Gamblers Education Trust), and by the Gambling Commission.

Responsible Gambling Week now has its own website, https://responsiblegamblingweek.org/ which includes details of all companies and organisations who are supporting the campaign. Operators and supporters can download responsible gambling literature and other campaign materials from the site. Practical advice for customers is being shared on the campaign’s social channels @RGweek18 and the campaign hashtag is #RGWeek18.

John Hagan, Chairman of the Industry Group for Responsible Gambling, said:
“It is heartening to see the support of leading operators for Responsible Gambling Week. Our aim is to make the event bigger and better than last year and we are using the collective networks, venues and staff of all gambling sectors, and our digital channels, to reach a wider audience and raise awareness”.

Simon Wykes, CEO of Jackpotjoy Operations Ltd, said:

“JPJ Group plc fully supports Responsible Gambling Week. Preventing the harms associated with problem gambling is a shared goal among companies working in the gaming industry, and one of the most effective ways to ensure players gamble responsibly is to arm them with the information they need to make responsible choices.”

This year’s campaign includes Ireland for the first time, where it will be supported by more than 800 bookmakers, and by the Arcades Association, the Gaming and Leisure Association of Ireland, Horse Racing Ireland and the Irish Greyhound and Horse Racing Tote.

Sharon Boyne, Chairperson of the Irish Bookmakers Association, said:

We are delighted to be partnering with the IGRG and joining their Responsible Gambling Week. Merging both campaigns can only help to increase the impact and reach of the campaign and ensure maximum coverage for the week”.  

 

ABOUT RESPONSIBLE GAMBLING WEEK:

The theme of the week is ‘Let’s Talk About Responsible Gambling’ and practical advice will be shared through social media channels to ensure responsible gambling messages reach the widest possible audience.

The event is being organised by the Industry Group for Responsible Gambling (IGRG), which, through its member trade associations, covers online, amusement arcades, bingo clubs, bookmakers and casinos.

Among the activities taking place during the week is a responsible gambling training programme being run by the charities, GamCare and YGam (Young Gamblers Education Trust ) for teachers, university professionals and community workers who work with younger people.

At every gambling venue in the country, responsible gambling literature will be made available to customers, designed to trigger conversations about how to keep gambling fun and safe. Customers who need further help or information will be signposted to GambleAware, an independent charity which funds research, education and treatment, and is supporting Responsible Gambling Week.

 

ABOUT IGRG:

  • Established in 2014, the IGRG promotes socially responsible gambling within the British gambling industry, in support of the three licensing objectives in the Gambling Act 2005.
  • The IGRG comprises the Association of British Bookmakers (ABB); British Amusement Machine Association (BACTA); The Bingo Association (BA); National Casino Forum (NCF); and Remote Gambling Association (RGA).
  • IGRG’s member associations represent some 640 operators and 8,500 licensed premises, reflecting the spectrum of gambling businesses.
  • igrg.uk

After starting out as an affiliate in 2009 and developing some recognized review portals, I have moved deeper into journalism and media. My experience has lead me to move into the B2B sector and write about compliance updates and report around the happenings of the online and land based gaming sector.

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eSports

Betting firms have responsibility to tackle esports corruption

Zoltan Tundik

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In this photo: Luckbox CEO Lars Lien
Reading Time: 3 minutes

 

Gambling companies have a responsibility to stamp out corruption in esports, according to one betting industry official.

The reputation of esports has been harmed by scandals including match-fixing, cheating and underage gambling.

Recent examples include CSGO player forsaken being banned after using a hack in an ESL Premiership event and Clash Royale payer Jimit Bhatt being suspended for 12 months for cheating.

Lars Lien, founder and CEO of esports betting operator Luckbox.com, says the legitimate operators in the gambling industry have a duty to help clean up the reputation of esports.

Luckbox is a member of the Esports Integrity Coalition, which works to maintain standards in esports.

Lien said: “Gambling will happen and it’s a matter of making sure that responsible operators work together to stamp out match-fixing and to help prevent it. We have an integral role in eliminating that from our world.

“This is why we’re part of ESIC, where we and other responsible operators share suspicious alerts. So if we see betting patterns that are not consistent with a normal match, we report to ESIC and they will investigate the event in question. They work with tournament organisers, teams, they educate players, they work to stamp it out.”

 

Players need to understand the risks

Luckbox holds an Isle Of Man gambling licence, which offers esports fans the highest levels of security and protection to bet on Dota 2, CSGO and League Of Legends.

Lien said it was also important for esports fans to be aware of the risks when choosing where to bet.

He said: “Recently, there’s a Reddit post that a gaming company stole $500 from them. There might be legitimate reasons for seizing the funds of a customer, because match-fixing is a problem in every sport, including esports.

“That gambling company might have very good reasons for seizing funds but the difference is if that company had a good licence, the customer would be able to go to the Gaming Commission, file a formal complaint and the Gaming Commission would help the customer get the money back if that seizure was unwarranted. There’s legal recourse.

“Operators in jurisdictions such as Curacao, Cyprus, many others. There’s no recourse. I could borrow a Curacao licence if I wanted to.

“Esports has seen the skin-betting scandals where operators have let 12-year-olds play using their parents’ credit cards. Children don’t have the same understanding of gambling risks. Even with adults, you will have problematic behaviour.

“Betting should enhance your experience, it should not be the experience. If someone loses their house, that’s a bad thing, of course.

“This is also part of the distinction between the good guys and the bad guys. We have deposit limits, we have responsible gaming limits, we will make sure our players are over 18 and we will be looking for problematic behaviour, so we can help people not spend more on gambling than they can afford.”

