UK Bookmakers Top Charity GambleAware 2019 Donation Figures List

UK gambling giants GVC Holdings, bet365 and William Hill, lead the voluntary donation list. Figures released by charity GambleAware, the bookmakers donated a combined total of £1,600,868.

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UK Bookmakers Top Charity Donation Figures List © Pixabay.

UK gambling giants GVC Holdings, bet365 and William Hill, lead the voluntary donation list. Figures released by charity GambleAware, the bookmakers donated a combined total of £1,600,868.

GVC Holdings was the largest contributor, donating £1.1m during the period between 1 April 2019 and 31 December 2019, a figure that is £300,000 short of their pledged total of £1.4m. Bet365’s contributions totalled £868,000, and William Hill has so far paid half of their pledged £1m. Betway contributed £153,000 while UK casino brand Rank Group donated £426,675 up to December 2019. Gambling software development company Playtech also paid the £100,000 it had pledged.

A notable omission from the list released by GambleAware was Flutter Entertainment. The Betfair, and Paddy Power owner is not among the contributors, but bookmakers have until April to make good on their donation pledges. Flutter’s liability is £1m, a figure the company confirmed last week.

Betting companies are obliged under current regulations to donate a minimum of 0.1% of their gross gambling yield. Operators pay this amount directly to GambleAware. Another funding source for the charity is in the form of donations which the Gambling Commission levy on operators who fail in their regulatory responsibilities. The UK regulator has increasingly ordered offenders to make a payment to Gamble Aware in lieu of a financial penalty.

The Gambling Commission state all monies raised will speed up the delivery of the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms.

Gamesys are an example of this new approach by the UK regulator. In June last year, the Commission found that the operator failed to prevent gambling harm and breached money-laundering rules. The case was a result of a criminal investigation in which three customers, who had displayed behaviour consistent with problem gambling, had used stolen funds with the operator.

The UKGC ordered Gamesys to repay the stolen funds which amounted to £460,472 and to donate to GambleAware £690,000 instead of a fine. Gamesys’s donation, combined with their additional figure based on GGY of £426,000 was a total of £1,116,000.

At the time of Gamesys’s judgement, UKGC’s Executive Director, Richard Watson stressed the need for operators to monitor for patterns of problematic gambling. Saying;

It is vital that operators understand their customers – track their online gambling and step in quickly when they suspect someone is suffering from gambling harm. Richard Watson, Executive Director UKCC.

Watson added that by bringing in measures to spot and intervene when customers are displaying risky gambling behaviours, the operators would conform with their “anti-money laundering and social responsibility obligations”.

Other online operators who have made donations to Gamble Aware include Genesis Global (£150,500), LeoVegas (£69,290) and Kindred Group (£75,000), Kindred also paid an additional £600,000 due to penalties imposed by the UKCC in 2018.

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