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October 2019: Industry Challenges

Phase one of the Gambling Commission’s Industry Challenge initiative, set at our industry briefing in October 2019.

Commission Assessment

The approach to so-called VIP programmes intended for high value customers (HVC) has been the focus of attention given the tension between commercial objectives and customer safety. The question of incentives more widely is a complex one that we need to consider further.

The success criteria for this challenge was for the industry to recognise and rapidly bring a halt to irresponsible behaviours that have grown up around HVC schemes.

If implemented quickly, the measures in this code could address the challenge set. We want to see these additional protections implemented as soon as possible and believe this is achievable given a number are based on existing regulatory requirements. Highly engaged customers are at greater risk of gambling related harm. That is why thorough checks, additional controls and clear Executive oversight and accountability are required in this area.

Our view is that for tailored incentives and bonuses to continue to have a place in the industry, we need to be satisfied they are being offered in a manner which is consistent with the licensing objectives. Where a licensee cannot provide that assurance, they should not be offering such schemes or incentives.

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