Rising inflation

Rising inflation in the UK could soon have an impact on the gambling sector due to the gamblers plan to stop or reduce their gambling.

The results of a survey conducted by the market research company YouGov suggest that rising inflation in the UK could soon have an impact on the gambling sector. The survey found that half of all active gamblers planned to stop or reduce their gambling.

Commissioned by Department of Trust (DoTrust), the survey found that 32 per cent of 700 respondents who are active gamblers planned to spend less on gambling in the coming months and that 18 per cent planed to no longer gamble at all.

Some 38 per cent of respondents said they were watching their spending but had not made changes while 43 per cent were already cutting back on non-essential expenses as inflation driven by rising energy prices pushes up consumer prices in the UK. Some 11 per cent were struggling to pay essential expenses.

The survey was conducted in the week of March 17 and based on a representative sample of active gamblers, DoTrust said. It excluded gamblers who only played on lottery products.

An “alarm bell” for the gambling sector

DoTrust founder and chief executive Charles Cohen said the results were an “alarm bell” for the industry.

He said: “Inflation is at levels not seen for decades and this is translating into a fast-moving affordability crisis for the gambling industry. Wait-and-see is not an option: operators need real-time financial data more than ever.”

Meanwhile, the current UK National Lottery operator Camelot is set to mount a legal challenge to the Gambling Commission’s choice of the Czech Republic’s Allwyn as its preferred applicant to run the lottery from 2024. Camelot is reportedly planning to take the matter to the High Court.

Camelot is claiming that the Gambling Commission removed a 15 per cent risk factor weighting that was originally used in its assessment of the bids. The company also claims the regulator failed to scrutinise Allwyn’s claims about how much money it will give to good causes.

The company reportedly plans to lodge a case against the Gambling Commission in court this week.

Camelot has done this before. When it initially lost the first National Lottery licence re-tender in 2000 to Richard Branson’s Virgin, it took the matter to court claiming unfair treatment and won, eventually retaining the licence, which it has held ever since.

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