Thursday, 11 February 2021

ASA Reports A Fall In Underage Gambling Advertisement Rule Breaches

ASA Age Restricted Ads

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has released a report revealing that the number of underage gambling advertisement breaches have dropped.

The report includes the ASA’s findings from its latest marketing sweep between October 2020 and December 2020. The regular sweeps are part of the ASA’s mission to identify and tackle age-restricted adverts appearing on child-friendly websites to prevent underage exposure to gambling.

Over the three-month period, the ASA used monitoring tools to identify age-restricted ads promoting gambling, alcohol, junk food and soft drinks, cigarettes, and weight loss products to children. During the sweep, the ASA monitored ads displayed across 49 websites and 12 YouTube channels with a high child audience.

As reported by Gambling Insider, the ASA found that 47 age-restricted advertisements breached its code and that 21 advertisers placed age-restricted ads across eight YouTube channels and 23 websites which are primarily child-friendly. Of those numbers, the ASA found three gambling ad breaches on three websites from one advertiser.

Despite the high levels of age-restricted ads on child-friendly media, the ASA reported a drop in the number of ad breaches. It also found that the number of ads for gambling, alcohol, and weight loss remained at their same levels from previous monitoring sweeps.

In a statement obtained by Gambling Insider, the ASA said: “Following our first and second reports, the ASA is encouraged by the lower number of ads found to have broken the rules. Once we have run the monitoring again in Q1 2021, we will in the summer publish a final report, reflecting back on this year-long project and in which we reserve the discretion to publicise repeat offenders, if there are any.

Guy Parker, the Chief Executive at the ASA, said of the report: “We remain alive to concerns and we will be monitoring and reporting on this again. But we’re making significant progress in our ambition to build a culture of zero tolerance for age-restricted ads appearing on websites aimed at children, and we expect that progress to continue.”

The news follows a previous report from the ASA, which recorded a fall in the number of gambling advertisements displayed on child-friendly websites. The report was released in November and included the ASA’s findings for its second marketing sweep which found more advertising breaches in the alcohol and cigarette industries.

In its first marketing sweep, the ASA found online gambling to be the worst offender for breaching age-restricted advertising code after discovering that four operators had displayed around 70 betting advertisements across eight child-friendly websites.

Developer Spribe Acquires UK Gambling License

The release of the ASA’s report comes as game developer Spribe has announced it’s acquired a license from the UK Gambling Commission, allowing the studio to provide its games to operators and players based in the United Kingdom.

Spribe was founded back in 2018, making it a new and up-and-coming development studio. Despite its infancy, the studio has released a slew of online casino games and other content like backgammon, dominoes, and various card titles too. However, it’s best known for its Turbo Games which are light mini-games based on traditional and new games, including roulette.

The small development studio, which is based in Kyiv, acquired a license from the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) last year and has already been attending ICE London. It’s also partnered with gambling operators Salsa Technology, Adjarabet, and numerous other gambling sites.

In a statement on the news, Spribe Managing Partner David Natroshvili said: “Securing a UK license is a milestone moment for Spribe, allowing us to deploy our thrilling, entertaining and unique content to operators in the market for the first time.

“Our games offer something different and have been designed to appeal to the lucrative Millennial player. They have proved to be a big hit in other markets, and we believe they will be just as popular with players in the UK.”

In a statement on the official Spribe website, Natroshvili added: “After [an] extensive verification procedure, we are pleased to receive approval from [the] UKGC. This is a big step for a young company. I also want to thank our partners who were patient and supportive during the lengthy licensing period, I believe our games will help them even more dominate Great Britain markets and reach new audiences.”

Yggdrasil Strikes New Content Partnership With High 5 Games

Spribe isn’t the only game developer celebrating big news. Earlier this week, leading game developer Yggdrasil announced a new content partnership with High 5 Games to expand its player reach through various licensed jurisdictions.

Under the brand new partnership, all of Yggdrasil and its YG Masters program slots from other developers will be made available at all High 5 Games’ partnered casino websites in the UK, New Jersey, Denmark, Gibraltar, and Malta.

Some of the games that will be made available via the partnership include Labyrinth Of Knossos Multi-Jump, GIZA Infinity Reels, Ancient Eclipse, Frost Queen Jackpots, Atlantis MegaWays, Christmas Tree, Pirates 2 Mutiny, Carol Of The Elves, Moley Moolah!, Elemental Princess, Hades Gigablox, Hyper Burst, Rock The Cash Bar, and dozens more.

Björn Krantz, the Chief of Global Market Operations at Yggdrasil, said in a statement: “Our focus this year is to expand our reach in untapped markets and provide our premium content to more players than ever before. We are delighted to be adding our titles to High 5 Games’ ever-expanding offering of unique content and look forward to a successful collaboration.”

Anthony Singer, the CEO and Founder of High 5 Games, added: “Yggdrasil is recognised for its high-quality game content and diverse slots portfolio popular with players all over the world. Partnering with such a well-respected brand is a great opportunity for us, and we look forward to growing the relationship together.”