30 Jan 2002 Pre-2014 Releases

The British Horseracing Board today refuted claims made by betting industry representatives that punters would have to face deductions of up to 5% if bookmakers paid BH?_x0019_s charges for the use of British Racin?_x0019_s pictures and data.

BHB Managing Director (Commercial) Nigel Smith said: “These statements are inaccurate and deliberately misleading. They have no basis in fact.

“The BBOA’s recently published report of their own members’ experience said that bookmakers’ average margins were now 14.2% and that net revenue after tax and levy had increased by 9.6%. Based on these numbers, gross margins would need to rise only to 15% to enable the betting industry to achieve the same net profit after paying BHB for the costs of its product.

“At the BBOA seminar yesterday, John Brown of William Hill said that he expects margins to rise. We have no reason to doubt his judgement. It was always forecast that a key determinant of gross margin in this new era, recycling, would take time to come through. There should therefore be no need to impose deductions.

“Our case has always been that it is for bookmakers to manage their margin. Our product has a cost just like any other. Even if the bookmaker decided to simply pass on this new cost, it would require a deduction of less than 1% against the 5% claimed. 5% would clearly generate massive profits for bookmaking against the interests of punters.”

For further information, please contact Alan Delmonte, BHB Communications Manager, on 020 7343 3318