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Annual Report and Accounts 2022 to 2023

The Gambling Commission's 2022 to 2023 Annual Report and Accounts. For the period 1 April 2022 to 31 March 2023.

  1. Contents
  2. Foreword


The past year has been one of opportunity, change and innovation for Great Britain’s gambling industry as we have continued to make progress against the objectives set out in our 2021 to 2024 Corporate Strategy, underpinned by our statutory duties and driven through our five priority areas, which continue to be:

  • protecting children and vulnerable people from being harmed by gambling
  • a fairer market and more informed consumers
  • keeping crime out of gambling
  • optimising returns to good causes from the National Lottery
  • improving gambling regulation.

Here in the Gambling Commission's 2022 to 2023 Annual Report and Accounts, we update against the successful delivery of our second year of the strategy and the impacts the Government’s recently published Gambling Act Review White Paper (opens in new tab) will have into the future.

The publication of the Gambling Act Review White Paper represents a once-in-a-generation opportunity to deliver specific change for gambling in Great Britain, but also builds on a significant, long-term programme of measures we already have in place.

We have effectively navigated the period between the launch of the Gambling Act Review and the publication of the White Paper and the uncertainties this brought, and we have juggled resources, workloads, and priorities to lay the foundation for the White Paper and its proposed actions.

This has put us in a strong position for the coming year. Much work has gone into our advice to the Government - Review of the Gambling Act 2005 as its statutory advisors on the gambling industry. This advice, underpinned by a wealth of research and insight, reflects our own ambitions for a well-regulated industry. To bring these proposals to life, work has already begun on planning for the next steps for engagement with the industry and interested stakeholders to deliver against the Government’s ambitions collectively and transparently.

We continue to effectively regulate the National Lottery. Ensuring that returns to good causes are maximised is a key objective and the £1.79 billion raised to support good causes in arts, sports, heritage and community projects during the year was extremely positive to see. The impact the National Lottery makes is far-reaching and an extensive amount of work continues to go into ensuring a smooth transition into the next licence.

Focusing on our core activity – regulation of the industry – this past year has been a high-profile one for the Commission. Our robust compliance and enforcement regime has continued at pace and has seen £60.1 million issued in fines or regulatory settlements to gambling operators where we have found they are failing to protect their customers; this is over double the previous year.

This included our largest ever cases against William Hill Group, which paid a total of £19.2 million, and against Entain Group for £17 million, both of which were for social responsibility and anti-money laundering failures. We made clear in 2021 that we would take escalating measures against recidivist behaviour and that is exactly what we have done.

We took enforcement action against a total of 24 gambling operators this past year, for breaching our regulatory requirements, but we saw many more working closely with us, as part of our improvement activities, to make themselves compliant. And for this, we thank them and their senior leadership teams, for being open to working collaboratively for the benefit of consumers, and to make gambling safe, fair and crime free.

One of the Commission’s core aims is to be the trusted and authoritative voice on gambling, which is particularly challenging in an arena where there are many strong and often opposing views. During the past year, the Commission has engaged with an extensive range of stakeholders including:

  • Parliamentarians
  • campaign groups
  • charities
  • other government departments
  • international regulators and partners
  • gambling operators
  • trade bodies.

During the last year, the Commission had 220 senior-level meetings and engagements with stakeholders – the equivalent of nearly one every working day.

Research and statistics are the bedrock of how the Commission regulates gambling in an environment that is always changing. During the last year, the Commission published the largest amount of research in our history, including Path to Play, Young People and Gambling report, and market impact data on gambling behaviour.

The overall headline problem gambling rate is statistically stable at 0.3 percent. We have also successfully piloted a new Prevalence and Participation methodology this year, which will become the new standard for assessing the level of problem gambling as part of the new Gambling Survey of Great Britain.

In October 2022 we celebrated the 15th anniversary of the Commission’s creation and whilst many things have changed considerably, some things remain the same. The Commission relies on high-calibre and engaged people who are carrying out highly complex and technical work in a wider environment that has become increasingly contentious in recent years.

We are incredibly pleased to see that in the last 18 months, people engagement at the Commission has increased by 10 percent, with the Commission achieving the Great Place to Work standard for the first time. Further to this, we were also named as one of the UK’s Best Workplaces, as a further testament to the efforts made in this area. There has been a high level of staff turnover across the public sector since the pandemic and we are pleased to see that the number of people leaving the Commission for other roles had reduced by 35 percent at the end of the year. We also successfully filled 123 posts across all areas.

After an immensely demanding but successful year, we would like to end by thanking everyone across the Commission for their professionalism and commitment to our strategic objectives and ambitions, which again has both bolstered our reputation as one of the world’s most respected regulators and established our position as a Great Place to Work.

We face one of the busiest milestone years in the Commission’s history as we push to consult on, and implement, the key actions from the Government’s Gambling Act Review White Paper. That will need everyone in the industry working closely and to one common goal – to make Great Britain’s hugely innovative gambling sector the safest and fairest it can be.

Marcus Boyle

Andrew Rhodes
Chief Executive and Accounting Officer

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Annual Report and Accounts 2022 to 2023 - Performance report
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