The Aussie’s seem to get it. At least Tasmania does.
In our post below we mentioned the High Court in Australia voted that shutting out places like Betfair was unconstitutional. They were finally allowed to compete. The reaction was expected and the arguments were promoted with vigor: You can bet a horse to lose, it will crush racing, and more of the same. The one argument I found quite funny was “they are now allowed to advertise racing all over Australia”. Say what? I loved that one. Racing is upset that a reseller can advertise their product. Hmmm, can you say backwards business? If you were making lemonade and a kid on the street selling it bought TV commercials, at no cost to you to advertise your product I bet you would be jumping for joy. Not in racing.
Now I see that here across the pond, Stan Bergstein weighed in with his thoughts. I normally agree with Stan; but this time I certainly do not. Give his column a read if you are interested, he has many of the same arguments we hear from old time racing. For example, the “destroy racing as we know it” line. We all know racing has been destroying itself for 30 years with the status quo, and looking for protection rather than competing.
The argument from us here on the blog, and punters all over the world is that this opens up racing to a whole new market. This is good for the long-term growth of the sport. We have given many examples about how this achieves this, and almost daily we see more and more. How about this. This is exactly what happens when you entice people to bet your product and work with, and not against, a world-class gambling operation who scratches and claws to grow their business. This was announced a couple of days ago, as the High Courts opened up betting markets: Betfair in Australia has forged a partnership with Tote.
Betting firm Betfair has taken another major step in its quest to revolutionise gaming in Australia after becoming an online agency for TOTE Tasmania.
Betfair's presence in the Apple Isle has already been a major boost for Tasmanian racing, with the latest agreement meaning Betfair will distribute the Tasmanian group's betting products to its international client base.
"We'll be distributing TOTE Tasmania products to our customers worldwide," Betfair corporate and business affairs director Andrew Twaits said.
What this means in layman terms is simple. They will be showing racing on their interface just like they always have, but with this partnership they will be offering (right in the same interface) a link so customers can bet right into pools with WPS and exotics. So, if you can’t get a price in betfair, or see an exactor or tri you like, and you want to bet, just click the button and bet away. This is awesome. Can you imagine if we had that here and we actually embrace this? Could you imagine if the title was “Betfair and HPI Link Up”. That would mean Woodbine Harness would have a specific link on betfair allowing 1.1 million customers from all over the world to directly bet into our pools. How is that bad for racing? Someone please tell me.
From another story in Melbourne about the new partnership:
"We will be giving a one-stop shop for punters. This will complement our product. Punters can bet on the exotics or, if they see better value, they can bet win and place," he said.
"For every dollar which is bet via our website, some of it will go to the Tasmanian racing industry and some will find its way back to Tabcorp via their agreement with Tote Tasmania."
Tote Tasmania chief executive Craig Coleman estimated the move could add "10s of millions of dollars" to its turnover.
"What that means is that Betfair customers will be able to bet directly on TOTE Tasmania products directly through their Betfair account."
"There will be a single log-in, a single interface and a single account, so no transferring of funds. The convenience factor that we're announcing today is compelling."
"Betfair already has more than one million registered customers in the UK which it can market Australian racing to immediately."
Ok racing, can you please tell me again that this is bad for us and we should be shutting people like this out at every turn? As new evidence mounts and mounts, I think we all know the answer.
The monopoly is dead. The sooner we come to terms with that, and use these new 21st century delivery mechanisms to grow, the better off we'll all be.