Gambling industry set to benefit after RMG strikes deal with SIS

By Martin Green
The British and Irish gaming industries are set to save millions as a result of a five-year deal between Racecourse Media Group and Satellite Information Services.

The agreement is for the distribution of “audio-visual pictures and data” to bookmakers and the groups promised it would result in savings for operators and “a significant uplift” in payments to racecourses.

The deal between RMG, the organisation that manages the media rights of 34 racetracks, and SIS, which beams live races into betting shops across the UK and Ireland, is set to run from 2018 to 2023.

The groups estimate the deal will save the industry between £70m and £80m by cutting out inefficiencies such as rival data providers running services to betting shops in parallel.

Under the agreement RMG will maintain responsibility for collecting pictures and data from all its fixtures, which include Ascot, Aintree and Cheltenham, while SIS will take delivery of the pictures and data and then make it available to bookmakers on in-house channels, most of which are operated by SIS.

Richard FitzGerald, CEO at RMG, said: “Today’s agreement with SIS is a significant step forward for our courses and shows what can be achieved when racing and bookmakers work together. This more efficient rights structure will deliver a significant uplift in payments to racecourses, while bookmakers will be paying reduced costs for guaranteed quality content for the long-term.

“We considered a wide range of options for our rights and this deal offers both the scale of increase and the security we were seeking.”

Gary Smith, CEO of SIS, added: “SIS is very pleased to have been able to reach this agreement which we believe represents an efficient, sustainable arrangement for bookmakers, racecourses and SIS for the future. The deal cements SIS’ role in the retail betting industry for the foreseeable future and ensures that we have the platform from which to continue the reinvention of SIS, developing new products and services for the modern bookmaking and gaming industry.”

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