ACCC greenlights sale. “ACTTAB has not been a vigorous competitor”

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THE Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has given the go ahead to Tabcorp buying the ACT’s legacy betting agency ACTTAB.

The ACCC’s public review focused on whether, as a result of the proposed acquisition, Tabcorp would be able to offer punters less favorable odds, increase its commission fees or otherwise degrade the quality of its wagering products. The ACCC also considered whether there would be any impact on the supply of ‘pooling services’.

“The ACCC considered that ACTTAB has not been a vigorous competitor in wagering markets and the proposed acquisition would only result in a marginal increase in market concentration,” ACCC Commissioner Dr Jill Walker said.

While Tabcorp and ACTTAB both offer pari-mutuel and fixed odds wagering products to punters nationally via the telephone and internet, there is limited direct competitive overlap in their local retail outlets. They each have exclusive licences to supply off-course wagering services in their respective ‘home’ states – ACTTAB in the ACT, and Tabcorp in Victoria and NSW.

“The ACCC determined that Tabcorp would continue to be competitively constrained by the corporate bookmakers and other state-based operators,” Dr Walker said.

Additionally, the ACCC considers the proposed acquisition will not have a material impact on the national supply of pooling services in Australia.

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