Date: 10.07.2024

by Adam Dworak

UKGC Highlights Regulatory Challenges in Micro-Betting

At the KPMG Gibraltar eSummit 2024, Sarah Gardner, the Deputy CEO of the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC), addressed the increasing regulatory challenges associated with micro-betting. Gardner highlighted that the rise of Bet Builders and similar micro-betting products, which allow customers to bet on small, discrete events within a game (such as whether a player will receive a yellow card), has led to a significant increase in player disputes.

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Subjectivity in Micro-Betting

Sarah Gardner, the Deputy CEO of the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) explained that micro-markets inherently involve subjective judgments that can result in differing opinions among consumers. “We have seen a notable increase in disputes from consumers where already higher-margin, multiple-selection bets now have elements which one person might see differently, especially when it makes the difference between winning and losing,” stated.

She provided examples, such as determining whether a shot was on target during a football match, where human judgment plays a critical role and often leads to debate.

Technological Solutions and Ongoing Challenges

While Gardner acknowledged that technological advancements, such as artificial intelligence, could potentially mitigate these issues in the future, she emphasized that current products still lead to a significant number of disputes. These challenges persist despite the existence of detailed processes and specific rules set by data compilers and providers to describe events accurately.

Hyper-Personalisation in iGaming

Gardner also touched upon the industry’s move towards hyper-personalisation. She noted that there are already products in development that allow users to view events in 3D with data tailored to their preferences.

“There are already products in development which allow the user to see an event in 3D with data easily presented which is more and more meaningful to their preferences,” she said.

This could transform how data is used, turning interesting information into actionable betting options and potentially reducing unwanted cross-selling of products.

Potential Risks of Hyper-Personalisation

However, Gardner warned of the potential risks associated with hyper-personalisation, particularly in relation to excessive gambling. Products that are highly attuned to individual consumer interests might inadvertently encourage excessive betting behavior.

Gardner emphasized the need for careful consideration by both the industry and regulators: “I’m not standing here with a view or position on that, but let’s all understand these are things which will need serious thought by both the industry and its regulators.”