William Hill to Continue Operations from Gibraltarian Base
There have been a few concerns in the recent past regarding William Hill, and the possibility that they may be relocating their operations from their base in Gibraltar to London. The first of these questions arose in 2013 when it was announced that London had opened a new innovation centre to concentrate on the production and implementation of new technologies. Many of the new technologies mooted were related to the online and mobile gaming industry and this is clearly what caused the consternation.
At the time, the Managing Director of William Hill Online stated that since William Hill had more than 400 employees based in Gibraltar, and that these employees were very happy with their jobs being in Gibraltar. He also mentioned that there were additional reasons apart from the employees’ satisfaction that would result in William Hill to continue operations from Gibraltarian Base, and not moving at all.
A Rationale for Relocating
The additional reasons referred to, was that Britain was planning to impose a 15% increase on bookmakers’ online winnings from British customers with effect from 2014. Whilst this new tax, which would raise some £300 million increase government revenue annually and apply to William Hill’s main chain of betting shops, the operations centre in Gibraltar would remain unaffected.
The concern from the local perspective was that William Hill to continue operations from Gibraltarian Base would not be depriving the local economy of one of the mainstays in terms of revenue in Gibraltar. Remaining in Gibraltar did provide William Hill with the best manner of handling the new tax rules effectively, which translated to good news for players at the same time.
The Innovation Centre in London
In dealing with these questions regarding the new innovation centre in London, William Hill stated that it had purposely launched in the city’s technology hub with the sole intention of attracting wide and varied talent that is available in the region. This is congruous with their initial claims that their online operations headquarters are based in Gibraltar for the very same reasons, which has turned out to be true.
The New Question of Brexit
In more recent times, Gibraltar as an operational base has again been questioned. The origin of the question this time is the national vote to leave the European Union, or Brexit, as the media termed the referendum. Once again, William Hill to continue operations for betting sites in Australia from Gibraltarian base seems to be the response from this bookmaker, although many of the 33 Gibraltar-licensed gambling companies seem to be currently assessing the situation in detail. This list includes William Hill, Ladbrokes, BetVictor, IGT and the NYX Gaming Group, and a total of some 3000 employees.
In response to this latest question regarding the validity of retaining Gibraltar as an operational base, Spain themselves have posed an potential answer in offering to jointly govern Gibraltar, and thereby simplifying the potential commuter problems associated with Britain leaving the EU. Therefore, for the moment, William Hill to continue operations from Gibraltarian base seems to be the situation on the ground, although effectively the entire system is in a state of limbo.