Regulators in Australia’s Northern Territory have taken steps to to crack down on betting on lottery outcomes in the region, effectively banning overseas operators who take bets on Australian lotteries and offer to match the jackpot for winning wagers.
Following the decision, Lottoland – who offer betting on a range of international lotteries to overseas customers – removed its Australian lottery product from its roster.
The operator has come under fire in the past for its model, which critics say misleads customers into thinking they are participating in the actual lottery.
“The facts are that Lottoland is under pressure because it has chosen to operate as an online bookmaker that poses as a lottery, outside of the much tighter regulations, consumer protections, and higher taxes that official regulated lotteries adhere to,” ALNA CEO Adam Joy said in October.
“It has attracted criticism because it allows consumers to be misled in a number of ways, and the bookmaker uses concerning tactics to attempt to hijack customers from news and lottery agents.”
Commenting on the regulators’ decision, Luke Brill, CEO of Lottoland Australia, said he was disappointed at the move but that the company would work with the Northern Territory Government to implement the necessary changes to the firm’s Australia-facing business.
“We offer value and choice through innovation to more than 650,000 Australians and, importantly, there are no restrictions on our international products, meaning our customers can continue to bet on the outcome of overseas lotteries,” he said.
“Overseas lotteries are the preferred betting option amongst our customers as they offer larger jackpots.From day one Lottoland has strived to grow the market through our international offering. Every bet placed on an international lottery is incremental revenue that state governments and newsagents can benefit from if they work with Lottoland.
“We are still committed to working with newsagents so they can expand their service offering through our platform and counter the negative impact Tatts’ digital business is having on their revenues,” added Brill. “Our offer to state governments on paying a point of consumption tax also stands.”