Problem gambling funding body GambleAware has revealed that GVC Holdings pledged to donate the most money in the nine months to 31 December 2019, despite not adding to the amount it committed to in the first half of the year.
The Ladbrokes Coral owner pledged a total of £1.46m (€1.71m/$1.91m) in the opening three quarters of the 2019-20 financial year – the same amount that it had donated by the end of the first half.
The £1.46m pledge also matches the total amounted that GVC donated to the body in the 2018-19 financial year.
Flutter Entertainment, which operates the Paddy Power and Betfair brands, has so far pledged £1m to GambleAware, while William Hill also committed to £1m.
Meanwhile, Bet365 donated £868,000 and Gamesys committed to £426,000, while Buzz Group made a pledge of £249,126, Betway a donation of £153,500 and Genesis Global donated £145,000.
Rank Group made several donations through various brands, with its Grosvenor Casino business donating a total of £249,450, and its Mecca arm £177,225.
BetVictor pledged £160,000, and gaming centre operator Praesepe Holdings said it would pledge £119,000, while 32Red committed to £95,000 and Tombola International £87,476.
In related new, GambleAware has commissioned a new research project looking into the relationship between gambling and gaming.
Led by Dr Joanne Lloyd of the University of Wolverhampton and Dr Helen Lloyd and Dr James Close, both from the University of Plymouth, the project will look at the relationship between players’ mental health and wellbeing, and purchasing of chance-based in-game items such as loot boxes.
The project will also investigate the psychological profiles of young people and adults who buy loot boxes, focusing on their motivations for purchasing and any potential harms they may experience.
“The connections between gaming and gambling are something we’re keen to understand better,” GambleAware interim director of research Alison Clare said. “This project should help us understand more about the similarities and differences between gambling-related harms and any harms emerging from chance-based elements in games.”
It comes after the mental health director for the National Health Service (NHS) in England accused the country's leading gambling operators of causing avoidable mental health problems among players.
Claire Murdoch also demanded operators immediately implement the ban on credit card gambling due to come into force from April this year, and to scrap tactics she claim encourage high-spending customers to chase losses. The operators, via the Betting and Gaming Council, have asked to meet Murdoch so she can share her experiences to help the sector refine player protection tactics.