English Premier League football clubs West Bromwich Albion and Everton have both signed up Asian online operator Dafabet as their International Gaming Partner.
West Brom’s head of partnerships Iain Wain said the English Premier League (EPL) club was “delighted” to announce Dafabet as one of its “key partners”, sand said it was “looking forward to helping [Dafabet] achieve their aims with the club.”
Online gaming director at Dafabet owner AsianLogic, Dimitris Karatzas, said the club was also “delighted” with the new partnership, and said he was “sure it is the start of a long and mutually beneficial partnership.”
Dafabet is licensed in the Philippines – the only territory to issue licences for online gambling in Asia – and has applied for a European-facing licence from the Isle of Man. According to eGR, which contacted Karatzas, the company had been given a “conditional letter of intent” by the IOM so it could start serving customers in the saturated UK online betting market within the next few weeks.
Dafabet recently signed up ex-England and Newcastle striker Alan Shearer as Ambassador in Asia, in support of the operator’s promotional and advertising campaigns across the region. Shearer is still the EPL’s all-time leading scorer, with 260 goals during his 14 seasons in the top-flight of English football.
Everton and West Brom’s deal with Dafabet follows Spurs and Liverpool inking betting and gaming partnerships with Asian operators to run alongside their UK-facing partnerships with Betfred and Paddy Power respectively.
Spurs chairman Daniel Levy said last week that the two-year deal with Fun88 to be the club’s Official Asian Betting and Gaming Partner had been designed to target the 60% of the club’s global fan-based now located in Asia, and will include a co-branded gaming microsite.
In announcing 188bet as its new International Betting Partner, Liverpool FC’s managing director Ian Ayre said the EPL club had invested heavily in its website to allow it to accommodate multiple betting partners and bring in more money to the club.
Asian online brands SBObet and 12bet also sponsor the shirts of EPL clubs, with SBObet appearing on West Ham’s match kit and 12bet on Wigan’s. Such sponsorships are aimed at capitalising on the potential spike in in-play volumes when their sponsored clubs appear on TV coverage there of the EPL, particularly in matches against the teams with the largest fan-bases in Asia, such as Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool.
Privately owned bet365, which became the shirt sponsors of Stoke City this season, also operates a sizeable Asian-facing business, but has never publicly disclosed exactly how much of its overall revenue is generated from the region.
Malaysian casino giant Genting, which recently rebranded its land-based and online businesses in the UK under the Genting name, also sponsors Aston Villa. However, Genting does not currently operate an online businesss in Asia, due to the regulatory risk to its main land-based business of doing so, given most of Asia’s markets remain “grey” or “black” as far as online betting and gaming are concerned.