The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Gambling-Related Harm (APPG) has urged TV channels to end daytime TV gambling sponsorships.
As reported by FocusGN, the UK Parliamentary group has written to UK television channels like ITV and Channel 5 asking them to end gambling sponsorships of daytime TV programmes such as Neighbours, which is sponsored by Gala Bingo.
In the letter, the group expressed a “deep concern” about the sponsorships, which it claims “glamorise” gambling while targeting and encouraging women and young people to gamble.
The letter reads: “Gambling companies are sponsoring programmes which see to glamorise gambling with the aim of targeting women and young people and encouraging them to gamble.”
Stating how there are half a million problem gamblers in the UK and over 55,000 children aged 11 to 16 who suffer from gambling harm, the APPG explained that ending daytime TV gambling sponsorships is now more important than ever under the Covid-19 lockdown as children are more likely to see the ads while at home.
“We are very concerned that television companies are promoting gambling – we have ourselves seen first-hand the harm and devastation that gambling can cause to young people’s lives, families, and communities.
“Therefore, we are calling on you to end the sponsorship of daytime television by gambling companies. Ending this association is all the more important during national ‘Stay at Home’ restrictions when children are at home and run the risk of being exposed to these adverts as well.”
In the tweet announcing the letter, the Gambling-Related Harm APPG stated it was backed by 16 Parliamentarians and 52 Experts by Experience and affected others who have all called for “urgent action now”.
16 Parliamentarians and 52 Experts by Experience and affected others are calling for urgent action now. pic.twitter.com/VwZU6xaYOM
— Gambling Related Harm APPG (@GRHAPPG) March 11, 2021
The Gambling-Related Harm APPG’s plea follows another one made in May last year. In a letter to the UK Gambling Commission and Betting and Gaming Council Chair Brigid Simmonds, the APPG called for an end to all gambling advertisements during the Coronavirus lockdown.
In the letter, the APPG explained that more was needed to be done to protect vulnerable people and urged the BGC to expand on its announcement to suspend all TV and radio gambling advertisements of its member brands.
Meanwhile, casino operator and game provider EveryMatrix has announced this week that it’s been given the green-light to launch its Spearhead Studios games in the UK following a license amendment by the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC).
According to the former UK casino operator EveryMatrix, the UKGC has amended its license to include Casino Host activities, allowing the firm to provide operators based in the UK with its games made by subsidiary Spearhead Studios.
The development studio was founded in November 2019 and develops games via its RGS Matrix remote gaming server. To date, Spearhead Studios has developed over 30 unique casino games, including hits such as Book Of Souls II: El Dorado, Book Of The Princess, and Blue Diamond Book, all of which are now available in the UK.
According to EveryMatrix, its Spearhead Studios games are available in multiple jurisdictions, including Belarus, Colombia, Sweden, Estonia, Denmark, Lithuania, Malta, Romania, Spain, and now the UK.
Mathias Larsson, the Managing Director at Spearhead Studios, said in a statement: “The team here at Spearhead is dedicated to making the studios’ games widely available in Europe and beyond. We’re excited to get into the UK market, and I’m looking forward to making new business connections with operators looking to source exciting titles for their players.”
The news marks EveryMatrix’s return to the UK after the company, which owned websites like PlayFrank and Fantasino, pulled out of the UK casino market in September 2019 after its license was suspended by the UK Gambling Commission earlier that same year following a compliance assessment.
Following its withdrawal from the UK market, PlayFrank, one of EveryMatrix’s most famous casino brands, switched hands and relaunched in the UK under gambling operator Aspire Global. Other EveryMatrix brands haven’t been as lucky and remain closed in the country.
EveryMatrix isn’t the only gambling company expanding into other countries as LeoVegas Casino has become the first casino operator to release its mobile app on the Google Play Store in Sweden, Denmark, and Spain after receiving all regulatory approvals.
The move now allows LeoVegas users within the three countries to release allows registered users at LeoVegas with Android smartphones to download the app and play directly through it.
According to CasinoBeats, the launch of the LeoVegas app in the three countries could provide new opportunities to Android users as the devices make up 90% of the system’s market share in Spain, 45% in Sweden, and around 38% in Denmark.
Speaking about the mobile app launch, Mattias Wedar, the Cheif Product and Technology Officer at LeoVegas, said in a statement: “Once again, we have positioned ourselves as leaders in our industry and make it easier for our customers to get a superior mobile product and this will enhance the customer experience.
“It was a tight deadline as Google only announced this possibility in late January, but with great effort of all teams involved we were able to make it happen not only on time, but ahead of competitors.”