Bet365 to expand Maltese operation amid Brexit uncertainty

24 May 2019

Bet365 has confirmed that it is to increase its operational presence in Malta and relocate certain functionality to the country due to ongoing concerns as to how the UK’s exit from the European Union will impact its business in Gibraltar.

The online gaming operator has operated with a dual regulatory and licensing strategy position between Malta and Gibraltar for a number of years, but will now switch its focus to the former.

Bet365 plans to expand on the existing resources and infrastructure it already has in Malta, with the idea of switching some of its functionality from Gibraltar, a British Overseas Territory, to the country. Such plans were first revealed by the operator last May.

Confirming the news in a statement issued to iGamingBusiness.com, a Bet365 spokesperson said the operator plans to maintain a presence in Gibraltar, with the “final rationalisation to be determined after we have completed our staff consultation”.

“From an operational and technical perspective and given our operating model, it has become increasingly challenging to efficiently run multisite operations and this has necessarily resulted in us conducting a review of our operations,” the statement said.

The spokesperson said Bet365, along with many other igaming brands in Europe, continues to operate in a "highly uncertain environment, driven primarily by the continuing Brexit landscape”, and this had a major impact on its decision to expand in Malta.

“To assist with business planning and in order to maintain operational effectiveness, we intend to enhance our Maltese operational hub and relocate certain functionality there,” the spokesperson said.

“We are now consulting with staff in relation to such relocation. It is intended to maintain a presence in Gibraltar and the final rationalisation will be determined after we have completed our staff consultation.”

While Bet365 has declined to comment further on the move at present, it has said it is working closely with all stakeholders on the relocation plans.

Bet365 is not the only operator to switch some operations from Gibraltar to Malta as a result of Brexit, with rival William Hill last year also setting out plans to open a new office in the country.

Confirmation of the move comes as Theresa May today (May 24) announced that she is to stand down as Prime Minister of the UK on June 7.