Retail

UK racing remains hopeful for crowd pilot events

Racecourse officials are awaiting news from the UK government regarding which fixtures will be permitted to host pilot events as racing inks plans to bring back crowds. A crowd of 5,000 were originally due to attend the final day of the Qatar Goodwood Festival last month, alongside four bookmakers. However, these plans were scuppered following an announcement by Prime Minister …

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BGC: Industry is ‘not out of the woods’ as English casinos reopen

The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) has welcomed the ‘belated good news’ that casinos in England will be able to reopen from tomorrow, but warned that the next few months will be ‘crucial to their recovery’. Casinos in England were initially scheduled to reopen on 1 August, but a ‘last minute u-turn’ by the government postponed such plans, which the …

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Ascot adds three-year extension to Sky Sports Racing deal

Ascot Racecourse has extended its agreement with Sky Sports Racing and Attheraces.com which will cover all of Ascot’s 25 annual fixtures until at least 2024. The extended agreement, which was initially signed in March 2019, covers non-terrestrial television in the UK and Ireland. At The Races will continue to manage licensing and distribution of Ascot races for live streaming to …

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Marc Etches to step down as CEO of GambleAware in 2021

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GambleAware has this morning confirmed that Marc Etches will step down as Chief Executive of the problem gambling prevention and treatment support charity at the end of March 2021. The decision will see Etches complete a decade leading GambleAware, a charity which under his leadership was transformed into the primary commissioner and convenor of services dedicated to reducing and preventing …

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HBLB gives £3.2m boost to UK racing

The Horserace Betting Levy Board (HBLB) has offered a £3.2 million boost to UK racing in the form of immediate and short-term funding. The Board has agreed to fund £1.46m of one-off costs incurred by racecourses which will be used to ‘meet regulatory standards and guidance for hosting fixtures in the current environment’. This will be limited to £75,000 per …

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SIS adds Irish Greyhound Derby to its portfolio

Sports Information Services (SIS) has continued to grow its greyhound offering after securing the rights to every race from the Irish Greyhound Derby. The month-long competition will be made available across online and retail channels, with live pictures and data of all six rounds offered across the supplier’s services, including its 24/7 Live Betting Channels. Gordon Bissett, Greyhound Operations Manager …

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GVC absorbs retail shocks as business recalibrates for critical H2 trading

GVC Holdings stated that it is ‘well placed to balance the year’, as the FTSE100 company absorbed significant retail shocks across its UK and European units, readjusting its full-year EBITDA outlook to £720m-£740m range (dependent on further COVID-19 outcomes). Publishing its interim results for the six month period ended 30 June 2020, GVC noted that the closure of its Ladbrokes …

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BGC: Casino and nightclub comparison ‘neither true, nor fair’

The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) has hit back at suggestions that casinos were similar to night clubs in terms of spreading coronavirus. During a Facebook Live session, Welsh First Minister Mark Drakeford likened casinos to nightclubs in risk profile, claiming that there was an ‘additional risk of coronavirus spreading’. Responding to questions on potential casinos reopening, Drakeford said: “We …

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SIS grows Latin American footprint through Betcris deal

Sports Information Services (SIS) has extended its reach across the Latin American market after entering into a new agreement with Betcris. Under the partnership, Betcris has agreed to launch SIS’s 24/7 Live Mixed Racing Channel across its online sportsbook to help provide ‘profitable short-form betting content’ and drive engagement for its growing customer base. Paul Witten, Commercial Director at SIS, …

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Julie Harrington takes the reins as BHA CEO

Julie Harrington, Chief Executive of British Cycling, has been selected as the new head of the British Racing Authority, effective as of 4 January 2021. In addition to working for British Cycling, Harrington is also a former member of the BHA Board and was a senior executive with Northern Racing for eight years, having also served as the Managing Director …

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