The latest figures to be released by gambling industry charity GambleAware have named Flutter Entertainment, William Hill and GVC Holdings as the highest paying charity donors between April and December 2019. Other gambling companies have also had to hand money over to GambleAware in somewhat forced donations due to violation of player protection, money laundering laws and even poor customer service.
Who Are GambleAware?
GambleAware is a charity aimed at tackling gambling addiction and its negative consequences. Any money received from industry players is poured back into the industry to help prevent gambling addiction, but also to help treat those already in the middle of a gambling problem.
Many of their donations are pledged to research with the aim of better understanding the problem and thus coming up with more effective strategies to curtail its effects. Other funds go to education and an array of treatment services.
The Key Figures and Current Rulings
GambleAware received over £7.5 million through voluntary contributions in the initial three quarters of 2019. However, this figure excludes any monies received through administrative settlements.
At current, the charity should receive 0.1% of gambling companies’ Gross Gambling Yield, also known as GGY, each annum. This is paid directly to the charity. Anyone with a gross annual profit of less than a quarter of a million is requested to donate a minimum of £250.
GVC Among the Big Donors
Ladbrokes and Coral’s group and the GVC Group both promised to donate £1.46 million to GambleAware. This figure was closely matched by William Hill and Flutter Entertainment, both contributing £1 million.
Through these sizeable donations, these gambling companies are showing they care about protecting players and helping prevent gambling addiction. Donations can stem from different areas of the business assets but also from dormant accounts and current unclaimed winnings.
Other Notable Donations
As all gambling companies are requested to make a donation, other household names have also made significant contributions to the charity. Buzz Group, Betway and Bet365 made contributions to the tune of around £250,000, £153,000 and £870,000, respectively. Due to the rules on donations, all gambling companies do hand over their fair share each year.
Forced Donations by the UKGC
However, not all donations to the charity are made autonomously and sometimes the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) is involved. In the first half of the year, GambleAware also collected just short of £1.3 million from Gamesys (Gibraltar) Ltd. And LeoVegas. Although a substantial amount, this was through penalties rather than a self-made donation form each outfit.
It should be known that LeoVegas felt the wrath of the UKGC due to rule violations concerning customer service and misleading ads, ultimately ending up in LeoVegas conceding £600,000 to GambleAware. While Gamesys was found guilty of failing to adhere to money laundering regulations and not protecting players adequately, ending in a settlement donation of £690,000 instead of paying a penalty.