Ever since the recession became the new buzz word in just about every country in the Western world, countries have been looking to make cuts in just about every area. Only the other day Euro Zone nations were forced to cut in half 2 million 5 Euro notes in order to help Greece through the worst houmous shortage to hit the country in two centuries. Then if you look at the United Kingdom even the Police are threatening to strike if cuts are made, in order to turn the country into the film set from 28 Days Later when there was no one, anywhere.
The one thing the UK government has been trying to get rid of for the past decade or so, and we’re not talking about the expenses scandal that engulfed the parliament, is the Tote pool betting service offered at race tracks across the length and breadth of the British Isles. After several failed attempts, including the Labour government shelving the plans in 2008 due to the economic climate being unfavourable – it was that really annoying light rain that isn’t heavy or light, combined with strong gale force winds, and the chance of lightning. Now though, since the budget earlier this year, it looks like the Tote will get its shot at a big money move elsewhere.
After a bloody battle between several different online gambling factions, it’s clear that the sale of the Tote is likely to be another one of the industry’s feted triple threat matchups. Lets compare the three companies, PaddyPower, William Hill, and Ladbrokes, to see what the UK government may look upon favourably when the companies are concerned, and what better way to compare them than look at the ambassadors they use for their advertising campaigns.
First up is the Irish contender PaddyPower. For a start, they’re from Ireland which could be problematic from the outset as the Tote is UK government property. Although, if Dave and his mates are able to see past this, Paddy has plenty to offer from their ambassadorial team, which includes Bruce Grobbelaar, Carlton Palmer, and even the Pope. The government were so impressed with the Pope wanting the visit the country this past week that they forked out million of pounds just to make it happen, so to have the pontiff on board will be of a massive advantage.
Grobbelaar, meanwhile, will hopefully be able to strike some kind of deal with the boys at Westminster akin to those he used to deal with when at Liverpool back in the day. Then you’ve got Palmer. Tall, clumsy, some may even say aloof, however, he’s great when in a bath. Not sure how this could be an advantage, but I’m sure Paddy will think of something.
Next in line is the favourite, the show-stopper, William “getting’ all up in your grill” Hill. Earlier this week the British-based firm unveiled their new ambassador, accommodation manager, and the most British person they could find, John Cleese, to lead their campaign to gain hold of the Tote. Cleese has been urged not to take along with him lifelong pal Manuel, who was such a help during his last ambassadorial role at Fawlty Towers. As a British company their chances of getting the Tote are quite high so watch this space.
Lastly, and very much the geezers choice, is Ladbrokes, or the Lads, namely four former footballers by the names of Ian Wright, Chris Kamara, Lee Dixon, and Ally McCoist. The considerable clout of these four would likely give them a foot up, and they could easily give the other two a run for their money. Football-wise these four can easily outdo PaddyPower’s pairing, and in terms of comedy Ian Wright and Chris Kamara have been putting a smile on the face for many a Saturday afternoon.
Now it’s over to the UK government as to who they’ll choose. My prediction: it’s going to go to William Hill.