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Bookmakers set to test new FOBT limits next month

By Nathan Joyes

UK bookmakers have opted to trial the new £2 ($2.56) stake limit for fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBT) in betting shops across Birmingham next month, in preparation for the upcoming law change on 1 April.

The Association of British Bookmakers (ABB) says all gaming machines are on course to be compliant when the FOBT stake limit is reduced from £100.

Around 400 games are being reprogrammed to meet the new requirements, while the ability to set time and spend limits remain implemented.

The suppliers of the machines will be testing content and platform updates, as well as accepting the £2 maximum stakes.

All staff within the betting shops will be provided training and customer information to hand out in preparation for the change.

GVC Holdings CEO Kenny Alexander confirmed in the Jan/Feb edition of the Gambling Insider magazine that the operator will have to shut up to 1,000 shops as a result of the FOBT restrictions.

The ABB said: "This is a hugely complex process that is now at an advanced stage where the trialling of content, platform updates and the new stake will soon begin, thereby ensuring all betting shops are compliant with the new maximum stake on April 1."

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