Not that it happens often, but this time, the BBC got it, wrong. Last week it reported that the industry agreed on a self-imposed ban on ads during live sports events. But as opposed to the original report, the reality is different. Such an act would need approval from the Industry Group for Responsible Gambling. And it’s not likely to happen before next year!
No Agreement Yet
The report about the Remote Gambling Association’s (RGA) supposed agreement was a mistake. The RGA, in fact, did meet last month to debate the possibility of voluntary curbs on TV advertisement. But the discussions didn’t conclude, and so the news wasn’t correct.
“The BBC has got it wrong. There is no agreement on any proposals yet. Let alone there’s an announcement,” said RGA CEO Clive Hawkswood. No matter the timing, the ban on ads during live sports events will eventually become a reality. Unfortunately, many mainstream media picked up the erratic news item. And the news finally hit the nerve of many gambling investors.
In consequence, most of the UK-facing brands suffered losses in the most recent period. A week after publishing the news, the shares of GVC Holdings posted a loss of 4.5%, while Playtech plunged 3%. Also, betting site Paddy Power Betfair’s stock dropped by 2%. Besides, the pressure on share prices hit also the major UK TV broadcasters.
TV advertising is, indeed, the most visible form of gambling advertisement. But sometimes the most dominant doesn’t mean the same as the most heavily used. As a recent report from GambleAware revealed, it’s by far not the most important marketing channel. In fact, up to 80% of the online casino ads happens online. In addition, according to the report, the industry spends just 15% of its promotional budget on TV advertisement.