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Entain faces GBP585 million fine in initial deferred prosecution deal

24th Nov 2023 14:25

(Alliance News) - Entain PLC on Friday said it has reached, in principle, a deferred prosecution agreement with the UK Crown Prosecution Service.

The sports betting and gambling company, which owns brands such as bwin, Coral, Ladbrokes, PartyPoker and Sportingbet said it will now seek judicial approval from Southwark Crown Court on December 5.

The firm said under the agreement it will pay a financial penalty and disgorgement of profits, totalling GBP585 million. It will also make a charitable donation of GBP20 million and pay GBP10 million to the costs of HMRC and the CPS.

It said it will pay the penalty in instalments over a four-year period.

The agreement relates to HMRC's investigation into Entain's legacy Turkey-facing operations which was sold in 2017, as well as former third-party suppliers and employees.

The offences in question are under the 2007 Bribery Act, and specifically relate to Entain's failure to have sufficient procedures in place to prevent bribery.

Chair Barry Gibson said: "This legacy matter concerns a business which was sold by a former management team six years ago. The group has changed immeasurably since these events took place, and the DPA process has provided a reminder of the stark differences between the GVC of yesterday and the Entain of today.

"We are committed to continuing our journey towards operating only in regulated markets, and are now widely recognised as a best-in-class, responsible operator with the highest levels of corporate governance across all aspects of our business."

Entain shares fell 1.6% to 851.00 pence each on Friday afternoon in London.

By Harvey Dorset, Alliance News reporter

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