The New Zealand government has approved a new long-term strategic partnership between operating giant Entain and local provider Tab NZ
Inked in March of this year 2023, the deal calls for global provider Entain to support Tab NZ betting and broadcast services for the New Zealand market for a massive 25-year period.
Change at the Top
The announcement was precipitated by the departure of Mike Tod from his post as chief executive at the top of Tab NZ.
Tab NZ Chairman Mark Stewart cited a study playing a key role in bringing this historic deal to fruition:
The approval delivers on a key recommendation from the Messara Report (2018) and we are thrilled that the Minister for Racing has approved the strategic partnering arrangement.
Stewart also cited competition from unregulated operators and the general global economic climate as key factors in the relevance and urgency of the deal in calling this moment “historical” for the growth of Tab NZ.
The deal enables the Tab NZ Board to guarantee prompt reinvestment in funds disbursed to New Zealand’s racing codes over the next five years at specifically defined rates providing significant annual increases.
This includes a minimum level of disbursement for 2023-4 of NZ$170m (£86m/€99m/US$107m), for a 36% increase from the current financial year, and rising to $175m in 2024-5, $180m in 2025-6, $185m in 2026-7, and $200m for 2027-8.
National Sporting Payout
New Zealand’s national sporting organisations receive an initial $15m lump sum disbursement to be paid out over three years. A separate $500,000 ring-fenced investment earmarked for women’s sports will be disbursed to Sport NZ.
Harm Minimisation Investment
An additional upfront $5m payment will be invested in harm minimisation--divided across a $4m investment in expediting a facial recognition technology rollout to 100 Tab venues and a $1m grant fund for gambling harm research.
Entain Spokesperson Speaks
Entain Australia CEO Dean Shannon had much to say about the generous distribution the unique deal opens the door for, calling the 25-year strategic partnering arrangement a “gamechanger for sports betting in New Zealand,” with his organisation particularly pleased with the “significant financial benefits” the deal will provide to New Zealand’s main sporting authorities.
With new blood Nick Roberts installed to replace Tod, this epochal long-term strategic agreement offers the entire industry a unique solution for immediate re-investment of iGaming proceeds in social programming, with Entain the big private winner who has secured the supply contract, which ensures the emergence and expansion of Tab NZ.