The sports betting firm MoPlay, which is a brand of Addison Global, has announced that it is insolvent. It comes in the wakes of reports that customers who had made withdrawals were not receiving their money. The UK website of MoPlay has also gone offline, simply offering a holding statement in the place of the website proper.
MoPlay’s financial troubles were first flagged up in the mainstream when Manchester United announced that they were suing the company for £9 million after they defaulted on two payments. Now that sense of monetary trouble has gone to the next stage, with the company owing money that it doesn’t have to several different affiliate partners.
Back on the eighteenth of February the company had its operating licence suspended by the Gibraltar Licensing Authority when it failed to honour outstanding debts. The day after, the United Kingdom Gambling Commission followed the lead of its Gibraltar counterparts and also suspended Addison Global’s gambling licence.
Unable to operate in major markets, the company’s financial issues were unlikely to get any better. Customers were allowed to continue to withdraw money held in their accounts initially, but by the twenty-second of February even that was no longer possible. A message on the website made reference to the ‘financial difficulties’ that the company was facing.
Hidden Terms & Conditions
As is the case with many gambling operators, Addison Global have it written in their terms and conditions that customer’s funds will not necessarily be protected in the event that the company encountered financial difficulties. The UKGC only requires betting operators to have a minimum level of protection for money in customer’s accounts.
Even some of the best-known betting sites don’t have any more than this, meaning that the money in customer’s accounts can be used to pay off debtors in the event of financial collapse. In the case of MoPlay it is Clause 9 of the terms and conditions that outlines this fact. It says:
”funds will be held separate from company funds in a mixture of bank accounts and reserve funds which we hold with our payment processors. However, if there was ever a situation where we became insolvent, your funds would not be considered separate to the other company assets and you may not receive all your funds back.”
In other words, MoPlay were not obliged to ring-fence customer funds in order to stop them from being taken as part of any insolvency agreement. If and when the business is declared bankrupt the funds of customers can then be used to pay off debtors, unless the company in question has the toughest of protections in place, which isn’t the case here.
Mass Resignations from Addison Global
The entire Addison Global management team, which is the company behind MoPlay, stepped down from their positions on the nineteenth of February, just hours before Andrew Lyman, the Commission of the Gibraltar Gaming Commission, announced that the company’s licence was being revoked. Though they apparently continued working in a voluntary capacity, it certainly added a complication to the situation.
Unpaid debts owed by the company reportedly includes more than £500,000 owed to just one affiliate partner, with many more owed on top of this. The Gibraltar Licensing Authority seemed to suggest that Addison Global had expected a large injection of cash from a shareholder but that this ultimately failed to materialise. Having projected a good amount of financial support when applying for the licences, it ultimately received none.
Speaking on this issue, Andrew Lyman said,
It is most disappointing that the promised financial support from the shareholder has failed to materialise, as the firm has not received the financial support it was projected to receive when first licensed.
It seems that that lack of support on a financial front that Addison Global and MoPlay had been promised is what has plunged the future of both into severe doubt.