UK Regulators Suspend Online Gaming Operator’s License, Fines Two More

Posted on: May 18, 2022, 07:05h. 

Last updated on: May 18, 2022, 10:44h.

Goldchip Limited, which operates the gaming platform, will not be available in the UK for a while. The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) suspended its license, while also issuing fines against two other companies.

Andrew Rhodes
UKGC Commissioner Andrew Rhodes speaks at the 2022 ICE World Regulatory Briefing. The gaming regulator has taken action against three operators who weren’t abiding by the rules. (Image: Yogonet)

The Gambling Commission has suspended with immediate effect the license of Goldchip. From a first assessment, it would seem that the company’s activities are carried out in violation of the Gambling Act 2005.

Alleged lack of social responsibility and insufficient adherence to anti-money-laundering (AML) procedures are the key activities that can lead to a suspension under this article. However, the UKGC didn’t specify what precisely led it to suspend the operator’s license.

The gaming regulator has asked the company for greater protection of players. The suspension does not prevent clients from accessing their accounts and withdrawing funds.

Goldchip Takes a Break

Goldchip has been operating under its current license in the UK since 2009. It describes itself as an “exclusive” sportsbook that caters to “high-end” bettors. However, it maintains a low public profile and doesn’t share a lot of information.

The suspension doesn’t just impact Goldchip. For example, sports betting platform and systems provider FSB Tech partnered with the operator in 2019. Any software provider working with Goldchip can find itself in a difficult position when an operator loses its license.

Goldchip can’t claim it’s being singled out as the UKGC routinely holds operators accountable for licensing discrepancies. This past January, it targeted Genesis Global, threatening to pull its license if it didn’t clean up its act. As an alternative, the operator had to pay a $4.2-million fine to appease the regulator.

Gaming Platforms Fined

The UKGC sanctioned two gambling companies for failing to meet responsible gaming and anti-money laundering security criteria. Specifically, Jumpman Gaming Limited, which operates 243 websites, will pay £500,000 (US$620,350). Progress Play Limited, which owns 201 websites, will have to pay £175,718 (US$217,978).

The money from these penalties will be paid to a National Fund dedicated to combating the effects of pathological gambling. In addition, the two companies will pay investigation costs of £13,594 (US$16,869) and £12,466 (US$15,462), respectively.

We will always sanction operators who fail to comply with their obligations to keep gambling safe and out of the criminal loop. We also encourage other operators to carefully consider the shortcomings identified in these cases and to consider what improvements they can make to their activities,” said Gambling Commission Director of Enforcement and Intelligence Leanne Oxley.

The UKGC explained in its announcement that it began an investigation of Jumpman on September 3, 2020. This followed a conformity assessment from three months earlier. The investigations found shortcomings in Jumpman’s processes aimed at preventing money laundering and promoting safer gaming.

The regulator added that it gathered evidence during the assessment that raised red flags. A subsequent review of the licensing agreement determined that the company did not comply with the UK License Terms and Codes of Conduct (LCCP).

Progress Play became a target in August 2020. The investigations found shortcomings in its AML processes as well. In addition, it failed to comply with regulations regarding the protection of vulnerable people.