IGT's UK National Lottery Damages Case Rejected

August 1, 2023
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Supplier giant IGT has had its attempt to claim damages from the UK Gambling Commission over Camelot’s loss of the UK National Lottery thrown out.

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Supplier giant IGT has had its attempt to claim damages from the UK Gambling Commission over Camelot’s loss of the UK National Lottery thrown out.

Camelot’s own legal challenges ended in September 2022 when it was purchased by new incoming lottery operator Allwyn.

At that time, Camelot’s major supplier IGT announced it was dropping its own attempts to block the transition, but continued with an attempt to extract compensation for damages from the Gambling Commission.

On Friday (July 28), that case was dismissed after a High Court judge ruled that IGT did not have legal standing to bring a claim against the UK regulator, the commission said. IGT can appeal the decision.

A spokesperson for the company said: "IGT continues its cooperation with the UK Gambling Commission on the transition of the National Lottery to a new license holder. We have no comment on any related litigation and we are currently evaluating our options following the publication of the Court decision."

More legal action against the commission is pending in the form of a claim by The New Lottery Company (TNLC), which bid for the new lottery licence on behalf of Health Lottery owner and former media magnate Richard Desmond.

The commission said that this case had been stayed pending the outcome of the IGT hearing and it was unsure whether TNLC intended to continue with its legal challenge.

“We remain resolute that we have run a fair and robust competition, and that our evaluation has been carried out fairly and lawfully in accordance with our statutory duties,” said the Gambling Commission in a press release.

“We have taken every step possible to ensure a level playing field for all interested parties, to enable us to appoint a licensee who will engage and protect players, run the National Lottery with integrity and ensure the National Lottery maximises support for good causes and its contribution to society through further innovation and investment.”

Czech-headquartered Allwyn is due to take over one of the world’s most lucrative lotteries from February 2024.

It agreed to purchase Camelot for around £100m in September last year. The operator had said it would be “effectively put out of business” by the decision to strip it of the UK lottery concession for the first time since the draw began in 1994.

Before being absorbed by Allwyn, Camelot had complained that the Gambling Commission’s points system for reviewing bids over-indexed a “risk factor” in ways that punished the incumbent operator and that Allwyn’s claims it could radically increase the amount given to good causes, to around £38bn over the length of the ten-year licence period, were unrealistic.

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