Betfair to consider appeal

Betfair will consider further options of appeal after a Federal Court ruling in favour of Racing NSW’s right to charge a product fee based on turnover.

The online betting exchange and corporate bookmaker Sportsbet fought the fee saying it was unfair and charges should be made based on gross revenue.

Betfair Australasia chief executive Andrew Twaits said his organisation would consider its options which include seeking leave to appeal to the High Court or putting its case to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).

“It’s another disappointing result for us,” Twaits said.

“It’s a great day for Tabcorp which has been running the case anyway.

“We do think we have a strong claim and the fee is manifestly unfair.

“We have a couple of options. One is to run a fresh case on appeal.

“Another option is to go to the ACCC with some compelling evidence of anti-competitive conduct.”

The race fields legislation enabling Racing NSW to charge the fee was introduced in September 2008.

Corporate bookmakers and Betfair have paid the fee pending the outcome of the court process with Racing NSW holding the money in the event it lost the case.

It has now collected around $120 million which it says will be used for the benefit of all race clubs around the state.