The effects of sports gambling on businesses



Currently sports-betting is not a legal activity in most of USA, however it is emerging that some government members feel that the country is ready for change, and that several of the Federal gambling laws currently in place are no longer relevant and need updating.

The Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 and the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 are two of the rulings which are coming into question, yet there are mixed emotions on whether legalizing sports betting would be the right direction to take.

Acceptance of sports betting in UK is becoming more commonplace and cash-strapped states are considering the opportunity of revenue should the laws be relaxed. However, there are also worries that legalization would contribute to an increase in gambling advertising and gambling addiction, which can also affect the players, as countries like the UK know only too well.

Recently football midfielder, Joey Barton, commenced an 18-month ban for placing 1,260 bets on matches over the past 10 years, breaking the FA’s rules. A footballer in Scotland has recently taken action himself, making an effort to curb his own addiction by requesting to be placed on the bookmakers’ self-exclusion scheme. A Ladbroke’s spokesperson has stated the importance of such schemes in order to ensure responsible gambling remains a vital part of their business. This could be something America takes into account should the laws be relaxed.

Campaigners in the United Kingdom are urging football chiefs to assist in tackling the prolific gambling problem amongst footballers by banning sponsorship by the betting companies. Kevin Twaddle, a former star who lost more than £1million on sports betting and who now works with players to get help, stated “How can football be big on gambling awareness when they are sponsored by all the major bookies?

Should US legalization take place, even partially, then it is expected that some of the worlds largest tech companies would compete against those already in the field, such as sports book operators and state lotteries, for a share of the market. This ties in to speculation that legalization could create more exchanges similar to the process of the stock exchange, catering for more sophisticated ways of betting and giving opportunity for the leagues to profit directly.

In 2017, sports betting is no longer just a deal between the sports book operator and the punter; when considering the enormity of games such as Super Bowl in USA, we have to consider that we are already involving the global marketplace with a huge value of global money flow, and that the odds are based not just on local value, but a more widespread market valuation.