Ladbrokes will no longer be offering live-betting services to punters across Australia. Despite the government’s ban on in-play wagering, the operator has continued to offer the service – but Ladbrokes has recently decided to stop players from placing in-play bets. Northern Territory is where most international gambling operators are licensed.
Recently, the state’s government has decided to clamp down on operators that are locally licensed, advising them that they can no longer offer in-play betting to punters across the country. Ladbrokes is the first operator comply with the ban, while there has been no response from William Hill, Sportsbet, Unibet and Bet365. They have 28 days to cease the service before legal action is taken.
While Ladbrokes has been complicit with the NT government’s new restrictions, the operator is not particularly pleased. Executives at Ladbrokes believe that punters should be allowed to wager on sports during matches, as mobile technology allows spectators to be online at all times. If they can use their phones to engage in all sorts of other gaming activities, they should be permitted to bet on matches while they are in play.
"If you look at clients who are betting on sports around the world, they're allowed to bet in-play,” says Dean Shannon, CEO of Ladbrokes Australia. “And I think in this day and age with people living through their mobiles and online, it makes a lot of sense for people to be able to still bet using the devices they use for everything else."
Many operators are concerned that the new rules will force players to wager with operators that are not licensed in Australia. Since they will not be able to place live bets with licensed operators like William Hill and Bet365, many players may make the shift to gambling with offshore operators. Shannon continues to express his concerns: “They will look at offshore options to go and bet which is unfortunate for Australian operators.
We'd like to give our clients a full offering and not have them go offshore to satisfy their betting requirements." We have yet to hear from William Hill, Sportsbet and Unibet about the in-play betting ban – but, they will need to respond to the NT government within the month. So, we will keep you updated as this situation develops.