Gambling Commission suspends BGO Entertainment licence for “failing to protect” customers

On Friday, the UK Gambling Commission announced it had suspended the operating licence of BGO Entertainment Limited.

According to the UK regulator, the operator’s licence was suspended as the operator failed to protect consumers.

Commission suspends BGO’s licence

The UK Gambling Commission announced on Friday that it has suspended BGO Entertainment’s licence as it reviews its operations.

The Commission is currently reviewing BGO’s operations under Section 116 of the 2005 Gambling Act.

According to the announcement, the reviews “follows concerns that activities may have been carried out contrary to the Act, not in accordance with conditions of their licence and that the Licensee may be unsuitable to carry on the licensed activities”.

Although the Commission could not provide full details of the concerns, it noted that “failing to protect consumers was a key consideration in the suspension decision.”

The Commission added: “We have made it clear to the operator that during the course of the suspension, we expect it to focus on treating consumers fairly and keeping them fully informed of any developments which impact them.”

The suspension does not prevent the operator from allowing consumers to access their accounts and withdrawing funds.

BGO operates the BGO.com brand alongside Powerspins, Vegasluck and Chili.com.

Another issue for BGO

This marks the latest time BGO has come under fire from the UK Gambling Commission.

Last year, the regulator imposed restrictions on BGO, and two other operators, after identifying failings in its social responsibility and anti-money laundering (AML) controls. Following last year’s ruling, BGO paid a £2m settlement.

The investigation that discovered the failings was launched in September 2019, after failings were identified in a previous compliance assessment from September 2018.

The 2019 investigation found that BGO failed to apply effective policies and procedures for consumers that displayed signs of problem gambling between 25 September 2018 and 23 March 2020.

This included players wagering six-figure sums without the operator taking any action with those customers.

Following the investigation, BGO agreed to apply and implement enhanced due diligence measures to the top 125 largest depositing customers and the top 125 customers by losses that were not already on the first list.

The Commission has not stated whether the current licence suspension was linked to the 2020 incident.

Commission fines land-based casino

Last week, the UK regulator also announced that a land-based casino would face regulatory action after an investigation revealed social responsibility failings and AML failures.

VGC Leeds Limited, trading as Global Gaming Ventures, will pay £450,000 as part of a regulatory settlement agreed with the Commission.

Helen Venn, Commission Executive Director, said: “These failings were identified as part of our ongoing drive to raise standards across the whole gambling industry.

“All operators should be very aware that we will not hesitate to take action against those who fail to follow rules that are in place to make gambling safer and prevent it being a source of crime.

“Consumer protection should be an operator’s main priority and we would advise every gambling business to read today’s public statement so they do not make the same mistakes as VGC.”