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Operators Unite To Trigger A National Conversation About Safer Gambling

George Miller

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Operators Unite To Trigger A National Conversation About Safer Gambling
Reading Time: 4 minutes

 

The gambling industry is coming together to stage the biggest ever campaign to promote safer gambling in the UK and Ireland.

Responsible Gambling Week 2019, which takes place from November 7th-November 13th, is the public face of the industry’s year-round commitment to safer gambling. More than 120,000 staff at thousands of gambling venues and online sites are taking part and this year it is also being supported by machine operators, who are opening their networks to promote responsible gambling messages, and by pubs across the country.

The campaign is led by the Industry Group For Responsible Gambling, comprised of all the gambling trade associations, and in Ireland by the Irish Bookmakers Association. The objective is to stimulate a national conversation about safer gambling, highlighting the tools, advice and help available to customers, and the initiatives being taken by operators to promote social responsibility.

A UK summit ‘Building a safer gambling industry’, hosted by ERG in association with Responsible Gambling Week, will take place on November 7th at Twickenham Rugby Stadium, bringing together leading online gaming operators, affiliates, regulators and the wider gaming community to discuss safer gambling strategies. Speakers include Tim Miller, executive director of the Gambling Commission.

During Responsible Gambling Week, staff from across the entire industry, including arcades, bingo clubs, bookmakers and casinos, will be empowered to initiate conversations with customers about safer gambling and messaging will be prominently displayed at venues. Some operators will have dedicated responsible gambling areas where experts will be available to speak to customers and others are organizing special events, including ‘take a break sessions’, and sponsored fundraising initiatives by staff. Operators will document their staff’s involvement in the campaign and have made an on-going commitment to invest in staff training, equipping them with the tools to advise customers about safer gambling.

Online websites will promote responsible gambling messages to their customers through pop-ups and banner ads. All operators will post responsible gambling content and information about advice and help for customers on their own social channels.

A new website, www.responsiblegamblinguk.org which goes lives in October, will act as an information hub, providing a comprehensive one-stop service for consumers all year round, educating them about all aspects of responsible gambling. Operators can also download assets and resources from the website to use during Responsible Gambling Week.

The responsible gambling information hub has been developed in conjunction with campaign partner GamCare, and the charity is running training courses during Responsible Gambling Week in London, Glasgow, Sunderland and Bath for professionals working with young people. The National Gambling helpline, 0808 8020 133, run by GamCare, helps anyone who has a problem with their gambling, or has been affected by gambling, and is being extended into a 24-hour service from the beginning of October.

Other key supporters of Responsible Gambling Week include:
Punch Pubs and Co, which will offer promotional kits, including posters and beer mats with responsible gambling messages across its portfolio of 1,300 pubs
The English Football League and sponsors SkyBet, who are offering advertising space at football grounds across the country and in matchday programmes; gambling operators, including Kindred and Betway, who sponsor Premier League, EFL and Scottish Premier League clubs, which will display responsible gambling messages on their team kit; Paddy Power Betfair, who are donating advertising space and providing sponsorship assets
The Racecourse Association and the British Horseracing Authority, which will display responsible gambling messages at racecourses across the UK during Responsible Gambling Week
Machine manufacturers, Astra Games, Scientific Gaming, Reflex and Inspired Gaming, who will be communicating responsible gambling messages through their network of gaming machines

Last year, the #RGWeek18 hashtag generated nearly 20 million impressions and safer gambling content is already being posted on Responsible Gambling Week social channels: Twitter: @RGWeek19; Facebook: facebook.com/RGweek19; and, for the first time on Instagram: Instagram.com/rgweek19.

John Hagan, chairman of the IGRG, said:

“We are confident that Responsible Gambling Week, now in its third year, will be our biggest campaign yet, but this is not just about one week in the year, it is about promoting safer gambling all year round. We want to make this an open and inclusive conversation, connecting with the widest possible audience, including those who do not think messages about responsible gambling are aimed at them. We want to take the message about safer gambling even further this year, through our own social channels, with the support of our partners inside the industry and beyond”.

Neil McArthur, chief executive of the Gambling Commission, said:

“The week’s strapline, ‘Let’s talk about safer gambling’, is an important message not only for customers but also for the staff and industry leaders whose role is to look out for their customers. It provides an opportunity for people across the gambling industry, no matter what their role is, to focus on what part they can play to make gambling safer and reduce gambling harms”.

Anna Hemmings, chief executive of GamCare, said:

“Safer gambling is a key priority for GamCare, and we are pleased to support initiatives that promote and extend safer gambling messaging, such as RG Week. In particular, we are delighted to be offering training to youth-facing professionals through our national youth education programme: BigDeal. This focusses on delivering education to young people directly, as well as the youth workforce to promote more informed choices about gambling behavior and an understanding of the potential for harm. As usual, if anyone has any concerns about their gambling, they will be able to get in touch with us at any time for help and support via the National Gambling Helpline.”

