GVC Holdings welcomes the publication of additional guidance to the industry released by the UKGC during lockdown time, and endorses the additional focus on protecting customers.
New Gambling Commission Measures Seek to Eliminate Gambling Harm
Leading gaming company GVC Holdings has made a statement welcoming additional regulatory guidance introduced by the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) on Tuesday in response to a growing fear that vulnerable players may slide back into problem gambling due to the coronavirus outbreak and lockdown.
GVC Holdings expressed satisfaction with the fact that no evidence has been found to support the claim that problem gambling has increased during the lockdown. Yesterday, May 12, the British gaming regulator added a raft of measures to an already large number of stricter regulations.
As per the new regulatory mechanisms, the Gambling Commission expects companies to comply with affordability checks, prevention of reverse withdrawals as well as introduce measures that guarantee more streamlined bonus offers.
While evidence of increased problem gambling is not available, the Gambling Commission has responded to a YouGov survey which indicated that there has been an increase in sessions played over an hour, indicating more intense gambling patterns.
Commenting on these developments, Minister for Sports, Tourism and Heritage, Nigel Huddleston said that it was vital for people to be protected from gambling harm.
“We will continue to monitor the situation closely and will not hesitate to take further action if required.”
Neil McArthur, chief executive at the Gambling Commission, encouraged operators to use the data they collect to protect consumers. He said that the information operators collect should be used to gauge financial risk and how much a player can realistically spend based on their current financial conditions. He also said that operators should take bonuses with a bit of caution over the period.
“To ensure operators do that, we are strengthening our guidance and expect operators to take account of that to prevent bonus offers or inducements being offered to customers who are showing any sign of harm.”
McArthur reassured that the Gambling Commission will also play its part in collecting data and issue recommendationss based on current trends with the ultimate goal being protecting the end customer.
GVC Supports Focus on Protecting Players, Endorses Minimizing Gambling Harm
GVC said it supports protecting consumers during the COVID-19 lockdown, reaffirming its commitment to using reliable gambling algorithms to ensure the overall safety of its offer. The company is also looking to continually improve on the mechanisms it uses to spot problematic gambling.
GVC has already agreed to the Betting and Gaming Council’s (BBC) voluntary advertisement ban. There have been some parties to protest against the ban, arguing that it was an excuse for big brands to push out gambling ads under a false pretense of promoting responsible gaming messages.
GVC CEO, Kenneth Alexander, commented on the new regulatory measures, arguing that they were a helpful guidance how to handle consumers.
“Providing a robust safety net for those who may experience harm is particularly important during this unprecedented time of uncertainty and social restrictions,” Alexander assured.
He added that GVC will continue to enhance its tools and help tackle problem gambling behavior in the United Kingdom. In fairness, gambling in the UK hasn’t entirely been attacked. In March, Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak introduced measures designed to support business in light of the COVID-19 lockdown, gambling included.