OCUK News Centre

Remote UK Betting Tax to Rise as Part of 2019 Budget

Remote UK betting tax is set to increase by six percent as the Treasury looks to plug the gap left by reducing the maximum stakes for fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs).

In announcing his 2019 budget, Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond has said remote gaming duty will rise to 21 percent. The move comes amid growing pressure from anti-gambling advocates to bring forward the new £2 FOBT betting limit.

Remote Betting Tax Hike to Cover FOBT Losses

Assessing the impact of lowering the maximum wager on live gaming terminals, the Treasury believes the national coffers will lose around £245 … Read more

The uproar over fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs) is expected to continue well into 2019 following reports that any changes won’t come into force for another 12 months.

As Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond prepares to announce his 2019 budget, Whitehall insiders have hit out at reports that impending FOBT cuts won’t take place until October 2019. According to an October 25 report by The Guardian, those supporting the reduction in stakes from £100 to £2 are ready to revolt if the processes is unduly delayed.

Tempers Flare in Whitehall

The latest wave of discontent comes after a select … Read more

Bookmaker William Hill is fighting battles on two continents following reports that its looking to sell its racing interests in the UK and regain control over its content in the US.

According to a recent report by The Guardian newspaper, William Hill could be on the brink of selling its on-course pitches at the UK’s leading racing venues. Although unconfirmed at this stage, speculation suggests that a deal with a major rival could net the operator around £2.5 million from the selloff.

Online Activity Killing On-Course Bookies

The reason for selling its on-course pitches is mainly due to the rise … Read more

GVC Sees Online Betting Surge as Retail Revenue Falls

GVC Holdings has reported a surge in European and online sports betting revenue despite like-for-like retail earnings in the UK falling by 2 percent.

In a trading update published on October 18, the parent company of Ladbrokes Coral reported a 14 percent upturn in business during the third quarter of 2018. Shining a light on the 10 percent year-on-year increase, GVC said that online net gaming revenue was up by 28 percent.

Live Slump Continues

Driven primarily by sports betting, the rise in online revenue has further cemented GVC’s position as one of Europe’s leading betting brands. However, despite improvements … Read more

Revolt Looms if Chancellor Philip Hammond Delays FOBT Changes

The fixed odds betting terminal (FOBT) debate is back in the spotlight after MPs on both sides of the political divide have warned that a lack of decisive action will lead to a revolt.

Talking to The Sunday People, sources have said Chancellor Philip Hammond will announce the date operators have to reduce the maximum stakes to £2 in his Budget speech at the end of October. However, with nothing set in stone, rumblings of discontent have started to reverberate through Westminster.

Cross-Section of MPs Back Immediate Action

Rallying against the indecision, Conservative MP Iain Duncan Smith has pushed back … Read more

Knives Out for Paschal Donohoe Following Irish Gambling Tax Hike

The Irish gambling tax rate will double from one percent to two percent next year following a recent announcement by finance minister Paschal Donohoe.

Outlined as part of the Irish government’s Budget 2019, the new levy will apply to retail and online bets from next year. As well as doubling the rate for traditional bookmakers, Donohoe has raised the tax rate on bets made through exchanges from 15 percent to 25 percent.

Reacting to the October 9 announcement, industry insiders described it as a critical blow for the industry. Within 24 hours, Irish betting brand Paddy Power Betfair saw £250 … Read more

Lucy Buckley Becomes Nektan CEO Ahead of Company’s US Push

Lucy Buckley will lead gaming operator Nektan’s US charge after being named as  chief executive officer (CEO) on October 9.

The appointment of Buckley comes after former chief executive Leigh Nissim resigned in July 2017. Bridging the gap between the appointment was Gary Shaw who will now become an executive director under Buckley.

Inspired Move Brings Buckley On Board

In taking the role, Buckley will resign as vice president of Interactive at Inspired Gaming Group and assume her new position on December 3.

According to Shaw, Buckley’s experience will play a key role in the company’s international expansion plans.


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GVC Holdings Leads Charge for Greater Social Responsibility

Chief executive of GVC Holdings Kenneth Alexander is taking the bull by the proverbial horns in an effort to improve social responsibility standards across the gaming industry.

In the wake of deputy leader of the Labour Party Tom Watson calling for a reduction in the number of gambling adverts on TV, Alexander has said that some sort of ban should be in place. Commenting on the company’s plans in an October 9 press release, the GVC chief have said he’s ready to see a ban on gambling averts before the 9pm watershed.

Getting Back On Track

Referring specifically to content … Read more

Golden Opportunity for William Hill Following US Sports Betting Deal

William Hill has forged a new deal with Golden Entertainment as part of its bid to become the leading sports betting brand in the US.

Just a month after agreeing to provide sports betting services to Eldorado Resort’s 21 US casinos, the UK-based operator has extended its existing agreement with Golden Entertainment.

Nevada and Beyond for William Hill

Under the terms of the new deal, William Hill will manage Golden Entertainment’s sportsbooks in three states. The new venture will start in Nevada where sports betting is already legal and see the British operator set-up shop inside four properties, including the … Read more

Bet365 Gets Court Date for £1 Million Racing Win Dispute

Bet365 is set for a legal showdown with Irish racing fan Megan McCann on November 13 as the two parties look to settle a £1 million payout dispute.

Although the court date set on September 5 isn’t a full hearing, it could prove to be a significant turning point in a case which dates back to 2016.

When legal representatives for Bet365 and customer Megan McCann meet inside the Royal Courts of Justice in Belfast, the former will look to strike out certain points from the latter’s statement of claim.

If Bet365’s team can remove enough of the claim on … Read more