Bet365 linked with post-Brexit Malta move

21 May 2018

Bet365 is reportedly considering relocating its Gibraltar operations to Malta after the UK leaves the European Union (EU).

The UK is scheduled to exit the EU on March 29 next year, although plans are still being but into place as to how this process will pan out.

Bet365 is one of several major gambling companies that have a presence in the Gibraltar market, but with the future of the British Overseas Territory uncertain, the firm is said to be considering its options.

The Sunday Times of Malta newspaper has reported that Bet365 is set to relocate some 1,000 employees from its operations in Gibraltar to Malta.

The Times also said Bet365 has signed a promise of sale agreement to acquire a section of a new property development on the Tigné peninsula in Sliema, with this site to serve as the firm’s main hub in Malta.

The promise sale, which is said to be worth around €70m ($82.8m), is expected to come into effect as soon as Brexit materialises.

Bet365 already has a major presence in Malta, with Hillside (New Media Malta), the operating company of Bet365 Group, having held a remote gaming licence in the country since 2015.

Sources told the newspaper that should the mooted move come to fruition, it could have a huge impact on Malta and its status as an online gambling hub.

“It is not every day that 1,000 well-paid employees are relocated to Malta,” the sources said.

“Apart from the fact that we are talking about the largest sports betting company in the world, with some 23 million customers, 1,000 new individuals and their families looking for a place to stay for quite some time on a small island will mean significant business.”

However, in a statement issued in response to the report, Gibraltar’s Minister for Gambling Albert Isola said Bet365 has previously stated its ongoing commitment to the country.

Isola said: “Bet365 confirmed directly to us that they remain totally committed to Gibraltar and the entirety of its workforce here; they are not leaving Gibraltar by any stretch of the imagination.

“Neither are they having to choose between us and Malta.

“What remains true is that Gibraltar remains the jurisdiction of choice for the most reputable gaming companies in the world.

“Brexit isn't going to change that.”

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