The major gambling regulatory body in the UK has officially announced that it is making changes to the way it operates as part of its efforts to make the best use of resources and in order to keep up with the constantly increasing demand in the sector.
The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has shared that its licensing processes are set to be overhauled because the current dedicated account manager model turned out to be somehow inefficient. Under the existing system, each gambling operator is given a dedicated accounts manager. However, the increased demand across the sector has forced the UKGC to consider some changes, including moving away from this method of operation.
A new licensing operation system is to be officially introduced by the gambling regulator, which plans to establish 4 sub-groups, each dedicated to processing a different form and stage of licensing, which makes them responsible for different areas of work.
As mentioned above, gambling companies that hold operating licences from the UKGC will no longer have individual points of contact. Instead, 4 sub-groups are set to be established.
The Operating Licence New Group is set to process the licence applications filed by new gambling companies. The Change of Corporate Control Group is the second one of the four new sub-groups created by the Gambling Commission to cover the different areas of work and will govern all licence applications linked to ownership changes and control for the existing gambling operations in the country. The Operating Licence Vary Group will process applications linked to some changes brought to existing companies’ operating permits, while the Personal Licence Group is set to process all personal licence applications filed to the UKGC.
Four Sub-Groups to Control Different Aspects of the UKGC Gambling Licensing Processes
At the time it made the announcement on its official website, the UK Gambling Commission emphasised the fact that it had decided to bring some changes in its licensing process in order to use its resources in the best way possible.
According to the UK gambling watchdog, its previous workflow was not the most efficient, so it decided to change the procedures in order to draw the maxim out of them. Separating the procedures into 4 sub-groups is supposed to improve its productivity and help it process the filed applications more quickly. The changes are also supposed to make the UKGC resources more efficient in query resolution.
This, however, will hardly have any actual impact on companies when it comes to them submitting an application for an operating licence because the application process will remain pretty much unchanged. The requirement for online gambling companies to file their applications online remains in place, while the licence application of companies that do not offer online services can be done by contacting the regulator on its official email. Applications by post will no longer be accepted by the Gambling Commission.
The announcement of the changes brought to the UKGC licensing process has come amid the ongoing review of the UK Gambling Act. The Government is expected to finally issue the white paper of the report in the next few weeks, although the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) is still expected to provide a release date.
Many anti-gambling campaigners hope that the white paper will pave the way for even stricter measures to be introduced in the industry, such as lower stake limits, restrictions on gambling advertising and gambling sponsorship deals, as well as a universal levy for gambling operators in the UK. Reportedly, a number of governmental departments are currently reviewing the white paper that is not expected to be released by the end of the week.