Ahead of the long awaited EU Green Paper on the online gambling industry another association has weighed in with their opinion.
The European Sponsorship Association (ESA) have urged the European Commission (EC) to include some kind of guidelines on sponsorship across the European Union (EU) as currently the legal issues involving gaming industry sponsorship vary widely.
Helen Day, Head of European Policy at ESA, commented, “We have had discussions with the European Commission about their Green Paper and are keen to ensure that sponsorship is fully understood and correctly presented within it, so ESA will certainly be responding to the consultation.”
Their policy statement was focused on a number of different areas concerning the gambling industry with the four key areas legality, self-regulation, integrity, and corporate responsibility.
Breaking them down, legality-wise ESA are mainly trying to get the EC to recognize the fact that no harmonized Europe-wide legislation governing the provision and promotion of gambling services in all 27 EU states currently exists.
As far as self-regulation goes, ESA reiterates that sports governing bodies and organizations are best placed to decide if a properly regulated gambling operator is an appropriate sponsor for them.
ESA also welcomes initiatives that promote cooperation and the sharing of information between the sports and gambling industries to promote and maintain integrity.
Lastly, as part of their corporate responsibility commitment, the group seeks to ensure sponsorship doesn’t adversely affect children or anyone who might be vulnerable to advertising.
You only have to look at the prevalence of gambling sponsorship on the jerseys of soccer teams and the advertising hoardings that dominate stadiums to realize how important more understanding over sponsorship is. The biggest club in the world, Real Madrid, wears the logo of bwin.com on their shirt only illustrating how much of an influence the gambling industry has on sports sponsorship.