Posted on: March 3, 2022, 05:59h.
Last updated on: March 3, 2022, 05:59h.
Some gaming operators are doing what they can to show their disapproval of Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine. Bet365, Parimatch and other gaming-related companies are shutting down operations in Russia, the largest CIS country.
The illegal invasion of Ukraine by Russia will go down as one of the biggest global-altering events of the 21st Century. The attack is only barely a week old and everyone is watching to see what happens next.
Condemnation of the attack is coming from all facets of operations and from most advanced governments. Companies are doing what they can, from dumping Russian vodka in the streets to shutting off bank accounts. The gaming industry is joining, as well.
Gaming Operators Choose Peace over Profit
Gaming operator bet365 is pulling out of Russia, according to a statement from the company. It announced yesterday that it is terminating its operations in the country, adding that users have until March 15 to withdraw their funds. Registration on its bet265.ru platform, as well as deposits, were already cut off.
The company didn’t specifically address the illegal war as the reason for its sudden withdrawal. It only entered the country legally a year ago after securing an agreement with Golden Bet. However, the timing of the exit hints at a connection to the invasion.
All of bet365’s partners in the country have received word of the withdrawal. The operator has asked all of them to remove the company’s branding from any and all areas it has been used. Just like it was silent on its reason for leaving, bet365 was also silent on whether it plans to return in the future.
Parimatch has made a similar move. In addition to giving around US$1 million to Ukraine to fight the war, it’s pulling out of Russia. Betring owns the rights to the company’s brand in the country, but will need to find a new source of income.
It, like bet365, has asked its partners and other associates in Russia to quit using its name and to remove all branding material that they use. This will include the removal of branding linked to Spain’s LaLiga, which Parimatch represents in Russia.
Statscore is joining them. The sports data provider will no longer offer stats and updates for sports tournaments in Russia or Belarus. The company is tied to BtoBET, FSB, Every Matrix, Boyle Sports and more.
Gaming Industry Can Do More
A new initiative hopes to find support for Ukraine from all levels of the gaming industry. A GoFundMe launch, Gaming Industry for Ukraine, wants to raise £250,000 (US$334,375) to help displaced Ukrainian citizens.
The initiative began earlier this week and, as of Wednesday morning, had received £70,982 (US$94,938) from 111 contributors. All proceeds go to the Ukraine Crisis Fundraiser, a program run by the Choose Love charity.
The charity isn’t the only target for the gaming community. LeoVegas has given over $50,000 so far to the Red Cross. ATG, the Swedish betting and gaming operator, has given $206,200.
Clarion Gaming is using its powerful voice, as well. It announced that no Russian or Belarussian businesses will be able to participate in its events, including the upcoming ICE London.