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U.K. news: William Hill to move; abandoned gambling accounts to fund sports; Weather Lottery sponsors three football clubs

Representatives from William Hill yesterday confirmed what they had hinted at last week: Namely, that the sportsbook operation would be moving its

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William Hill 
Representatives from William Hill yesterday confirmed what they had hinted at last week: Namely, that the sportsbook operation would be moving its telebetting operation out of the UK. Citing increasing business from its online sportsbook and decreasing business via telephone, William Hill’s telephone bank will be moved to Gilbraltar.  

William Hill figures to save on taxes and labor expenses in the move. In 2009, the sportsbook paid £265 million in taxes to the UK government while taking a £1.8 million loss in telebetting. The company figures to save up to £7 million per year after the move is complete.
William Hill was the last major online sportsbook in the UK to host telebetting operations in the country. 

Abandoned Gambling Funds 
The UK’s Department for Culture, Media and Sport has requested a report into abandoned monies in online sportsbook and land-based bookmaker accounts with a view to applying the funds elsewhere. Depending on the amount found in the report, the majority of the cash recovered from abandoned accounts would be put toward improving public sports facilities across the country. 

Tourism and heritage minister John Penrose said that since thousands of people bet on sports in the UK daily, “it seems a natural fit that funds from abandoned betting accounts should be used to benefit grassroots sports projects.” 

Among the elements to be analyzed in the report are the length of time that should pass before an online account is considered “dormant.” The sport ministry assured punters that they would be able to reclaim government-impounded money at any time with proof of identity.  

The Weather Lottery 
In an effort to publicize the launch of its online gaming services, The Weather Lottery (TWL) has announced it will be partnering up with British football clubs Coventry City, Derby County and Sheffield Wednesday. TWL will take over the running of lotteries for the three clubs and advertise their new brand that way.

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