Global gambling giant Entain has agreed a new deal with the Australian Hotels Association (AHA), allowing it to promote its online betting brands Neds and Ladbrokes at New South Wales hotels.
The agreement comes despite hotels in the state having an existing exclusivity deal with Tabcorp, the national totalisator board.
As a result, the deal will not involve any Entain wagering terminals, or hotel staff accepting or taking commission for bets. Instead, Ladbrokes and Neds will simply be advertised at these venues.
“For decades now, many NSW hotels have operated PubTABs for Tabcorp at a significant loss – primarily due to high Sky Channel and EBT (betting terminal) fees,” AHA NSW CEO John Whelan said. “In country NSW it’s even worse, with the majority of country pubs currently running their PubTAB at a loss.
“Today’s partnership with a world leader in Entain will finally give NSW hotels competition and choice.”
Entertain Australia chief executive Dean Shannon said the deal was an evolution of the retail betting experience.
“While there is still value in more traditional cash retail wagering, there is a highly engaged audience of punters who like to go down to their local for a bet with their mates, and how they do that has evolved,” he said.
“This partnership recognises that evolution and is about offering choice for the benefit of AHA NSW members and their patrons. There is no reason why traditional cash wagering can’t co-exist in a hotel, alongside an advertising sponsorship arrangement with Entain that promotes the digital offering of one of our leading brands.
“Entain recognises the opportunity for us to connect and communicate with the audience inside hotels is valuable and we intend to support the operators of those venues, just as we would any other advertising channel.”
Whelan, meanwhile, noted that the deal followed the way in which hotel patrons had already started to change their habits.
“Our patrons are already exposed to advertising from corporate bookmakers on our pub TV screens, on the radio, in newspapers and on their phones,” he said.
“Increasingly people are choosing to bet on the races or the footy on their phones – not in the traditional retail environment. Today, most people betting on their phone in a NSW pub are placing a bet with Ladbrokes, Neds or another corporate bookmaker.”