March 1, 2024 2 min read


Sports Betting Companies Drift Apart in Australia as Rules Tightening Looms

An expected betting ads ban in Australia has forced the hand of certain sports betting operators to go it alone as lobbying groups simply don’t cut it any more

Ladbrokes and Neds, Entain companies, are said to be leaving the Responsible Wagering Australia (RWA) group in the coming months, as the parent company prefers to operate alone.

RWA a United Front or Frenemies

Lobbying efforts to stall or placate gung-ho lawmakers have fallen flat with Australia seeking to introduce a blanket ban on gambling advertisements as the means forward to safeguard consumers.

In this context, Entain has decided that its brands would fare better on their own, with Tabcorp and a few other companies sharing this opinion.

Meanwhile, Bet365, Unibet, PointsBet, and Sportsbet have shown no indication that they would follow suit. The exact reasons for the decision are not immediately clear, but The Guardian has reported that Entain does not see eye-to-eye with other companies in the group, and specifically outlined a rift between Sportsbet and Entain.

According to a document obtained by MP Kate Chaney media, both Entain and Sportsbet sought audition with the Ministry of Communication, and presented data that attempted to, if not sway, then at least show why a complete ban on gambling advertisement in the country would be unwise.

The meetings, though, happened independently of Entain and Sportsbet’s commitment to RWA as a group. Entain and Sportsbet have long been perceived as competitors with Sportsbet holding vast swathes of the betting landscape, and Entain a global behemoth intent on chipping away share.

One of the possible explanations is that Sportsbet is not as motivated to make a genuine push and negotiate a ban that stops short of completely suspending gambling advertisements, as the company already has a strong player base and visibility, word-of-mouth tactics and the loyalty of the Australian punter.

No Partner Can Make for Lack of Market Share

In this context, Entain would be hard-pressed to compete, having to expand and come up with much smarter long-term tactics to make a relatively small dent per money spent. This, though, is just speculation and has not been acknowledged by the companies publicly.

It’s interesting, though, to entertain the idea that even though the RWA would want to present a united front, internal strife may lead to individual members choosing to go it alone. It’s unlikely that Entain can have any meaningful impact on government policy alone, but it seems the same is pretty much true for RWA.


Although Fiona doesn't have a long-spanning background within the gambling industry, she is an incredibly skilled journalist who has built a strong interest in the constantly growing iGaming network. The team at is glad to have her on our roster to help deliver the best stories as soon as they hit. Aside from writing, she loves to dabble in online casino games such as slots and roulette, both for her own enjoyment and also as research to better improve her understanding of the industry.

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