Ambulance giant Betway has been fined over £400,000 for advertising on a children’s coloring page on West Ham United’s website.
He displayed his logo on two pages of the Premier League club’s website designed for children, breaking the Gambling Commission’s social responsibility rules, between 2020 and 2021.
One infringement lasted three weeks, but the logo on the other page – where children could print out a picture of a teddy bear to color in – remained for over 18 months.
We take the violation of any rule intended to protect children very seriously.
Leanne Oxley, the commission’s director of enforcement, said: “Protecting children from gambling is at the heart of what we do.
“While there is no suggestion that the operator was deliberately targeting children or that children were allowed to play, we take the violation of any rules aimed at protecting children very seriously.”
She advised other gambling companies to “learn from this case” and ensure they have “the right processes in place” to avoid similar mistakes.
It comes two years after the commission fined Betway a record £11.6 million for “systemic historical failings” in the fight against money laundering and problem gambling.
The firm failed to properly investigate funding for a ‘VIP’ client who deposited over £8m and lost over £4m in four years.
As one of the first betting operators to remove our brand from under-18 kit and supporter merchandise, we are very aware of our responsibility in this area.
It also failed to carry out effective social responsibility checks with a client who deposited and lost £187,000 in two days.
Betway said in a statement: “As a responsible licensed operator, Betway has zero tolerance with marketing to those under the age of 18.
“As one of the first betting operators to remove our branding from the Under-18 kit and fan merchandise, we are very aware of our responsibility in this area.
“On this occasion, the Betway logo – due to a technical error – appeared on a restricted section of the West Ham United website. As soon as we were made aware of this error, we took immediate action to remove it. .
“Nevertheless, we accept the fine and will continue to work closely with the Club to ensure that this does not happen again.”