September 3 – Premier League Tottenham Hotspur have ended their relationship with betting partner 1xBet.
In its second year of a deal with Spurs, 1xBet was the club’s official betting partner for Africa, though had pulled its UK website.
1xBet lured gamblers with topless croupiers and faced allegations that odds were being offered on children’s sports as well as ‘battlecock’ bets on live streamed cockfights.
The online bookmaker had raised its marketing profile in Europe for the start of this season with a series of big club sponsorships including with Barcelona, Liverpool and Chelsea.
Founded in 2011, the Russian company built its business via offering higher payout rates that are normally only found with Asian operators. But actually getting winnings paid out has proved problematic with internet forums pointing to gamblers unable to withdraw funds and multiple hurdles being put in their way to do so by 1xBet.
1xBet said: “We take very seriously the allegation that 1xBet’s brand has been promoted on prohibited sites, which is strictly against our policies, and we have launched an investigation. Pending the outcome . . . we believe it is responsible to temporarily suspend our advertising activity in the UK.”
The UK Gambling Commission – which is investigating 1xBet – has written to Spurs, Chelsea and Liverpool, warning them that any promotion of the betting firm in the UK may be unlawful with the potential penalties of unlimited fines and up to 51 weeks’ imprisonment.
Contact the writer of this story at email@example.com