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Incentives for High Value Customers

We asked industry to work together to develop a code of conduct that ensures the incentivisation of high value customers also known as ‘VIPs’ is offered in a safe and responsible way. This was because the Commission’s casework had uncovered ways in which incentivisation and VIP schemes were offered, acted as a barrier to identifying people who are experiencing harm. In some cases, we had seen evidence of such schemes encouraging harmful play. This needs to stop.

Industry progress

An industry working group chaired by GVC, the large sports betting and gaming group, and BGC developed a draft code. This included a number of actions and related guidance, specific for high value customers compared to the current generic requirements.

It contained the following commitments:

  1. Undertake full customer assessments before offering any high value customers (HVC) incentives, rewards or special treatment. These checks will be regular and ongoing and commercial pressures will never override welfare considerations. Assessment includes checks on the sustainability of their spend, a safer gambling check, a negative information review, and Know Your Customer check. Further detail will be in the published code.

  2. Licensees will maintain full audit trails relating to their HVC reward programmes including information collected and decisions taken.

  3. Licensees will identify a senior executive or board member who will have accountability for how HVC schemes operate.

  4. Operator teams that offer High Value Customer (HVC) Rewards Programmes will not receive remuneration or bonuses based on an individual’s loss and/or spend.

  5. Restricting access to HVC schemes for 18 to 24-year olds.

  6. HVC reward programmes will be conducted with consistent, clear and transparent good practice to prevent gambling related harm. A number of positive and negative behaviours are identified in the guidance to ensure operators are not acting in a predatory or exploitative manner.

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