Paddy Power Betfair backs government curbs

Sports Betting

Paddy Power Betfair has broken ranks with the rest of the UK gaming industry by becoming the first big bookmaker to recommend heavy curbs on betting machines that campaigners call the “crack cocaine of gambling”.

Breon Corcoran, chief executive of the FTSE 100 bookmaker, said the debate around fixed-odds betting terminals that offer games such as roulette in betting shops has become “so toxic” that nothing but desive action would “address societal concerns”.

The government is expected to recommend new limits on FOBTs when it announces the findings of a review into the gaming industry next month. The devices provide the largest source of revenues at some retail bookmakers, including Ladbrokes Coral and William Hill, and a significant source of income for groups including Betfred and Paddy Power Betfair.