The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) is facing pressure to reveal the details of Betway’s ownership, with the Daily Mail claiming the operator’s ownership structure is lacking transparency.
Betway has recently come under fire from some anti-gambling campaigners regarding its use of gambling incentives.
According to the UKGC, however, UK licence holders are required to provide detailed information to the regulator in order for a licence application to be approved, and due to data protection laws, the UKGC was not obliged to pass on information regarding the operator’s ownership.
The UKGC said: “We expect applicants for licences to provide us with all the information we need in order to determine whether or not they are suitable to hold a licence.
“When considering the suitability of an applicant, the commission has regard to the following elements and seeks evidence to support and enable an assessment to be made against each one: identity, ownership, finances, integrity, competence and criminality.”
The Daily Mail also cited further criticism of the operator from Members of Parliament, who have called upon the regulator to find out more about the owner of the betting company.
Labour MP Carolyn Harris, chairman of the all-party parliamentary group on gambling, said: “Devious deals and deception are at the heart of this industry. The more you look the more you find. For too long the actions of this industry have gone under the radar and the Gambling Commission are complicit.
“They have allowed these kinds of Machiavellian dealings to go on unhindered. I urge them to tell MPs who owns Betway so they can be held to account.”
Former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith added: ‘The Gambling Commission should now come clean. It’s important to know who profits when gambling companies encourage problem gamblers to bet, leaving a wake of destroyed family lives behind them.’
Betway responded to the criticisms, emphasising that the company has prioritised both responsibility and compliance in all jurisdictions: ‘As a responsible, licensed operator, all of our regulators are provided with the details of our ownership, as is required by law. Betway is fully tax compliant in all jurisdictions and we pay all taxes due.’