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MGA extends deadline for the submission of audited financial statements

George Miller

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The Malta Gaming Authority publishes amendments to the Gaming Premises Directive
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One of the regulatory requirements that stems from the regulatory instruments applicable to MGA licensees is that of the submission of audited financial statements for each financial year, by not later than 180 days after the end of such financial year.

The Authority is aware that adherence to such obligation is dependent on a thorough process which licensees must undergo with qualified third parties, and that the current situation in Malta and elsewhere, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, is such that such this may be difficult to complete in the timeframes which are expected in normal circumstances.

In this light, the Authority is hereby informing licensees whose last concluded financial year ended, or ends, between December 2019 and March 2020, that the deadline for submission of the audited financial statements envisaged in article 41 of the Gaming Authorisations and Compliance Directive is hereby extended to the end of October 2020.  Nevertheless, by not later than 180 days after the end of their financial year, licensees are obliged to submit unaudited accounts, in order for the Authority to retain continuous visibility over their financial standing.

Should other considerations be required as the situation develops, the Authority will act accordingly and proportionately in line with the relevant developments.

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Frankie’s on board with Sporting Index

George Miller

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Frankie's on board with Sporting Index
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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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Playtech “Takes Full Responsibility” and Apologises for PTES Failings

Niji Narayan

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Playtech “Takes Full Responsibility” and Apologises for PTES Failings
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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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Bojoko Special Report assess the impact of Covid-19

George Miller

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Bojoko Special Report assess the impact of Covid-19
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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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