GambleAware names new CEO

Zoë Osmond takes the helm at "a critical time for the gambling industry."
Zoë Osmond takes the helm at "a critical time for the gambling industry."

Communications and engagement director Zoë Osmond will replace Marc Etches at the helm of the responsible gambling charity. 

UK.- GambleAware has promoted its current communications and engagement director Zoë Osmond to chief executive, replacing Marc Etches.

The safer gambling charity said Osmond has a track record in driving business growth and would bring a “wealth of knowledge” to the role.

Prior to joining GambleAware in 2018, Osmond served as chief executive of the National Advertising Benevolent Society, a national charity that supports workers in media and advertising and then as a partner at marketing consultancy Oystercatchers Partnerships.

At GambleAware, she has led the execution of the charity’s safer gambling and treatment campaigns and has worked with stakeholders in public health, government, media, academia and the gaming industry.

GambleAware chair, Kate Lampard CBE, said: “In the past two and a half years that I and trustees have worked with Zoë, she has demonstrated to us that she fits the criteria we are looking for perfectly. 

“Her knowledge and experience of GambleAware means she can hit the ground running, something that is of particular importance when starting a leadership role during a pandemic.

“Her ability to work with a wide range of subject matter experts and her experience of transforming a charity, building businesses, and leading change will be instrumental in taking GambleAware to the next stage in its development.”

Osmond said: “GambleAware is at an exciting moment in its history, and over the past ten years, Marc Etches has done a phenomenal job in leading the charity to this point. 

“It is a critical time for the gambling sector and the recent pledge of up to £100m from the gambling industry means this is a significant time to shape and drive forward GambleAware’s vital work and develop its own expertise.

“I am excited by the prospect of transformation and the opportunities now available to GambleAware to work with other organisations to prevent gambling harm and I look forward to taking on the challenge.”

GambleAware donations to reach £5m by end of quarter

GambleAware revealed this week that gaming operators donated a combined £4.5m in the first three quarters of the 2020-21 financial year.

Outgoing CEO Mark Etches has since released further details of funding commitments from Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) members.

Donations from the body’s members for the 2020-21 financial year are expected to reach £5m before the end of the fourth quarter on March 31 

Etches said GambleAware expects to receive at least £10m in donations in 2021-22, £25m in 2022-23 and £35m in 2023-24. 

BGC members have agreed to donate between 0.1 per cent and 0.25 per cent of gross gambling yield (GGY) in 2020, rising to 0.5 per cent in 2021, 0.75 per cent in 2022 and 1 per cent  in 2023.

Etches said: “GambleAware is working with the Department of Health and Social Care and the NHS to ensure the best use of this pledged funding, and to align and integrate the expansion of treatment services across the whole system so patients get the right treatment at the right time.

He added: “GambleAware plans to publish a new Strategic Commissioning Plan in April 2021 that will detail the charity’s objectives for commissioning prevention and treatment services during the next five years.”

The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Gambling-Related harm has responded that the growth in funding remains too slow and reiterated its call for a smart levy on gaming operators.

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