Betfair attempt to increase presence in Oz

The online betting exchange Betfair is attempting to increase its presence in Australia as it reveals it is in talks with state governments all over Australia.

At the moment, Betfair only holds a licence to operate in Tasmania but the company has confirmed today it is in talks with the New South Wales (NSW) government to advertise in the state and sponsor horse races.

Betfair director of corporate and business affairs, Andrew Twaits, hopes the potential extra exposure will increase the company’s share of the gambling market in Australia from 1 per cent to 5 per cent within 5 years.

"We think that advertising will help us do that. But NSW is only one state," Twaits speculated.

"We're engaging in the same sort of lobbying process and discussions with governments’ right around the country."

Twaits also defended the veracity of Betfair’s operation in Australia.

"We don't think that integrity issues are a major problem in Australian racing at all," he said.

"Whenever you have money and gambling involved you're going to have people who try and check the system ... we're happy to share and open up our books to the stewards and the government regulators."

However, the prospect of Betfair entering the NSW gambling market hasn’t gone done well with many operators in the state who claim “other forms of wagering (such as standard bookmakers) can’t compete against Betfair”.

Editor, - 2007-10-29 11:38:04

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