Gambling Operator’s Sponsorship Of Cardiff City Prompts Advice To Clubs
A spokesperson for the UK’s Gambling Commission confirmed that 777ball’s shirt sponsorship deal with Cardiff City prompted it to issue a 25 September Advice Note to football clubs that under Section 331 the Gambling Act 2005, it is an offence to advertise foreign gambling. Under the Act, any gambling operator who wishes to advertise in Great Britain must be regulated by an EEA state, or feature on the government’s ‘white list’ of jurisdictions judged to have comparable regulations (Antigua & Barbuda, Alderney, Isle of Man and Tasmania).
The Gambling Commission prevented Cardiff City from appointing 777ball, as it is owned by Pacific Sea Invests, regulated by Costa Rica. Following the issuance of the note, Pacific Sea Invests decided to remove its 12bet brand from Sevilla’s shirts during its 29 September game against Rangers at Ibrox – the club chose to feature UEFA’s ‘Respect’ campaign to eliminate racism on their shirts instead.
‘Clubs or operators in breach of section 331 put themselves at the risk of prosecution’, read the Advice Note. ‘This should also be borne in mind when hosting international competitions. Care should be exercised to ensure that visiting teams’ sponsors are permitted to advertise within Great Britain.’ Seven of the 20 Premier League clubs are currently sponsored by gambling operators.