Sports betting

TAB NZ launches campaign to discourage offshore gambling

| By Conor Mulheir
New Zealand sports betting operator TAB NZ has launched a promotional campaign encouraging customers in the jurisdiction to avoid gambling with offshore operators.

The campaign consists of a series of short video advertisements running on the operator’s racing and sport broadcast network, TAB Trackside Television, and features a number of sporting celebrities.

The advertisements feature messages from rugby union player Stephen Donald, horse racing trainer Jamie Richards, UFC fighter Dan Hooker, jockeys Samantha Collett and Sheree Tomlinson, and Trackside TV greyhound racing presenter Phillipa Morris.

The videos include estimates that NZ$130m (£69.4m/€76.9m/$94.4m) of gross betting revenue is lost offshore, and highlights the potential benefits of this revenue returning to the TAB for New Zealand racing and sport.

After normal deductions, taxes, levies and operating expenses, the net impact of the revenue would be around $80m to the racing and sport industries, the operator said.

TAB NZ’s executive chair, Dean McKenzie, said: “commercial success for the TAB means increased profit for New Zealand racing and improved returns for New Zealand sport”.

The TAB said reminding New Zealanders of the benefits of betting with the operator rather than its offshore competitors is part of its current goal to reduce the amount of money being spent on international operators.

The operator announced it had received a $41m grant from the New Zealand government in November, to help mitigate the impact of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic on the business.

The grant allowed the operator to post a $28.3m profit for the 2020 fiscal year, ending on 31 July. Net betting revenue was down 3.3% to $264.4m, as net gaming revenue slipped 9.3%.

New Zealand racing shown overseas also saw a significant decline, with revenue falling 10.6%.

Last year’s rescheduled Melbourne Cup saw the operator’s turnover grow $27.6m above budget in November, as turnover for the month came to $232.6m, $26.6m of which was taken on Melbourne Cup day, up 14% year-on-year.

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