The UK’s EU referendum may have left the bookmaking industry scrambling for position, but Michal Kopec of Better Collective thinks that the industry will soon recover from the shock Brexit result.
Michael, who is Senior Business Manager for the company, also commented on the plummeting British pound in the immediate aftermath of the result, and the effect on Gibraltar based operators, who will be facing huge headaches as they attempt to shore up their activities in mainland Europe.
On the plummeting British Pound, Michal made the following comments:
“Bookmakers and their suppliers are going to feel the pinch almost instantly, as many operate across the EU where prices for services will be hit by the poor pound.
Income for many international affiliates that are rooted in the currency are going to be hit by the payments they’re taking in GBP, with many based in countries such as Denmark, Malta and Germany.
“This will be a huge issue in the short term, and it’ll take robust planning to weather the storm and emerge on the other side.
“On the regulatory front, bookmakers and affiliates shouldn’t be affected for now, as the Gambling Act regime is a stable one, with many organisations well briefed and prepared for any potential changes.”
He also confirmed the problems facing those operators who have based themselves in Gibraltar:
“Gibraltar based operators will suddenly find that they don’t have an EU license, and it remains to be seen whether they’ll struggle to operate in major regulated EU territories such as Germany.
“It can also affect those based in Gibraltar but with operations or servers based in the EU, which means that bookmakers and their suppliers could soon be packing their bags – with Malta the likely destination.”
Finally, he acknowledged fears over the future appeal of the Premier League to the biggest stars:
“Football is such a huge betting sport, but the Brexit could cause some pretty significant shockwaves across the Premier League.
“Big name European footballers, whether it’s Paul Pogba, Robert Lewandowski or Zlatan Ibrahimovic, might not find the rigmarole of securing a visa to play in the UK such an attractive option, and there’s also the possibility of lawmakers limiting the number of overseas players in each team.
“It could mean the league lessens its appeal, prompting bookmakers, shirt sponsors, players and more to look instead to La Liga or Bundesliga.”