Seeking to act as a unified voice for all UK gambling stakeholders, new industry trade body the ‘Betting and Gaming Council’ will launch this autumn.
The new body will replace the functions and duties of the Remote Gambling Association (RGA) and the Association of British Bookmakers (ABB), which will be wound-up when the council secures its full operations.
Announcing its upcoming launch, the council has opened its membership to sector incumbents detailing that it aims to represent 90% of UK licensed betting firms excluding lotteries.
Former GambleAware trustee, Brigid Simmonds OBE will as the first chair of the Betting and Gaming Council, having, this morning confirmed her departure as Chief Executive of the British Beer & Pub Association (2009-2019).
An expert in regulatory and public affairs, Simmonds has formerly served on the governance boards of the ‘Sport England Lottery Panel’ and ‘Sport England’, and has further chaired UK tourism association – ‘Tourism Alliance’.
Commenting on her appointment, Simmonds said: “The gambling industry is a hugely significant contributor to the leisure industry and to the economy.
“There are, however, critical issues facing the sector and that is why I will ensure that creating a safe gambling environment is the top priority. I will be listening to all stakeholders to ensure that the Betting and Gaming Council is leading the industry in identifying effective measures to protect customers,”
The Betting and Gaming Council is formed at a critical time for the UK gambling incumbents, as sector policy and regulatory stakeholders review directives attached to social responsibility, consumer standards, advertising and customer engagement standards.
Commenting on the foundation of the Betting and Gaming Council, ABB Chairman Paul Darling said: “I welcome the creation of the Betting and Gaming Council which will enable the sharing of best practice across the industry and significantly increase the capability for innovation on new safer gambling measures.”