The Western Australian pub industry has backed Tabcorp in the race to take over the Western Australia (WA) TAB, which is being privatised by the WA government.
Tabcorp has emerged as one of three major players in the hunt for the WA TAB, along with Sportsbet – owned by Paddy Power Betfair – and Stars Group company BetEasy.
The WA government announced the sale of the TAB back in October and is pushing ahead with the privatisation, which could be worth up to $500 million.￼
But speaking about the sale over the weekend, a representative of the WA pubs industry said that the in deciding on the winning bid, the state government should consider reputation and experience as well as the financial aspect. Bradley Woods, the Chief Executive of the Western Australia branch of the Australian Hotels Association, said the government shouldn’t gamble on an unknown operator:
“In our mind there can really only be one successful tenderer from an industry point of view, and that’s Tabcorp, because they have the runs on the board already.”
Tabcorp, which merged with Tatts Group earlier in the year, operates retail betting businesses across Australia, but not currently in WA and is considered the front runner by many analysists. They face stiff competition from Paddy Power Betfair and Stars Group, but according to Woods, responsible gambling should be at the forefront of the WA government’s thinking. Many of the corporate bookmakers operating in Australia – including Paddy Power Betfair – have earned negative publicity for a perceived lack of social responsibility in their business practices.
Image sourced from Pixabay.