England's 'Gambling Alliance'

13 August 2004

As the U.K. government proceeds with plans to modernize gambling regulations, three of the country's leading service providers to the gambling industry have teamed up to create "Gambling Alliance," a one-stop shop servicing companies entering British gaming markets.

The partnership is made up of compliance and training specialists Gambling Governance, legal firm Harris Hagan and customer research and strategy agency BrandDriver. Its mission is to provide clients with a complete service solution that combines each of their disciplines into a package tailored to the individual client's needs and project-managed by a single, senior-level point of contact. They've already worked with prominent clients, including individuals from Gamcare, Casino on Net, Rank and London Clubs International.

Marie Stevens of Gambling Governance explains, "Having talked to people in the industry on both sides of the Atlantic, we heard a number of complaints such as 'It's too complicated,' 'It's very expensive,' 'We keep getting the same advice expressed differently' or 'We get different advice from different people.'"

Stevens specializes in the provision of compliance services, advice to new entrants to the U.K. market and the design and implementation of regulatory systems in new jurisdictions. Before founding Gambling Governance in early 2004, she served four years as a member of the Gaming Board for Great Britain.

Harris Hagan cofounder Julian Harris, meanwhile, has over 20 years of experience in gambling law and has advised some of the world's largest gaming corporations and trade associations, such as the British Casino Association and the Casino Operators Association.

The third core member of the Alliance, BrandDriver, is managed by Tim Julian. Before founding BrandDriver three years ago, Julian served as vice president of research and brand strategy at the Walt Disney Company. BrandDriver has already conducted extensive consumer research for the gaming industry, having compiled a BACTA-commissioned report "Economic and Social Impact Study of the Proposed Gambling Bill" in February 2004.

Gambling Alliance also offers a wide range of complementary services, such as planning and property advice, immigration services and political advocacy, which according to Stevens, "are provided by people we have vetted and who we know have industry experience."

Steven says the Alliance's U.S.-based clients are predominantly operators. "For the U.S. I think that the opportunity to speak to people who understand both the market and the regulatory side in one go is clearly of interest," she stated. "We're getting a lot of response from the U.S. on that."

But U.K.-based clients from a broad range of companies and even related industries are seeking assistance from the Alliance to supplement their current offerings as well as break into gambling markets that are about to open up many opportunities.

Bradley Vallerius

Articles by Bradley P. Vallerius, JD manages For the Bettor Good, a comprehensive resource for information related to Internet gaming policy in the U.S. federal and state governments. For the Bettor Good provides official government documents, jurisdiction updates, policy analysis, and many other helpful research materials. Bradley has been researching and writing about the business and law of internet gaming since 2003. His work has covered all aspects of the industry, including technology, finance, advertising, taxation, poker, betting exchanges, and laws and regulations around the world.

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