Paddy Power Betfair back FOBT stake reduction

28 Sep 2017

Paddy Power BetfairPaddy Power Betfair have stunned the British betting industry after agreeing that the proposed FOBT stake reduction is a step in the right direction. Both the Conservatives and Labour have recently stated their dismay at the maximum allowed stakes on fixed odds betting terminals, as they claim it is responsible for an increasing number of problematic behaviour players. The existing stakes stand at £100, the proposed reduction was to bring them down to £2, with experts suggesting that politicians and betting firms will settle at £25.

Paddy Power Betfair CEO Breon Corcoran, however, has clearly taken the government & UKGC's side as he stated that the stake reduction would not only help addicted gamblers, but also, not cause any "massive layoffs", as recently hinted.

More specifically, Corcoran stated: “Whilst we are not aware of any evidence which links stake size to problem gambling, we are acutely aware of the increasing reputational damage to the gambling industry that has followed lack of progress in this area. We now believe that the issue has become so toxic that only a substantial reduction in FOBT stake limits to £10 or less will address societal concerns. I am confident we could operate our retail business successfully and profitability under such circumstances. Other well-run operators should be able to do the same.”

Controversially, this press release comes in direct contrast to Corcoran's recent remarks at the Financial Times earlier in August, when he claimed that the Paddy Power Betfair brand could lose around £10m annually if FOBT stakes were to be reduced. According to a Barclays report a stake reduction to £10 would see Paddy Power Betfair revenues fall by £32m, while competing bookmakers Coral & William Hill would lose £87m & £55 respectively.

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Paddy is the best example of “united we stand” in betting business, as they started as a merger of all Irish bookies, who expanded in many countries and eventually merged with Betfair. Nowadays Paddy’s popularity is exceeding the British Isles, their main area of interest. They’re one of the first bookmakers who took advantage of odds as a commercial campaign, offering odds on bizarre events to attract publicity. Their services could be complete if they added an Asian Handicap option to their great number of alternative betting selections. They still offer their website only in English, by choice.

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