From legal changes and a football fallout to a high stakes robbery involving a toy gun, the UK gambling industry faced many challenges in  2017.

The year started well for the horseracing industry, but not so much for online operators, thanks to a government-backed funding scheme. Initially announced in January, the new 10 percent racing levy was finally given the green light by the European Commission in April.

New Levy Divides Opinion

Despite a long battle between operators and the British Horseracing Authority (BHA), the new tax was brought into effect and hailed as an “important day” by the BHA’s … Read more

GVC Officially Offloads Headlong Limited Ahead of Ladbrokes Coral Bid

GVC Holdings has completed the sale of its Turkish asset, Headlong Limited, ahead of its potential takeover of Ladbrokes Coral.

After announcing the sale of Headlong in November, GVC has moved quickly to fully dispose of the subsidiary in an effort to bolster its £3.9 billion bid for Ladbrokes Coral.

“Further to the announcement made on 2 November 2017, the Board of GVC is pleased to advise that following receipt of the required regulatory approvals, the sale of Headlong Limited and other companies to Ropso Malta Limited has now been completed,” read GVC’s December 20 completion notice.

Grey Market Exit

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UK Survey Shows Online Poker Isn’t a Young Person’s Game Anymore

Seniors now prefer to play online poker and Londoners think they’re the better than average, according to a new survey from Grosvenor.

In a bid to identify some of the major poker trends in the UK, Grosvenor Casinos recently surveyed 2,000 players from around the country.

Aside from being one of the largest live casino operators in the country, Grosvenor has hosted its own poker tour since 2007.

UK Poker Scene Has Evolved

Known formerly as the Grosvenor UK Poker Tour but commonly referred to as the GUKPT, the series has been a breeding ground for some of the best … Read more

Playboy Club Croupier Risks It All on Multi-Million Pound Affair

A croupier from London’s Playboy Club casino has reportedly been sacked after having an affair with one of Britain’s richest men.

25-year-old Victoria Jack from North London claims her secret fling with the high rolling businessman started after he saw her at the Playboy-themed casino and club.

After obtaining her address and phone number, the unnamed man started to send her WhatsApp messages.

A Whirlwind Romance

According to Jack, the two eventually started to go on dates, with the multi-millionaire showering her with gifts, including £1,000 for her birthday and a stay at the Four Seasons hotel.

However, after the … Read more

bet365 Wins Bid to Trademark “Bet 365” in Europe

Bet365’s long running battle to trademark its brand name within the European Union (EU) has, in part, come to a positive conclusion.

After fighting the trademark case since 2007, the EU General Court has said that the company’s push to own “BET 365” in Europe is permissible with regards to the provisions of betting and gambling.

At the heart of the matter is bet365’s assertion that it has built up enough of a brand name to warrant trademarks covering a range of services within the EU.

bet365 Bidding to Become Top of Its Class

When the British betting operator first … Read more

Betting in Video Games Exposes Children to Gambling at an Early Age

Betting in video games has caused a stir in the media once again, just weeks after the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) commented on the issue of loot boxes.

According to research published by the UKGC, new technology is making it easier for young children to access various forms of gambling.

Detailed in the regulator’s annual Young People and Gambling report is the finding that 12 percent of 11-to-16-year-olds had gambled in the week prior to being surveyed.

Although higher than the UKGC would like, the latest figure is down from 16 percent in 2016.

Skins Betting Now a Route into

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Remote Gambling Association Calls for Problem Gambling Levy

The Remote Gambling Association (RGA) wants better funding to tackle problem gambling awareness projects through the implementation of a fixed levy.

In a press release published on December 11, the trade association for online gaming companies licensed in the UK called for a statutory tax to help fund research and treatment of problem gambling.

Under the current system, operators aren’t obliged to pay anything towards the running costs of organisations such as GambleAware. Instead, the majority make individual donations.

RGA Wants Positive Reforms

However, in light of recent calls to impose betting limits on fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs) and … Read more

£3.9 Billion Bid Marks GVC Holding’s Third Play for Ladbrokes Coral

GVC Holdings has made good on its promise to explore new market opportunities just a month after selling its Turkish assets for £134 million.

Following speculation that the online gaming company was preparing to launch another takeover bid, GVC has announced that it has made an offer for Ladbrokes Coral.

In a notice to market, GVC announced that it aiming to take control of 53.5 percent of Ladbrokes Coral in deal worth £3.9 billion.

A Good Deal for All Involved

Although the announcement doesn’t constituent an official offer, it does signal GVC’s intentions and it now has until January 4, … Read more

Schedule Set for Irish Open 2018

The Irish Open 2018 is set and that means someone of world’s top players will be heading to Dublin for Europe’s oldest poker festival.

Since the first ever Irish Open was played in 1981, the tournament has grown to become an international spectacle and, in 2018, the €1 million/£880,000 guaranteed main event will return.

Taking up residence inside Dublin’s Citywest Hotel, the latest incarnation of the Irish Open will feature a full roster of side events, cash games and extracurricular activities.

New Owners Brings New Success

Since Paul O’Reilly and JP McCann took charge of the festival, the number of … Read more

UK Gambling Commission Brings in James Mackay to Reform National Lottery  

The UK Gambling Commission has drafted in the Rail Delivery Group’s former head honcho James Mackay to spearhead the 2023 lottery licensing race.

Announced on December 4, the appointment will see Mackay become Executive Director and the man in charge of overseeing the National Lottery for the next five years.

With current lottery operator Camelot’s licence set to expire in 2023, other companies will be given the chance to assume control of the UK’s largest lottery.

Mackay to Lead Lottery’s Evolution

In his new role, Mackay will be in charge of the selection process, but will also be working to … Read more