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the shambles of Sports Alive continues to unravel

The only good thing to come out of this utter schemozzle is that laws should be tightened and hopefully enforced in future. But then again, that's what was supposed to happen with the banks....

Tote chief snubs $14m claim

The liquidator of failed sports betting company Sports Alive has demanded $14 million compensation from TOTE Tasmania chief executive Craig Coleman and Victorian directors.

In a letter early this month, liquidator Hamish MacKinnon demanded the money be paid by December 14.

It is understood Mr Coleman has refused to pay and the TOTE Tasmania board has refused to discuss the situation.

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The letter alleged Mr Coleman had a conflict of interest in simultaneously being chairman of Sports Alive and chief executive of TOTE.

In a letter to all Sports Alive directors, Mr MacKinnon alleged: Sports Alive was trading while insolvent from June 2008, including the period under Mr Coleman's chairmanship. Sports Alive was in breach of the Race and Sports Betting Act by failing to keep punters' money separate from administrative funds. Directors had breached their duties and had failed to act in good faith in the best interests of the company.


For allowing this to go on for three years, the ACT Gaming and Racing Commission should be criminally liable... but they'll weasel out of it, like a typical pointless bureaucracy. Any other state or territory in Australia would have flagged this very early and barred them from trading while insolvent. No betting licence in the ACT is worth the paper it is written on anymore.

Comments

  1. Hi Scott,

    Just catching up with your blog, and like to comment about this post. The ACT Commission may have been inept, but other bodies in Australia are not totally vigilant either. For example, in Betfair's current appeal to the High Court they have argued, amongst other points, that given their revenues are capped at 5% net commission by the Tasmanian Gaming Commission, to have to pay Racing NSW's 1.5% turnover fee would account for most of their revenue, thus grossly unjust. This argument appears continually in both Betfair's application and appeal to the High Court.
    However, as you know Betfair's revenues are not capped at 5% net commission as some, not all, do pay the PC. The PC of between 20%-60% is considerably greater than the claimed normal 5% commission. Are the Tasmanian Gaming Commission turning a blind eye to this charge on some accounts?
    What I would love answered by a journalist such as yourself is have Betfair misled the High Court by claiming revenues of no more than 5% (it's there in black and white - literally - in the transcripts) or have Betfair breached their licensing agreement by charging the PC to some accounts?

    Regards, John.

    ReplyDelete
  2. sorry John, don't see the relevance. Having dealt with the TGC with a previous firm, I doubt there's anything they don't have their bunch of meddling bureaucrats involved in.

    A bookie falling over because a govt body was negligent in ensuring the business was solvent and punter funds were safe is not remotely similar to a debate over the legalities of an unpopular charge - it's like comparing the safety of an airline to another firm charging for excessive baggage fees...

    ReplyDelete

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