 

Learning from the best

Lien said he was motivated to obtain the Isle of Man licence after working at PokerStars, which is also based on the island. In 2011, the US government banned online poker and PokerStars was able to return funds to players while rival Full Tilt collapsed.

Lien said: “You can either be one of the good guys, that has a proper licence, where all of the player funds are segregated from the funds of the company.

“We have what’s called a ‘client account’, which is similar to what a lawyer would have to keep the funds of their clients, that’s completely legally and physically separated from the funds of the business.

“I worked for PokerStars and the Department of Justice, in the US, decided they wanted to shut down the poker scene. They filed complaints against PokerStars and one of the competitors, Full Tilt. What happened?

“PokerStars, because they had taken licensing seriously from day one – they actively and intentionally got the strictest gambling licence in the world (the Isle of Man) – and as a consequence of that they were forced into having good corporate governance, good structures, good compliance. They were forced into doing things right and Full Tilt did not.

“So when the Department of Justice pulled the rug from under the industry, FullTilt collapsed. Customers couldn’t get their money, everything was black, no one understood how they would get their money back. They didn’t have the money, PokerStars did and paid everyone back in a matter of weeks.”

 Make sure to view the video where, Lars Lien, CEO of Luckbox, discusses the role of betting in the esports industry, and how proper regulation can solve the issues that it raises.

 

About Luckbox

Luckbox was founded by former PokerStars colleagues Lars Lien and Mike Stevens. Luckbox was built by a team combining vast experience in the igaming industry and a passion for esports to offer players unique and highly social platform for CSGO gambling, Dota 2 and League of Legends betting. Real Time Games Holding Limited – the company behind the Luckbox brand – holds a full licence under the Online Gambling Regulation Act (OGRA), issued by the Gaming Supervision Commission. Luckbox is a proud member of ESIC and is committed to supporting responsible gambling.

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Industry News

Altenar enters Sweden’s regulated market with LuckyCasino

Zoltan Tundik

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

Leading sportsbook platform provider Altenar has launched its first client in the regulated Swedish market, with LuckyCasino.com going live with its software in late May.

The addition of Altenar’s sportsbook marks LuckyCasino’s first foray into sports betting and adds to its existing casino product portfolio of slots, table games and live casino.

“We are really pleased with the work that Altenar has done, which will strengthen our customer offer and improve our competitiveness,” said Martin Sidenvall, Director at Glitnor Group, which took over LuckyCasino in July last year.

Part of LuckyCasino’s customer offering is that it uses the Trustly simplified registration process, something which is proving very popular in Sweden as it allows players to begin betting without needing to create an account.

As part of its preparation for the launch, Altenar’s first with an operator using Trustly, it designed a new feature to mitigate the risk of fraud that can occur in sports betting due to the potential for misuse of inside information.

Limits are set, which can vary from operator to operator and segment to segment, and when payouts go over that limit Altenar will manually approve settlements.

Dinos Stranomitis, Chief Operating Officer at Altenar, said: “Over the past 12 months this unique deposit and withdrawal method that allows people to bet on sports or play casino has revolutionised player habits in Sweden. We are excited to launch our first regulated Swedish client with such an innovative selling point.

“We think this will become increasingly popular and so we have adapted our process so that good customers can enjoy the services of Trustly, but those who might attempt any type of fraud will be monitored and blocked.”

Altenar is also preparing to launch imminently with other newly licensed operators in the Swedish market, with upcoming partnerships also expected to integrate Trustly.

The Swedish launch marks Altenar’s second regulated market entry this year, having also secured its first Romanian client earlier this year with Red Sevens.

About Altenar

Altenar is a leading provider of sportsbook software and services to gaming operators. Its clients include Wplay.co, the dominant sportsbook operator in the regulated Colombian market, Betrebels in Greece, Winbet in Bulgaria and Betbiga in Nigeria.

It offers an extensive range of markets and sports thanks to its premium data package with Betradar, from which it holds gold certified status. It has also recently integrated the Betgenius live events portfolio.

For further queries, please contact marketing@altenar.com

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Industry News

Gill Whitehead Joins Camelot UK Lotteries as Non-Executive Director

Niji Narayan

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Gill Whitehead Joins Camelot UK Lotteries as Non-Executive Director
Photo Source: shutterstock.com
Reading Time: 1 minute

 

Camelot UK Lotteries Limited has appointed Gill Whitehead as its Non-Executive Director. Gill replaces David Kelly, who has become Chair of Camelot’s sister company, Camelot Lottery Solutions.

Gill has over 20 years’ experience in a number of leading companies including Google, Channel 4 and BBC. She joined Google in 2016 and is currently the Senior Director, Client Solutions & Analytics at Google. Prior to Google, Gill was an Executive Committee Member, and held roles as Director of Audience Technologies & Insight and Director of Strategy & Corporate Development at Channel 4 Television Corporation. Prior to that, she held a number of senior executive roles at the BBC.

Gill also held a number of Board appointments, including as a Non-Executive Director at the Financial Ombudsman Service and Board Director of both Youview Television and Freeview Television.

“I would like to welcome Gill – whose extensive experience in digital transformation, data and analytics, and consumer insight within high-calibre UK businesses will ensure that innovation continues to be at the forefront of our strategy. She is an ideal fit to continue to boost the standard and skillset of our Board, and I very much look forward to working with her,” Camelot Chairman, Sir Hugh Robertson said.

“At the same time, I’d like to take this opportunity to personally thank David for his expertise and guidance since I joined last summer, and also for his over four years of tenure on the Board. David’s in-depth knowledge of internet and technology businesses has been crucial in helping ensure our National Lottery digital products have gone from strength to strength. We wish him all the very best of luck in his new role as Chair of Camelot Lottery Solutions,” Hugh Robertson added.

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