Ireland’s New Gaming Regulator Has “No Experience Required” Stipulation

Posted on: March 18, 2022, 07:30h. 

Last updated on: March 18, 2022, 09:19h.

As Ireland continues to put together the pieces of its gambling regulatory puzzle, it is searching for someone to step in as the agency’s boss. Almost anyone qualifies to lead the organization, as industry experience is “not essential.”

Flag of Ireland
The flag of Ireland. A new gaming regulator is coming and candidates from all around the world can apply. (Image: Irish Sun)

Ireland has solidified its new Gambling Regulation Act, which calls for a new Gambling Regulatory Authority (GRA). The government announced at the beginning of March that it would start looking for someone to head the organization, and new details are now available.

Anyone and everyone has a shot at leading Ireland’s gambling regulations as the chief executive of the GRA. This is because, according to the Irish Department of Justice, no experience in gaming or regulatory oversight is necessary. Even better, the salary will certainly draw a lot of attention.

Leave Your CV at Home

Ireland wants someone to oversee its sports betting and gambling industries, as well as its lottery and bingo alternatives. The head of the GRA will be a regulator, investigator, inspector, promotor and enforcer.

The Programme for Government gives a clear commitment to establish a gambling regulator focused on public safety and well-being, covering gambling online and in person, and the powers to regulate advertising, gambling websites and apps,” said Minister James Browne.

The position is open to the entire world – not just Irish ID holders. The advertisement for the position indicates that experience in the gaming industry or in regulatory operations is “not essential,” which will greatly open the field of candidates.

If that doesn’t do it, anyone who wants to earn €145,000 (US$160,412) to live in Ireland now has their chance. That’s the salary the Department of Justice lists for the position.

Ireland began accepting applications on February 25. The last day to apply is March 21. While the government hasn’t stated how many applications have been received, the lax requirements and high salary – three times the average salary in Ireland – are sure to attract a lot of attention.

Regulator Search Misses the Mark

At least one person believes Ireland is going to get off to an embarrassing start with its new gaming regime. The co-founder of Paddy Power, Stewart Kenny, told The Pitch recently that the approach to finding a worthwhile leader for the GRA is off course.

Kenny, who made his fortune in gambling between becoming a staunch responsible gaming advocate, told the media outlet that the job description for the head of the regulatory body invites problems. He asserts that, despite being a decent amount of money, the salary should be considerably higher.

The pay is “probably under 5% of the salary of the top chief executives within the industry,” he said. This won’t make the position attractive enough to those who have the required expertise to lead the office.

Not having any experience will hurt as well, according to Kenny. Creating a new agency and hiring up to 100 individuals is not something everyone can handle.

Obviously, Ireland’s leaders know this. However, by opening the GRA application process so widely, they invited all kinds of responses. That makes it more difficult to focus on qualified personnel, as much of the time is spent weeding out the irrelevant applications.

Fortunately, there’s still time for lawmakers to settle on a small pool of potential candidates. The new gaming regulations, including the formal presentation of the GRA, aren’t likely to arrive until sometime next year.