Flutter boss warns of ‘spiral of decline’ for Irish racing if government’s gambling bill is not amended

Flutter boss warns of ‘spiral of decline’ for Irish racing if government’s gambling bill is not amended

Article brief provided by Racing Post
  • Conor Fennelly, Racing Post
October 30, 2023 8:30 PM

The chief executive of Flutter UK and Ireland believes the Irish Gambling Regulation Bill could result in a catastrophic “spiral of decline” for Irish racing and “send thousands of people to the black market” if it is enacted in its current form.

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The bill, which has been in the report stage in Dail Eireann since July, includes a controversial watershed on gambling advertising between 5.30am and 9pm, which could render it economically unviable for specialist racing channels to broadcast in Ireland.

While Ian Brown made it clear that Flutter – the parent company of Paddy Power, Sky Bet and Betfair – supports many of the proposals in the bill, he argued that some of the restrictions will cause betting duty to “fall considerably” and drive punters towards unlicensed operators, “where the opportunities for certain people to come to harm is so much greater”.