GVC Holdings has this morning communicated that the UK’s ‘five leading betting operators – bet365, GVC, Flutter Entertainment, Sky Bet and William Hill – will establish an ‘independent committee’ recommending ‘how to best administer funds’ attached to safer gambling initiatives.
Leadership of the betting operators’ have tasked Lord Chadlington (Peter Selwyn Gummer), a vocal campaigner on safer gambling measures, to chair its committee as the ‘UK top 5’ commits to raising their voluntary contributions on safer gambling measures to 1% of gross gambling yield (GGY).
“Lord Chadlington has been asked by the group to establish and chair a Committee to define the most appropriate mechanism for receiving and administering funds and for monitoring their deployment,” read the GVC statement. “Membership of the committee will be announced in September 2019 and it will publish its recommendations before the end of the year. Lord Chadlington and the other appointed members of the committee will not be remunerated.”
Advancing the industry’s social responsibility agenda this July, leadership of the betting groups pledged to a ‘new package of measures‘ which aims to fund the majority of UK treatment for problem gamblers.
Targeting raising a cumulative total of £100 million in safer gambling funds over a four year period, the betting groups will increase safer gambling GGY donations from 0.1% to 0.25% in 2020, before raising instalments to 1% by 2023.
The combined statement said: “We are absolutely committed to providing further funding toward treatment and other responsible gambling initiatives, and we believe the committee will identify and recommend how best to deploy effectively this investment. We believe this is an important step towards creating a safer gambling environment and look forward to reviewing and implementing its recommendations later this year.”
In addition to funding, betting leadership has stated that its social responsibility pledge will see the companies publish progress on directives through ‘annual assurance statements’ provided to the UK Gambling Commission.
Furthermore, the Top-5 will form a further commitment on deeper data sharing of problem gambling customers, helping support of UK betting’s new self-exclusion programme GAMSTOP.
Lord Chadlington said: “The committee will consult widely to formulate its recommendations taking account in particular of the views of government, regulators, the third sector, gambling operators and those with lived experience. I am pleased to accept the invitation to chair this committee, particularly as the five gambling companies are committed to implementing any reasonable recommendations it may make. I will announce the membership of the committee by mid-September.”