Advertising and sponsorship deal

Entain and the Australian Hotels Association ink agreement to promote Neds and Ladbrokes at NSW hotels

AHA NSW's CEO John Whelan (left); and Dean Shannon, Entain Australia's CEO.
Reading time 2:40 min

Sports betting and gaming group Entain has signed a new long-term advertising and sponsorship agreement with the Australian Hotels Association (AHA), allowing it to promote its online betting brands Neds and Ladbrokes at New South Wales (NSW) pubs.

AHA NSW CEO John Whelan said this new agreement would bring real benefits to members. "For decades now, many NSW hotels have operated PubTABs for Tabcorp at a significant loss - primarily due to high Sky Channel and EBT (betting terminal) fees. In country NSW it’s even worse, with the majority of country pubs currently running their PubTAB at a loss. Today’s partnership with a world leader in Entain will finally give NSW hotels competition and choice."

On the latest deal, Entain Australia CEO Dean Shannon remarked: "We applaud AHA NSW for their vision in agreeing to work with us to bring this partnership to life. While there is still value in more traditional cash retail wagering, there is a highly engaged audience of punters who like to go down to their local for a bet with their mates, and how they do that has evolved."

"This partnership recognizes that evolution and is about offering choice for the benefit of AHA NSW members and their patrons. There is no reason why traditional cash wagering can’t co-exist in a hotel, alongside an advertising sponsorship arrangement with Entain that promotes the digital offering of one of our leading brands," he added . "Entain recognizes the opportunity for us to connect and communicate with the audience inside hotels is valuable and we intend to support the operators of those venues, just as we would any other advertising channel."

Entain Australia CEO Dean Shannon

Whelan noted that AHA NSW is committed to supporting Tabcorp’s exclusive retail license in NSW. "Retail wagering in our venues is extremely important, with NSW pubs generating about half the current national PubTAB turnover," he stated. "Tabcorp has a long-term exclusive retail license in NSW and, of course, we will continue to support TAB retail in-venue."

Wheelan also noted that the deal followed the way in which hotel patrons had already started to change their habits: "Our patrons are already exposed to advertising from corporate bookmakers on our pub TV screens, on the radio, in newspapers, and on their phones."

"Increasingly people are choosing to bet on the races or the footy on their phones - not in the traditional retail environment. Today, most people betting on their phone in a NSW pub are placing a bet with Ladbrokes, Neds, or another corporate bookmaker," he stated.

Both Shannon and Whelan added that support for the NSW racing scene – thoroughbred, harness, and greyhound was another goal of the partnershipWhelan outlined that there are ‘currently around 600 NSW pubs without Sky Channel or TAB wagering’, sharing his view that the Entain deal will make it more affordable for venues to promote all three codes of racing.

Shannon added: "Our business is a proud Australian-based organization that employs more than 750 people across our offices in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, and Darwin. Over the next year, we expect to return more than $500 million in taxes, fees, and sponsorships to Government and the racing industry nationally."

"We have consistently demonstrated our commitment to going above and beyond in our support of racing through our long-term sponsorship of racing clubs in NSW, Victoria, Tasmania, and the NT. Off the back of our investment in NSW hotels, you will see further investment from Entain directly into the racing ecosystem in NSW over the next 12 months," the executive said.

Lastly, Whelan said he was pleased Entain was focused on promoting the local pub punters club – part of the social fabric of hotels for more than 100 years. "Its great Entain is committed to promoting its Ladbrokes Mates Mode in our pubs – there will no longer be a need for the blackboard behind the bar to register the week’s selections."

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