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NEWS 14 March 2016

Sportsbet calls for an end to betting ad blitz

By Edward Obeng
Australian online bookmaker Sportsbet has called on the government to cut down the permitted amount of gambling advertisement due to the industry’s increase in marketing spending.

According to a Nielsen AdEx report, Aussie gambling operators spent $147m on advertisement last year compared to a mere $45m in 2012, making the industry the country’s fourth biggest in advertising spend.

In an interview with local news, Sportsbet CEO, Cormac Barry explained that the government should “strike an appropriate balance between legitimate community concerns about advertising, such as whether wagering advertising is appropriate in certain public areas or on sporting team merchandise, while enabling wagering companies to advertise their service”.

Other operators that agree Barry’s proposals include Tatts Group, Tabcorp and Crownbet who in addition are requesting a national regulation on gambling and a self-exclusion programme; a system that would allow players to block themselves from any gambling sites.

Last year, former New South Wales premier Barry O’Farrell was given the task to review the Interactive Gambling Act. O’Farrell findings are expected to be made public soon, however Mr Cormac told The Australian that he believes a British-style regulator is needed to police the industry.

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