Industry News

Frankie’s on board with Sporting Index

George Miller

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Frankie's on board with Sporting Index
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

World’s top jockey joins leading bookmaker to offer unique insight for the 2020 Flat racing season

Sporting Index has made the landmark signing of world-class jockey Frankie Dettori, widely regarded as one of the greatest riders of all time, as a brand ambassador.

The deal will see Dettori carry the Sporting Index logo on his breeches and collar, offer exclusive thoughts on his rides at sportingindex.com and support with social media posts and daily previews during the season’s major meetings, such as Royal Ascot.

The Italian’s unrivalled achievements in the Flat racing sphere consist of 19 British Classics, including two Derby wins at Epsom, and an astonishing 251 Group 1 victories worldwide. He currently holds the LONGINES World’s Best Jockey Award and has done so for three of the last five years.

Sporting Index, who launched a fixed odds offering in 2019 to run alongside its well-established spread betting service, also currently sponsor leading National Hunt jockey Barry Geraghty, who celebrated a vintage Cheltenham Festival with five wins in March.

Simon Trim, CEO at Sporting Index, said: “Frankie is the face of Flat racing, if not horse racing as a whole, so it’s hugely exciting to have him as a Sporting Index brand ambassador.

“He is often riding the most talked about horses of the season, like Enable and Stradivarius, and we’re delighted to be able to bring racing fans closer to that with his regular blog.

“Even though he has cost us plenty of money over the years, no-one has done more to promote the sport of horse racing and we couldn’t be happier to have him on board.”

Frankie Dettori, said: “I’m over the moon to be joining Sporting Index ahead of the new Flat season. There are some top-quality horses that I can’t wait to get on this year, and I look forward to telling readers all about them.

“I saw over the winter that Barry Geraghty had plenty of success with Sporting Index on his breeches, so hopefully it’s the same for me too!”

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Industry News

Playtech “Takes Full Responsibility” and Apologises for PTES Failings

Niji Narayan

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Playtech “Takes Full Responsibility” and Apologises for PTES Failings
Reading Time: < 1 minute

 

Playtech has issued an apology for the failings of its PT Entertainment Services (PTES) subsidiary.

The case saw a customer sign up for an account in December 2016, ultimately spending £4.5m (€5.0m/$5.5m) on PTES’ Winner and Titanbet brands – losing £119,395 between 1 to 5 April 2017 alone – before committing suicide.

The UK Gambling Commission’s investigation uncovered widespread failings in the business’ social responsibility and anti-money laundering processes that resulted in no action being taken over the individual’s excessive gambling.

“We take full responsibility for these regulatory breaches. As a technology specialist, Playtech focuses on harnessing its capabilities in data-driven intelligence to place consumer protection at the centre of every stage of the player experience from game design to real-time engagement and messaging,” More Weizer, Chief Executive of Playtech, said.

“In recent years, we have invested significantly to seek to ensure that these types of breaches do not happen again, including addressing the specific issues raised by the Commission,” More Weizer added.

Playtech’s board extended its “deepest sympathies” to the victim’s family. Its interim chair, Claire Milne, will be contacting the family to apologise personally for the B2C subsidiary’s failings.

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Industry News

Bojoko Special Report assess the impact of Covid-19

George Miller

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Bojoko Special Report assess the impact of Covid-19
Reading Time: < 1 minute

 

Online casino comparison site has created a report that looks at what the pandemic means for the industry and how it can move forwards on a positive footing

Bojoko.com has created a special report analysing the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the online casino sector.

The online casino comparison site has used Google Trends data to see how consumers have reacted to the global sports blackout and what this means for online casino operators.

Some of the headline numbers show:

  • Sports betting search terms have declined from February to April. In particular, searches for “Best Betting Sites” and “Sports Betting UK” fell 41% and 33% respectively.
  • Online casino search terms have increased in volume over the three-month period, with “Best Casino Sites” enjoying a 78% increase in volume between February and April.
  • “New Online Casino” search volume recorded a 31% increase over the three months but made the biggest jump between March and April with its score increasing 50% MoM.
  • There were spikes in sports betting search terms on April 4 when the Virtual Grand National took place and casino search terms on Valentine’s Day.

The report also includes expert analysis and comment from a range of contributors, including operators, game developers and responsible gambling experts.

Joonas KarhuChief Business Officer at Bojoko, said: “We have created this report as a record of this unprecedented time in the history of the online gambling industry.

“But we also want it to act as a blueprint for how the sector can come out the other side on a positive footing and ensure it is business as usual as soon as possible.

“I’d like to thank those that have provided their opinion and insight and hope that the Bojoko Special Report provides understanding and value to all industry stakeholders.”

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