IBIA members pledge $300k to help guard against sports betting related match-fixing

bet365, Betway and FanDuel are fronting the program to protect integrity in sport

The International Betting Integrity Association (IBIA) and its member operators bet365, Betway and FanDuel have pledged their commitment to a new Canada-wide athlete education program.

Established to preserve and protect integrity in sport, the program aims to address the potential threat to athletes, sport and the regulated market from sports betting related match-fixing and fraud.

A minimum figure of $300,000 over three years has been committed towards the cause by the funding partners.

Khalid Ali, CEO of IBIA, the leading integrity monitor in Ontario, commented: “IBIA is delighted that our members, such as bet365, Betway and FanDuel, are so committed to sports betting education and are prepared to invest in such an important initiative. All of the partners are excited to see the positive impact this project will have on maintaining the integrity of Canadian sport and the players themselves.

“For IBIA, sports integrity, and investing in the people that make sport happen, matters.”

The announcement on the program’s formation was made yesterday (May 30) at the “Symposium on Competition Manipulation and Gambling in Sport” in Toronto, an event co-sponsored by IBIA, bet365, Betway and FanDuel, where interested observers included the AGCO, AGLC, NBA, NHL and NFL.

The CFL was also in attendance, a pertinent observation considering the league’s own new e-learning course, ‘CFL Match Manipulation Policy’, was launched last week by The Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport (CCES).

Like IBIA, the CFL is determined to protect against the increasing threats of match manipulation to ensure peak integrity in sport.

Anthony Werkman, CEO of Betway, said: “Protecting the integrity of sport is key to what we do, so we’re delighted to be giving our commitment to working with our partners to fund and develop an effective athlete education program in Canada.

“As a global brand, we have a commitment to combating any form of betting corruption, both globally and locally, and we look forward to working with the other members to help shape a better future for both sports organizations and regulators.”

The project funding partners are in active discussions regarding a ‘delivery body’, with the intention to finalize it ‘in the coming weeks’. The program will then be rolled out over the second half of this year and is intended to include face-to-face athlete training, an e-learning portal, anonymous reporting app and awareness raising material.

Dale Hooper, GM, FanDuel Canada, said: “Maintaining the integrity of sport is essential to players’ safety and enjoyment—the pillars of what we do at FanDuel. As a newly-regulated market, we are committed to supporting educational programs in Ontario that will help increase understanding and protections for athletes, bettors, and beyond.”

Jean-Francois Reymond, IBIA’s Education Ambassador and a former professional basketball player and VP of the World Players Association, added: “Protecting the integrity of sport means protecting the integrity of athletes. Most often through a lack of awareness, it is the athletes who are risking their careers and livelihoods.

“Our objective is to build a best-in-class program for all athletes that serves to protect the integrity of Canadian sport and the careers of Canada’s athletes.”

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