Another ad banned; Sportingbet struggling in Europe; William Hill pulls out of Oz

netplay sportingbet william hillNetplay TV is in trouble with the UK advertising watchdog after an ad for their product fell foul of their code. Two complaints were filed with the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) in relation to the ad being irresponsible and glamorising gambling. The ASA upheld the complaint as the gambler’s friends looked like “an entourage”. The main character’s treatment from his peers, music and location “linked gambling with recognition, admiration and enhanced attractiveness”. The advert isn’t particularly controversial and basically features a man walking into a casino and then exchanging certain glances with attractive members of the opposite sex. Unfortunately, the fact it’s not that controversial means Netplay won’t gain any of that publicity.

Sportingbet blamed the halt in business in two European countries for a drop in their net gaming revenue (NGR). The disposal of the Turkish site and suspension of their Spanish one were both attributed blame for an NGR that decreased from £54.7 million to £43.4 million. Wagers increased 10 percent to £555.9 million with Australia performing particularly well and chief executive Andrew McIver is confident that if they wait for the regulatory storm to clear there’ll be light at the end of the tunnel.

”Our Australian business, which accounts for over 90% of our profits, continues to go from strength to strength. The integration of Centrebet is nearly complete and our combined Australian business grew NGR by 116% in the quarter,” McIver said. “Europe continues to be impacted by the recession and the effects of regulation. As we have demonstrated in Australia, the long term benefits of regulation are clear but take time to manifest themselves.”

The group as a whole will “continue to explore new countries, products or partners for growth.”

As McIver mentioned, Australia continues to impress and wagers increased 78 percent to £369.1 million, which meant like for like NGR was up 46 percent to £12.3 million. Their Australian mobile product saw success and mobile revenue is now worth over 34 percent of online NGR. Challenging economic conditions are also affecting their business with Greece now seeing a fall in NGR of 19 percent and there were decreases in NGR across sports, casino and games, and poker.

William Hill is reportedly not accepting players from Australia in order to further enhance their chances in Nevada. SBR reports that an email from William Hill told customers: “Following previous communications, please be advised that we have taken the decision to withdraw our Sports betting service for any customer registered in Australia. Any real cash funds held in your account will now appear in your main William Hill account and you can arrange withdrawal of these funds through the ‘My Account’ section of our site.”

SBR spoke to who told them that they couldn’t serve Australian customers whilst applying for the Nevada licence as the Aussie Interactive Gaming Act makes providing casino and poker games to Australian residents an offence.