A report coming from UK charity GambleAware indicates it received £5.4m ($6.8m) in donations in the first six months of 2019, including huge sums from some of the most prominent operators in the country including GVC Holdings, William Hill, and Bet365.
However, the aforementioned statistic is set to spike up once funds taken from regulatory settlements are taken into account.
Most of the money that the charity received during the first two quarters of the year comes from different donations. However, GambleAware also gets cash from winnings that have not been claimed as well as dormant accounts. The money is then utilized to offer support to problem gamblers as well as develop initiatives to curb problem gambling.
The parent company of Ladbrokes and Coral, GVC Holdings, has vowed to donate £1.45m ($1.84m), while William Hill also pledged to give £1m ($1.27m). Bet365 handed over £868,000 ($1.06m) during the first two quarters.
The Rank Group, which is the parent company of Grosvenor Casino and Mecca Bingo, contributed £284,450 ($362,470). This came after a donation of £160,000 ($203,000) was made by BetVictor and £153.500 ($195,600) from Betway.
All gambling operators in the UK are compelled to “make an annual financial contribution to one or more organization (s) which between them research into the prevention and treatment of gambling-related harm, develop harm prevention approaches and identify and fund treatment to those harmed by gambling.”
GambleAware has identified various thresholds for donations that rely on company turnover. For those operators that have a gambling revenue of less than £250,000 ($318,571) a year, it requires a minimum contribution of £250 ($318.57). Operators that earn more are expected to donate a 0.1% portion of their Gross Gambling Yield (GGY) annually.
In 2019, the charity has also received £1.29m ($1.64m) after a number of operators were meted with fines in regulatory settlements. LeoVegas, which was fined for advertising failings and mistreating customers reaching the end of their self-exclusion period, paid £600,000 ($764,571) to the charity.
Gamesys was also slapped with a fine by the United Kingdom Gambling Commission (UKGC) for violating money-laundering rules and failing to prevent gambling harm. It settled to pay GambleAware £690,000 ($879,256).