UK bookmakers to pay extra fees to support horseracing

Online bookmakers will be additional fees to help support racing.
Online bookmakers will be additional fees to help support racing.

Online bookmakers have agreed to pay extra fees to boost the horseracing sector’s finances.

UK.- Online bookmakers have agreed to pay additional fees on current streaming and data deals until December 2. 

The extra revenue will help racecourses to make up for some of the loss of revenue caused by the closure of betting shops for the next month under new lockdown measures and the lack of spectators at races since the outbreak of the pandemic.

Nick Mills, commercial director at Racecourse Media Group, said: “We are very grateful to all our streaming and data partners who have agreed to pay an increased fee for the RMG Watch & Bet service for one month.

“This will help compensate our racecourses for some of the revenues lost from our LBO (Licensed Betting Office) business, while shops are closed.

“This shows what can be achieved by racing and betting working effectively together, which is especially important in these times.”

The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) has highlighted the contributions by both land-based and online bookmakers for the rights to screen live races to customers, in addition to levy contributions and media payments.

Chief executive Michael Dugher said: “There has always been a close relationship between betting and racing.

“So, with the Government’s ongoing Covid restrictions affecting the sport so severely, it’s welcome that bookmakers are stepping up to further support the sport.

“This extra funding for streaming and data rights will undoubtedly help racing’s finances for the next month and I’m delighted to see BGC members assisting the sport in this way.

“We will continue to make the case to the Government that betting shops should be allowed to re-open, in line with the rest of non-essential retail once the national lockdown ends, and that socially-distanced crowds return to race meetings as soon as possible.

“I’m equally sure that the whole of racing will be making the case ahead of the Government’s gambling review that a healthy betting industry is critical to the future of the sport.”