As CEO Of Online Gambling Giant Blasted For “Preying On The Vulnerabilities Of People, Including Children”
During the very same week that parents in the UK – the epicenter of the online gambling epidemic – learned the deeply troubling fact that “the number of problem gamblers aged 11 to 16 has quadrupled in two years to 55,000,” Bet365 CEO Denise Coates came under fire for “preying on the vulnerabilities of people, including children.”
[Coates’] online betting company, Bet365…has flourished on the back of the UK’s two million problem gamblers…the unease with Coates’ success comes from knowing it is built on (and fuelling) an upsurge in online gambling amongst smart phone-using millennials who can place a bet at the tap of a screen.
Unlike casinos and indeed FOBTs, online gambling sites can be accessed day or night, sober or drunk, and using a credit card. The service Coates’ company offers is not merely 365 days a year, but also 24/7…It is dirty, predatory money, and she’s made no attempt to cleanse it
The number of children classed as having a gambling problem has quadrupled to more than 50,000 in just two years…The Gambling Commission study suggests that 450,000 children aged 11 to 16 bet regularly, more than those who have taken drugs, smoked or drunk alcohol.
The Young People and Gambling report found:
– Over the past 12 months, 39% of 11-16 year olds have spent their own money on gambling and 14% in the previous week
– 6% had gambled online using a parent or guardian’s account
– 60% of young people think their parents would prefer them not to gamble at all, however only 19% said their parents set strict rules about gambling
The analysis also suggests one in seven boys followed betting brands on social media.
As a reminder, Bet365 has long been embroiled in controversy – from the three-year-old who cost his father £50,000 on the company’s mobile phone app to last week’s Daily Mail report regarding an autistic 11-year-old who lost £3,300 on his grandfather’s account. The purely online outfit was also busted earlier this year for bombarding teenagers with ads – so much so that more than 60 percent of teens in the UK said some TV ads for Bet365 made gambling “look fun.”
Watch what MP Clive Lewis and Demos’ Polly Mackenzie are saying about how online gambling behemoths like Bet365 prey on vulnerable children: