Number Of Gambling Sports Sponsorships Have Fallen, New Study Finds
A new study has found that the number of gambling sports sponsorships have fallen since 2019.
The study, conducted by consultancy Caytoo, analysed the primary sponsor of 221 men’s and women’s sports teams in cricket, rugby union, rugby league, and football, and discovered a sharp drop in the number of teams sponsored by gambling firms, with gambling sponsorships almost halving since 2019.
According to Caytoo, the gambling industry was the main sponsor for sports in 2019, holding around 15.3% of the market share. Today, however, gambling accounts for 8.1% of all sponsorships in sports, overtaken by sponsorships for construction and engineering (11.2%), automotive (9.4%), and financial services (8.5%).
Caytoo says the large drop “has been driven by football” as teams have begun distancing themselves from gambling firms over social responsibility requirements, and amid the ongoing criticism of gambling sports sponsorships and their exposure to vulnerable peoples, including minors.
Alex Burmaster, the Head of Research and Analysis at Caytoo, said in a statement to SBCNews: “This change has been driven by the greater demand from society for professional sports to be more socially responsible when it comes to their fans and communities. In addition to gambling’s drop, alcohol has seen the second-biggest reduction in prevalence while Environmental Services and Healthcare are among those with the biggest increases.”
As an example, Burmaster highlighted how Norwich City FC recently terminated its sponsorship with betting website BK8 days after announcing it due to negative feedback and criticism from fans and partners over the betting company’s sexually provocative marketing. Norwich City FC is now sponsored by automotive company Lotus Cars.
Burmaster commented: “At the beginning of our research, the club signed a deal with Asian betting firm BK8 but by the time the research finished, Norwich had terminated the deal due to public pressure over the sexualised nature of BK8’s marketing activity and replaced them with Norfolk-based Lotus Cars who recently announced a £2.5 billion investment to move to producing only electric vehicles.”
The UK Government, meanwhile, is currently in the midst of reviewing the Gambling Act 2005, with a ban on gambling sports sponsorships claimed as the “most likely outcome”. The review has already led to an increase in the minimum age required for lottery products and it will reportedly look into the powers of the UK Gambling Commission.
Relax Gaming Announces Partnership With Spadegaming
Meanwhile, game aggregator Relax Gaming has announced a partnership with developer Spadegaming to expand its Powered By Relax programme.
Under the new partnership, all of Spadegaming’s casino games have been integrated into the Powered By Relax aggregator programme, providing Spadegaming with access to all of Relax Gaming’s partnered gambling operators and allowing the firm to expand its player reach, while also building on Relax Gaming’s content offering.
Simon Hammon, the CPO at Relax Gaming, said in a statement: “Spadegaming’s focus on technology and high-quality content represents the ideal partner for us and our operators. Their products are highly recognised and loved by a wide range of demographics and we look forward to helping them expand into new regulated markets.
“The deal highlights the value that Powered By Relax brings to the table both for us and for studios, allowing for content to be exposed to the leading operators at unmatched speed. We look forward to supporting their next chapter of development.”
Danny Vincent, the General Manager at Spadegaming, added: “We are driven to create the best games on the market, and it is exciting that such a large number of new players will get to experience what we have to offer. The Powered By Relax programme is exactly what we need to help us achieve just that and get to the next level as a developer in the iGaming industry. We look forward to everything this partnership with Relax can offer.”
The Asian-based Spadegaming was founded in 2007 and established itself as a leading game developer by releasing culturally-themed video slots packed with special features and high-quality visuals. The developer has recently turned its attention to Europe, obtaining a license from the Malta Game Authority and signing partnerships with operators such as BetConstruct and Campeon Gaming. It released its first video slot – Fishing God – in Europe last month.
Playson Expands In Lithuania With 7Bet Agreement
Speaking about gambling partnerships, game developer Playson has expanded its Lithuanian presence by striking a content agreement with the newly launched sportsbook and live casino operator 7Bet as it looks to launch an online casino.
Under the new partnership, Playson, which is licensed by the UK Gambling Commission and the Malta Gaming Authority, has provided 7Bet with its entire catalogue of video slots, including popular titles such as Wolf Power: Hold And Win, Solar King, and Legend Of Cleopatra: MegaWays, along with numerous others.
Blanka Homor, the Sales Director at Playson, said in a statement: “It’s fantastic to be involved with 7Bet and its new online casino from day one. We’re thrilled the company has entrusted our content to build its online offering and have no doubt that it will attract an impressive number of players across Lithuania. Equipped with a state-of-the-art games catalogue and an integration-free suite of retention-enhancing engagement tools, we’re ready to continue going above and beyond for partners around the world.”
Andrius Lapienis, the Head of Marketing at 7Bet, added: “Boasting an enthralling succession of recent slot launches, as well as a range of classic hits which have proved consistently popular, Playson’s world-class content portfolio speaks for itself. For that reason, we were very keen to include the provider’s games within our new casino and look forward to cultivating a commercial relationship of strong mutual benefit going forward.”