Gross gambling yields (GGYs) per licensee
I am writing to make a Freedom of Information request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.
I would like to request the gross gambling yields (GGYs) for each licensee in a spreadsheet. Alternatively, I would accept the GGY totals for the top 20 licensees.
Please include the following information for each licensee in the spreadsheet:
The name of the licensee The GGY for the last five financial years
If the requested information is not available for the last five financial years, please provide the information for the previous financial year available.
I understand that under the Act, I am entitled to a response within 20 working days of your receipt of this request. If for any reason you are unable to provide the information requested, please let me know as soon as possible.
Thank you for your request which has been processed under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA).
In your email you have requested the gross gambling yields (GGYs) for each licensee in a spreadsheet.
I can confirm that the Commission does hold information falling within the scope of your request, however, the Commission is of the view that this information is exempt under Section 43(2) of the FOIA.
Releasing the Gross Gambling Yield (GGY) of individual operators relates to the performance of the business and is not otherwise in the public domain.
Section 43(2) of the FOIA provides that information is exempt information if: its disclosure under the FOIA would, or would be likely to, prejudice the commercial interests of any person (including the public authority holding it).
Having acknowledged that information within the scope of your request is exempt from disclosure, section 43 FOIA requires that we consider a public interest test to identify whether there is a wider public interest in fulfilling this request opposed to maintaining the exemption.
Public Interest Test
The factors the Gambling Commission has considered when applying the public interest test have been detailed as follows.
Arguments in favour of disclosure
The arguments in favour of disclosure are as follows:
- it is recognised that there is a legitimate public interest in promoting the transparency of the Gambling Commission and in making information available to the public. Further to this, in understanding the performance of the gambling industry
- there is a legitimate public interest in members of the public having confidence the Commission is being open and honest with the data it holds so that it can be held to account.
Arguments in favour of maintaining the exemption
The arguments in favour of maintaining the exemption are as follows:
- licensed operators have a reasonable expectation that this level of detail would not be published on an individual basis
- an extensive range of aggregated or anonymised data is already available to the public to give a necessary level of understanding of the gambling industry. Operators have a reasonable expectation that such information would not be published on an individual basis
- detail of individual companies does not contribute to the understanding of overall performance of the industry as a whole
- releasing this information would be likely to provide competitors with a commercial advantage as they would be able to see the position of competing operators
- we consider that disclosing the information could discourage licensees from freely providing information to the Commission in future, which would likely prejudice the Commission’s ability to monitor and regulate its licensees
- providing operator specific information regarding the information requested could lead to comparisons being made between operators, leading to unjustified inferences being made without the full context.
Weighing the balance
Whilst the Gambling Commission aims to be open and transparent, there is a need to preserve the confidentiality of information relating to licensed operators and to be mindful of the commercial sensitivities of information that is held. In our view there is more than a 50% chance that prejudice to the Commercial Interests of licensees would be caused by disclosure and the Commission’s view is that the public interest is best served through maintaining this exemption.
Review of the decision
If you are unhappy with the service you have received in relation to your Freedom of Information request you are entitled to an internal review of our decision. You should write to FOI Team, Gambling Commission, 4th floor, Victoria Square House, Victoria Square, Birmingham, B2 4BP or by reply to this email.
Please note, internal review requests should be made within 40 working days of the initial response. Requests made outside this timeframe will not be processed.
If you are not content with the outcome of our review, you may then apply directly to the Information Commissioner (ICO) for a decision. Generally, the ICO cannot make a decision unless you have already exhausted the review procedure provided by the Gambling Commission.
The ICO can be contacted at: The Information Commissioner’s Office (opens in a new tab), Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF.
Information Management Team
Victoria Square House
Birmingham B2 4BP