Belgium Pro-Football Club Demand BGC Clarify Betting Advertising Terms

Belgian Jupiler Pro League football club KAA Gent has pressured the Belgium Gambling Commission (BGC) to clarify its football marketing advertising conditions undertaken on behalf of betting firms.

The BGC has launched a KAA Gent investigation to distribute partner Napoleon Games ‘ promotional email featuring a prize titled’ Experience a day with the Buffalos ‘ (KAA’s club nickname).

KAA Gent offered the opportunity to spend a day training with the first-team players of the club at its fanbase. Fans would have to wager just € 1 on the vertical Napoleon Games to qualify for the competition.

The BGC flagged the promotion, stating that KAA Gent had violated the conditions of the newly installed Royal Decree of Belgium (July 2019), which sanctioned Belgian media operators with strict betting advertising conditions.

In the communications of the Napoleon Games campaign, CD&V Justice Minister Koen Geens, author of the Royal Decree, has since chastened KAA Gent advertising for ‘ clear violations, ‘ saying that the football club has failed to meet its expectations regarding social responsibility.

“Gamble in moderation! Must stand. Offering bonuses involve various dangers for the gambler. For example, new players can be encouraged to start gambling or existing players to start gambling again,” Geens told Belgian media outlets.

He stressed that the marketing infringement of KAA Gent would be used as an example of additional advertising measures needed when the Belgian ministers reviewed the Royal Decree.

Napoleon Games Chief Executive Tom De Clercq responded to the criticism of Geens, stating that the marketing department of operators and KAA Gent had developed the award campaign in line with the advertising standards of the Royal Decree.

He insists that all criteria for reaching the market have been met and that the football club has completed the checks of responsibility for gambling.