New Gambling Laws Could Upset Sponsorship Deals between EPL Clubs and Asian Betting Firms

The reality of UK’s soon-to-be imposed Gambling Licensing and Advertising laws has been dawning not only on offshore-licensed betting companies that cater to UK punters, but also on Asia-facing online sportsbook operators who have substantial investments on sponsorship deals with English Premier League (EPL) clubs. The UK Gaming Commission (UKGC) has stated that as a gambling regulatory body, it does not issue an “advertising only” licence. After all, the promotion of online sports betting brands by way of sponsorship agreements is basically an advertising strategy of well-funded sportsbook operators.    

This means that non-British facing offshore remote betting operators are not qualified to apply for a UK licence; not unless such operators show proof that they intend to offer their products and services in the British gambling market in the near future. It is a condition that poses a problem to the companies behind online sports betting websites like SBObet, Dafabet, 188bet, 12Bet, TLC88, 138.com and Fun88, since those firms’ existing sponsorship deals with EPL clubs support mainly their sports book operations in Asia.

SBObet, for one, is a big name in the Asian sports betting arena, being the official Asian betting partner of five Premier League teams, namely: Hull City A.F.C., Norwich City F.C., Southampton F.C., Swansea City A.F.C. and West Ham United F.C. for the 2013-14 season. SBObet’s exposure through the sponsorship arrangements is said to be worth many times over, than the amount initially invested by SBObet’s parent company, Celton Manx. Although the betting site’s remote wagering operation in Europe is sanctioned by the Isle of Man, the UK government will no longer consider a “white list” status upon implementation of the new gambling laws on December of this year.

April 21, 2014 by : posted in Gambling News No Comments