The board of GVC Holdings has issued a statement dismissing ‘press speculation’ regarding HMRC’s investigation of its disposed former Turkish wagering subsidiary.
GVC underlined that HMRC’s investigation is strictly focused on ‘former third-party payment service providers’ whose only link to GVC was the provision of payment services for its former Turkish-facing business.
This July, HMRC confirmed that it had launched a year-long investigation into GVC related to the ‘processing of payments for online gambling in Turkey’.
GVC had formerly operated its ‘Headlong Limited’ Turkish market subsidiary until 2017, when the group was forced to sell the business as a condition attached to its £4 billion Ladbrokes Coral merger.
In separate filings with the CMA, GVC stated that it had relinquished any payment for its Turkish asset, absorbing costs of €46 million to close down the business.
The confirmation of HMRC’s investigation came less than 24-hours after the announcement that Kenneth Alexander had ended his 13-year tenure as Group CEO – replaced by COO Shay Segev.
Yesterday, Alistair Osborne, chief business commentator of The Times, published his daily column reporting of ‘city rumours’ that GVC’s former subsidiary had been connected with the €2 billion Wirecard AG scandal.
“The Board can confirm that it has no evidence of any link between the HMRC investigation and the payment service providers mentioned in the newspaper report. As announced on 20 July 2020,” GVC replied in a statement.
The FTSE100 group stated that it is complying with the HMRC investigation and will update the market when appropriate.
Concluding its statement, GVC reiterated that its core focus remains on regulated market growth, for which the company will report on activities by publishing its interim results on 13 August.